Dazed and confused? Not me. I’m just Lost in the Cheese Aisle.

Sunday, March 23, 2014


This evening’s Sommelier Guild event will be held at Murphy’s in Virginia Highland. It features Burgundies... specifically, Burgundies produced by Maison Louis Jadot in 2007 and 2009.

I’m more of a Bordeaux than a Burgundy guy, but that’s probably more due to laziness on my part than anything else: I tend to stick with what I like when buying or ordering wine. But some of the finest wines in the world come from Burgundy, so who am I to turn down a learning opportunity? Besides, what sort of Georgian would turn up his nose at wines made from the legendary “Peanut Noir” grape?

As far as the Foodly Accompaniments go, I do love a good coq au vin, especially when I don’t have to mess up my own kitchen making it. And salmon - a full-flavored fish - is one of my go-to dishes, one that I am happy to enjoy along with red wine. It will be interesting to see how it pairs up with three serious Burgundies.

Jadot Burgundies
The evening’s array of Winey Goodies. [Click to embiggen.]

Now, let’s take a look at tonight’s menu, shall we?

NV Collon Brut Grower Champagne**
Mini crab cakes

First Flight:
2004 Kistler Chardonnay
Mystery Wine (served blind)
2011 Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay***
Crispy flatbread with arugula and prosciutto

Second Flight: Beaune Premier Crus
2007 Jadot Theurons
2009 Jadot Theurons*
2007 Jadot Bressandes
Chef Ian’s Surprise Course - Lentil Soup with Black Truffles and Truffle Oil

Third Flight: Beaune Premier Crus
2009 Jadot Boucherottes**
2009 Jadot Clos des Coucheraux*
2009 Jadot Clos des Ursules***
Coq au vin with potatoes and pearl onions

Fourth Flight: Côte de Nuits Premier Crus and Côte de Beaune Grand Cru
2009 Jadot Les Boudots Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru
2009 Jadot Gevrey-Chambertin Estournelles-Saint-Jacques Premier Cru*
2007 Jadot Corton Pougets Côte de Beaune Grand Cru*
Grilled salmon with cheese grits and local cabbage slaw

2000 Henri Gouges Clos des Porrets Monopole, Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru**
2009 Cénit - Viñas del Cénit, Zamora, Spain*

Some three decades ago, we were friendly with the executive chef at one of Atlanta’s fancy-pants dining establishments. Every so often, when he would clear out some of his wine inventory, I would be able to grab a few bottles of Jadot Burgundy at wholesale cost. Man, would I love to be able to do that today.

As usual, I’ll report back after the event with a summary of my preferences.

Update: I had had such high expectations coming into this event, but Burgundy will not be replacing Bordeaux as my favorite French appellation anytime soon - at least, not on the strength of this evening’s showing.  Except for the third flight, which combined a reasonable rendition of coq au vin (chicken stewed in wine) with several pleasant enough wines, most of the evening was, alas, not up to the usual standards. The wines were, for the most part, thin and uninspiring. The salmon was bland, and the Chef’s Surprise - a bowl of lentil soup with the captivating aroma of black truffle - was salty to the point of inedibility. Ouch. (On the other hand, the crab cake was a little gem, perfectly prepared and with no detectable filler.)

Oh, well. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Not every dinner can be a winner. [Insert your favorite cliché here.]

Bonus Question:

Beaune Clos-des-Ursules 1971

Let’s see how much of a Wine Geek you are. Take a look at the bottle above. What’s wrong with it?

[El Capitan knew the answer. If you think you do, leave a comment!]

Attendees at this month’s Guild event - 24 of ’em - were asked this question upon arriving at the restaurant. Only three got it right... including Yours Truly. No, we did not win any valuable prizes.

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