April 26, 2013

Fly airplane, New York-style

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Early this morning I received an invitation to dinner from a couple of friends I haven't seen in a few weeks.  They were having dinner with a certain wine personality from New York, and asked if I was interested in joining them.  Since it would give me a chance to see them and undoubtedly involve some good wines, I didn't hesitate to say "Yes".

Upon my late arrival at Fook Lam Moon (福臨門), I discovered that said wine personality had cancelled on my friends.  I think jet lag may have been used as an excuse but in reality the guy had simply chosen to go hang with some other people.  No matter.  I was more keen on seeing my friends anyway, and we were gonna drink some nice wines with or without this guy.  Not having him around simply meant that we were able to yap away in Canto or Mando at will…

Deep-fried tofu cubes (椒鹽豆腐粒) - something simple to start us off.  The chopped chili peppers added just enough flavor without destroying my tastebuds for wine.

Winter melon soup (冬瓜盅) - nice and clear as usual in terms of flavor.  Plenty of ingredients here accompanying the cooling chunks of winter melon.  Great dish to have as the weather warms up.

I was told the steamed fish was something like "鼠眉".  I have no idea what that is… a cross between humpback grouper (老鼠斑) and humphead wrasse (蘇眉)?!  Does such a species exist?!  In any case the fish was delicious.

Fresh 'Dai Lin' abalone wok-fried with ginger and spring onions (油泡薑蔥大連鮮鮑) - this was really pretty decent.  I liked the texture and flavor of the fresh abalone, and the spring onions were particularly sweet.  I actually kept scooping up more spring onions as I just wanted to eat them!

Fook Lam Moon's famous crispy chicken (當紅炸子雞) - we took half a chicken, and the skin was excellent.

Fried rice with salted fish and diced chicken (咸魚雞粒炒飯) - I was already kinda full, and said that I wasn't gonna eat any more food… which turned out to be "famous last words"… I couldn't resist the wonderful fragrance of the salted fish or the golden hue coming from the egg yolks.  Ended up having a bowl and a half…

Despite being very full, somehow I managed to stuff some dessert in...

Steamed traditional brown sugar sponge cake (杬仁馬粒糕) - haven't had this for a while... very good.  Love the taste of brown sugar.

Steamed layer cake (鳳凰千層糕) - not bad.

Walnut cookies (核桃酥) - OMG these were soooo awesome!  Full of walnut flavor and... probably full of lard or some kind of fat that just made it delicious.  Couldn't resist having two.

But tonight wasn't about the food at all... the focus was squarely on wine.  I must say we had a pretty nice selection.

Jacques Selosse Les Carelles (disgorged February 24, 2011) - salty, minerals, salty plum, sweet on the edges of the nose.  Palate pretty mature and round, almost a little flat, with a little bit of savory minerals.  A blanc de blancs lieu-dit from Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, made solera style using 2003 and 2004.

2003 Christophe Roumier Charmes-Chambertin Aux Mazoyeres - a very floral and violet bouquet, with cool fruit, a bit sharp on the nose, but lovely and soft on the palate.  A little animal, leather and dried herbs.  Quite a lovely wine that's pleasant to drink.

1989 Chave Hermitage Rouge - lots of animal and leather, grilled meats, a little smoky, with some toasty oak.  A really lovely wine.

1976 Christoffel-Berres Erdener Prälat Riesling Trockenbeerenauslese - a little plastic, with marmalade and nutty nose.  Wonderful acidity balance with the sweetness.  This wasn't as sweet as I expected from a TBA, but the acidity was perfectly meshing and in tune with the sugar.  Very round and soft on the palate.  What a beautiful wine to drink now!

1995 Roulot Meursault 1er Cru Perrières - big, toasty nose.  Interesting to find acidity in the nose, which was kinda ripe.  Nicely oxidized, with toasty corn.  Finish was a little bitter.  Pretty nice.

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