Saturday, February 6, 2010

# Arzuaga wines # Makati Shangri-La

A Night of Arzuaga

The information that I used to know about wines are: to take white wine with seafood or chicken, to take red wine with pork or beef and to take champagne with desserts.

My evening with Arzuaga amazed me on how the smokey, tarty, sweetness and sourness of different Arzuaga red wines can bring out the flavor of each dish. Organized by Wine Depot Gourmet Depot, the night featured five Arzuaga red wines paired with the five course menu prepared by Red Restaurant of Makati Shangri-La.

Red is a perfect venue for this wine dinner for having a simple set up of white table cloth with black chairs and the seats were spaced wide enough for different guests to have intimate discussions during dinner. Despite the five wine glasses per person in each table setting, the table still had enough space for another glass of water and the dishes which will be following as the night goes on.

The appetizer is a plate which consisted of ceviche of tuna with micro herbs, cocoa dusted seared foe gras with pomegranate and vanilla syrup and pata negra crisps. Paired with Fan D'Oro 2007 and La Planta 2008, the flavor of each dish became stronger. The foe gras which was smoked in perfection maintaining its juicyness had a clean finish after having a sip of Fan D'Oro 2007.

The second dish is star anise braised pork belly, chorizo tamales with thyme and oregano paired with Pago Florentino 2005. The pork belly was soft and chewy. The sauce smells good but is a little bland. Taking Pago with the pork gave it a little salty kick which made the dish tastier.

I love salmon which made me crazy for the third dish. Olive oil poached wild salmon fillet with blackberry reduction, warm sambuca jelly, shellfish veloute paired with Crianza 2006. I have never tasted such good salmon. It is very soft that it melted in my mouth. The Crianza 2006 was a wonderful match as it took the fishy taste and smell of the salmon away as you swallow it.

The fourth dish consists of bone marrow crusted organic beef tenderloin, minted apple puree, truffle mashed potatoes in balsamic jus with Reserva Especial 2004. The beef tenderloin was very tender and the bone marrow crust gave it an extra special herby kick that made it very mouth watering. Reserva Especial 2004 has a very strong scent of grapes and sweet taste that made the taste of the dish stay on the tongue for awhile.

The fifth dish is a very sumptuous warm flourless dark chocolate cake, berry jelly and red port wine sabayon. The cake was still very moist and creamy inside. Paired with Vittoria coffee, I feel so pampered during dessert. I tried some of the pralines which is yummy and also goes well with the coffee. Even though I was already full, I wasn't able to control myself and finished the whole cup of coffee which gave a tempting aroma. Vittoria coffee lived true to its sweet scent. It has a really bold sweet flavor that gave a sweet ending to a truly delightful dinner.

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