Food and wine pairing

March 31, 2010

Beautiful scrimps in garlic and olive oil

In the hot weather of March and April big meals are not very attractive. Alas, Thailand has a lot of choice in seafood and lighter dishes are the go. Some rice with tofu and green vegetables and plenty of scrimps are the right stuff for a light meal. The question is which wine to drink with it?

A simple “Chinese set” meal

There is a lot of choice actually. As far as white wines are concerned one could choose a Chenin Blanc from Gran Monte, Thailand, for instance. Or one could have a Pinot Grigio from Italy or Germany. Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc are other possible choices.

If the dish is spicy, and the above one was, the ‘Grande Signature de Rapatel’ by Gérard Eyraud, France, a blend of Roussanne and Bourboulenc, is a great choice. The wine is oily and thick and full of apricot flavour. It balances the spicyness of the food in a wonderful way. I never thought that a Roussanne could be such a good complement to Asian food. My tip of the day: try it.

PS: You can get bottles of this wine in Bangkok from Lake House and Comte de Sibour.

Advertisements

Wine tasting at Lake House, Bangkok

March 30, 2010

Last Friday we went to a wine tasting at Lake House. Four wines were on offer, two came from California and two from South Africa. The Californian producer was Bliss Family Vineyards, which is a third generation family business in Mendocino County. The South African producer was Darling Cellars. Both producers are not small entities.

From each producer we tasted a Merlot and a Sauvignon Blanc. I do not want to bore you with tasting notes. The clear “winner”, the wine I liked best, was the Merlot from Darling Cellar, a ‘2007 Six Tonner Merlot’. I did not like the wines from California. Both Sauvignon Blancs tasted very unusal but did not hold my attention for very long.

The atmosphere at the Lake House tasting was, as always, great. We met so many interesting people, from Argentina, India and the USA. Dan and Dan, two of three partners of the Lake House venture were also there and we had a good chat about life and the universe.


Gérard Eyraud – Domaine de Rapatel

March 17, 2010

My newest treasure

When I got home the other day from a week long business trip, the two boxes of wine by Gérard Eyraud were already waiting for me.

I told you that we had attended a wine tasting at Lake House and that we just loved the wines presented to us by Gérard.

Grand Signature de Rapatel – the Roussanne – Bourboulenc blend.

The Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre blend

The Syrah – vine de table/table wine

More about these wines later, maybe even some tasting notes. Stay tuned.


Wine tasting at the Lake House in Bangkok

March 7, 2010

The bottle of red by Domaine de Rapatel at Lake House

In the morning when we drove past Lake House on our way into town, we decided spontaneously that we should go there for dinner. Margit had seen a review about the place in the Bangkok Post. Of course we had to check the place out ourselves.

It was already dark when we arrived but the surroundings of the lake were very romantic. My camera, however, could not cope with the conditions. We choose a small table in the garden and had just ordered our food when an excited waitress came and invited us to a wine tasting. Surprise surprise, we thought, why not taste some wines.

In a small room in the main building, we met the winemaker, Gérard Eyraud, his daughter and grandson, and some more French people from the wine importer. We tasted four wines, three from Gérard, one from another producer from Southern France (Domaine Bouche Red, Cote du Rhone). I had nothing to write with, took no notes and also forgot completely to take a picture of the winemaker and his family.

The white from Domaine de Rapatel was a blend of Roussanne with Bourboulenc with a taste of apricots, one red was a blend of Grenache with Syrah and the third one was a blend of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvèdre (14.5% vol. alc.). The last one I know for sure, because we could not continue to drink the wine I had ordered earlier, after we had tasted these wonderful fruity wines made by Gérard. In the process we got to know Matt, one of the three co-owners of the restaurant, from Melbourne and established that his brother Dan is an old mate of my nephew Nik Meinhold. How small the world is.

Gérard and Christine Eyraud have about 15 ha under vines southwest of the city of Nîmes. Gérard sells most of his wine as Vin du Pays du Gard, the grand cru wines are labeled “Costières de Nîmes”, a wine region in the Carmargue, in the South of France. I have visited the city and its surroundings but had never tasted wines from there before. I loved the fruitiness which reminded me of Australian wines and not necessarily typical for French wines.

We had a jolly good evening. The tapas we had ordered were delicious, the wine was just superb. The staff was very friendly. We went home with the sincere intention to come back and taste some more wines. By the way the wine list of Lake House is quite extensive, and the prices are the best I have seen in Bangkok so far.
Needless to say that we ordered a couple of dozens of the wines the next morning by e-mail. More soon about these wines maybe with proper tasting notes.

PS: During the wine tasting we also learned that the house used to belong to Tiziano Terzani (14.09.1938 – 28.07.2004), an Italian journalist and writer, and a native of Florence. He stayed there for about two years. The house was called “the turtle house”. He also had lived in Beijing, China for a while where he was the correspondent for the German magazine Der Spiegel, until he was thrown out. I red his book “Behind the forbidden door: travels in unknown China” in 1986.

Address:
Lake House
http://www.lakehousebkk.com
18 Soi Prommitr, Sukhumvit 39
Bangkok, กรุงเทพมหานคร 10110, Thailand
+66-2-662 6349