October 23, 2010

Dinner at the Froggie residence

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Tonight the Resident Froggie kindly invited me to her new residence for dinner.  She had a couple of guests and wanted to see if I would join them, knowing that I had no plans for the weekend.  I was only too happy to accept the invitation, and trekked across to the Dark Side.

I arrived a little later than I'd originally anticipated, and the hors d'œuvres were already laid out.  After I was done prepping the wines I brought, I made a dash for the plates and started munching.

Mini quiches and tarts with blue cheese - my bet is on Stilton - were pretty yummy.

The sight of the big pile of paté de foie gras had me salivating, and it was very bit as silky and smooth as I'd hoped.  I had to stop myself from gobbling down more of this, knowing there was a lot more food coming.

Froggie then served up some pan-fried foie gras with grapes.  Very yum.

All this was washed down with some 2006 Muffato della Sala from Antinori.  Very sweet with lots of honey in the nose.

We moved to the dining table and waited for the hot food to arrive.  Froggie wasn't very happy with how the cheese soufflé turned out, although the rest of us had no complaints.  I loved the combination of Comté and Gruyère.  Salad was served on the side with some homemade semi-dried tomatoes which packed a lot of flavors.

I opened the 2004 Pazo Piñero de Lusco Albariño as I wanted an aromatic white.  Unfortunately I had waited past the wine's prime, and the nose was flinty, mineral, lemon citrus and very toasty.  No more fresh and floral notes.  Pretty high acidity on the palate.

Our main course was veal shank stewed in apple cider, with pan-fried apples and gnocchi.  The veal was very good, and there was a nice chunk of wobbly, rich bone marrow.  I scooped the awesome marrow onto a piece of baguette, and polished it off in two bites.  Doesn't get better than this.  Some of the bone marrow found its way into the sauce for the veal, and I scooped some of it over the gnocchi.

I brought along the 1989 Lou Dumont Chambolle-Musigny 1er Cru Les Charmes Léa Sélection to match the veal, although my original plan also called for a white wine to match.  This was a very beautiful wine, which I decanted about 1½ hours before we got to drink it.  Big, sweet and fruity nose, with black dates, sous bois, smoked meats notes.  Absolutely lovely and feminine - just what I'd expect from a Chambolle.

In her first attempt some 3 months ago, Froggie had failed to achieve "marbling" in her chocolate marble cake.  So I held my breath tonight while the first cuts were made... and sure enough, there was a smiley face of sorts... success!

We were still in the mood for more wine, so I opened up the 2005 Kongsgaard VioRus.  Sadly, I had also waited a little too long to pop the cork on this one, so we did not get the floral notes from the Viognier immediately.  But the wine was still delicious, with notes of honey, marmalade, marzipan, a hint of chalk.  The floral notes came out later - almost like osmanthus.

Froggie was eager to drink up the Bijofu Yuzu Liqueur (美丈夫ゆずリキュール) I gave her, so we each had a shot of it.  Still wonderfully fragrant and full of that citrus flavor.  A great way to finish.

I stuck around a little longer to have some coffee, and also to crack open the box of Turkish delights from Hafiz Mustafa Sekerlemeleri - given to me by a friend who had recently returned from a trip to Turkey.  I'm not really familiar with Turkish delights, but this box didn't look like your run-of-the-mill stuff.  No pieces were alike, so Froggie and I started picking them at random. Loaded with an assortment of nuts and not overly sweet, these were very delish.

I had a great time, and was very thankful for Froggie's hospitality. I was stuffed full of delicious, rich food and couldn't possibly ask for more from my hostess...

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