Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

5th Annual summer party


Chef Fowke
 Share

Recommended Posts

I host an annual dinner for local members of the food industry, food suppliers, wine makers and wine suppliers. I have chosen to serve Cote de Rhone wines.

I have always served big Californian Cabs, etc at these functions. I love Oregon Pinot Noir.

But the reality in Canada is that you can get great French wines, cheap. Forgetting about politics I think the value is in the south of France.

My education is limited in this region. I know it is easy to go out and buy a $80 bottle (retail) of French wines. I would like to find obscure, different wines from this region.

Can anyone direct me towards 'the next great thing' or great, unappreciated classics coming out of the Cote de Rhone?

Amuse-gueules

A l'envers Tarte de Tomate

Terrine de pomme de Foie Gras

Nicoise rôti de Morue de Ling

Cromesquis (Foie gras et truffle perdent)

Tarte aux asperges

Le thym A Battu les Jambes de Grenouille avec Aioli d'Ail

Les Escargots d'ail ‘Petite Gris’ Provencal

Entrees

Le Faisan de Ferme de Aldergrove avec les olives de Nicoiseet les Prunes de Okanagan

Confit de lapin avec Provencal d'Herbe et l'Huile d'olives extra-Vierge

Le Chargement français de Saucisson avec Moutarde de Meaux

La cocotte A Rôti ‘Libre A Couru’ le Poulet avec Lardon et Germaine de St de Sauce

Cassoulet de Saucisson de Merguez

Desserts

oeur un la Crème

Tarte au Citron

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I host an annual dinner for local members of the food industry, food suppliers, wine makers and wine suppliers. I have chosen to serve Cote de Rhone wines.

I have always served big Californian Cabs, etc at these functions. I love Oregon Pinot Noir.

But the reality in Canada is that you can get great French wines, cheap. Forgetting about politics I think the value is in the south of France.

My education is limited in this region. I know it is easy to go out and buy a $80 bottle (retail) of French wines. I would like to find obscure, different wines from this region.

Can anyone direct me towards 'the next great thing' or great, unappreciated classics coming out of the Cote de Rhone?

Amuse-gueules

A l'envers Tarte de Tomate

Terrine de pomme de Foie Gras

Nicoise rôti de Morue de Ling

Cromesquis (Foie gras et truffle perdent)

Tarte aux asperges

Le thym A Battu les Jambes de Grenouille avec Aioli d'Ail

Les Escargots d'ail ‘Petite Gris’ Provencal

Entrees

Le Faisan de Ferme de Aldergrove avec les olives de Nicoiseet les Prunes de Okanagan

Confit de lapin avec Provencal d'Herbe et l'Huile d'olives extra-Vierge

Le Chargement français de Saucisson avec Moutarde de Meaux

La cocotte A Rôti ‘Libre A Couru’ le Poulet avec Lardon et Germaine de St de Sauce

Cassoulet de Saucisson de Merguez

Desserts

oeur un la Crème

Tarte au Citron

These all should be avail at your local L.C.B.O. (at least I've seen/purchased a few there) and under your budget

Bouchard Aîné et Fils 2001 Beaujolais Supérieur

Guigal Hermitage White 1999

Henri Bourgeois 2001 Les Baronnes Sancerre

Léon Beyer 2001 Riesling Réserve

Caves des Papes 2001 Côtes du Ventoux

Château de Gourgazaud 2001 Minervois

Château La Nerthe

2000 CNDP White

Alain Graillot

1999 Crozes-Hermitage

Some 98-99 Gigondas

I would query some of the winemakers for some suggestions

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:huh: Rather than listing specific wines, I hope I might help by listing some geographic suggestions. For the amuses, I would suggest a white nothern rhone wine, marsanne based. The big ol cooperative cave de Tain L'ermitage makes a brilliant one perfect to pair with all that vegetal stuff but also perfect with fois (it does not always have to be sweet folks). Also sometimes you might find a dry delicious sparkling wine coming out of St Peray. these bottles should be found for under 20 bucks although finding them might take some investigation. Do not forget about Tavel, that southern Rhone AOC famous for rose. Rose is famous for helping out with vegetable amuses although it might be a tad alcoholic for the amphibians, mollusks and salt cod. perhaps you could do a combination of Tavel and marsanne.

For the entrees. You could do one wine and cover everything or break up the menu into two sections. section 1) chicken rabbit and pheasant. 2)sausage dishes. For section one you could use a grenache based red ( dependent upon sauces) of a softer style such as Lirac. I might stay away froom those stony soiled old vine CDR villages for these. But section 2 could do with a dry village level CDR such as Cairanne (negociant Le Sec makes an awesome one very cheap), Vacqueryas, or Seguret. Perhaps you could even find a delicious but inexpensive Crozes hermitage (all syrah) from up north to add a smokey element to the sausage dishes.

For desserts (what is an ouer again???) I would suggest a Muscat de beaumes de Venise, fortified muscat, sweet but not overly cloying. You could maybe entertain banyuls (fortified grenache) or rivesaltes but I do not think these are appropriate choices given your menu.

over it

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Vieux Telegraph, both red and white.

However, how can you serve Asparagus and Pheasant at the same dinner? One must be frozen or otherwise preserved.

Pheasant is from October to Jan; Asparagus is April-June. Serving both together is a gastronomic nonsense, or a lack or resepct for the ingredients.

Edited by jackal10 (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is there any way of letting us know which wines are available to you? Does the BC liquor board have a website? Can you obtain special imports?

Also, how much do you plan to spend per bottle?

There are lots of great wines and wine bargins coming out of the Rhone and southern France these days, so reccos won't be a problem once we have an idea what you have access to. Carema has given you some good general suggestions. One idea off the top of my head: how about featuring the red, white and pink line-up from a single estate? Coudoulet de Beaucastel's RW&P Côtes-du-Rhônes are widely available, generally affordable (unlike their big brothers, alas) and, most importantly, delicious. They'd also go well with your menu.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am not really concerned about the price. Everyone is bringing a couple of bottles to taste so I am only on the hook for a few bottles. I would like to keep it under $100 a bottle (CAN), I am paying for all the food and the fresh goose liver is going for $94 a pound.

More importantly, I am a Chef who loves wine but does not know as much as I would like. At the party there will be a lot of 'wine geeks', beverage managers and restaurant people. I would like to produce something that is unique and interesting.

So far I have picked up a 1990 Chateau Saint-Pierre (Saint Julienne, Domaines Henri Martin) and a 1998 Chateau Neuf du Pape, Beaucastel.

BC Wine link:

http://www.bcliquorstores.com/en/products?...mber=1&search=1

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While they are not "obscure" I'd say my favorite of the Cotes du Rhone (I'm being picky and ruling out wines not explicitly from Cotes du Rhone in this case) producers are Tardieu-Laurent, Coudoulet de Beaucastel, Chateau de Fonsalette, Guigel and Domaine Gramenon.

For Cotes du Rhone you'll probably want to be looking for wines from 1998 or (perhaps) 1995. While 2000 yielded stunning quality, you'll have to pick and choose to find wines that are ready to drink. Obviously, if money truly is no object then you could go and pick up some truly great Cotes du Rhone from either 1989 or 1990. These wines should be perfect now and were from profound years.

Wines you might want to look for that people may not have had would include the 2000 Cotes du Rhone-Villages from Louis Bernard, the 1999 Domaine Santa Duc Cote du Rhone Les Quatre Terre or (for something more "old school") the 1998 Cotes du Rhone Tradition from Barton & Guestier.

You should try to find the 1999 Guigal Cotes du Rhone Rose as well. Clean, balanced with a medium-light body -- perfect for pairing with difficult dishes.

If you're willing to extend beyond "Cotes du Rhones" then I would second FG's suggestion - though I think I would go with an older bottle (at least the 1998) as that particular vintage probably won't fully peak until around 2010 or so. I would guess the Sizeranne would be very nice with the Lapin. I'd also look at some of the other Chapoutier wines - his wines are consistently interesting. I recently had a bottle of the 1999 Chapoutier Cote-Rotie La Mordoree and, while it is not at its peak yet, it was and will be a mind-blowing wine.

If this is "blind" I'd throw in (as a spoiler) Sean Thackery's Orion (look for the 1995 if you can).

Bernard Chave Tete de Cuvee (1999 or 2000) is an excellent value wine, and would pair well with a number of the dishes (it might even hold up to the Merguez sausage.

The 1998 Chateauneuf-du-Pape from Chateau Cabrieres is lovely, incredibly pure in taste. If you can find the 1999 Domaine du Vieux Telegraphe Chateauneuf-du-Pape La Crau it's a fabulous wine. It will still be rather tight and minerally, but with decanting will be a lovely experience. The 1998 is equally good, and more open and ready to drink. I also recently opened a bottle of the 1999 Domaine du Pegau Chateauneuf-du-Pape Reserve and, while still a bit closed initially, once it opened it was a glorious wine -- something to serve to bigots who think Chateaneuf-du-Pape is inferior "rustic" wines.

The Jean-Michel Gerin Cote-Rotie Les Grandes Places is one of my favorite wines from the Rhone Valley of all time. Incredible. Soft, exposive fruits, noticable flower and oak notes - the 1999 should be ready to drink now. Far more affordable, though just now coming into its prime, is the 1998 Guigal Cote-Rotie Brue et Blonde.

For a Gigondas look for the 1998 Le Grand Montmirail from Domaine Brusset. Like liquid velvet - but with the tanins needed to get you through aging. Also the 1999 Domaine de Cabasse. A brilliant example of both the style and the terroir. Incredible winemaking. Finally, the Domaine Santa Duc from 1998 is brilliant and stunning.

For a Cornas, the 1997 from A. Clape is staggeringly good. It may be hard to source, but if you can get some this is a great illustration of the terroir of the Rhone. If you can find any of the 1999 Domaine Courbis Cornas Champelrouse then you should buy them up, serve all but two, keep one for yourself and send me one (grin).

With the Foie I would look for the Condrieu Essence d'Automne from Yves Cuilleron. Strong preserved fruit flavours and honey sweetness will balance well with the fats. He also makes another botrytized wine that I love - the Condrieu Ayguets (harder to find in my experience). Both are incredible.

A dream white is the 1998 Hermitage White from JL Chave. Hard to find - but stunning. Absolutely world class. Additional whites from Rhone that are worth considering would include the 1998 Vernay Condrieus Coteaux de Vernon and Les Terrasses de L'Empire. Also worth seeking out is the 1996 Hermitage White from JL Grippat.

fanatic...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While I love some of the suggestions, it seemed like the BC store didn't have all that much. It did have Vieux Telegraph, but my experience with that is it get's closed awfully quick, the 98 was disappointing until just last month . The 2000 would be great for the cellar.

The wine that jumps out at me on the list are Guigal 99 Cote Rotie Ampuis; everyone says that's the bomb. And the critic I like in the Rhone set's the 2000 Clos de Papes CdP in a class above the others on the site.. Both are in the upper class of these great vintages. Of course, they aren't ready, but it looks like you'll have to choose great wines that aren't ready, or fruity wines that are delicious (but not at the level of your 98 Beaucastel).

You can't go wrong with 2000 Les Cailloux or Vieux Donjon CdPs either.

For a white; I think you can do well with the St. Cosme 2000 Condrieu. I think Condrieu is a great food wine (the 99 Chapoutier may be past it's prime, Condriue fades quickly).

I'm a big fan of Beaurenard, especially their Cuvee Boisrenard (top end CdP) and Rasteau (top notch CdR). There were two prices shown for the 2000 Beaurenard CdP leading me to wonder whether one of them wasn't the Boisrenard. I haven't tried my 2000 red CdP yet, but I have tried the Beaurenard Boisrenard White, and it was superb. The 2000 Beaurenard Rasteau would be my backup for those extra few bottles (you need some "drinkers" too).

Beaume de Venise is a classic accompaniement to fois gras. The Jaboulet should be very nice.

The only wine with some age that I noticed is the Mont-Redon 1995 CdP. Anyone have this before?

beachfan

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you for all the help! I cannot believe all the information I have gained this week. I will not be online this weekend, I have to get ready for the function.

I will save every bottle of wine and the tasting information on the food and will post it on Tuesday.

Again, thank you for the help! I am really excited (and a lot poorer) about the wines I will be drinking on Monday.

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The fifth annual dinner party has come and gone and I really need to thank everyone at eGullet for his or her contribution. The food, as expected, turned out great. With the exception of the snails the food turned out as I had planned. The snails were live ‘petite gris’ that took an additional four hours to clean and prep (the day before the party). I am more familiar with the larger Bourgogne snails that are easier to clean and have a more pronounced flavour. Maybe more on that in a separate thread…

The wine was the highlight of the day. I have gathered the twenty bottles that I enjoyed the most (thank god for the new Ridel tasting glass that only holds one ounce; I didn’t have to spit!). The following is in the order of preference (I am a novice so I am writing the description as it is written on the label, sorry if I get regions/growers mixed).

1. Chateau Saint-Pierre 1990 (St Julien) I cannot remember a better wine. The flavour was in my mouth for a full five minutes. This wine changed in complexity every half hour. We opened it and tried it over a five hour period.

2. Clos Des Papes 2000 (Chateauneuf-du-Pape) (Magnum) I will apologize to everyone French but I loved this because it reminded me of the very best of the big Californian Cabs. This was amazing and the large format bottle was a lot of fun. We had some left over after dinner and we smoked a couple of Cohibas and the wine held up to the smoke!!

3. Pouilly-Fuisse 1990 (Bourgogne J.J. Vincent) This wine was a fresh and lively as if it had been bottled yesterday. This wsa the perfect wine to crack at 11:30am.

4. Pouilly-Fuisse 2000 (Bourgogne Joseph Burrier) This wine almost sparkled in the glass. It was tamed by the solid butter finish.

5. Cairanne 1997 (Cotes du Rhone Village) (Magnum) For everyday consumption this would be my favorite wine of the day. It held up really well to all the food.

6. Aloxe-Corton 1995 (Cote-D’Or Comte Senard) I found this to be very unique. I am still not sure if I liked it but I went back for seconds and am going to purchase some more. I think the flavour was raspberry-grapefruit-vanilla-tobacco,

7. Domaine Rabasse Charavin 1996 (Cote du Rhone) (Magnum) the best $70 magnum I have ever tasted. Extremely smooth with everything French I was looking for.

8. Domaine Raspail-Ay 1999 (Gigondas) Why do I love Gigondas so much? This was the best buy for $30can. It was definitely ready to drink and it paired well with the rabbit and pheasant.

9. Vacqueyras 2000 (Rhone Feraud – Brunel) Another wine under $30can that was great to drink. Nothing overly complex; just pure enjoyment to drink while sitting in the sun with a full belly of food.

10. Silver Oak 1987 (Alexander Valley) Not French. Should be closer to the top but it was a French theme party. I hope there is more of this on the market. The tannins are gone and the fruit is beautiful.

11. Meursault-Genevrieres Premier Cru 2000 (Latour-Giraud Cote-d’Or) Extremely buttery. I am not an expert but I do believe this will be number one on this list in a few years when it rounds out more.

12. Caves des Papes 2000 (Eleve en Foudre Dechene) One of the most sophisticated bottles of the day. The content was clean with great, mature, oak for a bottle only three years old.

13. Riesling 2001 (DR Loosen) This was a great refresher.

14. Les Hauts de Montmiral 2000 (Gigondas) Another favorite that I will put into my cellar. This had good alcohol with a rich flavour. Five years and it will be at the top of the list.

15. Croze-Hermitage 2000 (Caves des Papes) This is on the list because I didn’t get to try it. Everyone ‘guzzled’ this bottle in seconds.

16. Montirius 2000 (Gigondas) Very good flavour. Great bottle.

17. Stag’s Leap Petite Sirah 1998 (Napa Valley) My crazy friends. Bringing a Californian to a French Theme party. It was extremely tasty and much appreciated. I though 1998 was a poor year in Napa? This wine was full and complex.

18. E.Guigal Rose 2000 (Cotes-du-Rhone) I would have never thought to have brought a Rose. It was a real treat after lunch and before the cheese. I am going to keep a bottle in my cooler.

19. Chateau de Bord 1999 (Laudun Cotes-du-Rhone) Cheap, inexpensive and easy on the palate. We drank about 10 of these bottles between 4:00pm and 8:00pm.

20. Napanook 1998 (Dominus Estates Napa) I hope I can afford this wine. I thought it was an old Cote-du-Rhone when I first tried it. This was the biggest surprise of the day for me.

And then there were the cheeses. My supplier didn’t leave the labels on all the cheese so I have to guess on a few. The majority were un-pasteurized French cheeses. To pick a best would be impossible. They were all perfect in their own way and my house stank! As the day warmed up so did the odor. The ‘cheese virgins’ began to thin out and move outdoors. The true gourmands ascended on the ripe molding mounds of dairy and bacteria!

1. Morbier – very mellow. Really interesting to taste the difference between the ‘morning milk’ cheese and the ‘evening milk’ cheese that is separated by the volcanic ash

2. Chaumes – This cheese never ‘warmed up’. It looked like it was going to run after four hours but it never did! It had a very nutty flavour with a meaty overtone.

3. Port Salut – Almost pedestrian today but what a great flavour.

4. Bucheron – The wooden box was a great touch and I understood why it was there when I opened it and saw the ball of mould. The cheese by the crust was extremely sharp. It became quite mild and creamy near the center.

5. Somerset Farm House Cheddar – I kept coming back to this cheese with a cheap bottle of Chateau de Bord. For a cheese priced at $30/lbs and a bottle priced under $15/bottle it was a match made in heaven.

6. Affidélice – The taste of the Chablis is prevalent throughout this cheese. I drank a 1990 Pouilly-Fuisse (J.J. Vincent) and ate a loaf of potato baguette.

7. Honorable mention needs to go to the Salt Spring Island Cheeses that were served. For a small, cottage industry (Hippie), the cheeses had a note of sophistication. Anyone wanting more information contact me directly and I will forward you more information or try this link: http://www.moonstruckcheese.com/

Some Notes on the Food:

By far my favorite dish was the Pheasant. I marinated the plums in a young Marsala overnight. After searing the pheasant with leek, juniper and thistle honey I simmer in the plums, duck jus and a good splash of cognac. It slowly cooked for 3 hours in a 225f oven.

The frog legs were a new approach for me. I marinated them overnight with thyme and buttermilk. To order I fried them in peanut oil after dipping them in a simple egg-beer-flour mixture that I firmed with some cornstarch. I had to cook up three batches; everyone kept asking for more.

I switched the fish from Ling Cod to Black Cod (Sablefish). The fish was overpowered by the Dijon but as a whole it turned out to be a very good Nicoise salad.

My wife loved the Cromesquis. I took Quebec Foie Gras and lightly whipped it with a touch of sauterne, braised leeks and black truffles then coated it with panko. When fried the foie gras became very creamy. Those who could wait for it to cool a little were rewarded with an excellent package.

After the event was into the eighth hour the food emphasis switched to more rustic dishes like ‘Le Chargement français de Saucisson avec Moutarde de Meaux’ (pardon my French). This is sausage forcemeat sautéed with leeks, onions, garlic, fresh herbs and mushrooms and finished with grainy mustard and raw egg. It is then bound with raw bread dough and left to proof. When it is baked it becomes a drunken wine drinkers dream.

The lemon tart was the first dessert to disappear. I preferred the simplicity of the Coeur la Crème. Basically a soured yogurt and cream mixture enhanced with Tahitian vanilla beans that is allowed to hang in cheesecloth at room temperature for 3 days. The remaining ‘curd’ is similar to a sweetened cheese that you serve with fresh berries and pastries.

This event is the highlight of the year in my household and again I would like to offer my thanks to everyone who helped contribute. We need to open this event up in the next years to include the people on eGullet!

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Did you not get an invitation? The event is held on Canada Day every year at my house (third mountain over when looking across the inlet from Vancouver). Feel free to drop by...

The conversation, food and drink were all very good and we spent an hour browsing eGullet; a lot of my 'hospitality' friends had not heard of this site.

We should see a huge influx of new members soon

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chef Fowke, thank you indeed for such an exhaustive, wonderful report.

I am on a self-prescribed Bourdeaux tour these days, but my spiritual home is the Rhone, with Gigondas as king, and I have not had the wines you mentioned.

Congratulations on such a successful event (and on your other ventures).

-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great notes. The Raspail-Ay is nice but the Cayron is better. Both available in BC. The 1990 Vincent is a wonderful wine that is just right to drink now and for the next few years and then it will be done so get more before it's gone.

slowfood/slowwine

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chef Fowke, thank you indeed for such an exhaustive, wonderful report. 

I am on a self-prescribed Bourdeaux tour these days, but my spiritual home is the Rhone, with Gigondas as king, and I have not had the wines you mentioned. 

Congratulations on such a successful event (and on your other ventures).

Yes! I experienced Gigondas for the first time last year while sitting in Bistro Chez Michel on the North Shore (Vancouver). I was eating steak frittes and I asked the owner what he recommends as a wine. He brought over a bottle of Chapoutier. I have been hooked ever since. I have spent the last 12 months sampling all that I can find. Flying Fish in Seattle has a nice collection of Gigondas and Rhone at reasonable prices.

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Now its time to work on the autumn backyard party 2003. I invite mostly restaurant industry people to this event. I am thinking a big clam/lobster/crab/oyster bake with lots of rich lagers, red wine and Sangria on a hot Vancouver autumn Sunday.

Though.... clam bakes are passé :rolleyes: and so 1997; does anyone have an original idea for a backyard get together?

Chef/Owner/Teacher

Website: Chef Fowke dot com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...