September 3, 2014

Food that don't work with red wine, episode 3

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Two years after his debut performance, Curry once again hosted his MNSC dinner at Megan's Kitchen (美味廚).  There's no question that the MNSC boys all love the food here, but the reality is that many of the dishes simply don't work with the reds that we tend to pop when we come here.  Tonight, though, there was an added bonus.  It seems that the restaurant has been doing some renovation work, and I was hit with the paint fumes as soon as the elevator doors opened.  Blind tasting under these circumstances would be a real challenge...

The host asked the owner to put together a menu for tonight, and given that she is a wine lover herself and knows exactly what we are doing tonight, one can only assume that she was deliberately trying to screw with our palates... perhaps on Curry's orders!

Deep-fried Bombay duck (椒鹽九肚魚) - always a crowd favorite, and that sprinkle of deep-fried garlic and chili was just perfect with the Cali reds we were drinking...

Japanese-style fried chicken (日式炸雞件) - pretty good.  Deep-fried dish #2.

Deep-fried tofu with black truffle (炸黑松露豆腐) - curious thin sheets of bean curd with blobs of black truffle paste on top.  Not bad at all.  Deep-fried dish #3.

Marinated boneless pig trotters (涼拌無骨豬手) - oh this was so sooo good... I'm a sucker for pig trotters, thanks to all that skin and fat and gelatin and collagen... which can be simultaneously soft, springy and crunchy.  Marinated with sesame oil, with plenty of chopped chili and spring onions... there is just enough kick here.  I found myself unable to stop reaching for more.   Chili/spicy dish #2.

Crab meat and mushroom soup (生拆蟹肉多茸羹) - nice and thick thanks to the abundance of corn starch, but we've got really nice and big chunks of fresh crab meat here.  Very, very yum.  Was that a sprinkle of deep-fried garlic and chili flakes on top?

Deep-fried crab claw (椒鹽大肉蟹箝) - mmmmm more deep-fried food, and more deep-fried garlic and chili.  Let's just say that the crab that this claw came from wasn't exactly a baby.  Chili/spicy dish #3 and deep-fried dish #4.

Baked garoupa fillet with corn in cream sauce (鮮粟米奶油焗斑球) - oh this is so Canto... The cream was really, really nice.

Surprisingly, though, this dish was spicy!  Quite a few of us were caught by surprise, fooled by the heavy cream and veg.  Chili/spicy dish #4.

Stir-fried pork neck with dried shrimp (蝦米醬爆豬頸肉) - aaaaaand another spicy dish... this time a lot more in-your-face.  Just looked at the chili oil with seeds and chopped dried shrimp and shrimp paste covering the pork and celery.  Another dish where I couldn't resist reaching out my chopsticks for more and more, red Bordeaux be damned.  Chili/spicy dish #5.

Crispy chicken (南乳脆燒黃油雞) - really yum... and the prawn crackers were so nice... Deep-fried dish #5.
Pan-fried rice flour rolls with beef in black truffle sauce (黑松露牛肉煎腸粉) - finally!  I dish that was neither spicy nor deep-fried... just pan-fried.  Ya just can't come here without ordering something that's got the minced beef and black truffle sauce... and today those pan-fried rice flour rolls were killer.  My stomach was already bursting at this point, yet I just couldn't help myself...

Baked four vegetables in whole pumpkin with Portuguese sauce (原隻南瓜葡汁焗四蔬) - anything smothered in molho português tastes pretty good in my book, and this was no exception.  Broccoli, cauliflower and mushrooms.  Chili/spicy dish #6.

Stir-fried kailan with ginger sauce (生磨薑汁炒芥蘭) - can't go wrong with this classic and all the antioxidants...

豐料鮑汁荷葉飯 - rice flour rolls AND rice?  Yes, ma'am!  This was very tasty and pretty full-on thanks to the abalone sauce.  Too bad I could only fit in a small bowl...

Before we even showed up, Curry had announced that this would be a magnum dinner with 6 big guns.  We were, of course, kinda hoping that we would be drinking 6 magnums of Jayer... but none of us would have cause to question his generosity once we tasted the wines and realized what they were!

First pair: opened 3½ hours and decanted an hour prior to serving
1991 Dominus from magnum - nice and smooth on the palate, with a little cedar, a little grassy, bigger and more smoky than the Harlan, a little spicy.  Later on pretty savory.

1991 Harlan Estate from magnum - nice, sweet fruit, with a hint of grass, mint and a tad savory mineral.

Second pair: opened and immediately recorked 2 hours prior, and decanted 15 minutes prior to serving
1975 La Mission Haut-Brion from magnum - nose seemed very oxidized at first, kinda dusty but cleared up later.  Nose of grilled meats, coffee, and mocha.  Later on turned pretty savory.

1975 Petrus from magnum - some fruit here and a little minty.

Third pair: opened and decanted 15 minutes prior to serving
1966 Petrus from magnum, ex-château - more concentrated than the '78.  Minty, metallic, a little sweet, a little smoky, and almost coffee notes.  Definitely a better wine than the '78.  97 points.

1978 Petrus from magnum - cool fruit, lovely and elegant.  Slightly ripe and sweet.  96 points.

This was a really fun evening... with good food and obviously good wines.  Unfortunately I couldn't really smell the wines from the first two pairs, so I ended up not scoring them.  Nevertheless I am extremely grateful for Curry's generosity, and I did really enjoy the last pair of Petrus...

In case anyone was wondering... yes, you can drink Petrus with spicy food.

1 comment:

Sue-Ann said...

Oh, this would be a treat for anyone who likes deep fried food. The tofu looks appealing.


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