We survived the holidays in our MAJOR construction zone, thanks to great friends and family. Let’s just say it was a Charlie Brown kind of Christmas, complete with a pathetic fake tree.
Gourmet Round Up #1
We had the pleasure of dining at RN74 and Michael Mina’s new space (at his old space of Aqua). While RN74 left us wanting more, Michael Mina’s was solid. So much so, that despite the price tag, I can’t wait to return and have the lobster pot pie. With the first course we had Marisa Cuomo Falanghina Ravello, Costa D’Amalfi 2009 from Italy and it carried the appetizers with ease and paired well with the crab tortellini with lobster sauce. Next, the sommelier, Jenna Boyer, steered us to the Can Blau, Montsant 2008 from Spain. This workhorse of a wine paired well with the lobster pot pie, the rack of lamb and the crispy fish two ways. It just goes to show you that you don’t need to reach for the most expensive wines on the list nor are you limited to white with fish. Jenna then poured us a Royal Tokaji le Puttonyos “Betsek” 2000 from Hungary. The citrus butterscotch notes with pleasant acidity worked with the lighter desserts but not the chocolates. None the less, the dessert wine had amazing complexity and could have been dessert itself.
Gourmet Round Up #2
My lovely husband knows me well. While our remodel should have been a present itself, he surprised me on Christmas Eve with a white truffle. I quickly whipped up an upscale mac and cheese (fettuccine with Robliatta cheese) and shaved the truffles atop for our first course that night. Our white Côtes du Rhônes paired marvelously with the whole dish. If you ever have a chance to indulge in white truffles, here is my approach for a wine pairing. You need a wine that doesn’t mind playing second fiddle and being a backdrop. So first off, an aromatic wine is out... so no Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, or Gewürztraminer on its own. Second, you want some body to fully give the truffle support. In our case the Marsanne & Roussane was perfect amount of body and acid level. Next time, I might try a Bordeaux Blanc or white Burgundy.
Gourmet Round Up #3
We enjoyed many meals at close friends: A tequila/tamale feast, a crab dinner and an elegant Christmas dinner. We are so blessed to have so many great friends and even more blessed to have friends who love to entertain and know how to cook!
So, 2011 will be a great year (once we are past the remodel) and I look forward to sharing more wine and culinary moments with you. Don’t forget to friend us on Facebook and share some of your wine and culinary moments on our wall!
Angela Camacho, a certified sommelier and author of a best selling wine tool, The Wine Wheel®, shares her obsession with wine and food.