Champagne Princess is in town, stopping by for a few days on her way to her true homeland. She wanted to get together with Rice and I at Neighborhood, so I found myself back there after a 2-week absence. I did check ahead with the Man in White T-shirt, and made sure to reserve something specific ahead of time.
once before, and back then it also came from a 70-catty fish. Last time, though, there were 12 of us sharing half a head, and this time the 5 of us got ourselves a quarter...
The four of us who love this stuff dug in greedily, trimming bits and pieces here and there away from the bony head. LOTS of collagen here, and the flavors can get a little "fishy". But the sauce was simply awesome - as always. With tomato, basil, and garnished with some black olives, this was something we could not let go easily. We asked for extra portions of bread so that we could soak up as much sauce as possible.
I think Rice was happy... he took the eye of the grouper.
Us winos ended up opening all 5 bottles that we brought, and there were a few unusual and interesting bottles tonight.
2005 Brewer-Clifton Chardonnay Ashley's Vineyard - pretty powerful nose, with some toasty notes. Ripe, hot and alcoholic on the palate. Later on I definitely noticed the pungent sulfur.
2009 Bernard Van Berg Les Gamets - made from Gamay vines planted in 1957, with a production of just 269 bottles. Opened more than 2 hours prior to serving. Intense nose of toasty oak, with lots of grilled meats as well as animal notes. Pretty smooth on the palate. A very nice wine, if somewhat lacking in complexity. Reminiscent of a good Morgon.
It was a lot of fun to get together and drink some of these "educational" bottles which were eye-opening. Too bad the Man in White T-Shirt had another, more important engagement tonight...