Friday, July 27, 2012

josmeyer, pinot gris vendanges tardives, 1990

josmeyer vendanges tardives pinot gris 1990

we went back to a favoured sri lankan roadhouse and brought reinforcements, who brought many marvelous wines. the stub of this bottle of late harvest pinot gris went home with me (thank you, ed); incredibly, no one wanted it. sweet but not cloying, with brilliant acid balance, vinous, sappy, bitter like grapefruit or citrus albedo. mildly oxidised, smelling of nuts, copper, petroleum then, after some time in the glass, cold but very ripe lychees.

and speaking of colour: this was greek gold, with red and brassy lights. it went great with the cold starchiness of kheer that first night, and then in small sips on its own for the next four days, becoming nuttier every day.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

a simple, reassuring balm

simon hopkinson's books are particularly nice to read because, like the best of the british (patience gray, elizabeth david, etc), he has no qualms about being idiosyncratic and is often right. this is from his latest article in more intelligent life, about emulsions:
It’s the exquisite blandness of mayonnaise that I adore almost more than anything. In these times—when cookery seems to demand so much punch and flavour, so much absurd invention—my little lidded pot of mayonnaise sits in the fridge, a simple, reassuring balm.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

henri boillot, puligny-montrachet (les folatières), 2002

henri boillot, puligny-montrachet (les folatières), 2002

when tacos are for dinner, white burgundy doesn't come immediately to mind. but i was happy to be surprised when carolyn took this bottle out of the refrigerator.

the cork, when the capsule was removed, was covered in a thin fuzz of white mould. but it came out just fine. deep gold in the glass, dry but not austere, it was filled with richness, intensity, and gravitas. no fruit left, just a little butter and vanilla, toasted hazelnuts, balanced by the full-mouth roundness and tautness of limestone. it had oxidised a bit in the bottle and was the better for it. could have been colder though, and would have profited from the decanter too.

premier cru white burgundy is a rare pleasure and, with black bean tacos and lots of avocado (chardonnay's lauraceous friend), well worth a thanksgiving.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

café integral x ats


café integral is located within american two shot, a select shop located in soho (135 grand). this makes café integral difficult to find. the establishment consists entirely of a small, precisely laid-out, softly gleaming white coffee bar. the strada, which often (but not always) indicates seriousness of intent, was strategically positioned to be the first thing visible, in direct line of sight from the door.

i did not have an espresso drink though, opting instead for a softly brewed nicaraguan maracaturra made by césar vega, who has retrofitted his kettles for better temperature control and also is CI's green buyer and roaster. the softbrew was particularly nice in the cold cup (a savory, mouth-coating, lactic acidity, mid-palate bitterness, with light menthol and caramel flavours and the aroma of milk chocolate) but i prefer the clarity of a paper filter. maybe one day i will become less immature, but for now coffee oils and fines are legitimate only in a sock-brewed, butter-roasted, robusta coffee served in a coffeeshop in the motherland.