Riesling at The Modern Pantry, Spring Tasting menu

Spring is just around the corner, now if we could just get the weather to cooperate. In anticipation of warm days and sunny skies, The Modern Pantry in Clerkenwell is featuring a riesling paired Spring Tasting menu for the month of March.This is first of what they promise to be a series of wine themed dinners. I think it’s apt to have riesling for Spring as it’s such a refreshing wine with it’s racy body and zippy, zingy acidity, represented by the New World’s offerings to the rich honeyed aromas and ripe stone fruit flavours and minerality of the Old World, riesling rarely let’s me down. It’s also a very versatile food wine and, with recently awarded MBE, Anna Hansen’s cuisine, is the perfect partner to the often spicy, exotic flavours of her food. The wines were chosen by Bill Knott for the restaurant and what was most interesting was that Bill said he chose the wines first and then worked with Anna to find just the right food matches. Usually, it’s the other way around when doing food and wine matching. Bill chose an array of rieslings showcasing it’s versatility from a variety of wine growing regions, from its homeland of Germany to the ends of New Zealand, we were presented with a delightful profile of the grape. An amuse bouche of tempura battered oysters was followed by the first course of Black fried squid paired with a kabinette riesling, the Bernkastler Badstube 2010 from the Mosel was a nice foil to the spicy sweet squid, the wine being slightly spritzy with loads of sweet ripe peach fruit on the palate, salty and sweet…mmmmm. Albert Mann is a great producer from Alsace and biodynamic to boot. His wines are always refined and fresh, the 2009 Albert Mann was pleasingly aromatic, almond blossom notes floating about. A slightly off dry but tasty wine with delicious ripe fruit on the palate. The seared King oyster mushroom, yuzu & tamari and kimchee & manouri pot sticker...

read more

Europe’s iconic wine families, Primum Familiae Vini comes to London

Feb 15, 12 Europe’s iconic wine families, Primum Familiae Vini comes to London

Posted by in Food and Wine

2012 sure is shaping up to be the year to be in London. So, we’ve got the Olympics, the Para-Olympics, the Queen’s Jubilee etc.  But what made it even more special, for me, was this was the year that the Primum Familiae Vini came to town. The PFV picks an international capital city once a year to play host to them. Now this may not sound like a big deal but the PFV also bring their wines with them. And now it gets interesting. What is the PFV you may be asking? They are a group of the leading wine families in the world. By world, I mean Europe and by leading, I mean, the creme de la creme. Marchese Antinori, Chateau Mouton Rothschild, Joseph Drouhin, Egon Muller Scharzhof, Hugel & Fils, Champagne Pol Roger, Perrin & Fils, the Symington Family Estates, Tenuta San Guido, Miguel Torres and Vega Sicilia. Their charter states that they can have a maximum of  12 members but currently there are only 11 members of the group. PFV was established in 1992 and is by invitation only. While PVF might seem to be a bunch of old houses clubbing together, the real goal of the group is “a passion for the pursuit of excellence”. Started by Robert Drouhin and Miguel Torres when they were chatting and walking around a vineyard, they realized they had many of the same goals both in traditional winemaking values and business concerns.  It has since grown into a collective where they can share their knowledge and expertise as well as help each other out in the marketplace. While they are here to show their wines to the press and public, they also hold several tastings as well as a gala dinner and auction to raise funds for various local charities. Another major goal of the partnership is to pass on their knowledge to the next generation and many had brought along their progeny to lunch. Etienne Hugel joked that they were hoping for a...

read more

An Evening of Swine and Wine

Swine and Wine. Sounds like my idea of a very good night indeed and my friends over at DVine Wine teamed up with Lardy Da (cute) to put on a supper club-y type dinner the other night somewhere under an arch near London Bridge. A big sparse room, with concrete floors, art pieces scattered around the walls and a rockabilly bass player in the corner greeted me as I entered and I thought, yeah, this should be a good night. What made me sure it was going to be a good night was the big paper bag full of pork crackling on the table I noticed when I sat down. Brilliant idea in lieu of bread! DVine Wine, who I’ve written about before, are all about sourcing sustainable wines, not necessarily natural wines, more like biodynamic or organic which, if they happen to be natural, well that’s just a good wine nonetheless.  Lardy Da is all about the swine and using the bits and pieces that normally get thrown out (like trotters and tails for the jelly) for their ethically sourced pork pies. The idea of pork pies and wine, well, why not? The first wine we had was a sylvaner, a lesser known grape from the great producer Domaine Ostertag. This wine was a winner round the table, a 2007 it was lusher then expected with ripe granny smith apples and a pleasing coconut flake nose, finishing off with dry, zippy lime notes. Served with a trad pork pie, it cut through the fat like a scythe. A New Zealand sauvignon blanc but not as we know it. The 2010 Urlar s.blanc was a throwback to the way NZ SB used to be – gooseberry, passionfruit and lime with none of that cat’s pee on the nose. I do hope that is falling out of favour. This was a fuller s.b. then I’m used to but delicious indeed. It was served with a pig’s head terrine which I didn’t really think had much...

read more

Galvin Bistrot de Luxe’s birthday

Rain in the summer in London is a real pain because even if it looks cold outside, it’s really not. Rather, it’s muggy and humid and when I get to wherever I’m going, I’m all hot and sweaty because I overdressed. Such was the case as I arrived at Galvin’s Bistrot De Luxe for a pre-birthday dinner a few weeks ago. Galvin had just the thing to cool me down as I joined everyone else at the dinner table. Sipping on a French 75, the house aperitif for the month of September in celebration of their birthday, was just the ticket. Galvin has taken the classic cocktail and put a twist on it, originally made with champagne, gin, lemon juice and sugar, they’ve substituted the gin for calvados which gave it a nice apple-y twist. Hosted by Sara Galvin, we were there to take a trip down memory lane to five years previous and sample the menu as it was then. On the menu for dinner were some originals from 5 years ago. Starting with the terrine of ham hock & foie gras with onion confit, a very tasty, meaty slab of terrine, it was paired with an Alsatian riesling, the Brandluft 2006 from Dom. Lucas & Andre Rieffel. I love most rieslings and think they are great food wines. The Brandluft did not disappoint, a classic nose of spices, limes and riverside minerality with plenty of ripe peaches on the palate and a refreshing limey finish. A fruity but dry wine, it worked a quite well with the sweetness of the ham, score another one for riesling. A Corbieres was next, the 2008 Ch. Ollieux-Romanis. A blend of carignan, syrah and grenache it’s a big, powerful wine. Carignan is always a signal for rather muscular wines to my mind and this was definitely in that category. Blackberries and fruits on the nose and palate with excellent structure, a wine that was suited to the Pithivier of wood pigeon & quail that we had...

read more

Chatting with Jean Trimbach

Some of my favourite wines are from Alsace. I absolutely adore those gewurztraminers and rieslings  that can really only be produced at the foot of the France’s Vosges Mountains. I’ve talked about Hugel and now it’s that other big Alsatian hitter, Trimbach. Trimbach have been producing their wines since the 1600’s and specialize in riesling. I was at a dinner  not long ago at Trinity restaurant in Clapham for a pig masterclass and wine matching evening. The food was expertly matched by chef Adam Byatt. Adam walked us through how to butcher a side a pig. For a very thorough write up of the food we had, please check out Eatlikeagirl’s post here. As for me, The Winesleuth, I was able to chat with Jean Trimbach, the 13th generation of Trimbach, about their special Cuvee Frederic Emile riesling which was made in honor of the 375th anniversary of the founding of Trimbach. Click on the video to see what Jean has to say about the quintessential Trimbach riesling Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

read more
%d bloggers like this: