Wednesday, February 09, 2005

A Tale of Two Wines (and One Dish)

At L’Eau we offer tasting menus which match Anne and Nancy’s cuisine with wines from various regions or countries. While the food selection changes once every 3 months, we change the wines at 6 weeks, thus offering us inquisitive ‘wine and food heads’ an opportunity to look at a food pairing from two different angles. Here’s the story of the seafood duo.

The Plate
A tartare of scallops mixed with wild ginger and mustard is served in a floret of arctic char which was marinated in lemon and coriander. This little package of fun is served on a bed of jicama (yam bean or Mexican turnip) with a soupcon of flying fish row.

Wine #1

Château Rochemorin 2002, Pessac-Leognan ($22..saq)
Brimming with pink grapefruit and lemons, this is classic white Bordeaux from a year that was very kind to northern French whites. While it doesn’t have the toe-curling acidity of Sancerre, it still remains extremely fresh and is perhaps a touch richer. A mix of 90% Sauvignon and 10% Semillon with a hint of oak, there are notes of garden herbs, sorrel and basil to complement the citrus twang. The match was extraordinary with the herbal notes blending with the coriander in the fish marinade, and the citrus component acting as if squeezing a half ‘pink lemon’ over the scallops.

Wine #2

Vermentino di Sardegna 2003, Cala Silente ($22..importation)
While it maintains a healthy acidity for a warm weather white, this Sardinian offering has much more body than the Rochemorin. It smells like a bouquet of spring flowers with notes of pear and a hint of lemon. In the mouth it has an almost honey like feel and finishes grassy and menthol, which keeps it really light despite it’s richness. Here the play is on the mustard and ginger in the scallops, and where the Bordeaux put the emphasis on the fish, the Vermentino brings out the luscious texture of the scallops.

Two wines, One dish, coming from opposing directions but each working perfectly. This is starting to get real fun.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Billy, you are making me hungry. I figure someone has to be the Homer Simpson of wine blog commentators. Raw scallops --- mmmm. Wish I could get my hands on those wines. I might try mail order. Or settle for beer.