Silverlake Wine and Heirloom LA previewed sizzling ideas for a memorable Thanksgiving feast this past Sunday, with an audience of 94 people abuzz with excitement. Five wines and four generous small plates made for a great time, while many were inspired to leave the cooking to Heirloom LA, with wine pairing by the great team at Silverlake Wine.
Greeted with a sparkling glass of Sommariva Prosecco Superiore DOCG Brut NV, this crisp dry bubbly tickled the nose with light lemon, honeysuckle, and herbal notes and teased the palate with its low alcohol froth. A welcoming aperitif, this Prosecco set the stage for the mini-feast ahead.
Edgy food and wine pairings ruled the day, with Matthew Poley, owner/chef of Heirloom LA, cooking up a storm, while his partner, Tara Maxey, documented the Herculean effort with her iPhone! And Silverlake Wine threw out all the conventional holiday wine choices, like Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and fashioned an intriguing international wine tour. With informative and often colorful commentary by co-owners George Cossette and Randy Clement, the crowd drooled and chuckled their way through the wine lineup. April Langford, the other co-owner, kept the whole tasting on track, deftly polishing wine glasses, and directing the rest of the staff how best to cater to the huge crowd.
First course, Clendenen Family Vineyards Gewurztraminer Le Bon Climat Santa Maria 2010, a beautifully balanced white wine, fragrant with aromas and flavors of rose petals, lychee, and grapefruit rind, graced the palate with a medium-light body and lots of character with a long, softly spicy finish. When paired with the whole roasted Claire Island wild salmon that was stuffed with rosemary, marjoram, lemons, roasted garlic, and shallots, the whole experience was spectacular. Served with citrus purple Brussel Sprouts, a carrot rutabega gratin, and set off with a cumin creme fraiche, the Gewurztraminer perfectly complimented the salmon. This was easily one of my top favorites, yummy with a capital Y!
Second course, the Montevertine Pian del Ciampolo IGT Tuscany 2010, had great balance and acidity, with its ruby red, semi-transparent cloak of black cherry, plum, blackberry, raspberry, cassis, licorice, green pepper, mint, and a floral element. Pretty complex for a mostly Sangiovese red wine, with a splash of Colorino and Canaiolo. It really showcased the smoked prime beef brisket and sweet potato mini-shepherd’s pie with root vegetables, topped with a carmelized homemade marshmallow and a pinch of sea salt. Holy smokes, what an epiphany! The pairing was truly outstanding, as your taste buds ricocheted from the sweet, salty, and beefy high notes, with a little earthiness from the root vegetables. This little piece of heaven was tied with the salmon for my top favorite of the afternoon.
Continued in Part 2