McKahn Family Cellars Rose of Grenache 2021 - $14 at Costco in Livermore. I believe it retails at double that price. Strawberry, stone fruit, good amount of acid, dry, some minerality on long finish - refreshing and hard to beat on an insanely hot California summer day.
Tonight’s enjoyable Cantonese feast at ’ Starchiva, Richmond Hill ’ include:
Signature Braised Whole ‘5 flavour profile marinade’ Duck.
Sauteed Yellow Fin Grouper Filet with Mixed Mushrooms and
Baked West Coast Jumbo Oysters with Salted Duck Egg Yolk coating
Braised Goose Webs with Oyster Sauce, Shitake Mushrooms and
Sea Cucumber Hot-pot
Sauteed BC Dungeness Crab with Maggi, Rice Vermicelli Hot-pot
Steamed Minced Pork Pattie with Salted Sun-dried Fish
Sweet and Sour Pork with Fresh Pineapples
Braised Tofu with Mushroom Medleys and Vegetables
Sauteed Morning Glory with julienne ginger, chili and Fermented Bean Curd
Pairing of this evening’s meal was with a super smooth and mature, Super-Tuscan - Ornellaia, from a great 1997 vinatge year and an off-dry 2019 ( another great year ) German Gewurztramminer Kabinett. The attempt was spot-on and a success. The wines managed to show off both the less heavy, non-red meat dishes and the slightly sweet and delicate seafood preparation extremely well.
Some of us wanted more wine at the end, so we opened up an excellent 2016 Spanish Ribera del Duero by a top bodega -‘Ausas’
![The ONE Fusion, Gyu-Kaku, Starchiva Cuisine, Sunset 057|700x525](upload:/
This evening at O’ Mei, our regular foodie group were presented with a ‘ginormous’ 9 pounder, line-caught, whole Floridian Yellow fin Grouper. Ringo, the owner, proposed to us a 4-ways preparation. An aquatic version of a head-to-tail cooking approach?!
The 4-ways comprised of the following execution:
- "Fish Soup" derived from the use of the Grouper bones, Clams, Tofu, Pork slices, Chinese Celery and Chinese Mustard Green. ( What a Lovely soup! Composed of multi-layers of aromatic and umami laden taste profile )
- "Wok-stirred fry fish filet with yellowing chives and paired with ’ Choi-Sum ’ Sprouts". ( Bravo! What a superbly executed dish! Loaded with smokey wok-hay aroma. The perfectly cooked, moist and juicy filet were caramelized with just the right touch of welcoming char. Must be the best rendition of this preparation method I have come across in town!..and I have eaten this preparation in a lot of other fine establishments in the GTA! )
- " Fish Belly and head prepared 2 ways" - Fried with Salted Duck Egg-Yolk coating and Fried with Chili-pepper garlic seasoned salt. ( Grease-less and super-flavourful. Both ways of preparation resulted in some savoury and delectable finger-licking magic! )
- " Braised Fish tail with Shitake mushrooms and fried tofu in brown sauce " - ( IMO, the weakest link to tonight’s outstanding meal. Tasty but nothing too out-standing. The well used tail section was void of almost all residual meat and flesh. Looks good but no substance! Ha! )
To augment some of the dishes, we added a “Generous-Tycoon fried rice” ( Egg white, scallops, prawns, and dried pork and conpoy floss ). Well executed and tasty.
Our meal was paired with ’ El Enemigo ’ - an interesting, un-oaked Chardonnay from the Mendoza district of Argentina. Fresh, crisp, fragrant and fruity. Not unlike a fine Chablis Grand Cru!
As well, contrary to most approach to pairing fish. We also opened up a ’ Zinfandel/ Bordeaux blend ’ red from a small Napa family winery - ‘Reynolds’. Fruity, lush and smooth. This adaptable red was packed with blackberry, metallic and herbal components. A surprisingly nice complement to the 'meaty ’ fish!
Today im drinked Pino Noir from Purcari, it s Moldovian wine who was very tasty and pleasant. I don’t really like wine, but I really liked it.
As for what complements a meaty fish: Once at a well-known steakhouse, our host asked us to choose a wine before we had ordered. A modest cabernet from a highly regarded Napa winery it was then. He then said how 'bout I order. Fine. He requests the largest lobster the kitchen has. Inspired and enjoyable pairing.
I tossed out the age-old pairing idea of ’ Red wine with Red meat and White wine with seafood/fish ’ years ago, after I ate and was totally wowed by Daniel Boulud’s " Crisp Potato Paupiette of Sea Bass with Barolo Sauce ’ at NYC’s Daniel!..who would have thought Sea Bass with Barolo reduction?!
During the meal, Boulud walked by, chatted with me and joked that he actually ‘cut corners’ with that dish, using ONLY one bottle of Barolo for the reduction instead of the THREE he started off with at ’ Le Cirque!!
Speaking of “cutting corners”, a friend who gets around (likes Boulud, by the way) told us never order “Beef Braised in Barolo” unless the menu price is “out of line” with dishes containing less rarefied-ingredients. So far, we haven’t had occasion to confront the challenge.
Belle Glos pinot noir, 2015, Clark & Telephone single vineyard.
Dark ripe fruits with a long spicy finish. Delicious.
De Apostelhoeve - Cuvée XII, 2021.
Dutch white blend, Muller-Thugau (40%), Auxerrois (30%) & Pinot Gris (30%). Fruity, a tad sweet but not cloying. Suggested by the Amsterdam cheese shop we visited as an accompaniment for a ripe,runny brandy- washed rind cheese from Utrecht. There’s more to Dutch cheese than Gouda.
That sounds delicious (both wine and cheese)!
Do we have a “What Cheese(s) Have We Eaten Today” thread? I feel like that is a thread that should exist…
Make it so number one. I would like it for my education please.
Chateau de Beaucastel, 2005 - A wonderful wine from one of Chateauneuf top estate. Smoky, dark and complex but IMO, slightly too manly and full body for tonight’s more ‘gentile’ Cantonese food.
Fortunately, the stand-by, smoother and fruitier, Pruno 2013 - Ribera del Duero manged to save the day ( meal )
Did dinner include any roasted meat(s)? That Beaucastel is calling us, by the way.
Just want to take this opportunity to mention that I have 2 bottles of '04 lying around, next to the bottle of '04 Clos des Papes.
Sadly not this time! Only meat dishes were ’ Fried pork spare ribs with minced chili garlic salt ’ and a Chinese style pan-seared Angus beef filet mignon with honey mustard sauce. Both not good candidates for the wine since seasoning were very dominating.
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It is a known fact amongst chefs and foodies that Crab ( Dungeness ) together with Riesling is part of the Creator’s plan. Today, for our dinner’s appetiser of " BC Dungeness Crab prepared Chinese Chiu-Chow Cold Crab " style, I tried pairing the crustaceans with a more floral and exotic, fairly rare, off-dry German Siegerrebe from the great 2019 vintage.
The complex profile matches the inherent sweetness and delicate umami and salty component of the crab meat surprisingly well. However, the best part was the wine’s mildly sweet component that complemented the ’ foie gras ’ creaminess of the Crab brain/tamale so perfectly!
For our 9 dishes take-out Cantonese meal, we opened up a magnum bottle of an ‘excelente’ vintage 2010
Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 904…ripe, spicy and still elegant with a tangy vanilla edge.