The latest in the (not so) occasional series of @strawpig goes to a more expensive wine dinner than he should at Trinity Clapham.
Venison and Piedmont. I really couldn’t miss it.
After a negroni and some nibbles we kicked off with Dolcetto d"Alba Benevelli 2020 served with Cep Tortolini in a creamy sauce with autumn truffles.
The Dolcetto was very much in it’s “If beaujolais were northern italian” vein, with sweet red and dark fruit and a slight savoury, almost bacony funk. It worked very well with the truffles on the pasta which added an earthier dimension. In terms of wine and food lifting each other, this was the best pairing of the evening.
Slip sole with hazelnut butter and raw chestnuts serves with La Raia Gavi Riserva La Madonnina 2017 (from a Jeraboam!). This was not your average Gavi to say the least. Think a PC Chablis of a similar age and you’re not far off the mark. Rich and mineral, but with delicate floral and subtle stone fruit undercurrents. Very persistent length. Om nom nom.
Who killed bambi? There was a whole saddle of red deer served with apple sauce and a celeriac gratin for the main. 2018(!) Barolo Conterno Fantino “Vigna del Gris Ginestra” in magnum. Young? Sure. Drinkable? Very. Dark and brooding with a heavy marzipan aroma on top of the cherry and herbs. I’d like to say it carried on on the palate, but that’d be doing it a disservice. It had so much going on that was already so well integrated that it was hard to pick individual things (other than the almonds) out at any one time. This is a very classy wine that was genuinely delicious now to the point of getting me to reconsider my attitude to Barolo and the need to age it. Intense, complex, complete. Another eye opener for very different reasons.
A wonderful chunk of aged beaufort cheese with pickled pears served with a 2018 Barbaresco Cascina Delle Rose Tre Stelle. Unlike the Barolo, the Barbaresco did feel a bit young when it was on its own. With the fat of the cheese to calm it down it became much more rounded with classic elegant cherry-menthol notes and a floral finish.
I have a feeling pudding went wrong. It wasn’t the advertised pumpkin custard tart (it was however the Trinity salt caramel tart, which is all of the nom) with a Moscato d’Asti from Vajra. Light, fresh and everything you want from a Moscato d’Asti, but nothing particularly ground breaking or earth moving.
Clearly objectively the Barolo was the nicest wine of the evening. However, I was so blown away by Gavi being able to be anything more than the standard Gavi di Gavi’s I’ve had over the years that it’s also difficult to not say that. Either way there was some stunning food and wine had!