Sunday, September 11, 2011

Chateau La Touche Muscadet `09 $14.00 ***

A Birthday Dinner in three bottles.

Bottle # 1  Chateau La Touche Muscadet  `07 was opened as the family started to arrive and the fire pit was lit.  Made from Melon de Bourgogne grapes, this wine is light (12% ETOH), bright (hints of melon and a ghost of a taste of tart citrus - grapefruit) and refreshing; there is a crisp minerality that some say comes from proximity to the sea.  AOC Muscadet Sevre-et-Maine is where the Loire river meets the Maine and the Sevre rivers in western France.

The sur-lie fermentation process produces a rustic, flavorful wine with the harvest pressings spending their first winter fermenting with the skins and dried yeasts.  This adds a crispness and a real depth of flavor to the finished product. The wine was a perfect foil for the salty almonds, nuts and crackers that we nibbled on as the pheasant braised.  At 12% ETOH, it was a great was to ease ourselves into the next bottle.
photo by MEH

This was JPH's Birthday Dinner, all hands were on deck.  For the occasion, S. planned the menu, sourced the amazing ingredients from Marx Foods and brought out the good glassware; everything was perfectly in place as we sipped wine and watched the day turn to dusk. 

Our Menu:  Braised Pheasant, Spetzel and fresh Chanterelles sauteed in a butter cream sauce.  For dessert, I made Panna Cotta.

As the fire started outside, the fire was about to start inside:  JPH played with fire as I tried to snap a picture. On the right is what the stove looked like as he poured the flaming cognac onto the pheasant....

As we were about to plate, JPH opened Bottle # 2, our dinner wine: Cave de Tain l'Hermitage Crozes-Hermitage Les Trois Lys `07

Here is dinner just before it came off the stove:

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