September 20, 2022

Jura with fried chicken

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We have a visitor in town for a couple of weeks, and a plan was made to gather for a meal and a few bottles. Our convenor suggested that we open a few bottles from the Jura, as it's a wine region which occupies a small or non-existent part of our collections. I don't have a lot of wine from this area, but my favorite maker of bongwater happens to be from this region. Our convenor was also kind enough to share a bottle of unicorn wine with us.

Nikushou was suggested as the venue pretty early on, and all of us are happy with this choice. It also gives us a chance to drink with RAW Yeah, something we're happy to do. Of course, the boss came up with a selection of the best seasonal ingredients, keeping in mind that most of the bottles will be white wines. I, of course, asked for my usual fried chicken... which he refused to include when the menu was designed.

Japanese horsehair crab (毛蟹) - with tomato and jelly - the usual first dish, kind of. Always enjoy the combination of acidity from the ponzu (ポン酢) jelly, the sweetness from the tomato and crab meat, as well as the umami. And always refreshing because this is served chilled.

Raw oyster (牡蠣) - from Senposhi (仙鳳趾) in Hokkaido. This was very, very creamy and fatty. A long finish, and a little spicy thanks to the spicy grated radish (もみじおろし).

Grilled freshwater eel with sansho pepper sauce (うなぎ 山椒焼き) - the usual.

Pink sea urchin (赤雲丹) - from Yawatahama City (八幡浜市) in Ehime (愛媛). Very creamy with tropical fruit flavors.

Northern purple sea urchin (北紫雲丹) - from Rishiri (利尻) in Hokkaido and supplied by Ichikawa Hokkai Foods (イチカワ北海食品). Also creamy but richer, very sweet.

Salmon roe (イクラ) - from silver salmon, these eggs seemed smaller. Very light and refreshing.

Chicken karaage (チキン唐揚げ) - well... OF COURSE I managed to get my fried chicken. Ain't nothin' better than some fried chicken with some white wine! This was very juicy, and the batter was actually sweet on the palate.

Pacific saury (秋刀魚) - from Kushiro (釧路) in Hokkaido. The season has just started, and these were reasonably fatty.

Abalone and matsutake tempura (鮑と松茸の天ぷら) -

The first piece of abalone was taken with a little salt, while the second piece was dipped in the abalone liver sauce on the side.

Local chateaubriand - same as it ever was. Decent beefy flavors.

Thick cut Australian wagyu tongue (オーストラリア 和牛タン) - tasty as always.

Tottori Wagyu Oleic Acid 55 chateaubriand (鳥取和牛オレイン55 シャトーブリアン) - it was 3 years ago right here that I had this for the first time, and happened to be with 2 of my companions tonight.

Very, very tender... which was no surprise given all the marbling.

Hida A5 top shoulder blade (A5飛騨牛 ミスジ) - charred and very smoky. So tender and so delicious.

Fried corn and scallop (とうもろこしとホタテ揚げ) - how could I pass up having this kakiage (かき揚げ), especially when it's made with corn?!

Smoked wagyu tongue jerky - very chewy and extremely smoky.

The main event tonight, though, was the lineup of Jura wines. We had a couple of superstars tonight:

2015 Domaine Labet Chardonnay Les Varrons - a little smoky and oily on the nose, lemon, acidity on the nose was prominent along with some ripeness, alcoholic with some petrol. Good acidity on the palate without being overly sharp. Pretty nice.

2006 Jean-François Ganevat Les Vignes de Mon Père, en magnum - decanted for 2 hours before pouring back to the bottle, served after another hour in bottle. Initially showing lots of very sweet honey while decanting. Very big, toasty nose along with lots of sweetness, also coffee notes. Three hours and forty-five minutes after opening the nose was showing lots of toast and coffee. About 5 hours after opening there was some vanilla and sugarcane. Nose was still very sweet when serving temperature was very cold, but not so much ripeness and honey now. Still going strong and showing beautifully more thn 7 hours after opening.

2015 Domaine des Miroirs Entre Deux Bleus - breathed for 45 minutes before the cork was put back, then served 2 hours later. Toasty and flinty nose, leaner on the nose than the Ganevat but also more elegant. Dry on the palate but a little round and ripe. A little buttery on the nose, along with some savory notes. About 6 hours after opening this was still very elegant and floral. Drinking very nicely.

2016 Jean-François Ganevat Les Chamois du Paradis - served a little more than 1 hour after decanting. Flinty, mineral, lemon, and oily on the nose, with some white pepper. Drinking pretty nicely, and good acidity.

2015 Domaine Labet Pinot Noir Les Varrons - served about 1½ hours after opening. Lots of leather notes in the nose, a little funky. Fairly typical of natural wine and bears similarity to Prieuré-Roch. Showing nice fruit like strawberries, and sweet like bubblegum. Very soft and smooth on the palate.

2004 Jean-François Ganevat Suyquiême, en demi-bouteille - I thought the wine was a little fizzy on the tongue but no one else did... A bit savory on the nose, but just a hint, and a little nutty.

We had a good amount of the magnum leftover, so I rushed over to Caprice Bar to share some with Hairy Legs and Victor, since they are big fans of Fanfan, too. This was just an unbelievable wine!

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