A couple of quick food-and-wine notes on a Tuesday...
This past weekend, none other than Robert Parker himself took a road trip to Philadelphia and dined at the city’s spectacular Bibou, a French BYOB that locals have known for a long time is one of the best restaurants not just in the city, but in the entire region and beyond. You can always tell the quality of a BYO by the bottles dotting tables around the room: If guests respect the food enough, they’ll dig deep into their cellars and pop the corks on the good stuff. And at Bibou, there’s always a jaw-dropping selection of great wines being enjoyed and--often--shared among complete strangers. Parker, as is to be expected, drank pretty well that night; he also loved the meal, referring to the food as “as great a bistro fare as one can imagine.” The list of bottles (there were others in addition to these) from his table is below. It’s a pretty amazing selection. Wouldn’t you be disappointed if Robert Parker drank poorly?
Marcassin estate chardonnay 2000
Leeuwin Estate 2004 chardonnay
Guigal 1990 white Hermitage
Dagueneau 2006 Silex
Beaux Freres 1994
Haut Brion 1982
Vina Tondonia 1976
Catena Alta 1997 Malbec
Rostaing 1991 Cote Rotie La Landonne
Guigal 1991 La Landonne
Guigal 1985 and 1988 La Mouline
Guigal 1989 La Landonne
And last night, at the press unveiling for a number of new, fantastic seasonal dishes at The Fountain Restaurant at The Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia (also one of the top restaurants in the region...and beyond), I was yet again reminded of the versatility of pinot gris and a good syrah. The white, from highly regarded producer Trimbach, worked as well alongside the seared tuna with a walnut puree, juniper oil, and a light-as-air pumpkin souffle as it did with a heady potato leak soup with duck confit pierogi and foie gras butter. And the syrah, a 2005 from Carneros standout Truchard, sang with heartier preparations of veal porterhouse and a grilled venison saddle in a cabernet sauce. Even at the best restaurants, great wine pairings don’t have to cost a fortune.
Finally, a reminder: This Friday is the blowout launch party of UncorkDeals.com at Wine Chateau Piscataway. The party will feature everything from Sassicaia, Oreno, Duckhorn, Cakebread and other top wines to single malt Scotches, beers from all over the world, a former White House chef, live entertainment, and great food. Get there early! (It runs from 5:00 - 10:00.)