A’tasting and a’tweeting
September 16, 2009 by Erin Thomas
Monday, I attended the second event for “Taste and Tweet,” a mongrel creation of a few social media strategists trying to break into the world of wine.
That being said, the group of “tasters” who were “tweeting” at said event were heavily “tweeters.” They loved the idea of the group and were no doubt enthusiastic about wine. However, I felt really strange being expected to clack away on my Crackberry while LEGENDARY Seattle wine authority April Pogue was explaining her selections and necessary pairings.
Nonetheless, it was a fun little gathering with a few familiar faces and a few I may never see again outside the digital realm.
Hosted, this time, at the Grand Cru Wine Bar in Bellevue – the newest home for Pogue to manage – the wine from their retail shop was showcased along side of their constantly revamping menu. With a knowledgeable co-owner, a “consultant” who I gathered was more for the food side and a well-known and expertly-versed sommelier/buyer, Grand Cru seems to be on a fast track to success.
Unfortunately, their location isn’t really on the fast track in Bellevue so success is most likely going to be brought in from romancing future customers with such featured events, deals and parties to get Grand Cru on the physical map.
And thus, tasting and tweeting to spark some interest amongst our avid Twitter follow-basis and wine influence. Bam! I have 291! Who wants to be my final 9 on my path to 300?!!
The first (and possibly favorite) course was the flavorful Thai crab cake, with Dungeness, sweet Thai chili and an orange slaw. Pair that with a naturally aromatic yet tender-palated Lachini Vineyards Willamette Valley 2007 Pinot Gris and wine and food were doing what they were meant to do together. Pair…
My favorite pairing, however, was the awesome simplicity and elegance of the Caesar salad next to the equal 2006 H. Bourgeois Sancerre. An eggless and vinegarless dressing was still salted and amiable enough to really exploit the killer characteristics of this $17 Sancerre. 100% Sauvignon Blanc, heavy on the lemon and fresh-cut grass on the nose with some melonballs and a righteous minerality reckoning from Loire Valley soils. On the palate, full-bodied and delicious. I don’t know a much better way to explain it. Delicious pairing.
Third in line was the 2007 Domaine Coteau Pinot Noir (deceptively from the Eola-Amity Hills region of Oregon), served without adornment next to an assorted cheese and charcuterie board. I always enjoy olives. But definitely not with a funky, deceptively (again!) Old World nosed Pinot with some fruit-forwardness of strawberry rhubarb and slate. Tasty but funky.
The Rene Corton Tart Flambee (named after a regular’s more “wine-sounding” alter ego) was aka sausage, onion, mush and cheese flatbread and served with the 2007 Chinook Cabernet Franc. I am hard to budge on my judgments toward Cab Franc from Washington – I am yet to be thoroughly impressed and to be strayed away from the bell pepper/chile on the nose. And this was nothing but… However, it was super young and I foresee that legitimate cooked Anaheim Chile scent dying down and the violets, dark-pitted fruit and beautiful oak coming out in the near future.
The final pairing was a pan-seared flat iron steak served with a few pretty dry sauteed prawns. The steak was adequately prepared though, the beef deriving of grass-fed cows and served over a juicy sauteed spinach side. This guy, though tough in flavors, was wisely lined up with the 2008 Mollydooker “The Boxer” Shiraz. A true Aussie Shiraz, full of bright and juicy fruit, with tobacco and nutmeg on the nose followed by a sincere rich mouthful of dark cherry and spice.
And just when I thought it was over, they brought out two AMAZING chocolates from Suess Chocolates – a citrus white chocolate truffle and a salted dark chocolate truffle.
I was dead and full and oddly wanting more… Mark my words, I will go back for that Sancerre and review the crap out of it.