Fine dining in China: Capital M in Beijing

June 20, 2013

Capital M Beijing

Captital M

Many of you know that Capital M is one of my favourite restaurants in Beijing, China. I try to dine there at least once every visit. On my last visit, I went with my friend Brian Wallace, the owner-director of Red Gate Gallery. We had ordered a table for dinner on a mild spring evening. We both needed a treat, and a treat it turned out to be.


The wine list

I love the wine selection of Capital M, and decided on a wine from Sancerre. The ‘2008 Domaine Fouassier’ by Domaine Fouassier was a lovely Sauvignan Blanc. This was my first time that I tasted wine from this producer, and I should not regret it.

The Fouassier family is one of the oldest wine producing families in Sancerre. Today the estate covers about 56 ha, 80% planted to Sauvignon Blanc, 20% to Pint Noir.

This wine is aged in oak barrels where it remained on lees for about ten months. It displays the fine acidity, the aromas and complexity one expects from a wine from Sancerre. I loved the sound structure and the long finish.

The grapes come from old vines. The winery prides itself with its organic agricultural and bio-dynamic methods. It was a good choice and I have to look out for more wines from this producer.


2008 Domaine Fouassier, Sancerre

I urgently needed some green stuff and started with a salad with some beetroots pieces. The wine was perfect for this food pairing.


Beetroot salad

I am not someone who likes the fancy recipes. I like solid-rural, more agrarian and artisan food not the highly refined output from modern kitchens.  So my choice was red meat which did not exactly match my choice in wine. Since Brian did not feel like another bottle, I stayed with the Sancerre. But I am sure some of the reds from the wine list of Capital M would have been a lovely match.


My beef fillet on potato mash

The beef was just awesome, what a great dish, what a great evening. If you want to spoil yourself, get going, book a table and enjoy a meal at Capital M. It’s worth it, trust me.

When we left and had said our good-byes, I went on a stroll on Tiananmen square which was completely deserted and void of people. I was rewarded with this view of the entrance of the forbidden city. A visit to Beijing can be quite delightful.


Restaurant review: Chez Clément, Paris, France

September 8, 2010


During our summer vacation we also visited Paris for a few days. It is only about 2 1/2 hours by train from my hometown Trier. So why not seeing the French capital?

One of the highlights of the visit was a lunch on the Champs-Élysées. We chose a nice “little” place (the inside is huge but quite lovely, as we discovered when looking for the bathrooms) called ‘Chez Clément’ , a chain restaurant though, but nevertheless very attractive.

The entrance of Chez Clément

Oysters was one of the starters we could not refuse. The unpasteurized Camembert was the other. For the main course three of us went for the Toulouse sausages, one took the Charolais beef tartar. The house white was just the right wine, a Sancerre if I am not mistaken.

The food was just divinely delicious. The service was great. It might have helped that we arrives slightly before the lunch time crowd did. It was one of the best meals we had in Paris during our stay. I can highly recommend the place. Just walk up to the triumphal arch and look out for Chez Clément.

Oysters from Brittany

Croustilland de Camembert

Toulouse sausage

Charolais beef tartar

Rucola salad with parmesan

And a espresso afterwards

Chez Clément
Paris, France

PS: I was traveling in Vietnam and had no access to for that time. This is why I had to postpone updating my blog. The above story is form this summer.

Mount Nelson Sauvignon Blanc

June 24, 2010

Our fish

I just love to eat fish, all kinds of fish. And there is good fish on offer in the markets of Bangkok. Often we do not have carbohydrates with it. But veggies are a must. They are a great complement for the protein.

What you need in addition is, if possible: a superb wine, preferably white.

A plate of fish and veg

Very delicious veggies

I admit that sometimes I drink red wine with fish but most of the time I select a white. Since I love to drink Riesling wines, that’s often my preferred choice. Another option I like is Sauvignon Blanc. But it needs to be a really good one. I like Sancerre style wines and the ‘2007 Mount Nelson Sauvignon Blanc’, from the Marlborough wine region of New Zealand seemed to be the right stuff.

But I did not buy the bottle because SB wines from New Zealand are in fashion right now. I bought it because the Mount Nelson brand is a project of a famous Italian wine dynasty, the Antinori’s from Tuscany.

Piero and Lodovico Antinori are the 26th generation of Italy’s most famous wine family. I wanted to know how their interpretation of New Zealand SB fruit would turn out. I should not be disappointed as it turned out later.

2007 Mount Nelson Sauvignon Blanc

In 2004 the Antinori brothers bought for US$ 1.8 million a 32 acres vineyard on the banks of the Taylor River near the mouth of Cloudy Bay not far from the Wither Hill Vineyard. To make the Mount Nelson SB additional fruit (about 40%) is purchased from the adjoining Meadowbank vineyard.

The 2007 vintage is just the best ever. This is the unanimous verdict of the wine critics (91 Parker points). I can only confirm this. My recommendation: buy buy buy.

The wine has zest, is fragrant with lime and lemon flavours and some mineral notes. The colour is beautiful straw-like. The finish is lasting. I forgot the alcohol content and the price. But rest assured if I see it in my local market again, I will buy all the bottles on the shelve.

Beautiful colour in the glass

In early July, we will be in Italy. There I will taste some more of the Antinori wines. This time Italian wines.

Restaurant review: Bombay Palace, Kuala Lumpur

November 17, 2009

Bombay Palace

A beautiful building houses the Bombay Palace: 1001 nights come to mind

I usually do not use business dinners as a source for my blog entries. However, in the case of Bombay Palace I make an exception from this rule. I had started the day (a Sunday) with an Indian breakfast to which my friends took my in one of the many shop-house-eateries in Bangsa. Needless to say that it was super delicious.

Bombay Palace1

The excursion of my taste buds to the Indian subcontinent continued with the dinner at Bombay Palace. I always wanted to dine there but the occasion never arose. Therefore, I was very excited about the prospect of a dinner in this famous restaurant. Ever since living in New Delhi I love north Indian food.

Bombay Palace2

A water fountain decorated with roses was to be found in the entrance hall

I did not feel like eating any meet, and therefore ordered a vegetarian “platter”, a selection of various vegetarian north Indian dishes as you can see from the photos below. The food was excellent, and so was the service in the restaurant. I can only highly recommend the place. You must eat there! if visiting Kuala Lumpur.

Bombay Palace3


Bombay Palace5

My “selection” of vegetarian dishes

The wine list included wines from all over the world. After discussing wine preferences with my fellow diners, I selected a French wine, a ‘2006 Sancerre’ by Pascal Jolivet, a Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire, France (12.5% vol. alc.). I love Sauvignon Blanc wines not only because we grow our own but because I just love the finesse, the crispness and the fruity flavours.

Pascal Jolivet is a unique guy with a strong philosophy when it comes to the making of fine wines. With more than 30 ha under vines the Domaine Pascal Jolivet is not a boutique producer. His vineyards are located in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume in the Loire valley. In the USA the ‘2006 Sancerre’ retails for about US$ 22. We very much enjoyed this clean and crisp wine, just the right choice since it went well with our meals.

I admit that this was my first encounter with a wine of Pascal Jolivet. I do not drink much French wine but this time I was in an exploratory mood which is good from time to time. I recommend it and also the Sancerre by Pascal Jolivet.

Bombay Palace4

The wine list

To sum up my experience I must say that the evening at Bombay Palace was just great. The food was excellent and the wine list gives you enough choice to find a complement to the north Indian cuisine. I will come back, promise.

Bombay Palace
215, Jalan Tun Razak
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan 50400, Malaysia
+60 3 2145-4241