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Menu/Wine Pairing suggestions


LoneSavant
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Working as a private chef, I have a dinner coming up for a new client who is requesting a modern asian-fusion tasting menu.

I am a devout traditionalist, with a background in french pastry, and hands-on study in Italy...to me, fusion cooking is blasphemy. Like asking Van Gogh to try using an airbrush (not that I'm that good, or airbrushing is that bad, but you get the picture...).

Regardless, I've come up with an Asian-French menu that I'd love a few reviews on, and more than anything I'd love some wine-pairing suggestions. I've got my own ideas, but I'd love to hear a few others!

THE MENU

(for 15)

Cold bisque of chinese chives and chickweed with Sake creme fraiche and radish sprouts

Lobster fritters on green tea soba (cold mirin dressing)

Warm spinach salad with black sesame and blood orange segments

Crepes with fresh plums, honey, and roast duck

Pork Shoulder with dark soy, shiitake mushroom, and fried shallots

Demitasse of Lemon gelee with lotus root

Green tea tofu cheesecake with candied hibiscus petals and melon seed brittle

Five spice flourless chocolate cake with caramelized banana and cashew gelato

Torren O'Haire - Private Chef, FMSC Tablemaster, Culinary Scholar

"life is a combination of magic and pasta"

-F. Fellini

"We should never lose sight of a beautifully conceived meal."

-J. Child

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I'd go with some good Alsace whites, Riesling and/or pinot gris for the lesser spiced dishes and Gewürztraminer for the heavier spiced ones.

Some good quality cold sake would be nice as well.

A really peppery Rhone red might work with the pork shoulder.

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Oh by the way...

To make things even more frustrating, my hosts greatly prefer reds over whites--I told them that with at least a few of the courses whites would be all but unavoidable, but overall I need to go red-heavy with the menu...

I thought about sake for the first course (with the soup) and a Madiera for the last dessert, but i'm not 100%.

Torren O'Haire - Private Chef, FMSC Tablemaster, Culinary Scholar

"life is a combination of magic and pasta"

-F. Fellini

"We should never lose sight of a beautifully conceived meal."

-J. Child

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh by the way...

To make things even more frustrating, my hosts greatly prefer reds over whites--I told them that with at least a few of the courses whites would be all but unavoidable, but overall I need to go red-heavy with the menu...

I thought about sake for the first course (with the soup) and a Madiera for the last dessert, but i'm not 100%.

Those are some tough hosts.

Pinot Noir/Burgundy with the duck crepes, I think. I'll stick with the Rhone for the pork shoulder unless it was smoked somewhat and then I'd think zinfandel. The others are tough. Citrus (blood oranges, lemon gelee) is hard on reds.

Let's hear it for Asian beer.

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Oh by the way...

To make things even more frustrating, my hosts greatly prefer reds over whites--I told them that with at least a few of the courses whites would be all but unavoidable, but overall I need to go red-heavy with the menu...

I thought about sake for the first course (with the soup) and a Madiera for the last dessert, but i'm not 100%.

Those are some tough hosts.

Pinot Noir/Burgundy with the duck crepes, I think. I'll stick with the Rhone for the pork shoulder unless it was smoked somewhat and then I'd think zinfandel. The others are tough. Citrus (blood oranges, lemon gelee) is hard on reds.

Let's hear it for Asian beer.

Verrrrry interesting...

Just for arguments' sake, which beers would you pair with what? (I'm a big beer fan, but not versed in asian beers at all)

Torren O'Haire - Private Chef, FMSC Tablemaster, Culinary Scholar

"life is a combination of magic and pasta"

-F. Fellini

"We should never lose sight of a beautifully conceived meal."

-J. Child

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There are many good Asian beers that pair well with food. Japan's Sapporo, Vietnam's 33 (Asian + French influence), Thailand's Sing-Ha. They are somewhat similar with a touch of sweetness and all work well with the flavors of Asian cuisines.

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Or any of the Hitachino line of Nest beers, which are an interesting beer/sake crossbreed, and have a touch of sweetness, similar to many Belgian brews. There's even a Red Rice Ale, to keep things skewing "red". But the flagship, Hitachino Nest White, styled essentially as a Belgian witbier, has orange peel and coriander in the mix, so that'd work very well with the spinach/orange course.

Christopher

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