Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Sommelier Showdown -- fun food and wine event

The wine store/catering business in O'Bryonville called Art of Entertaining hosts cooking classes, wine tastings, grill-outs (in good weather) and all sorts of other parties, but for my money the best thing they do is an occasional "Sommelier Showdown" in which three local wine experts compete to see who can devise the most harmonious wine pairings with an array of dishes produced by the Art of Entertaining chef and assistants.
Charles Redmond won the night!

This week was the first such competition this year -- they did a couple last year -- and the owners promised to make it quarterly in 2012. I had attended the final one of 2011 sometime in the fall and had such a grand time, I knew to sign up right away for this one.

Mary Horn (two-time defending Sommelier Showdown champ), Jennifer Stewart and Charles Redmond were the wine experts who delighted a house full of participants on January 24th.

FIRST COURSE, in photo: Fennel and orange salad with poached lobster and tarragon vinaigrette (best wine pairing went to Charles' 2008 Raventos Reserva Cava) --
SECOND COURSE: Pan seared trout with pickled grape, corn puree, daikon and ginger (Charles selected a Kabinett Riesling that was the winner with this course)
THIRD COURSE: Seared duck breast with cherry demi, Brussel sprouts, bacon hash and star anise (Mary's 2009 Catena malbec won this round, but I preferred, and bought a bottle of, Jennifer's Austrian red wine called St. Laurent, a cousin to pinot noir).
FOURTH COURSE: Braised short rib with celery root horseradish puree (Charles took the honors again with his 2009 Domaine de Fontsainte Corbierres).

The champ for the night was Charles Redmond -- who currently delights diners at Orchid's restaurant downtown -- with Jennifer Stewart coming in second and Mary Horn losing her crown, at least for now.

Be sure to contact Art of Entertaining to get on their mailing list if you'd like to know when they do this again. My friends and I thought it was a grand time!

1 comment:

  1. Wow, it sounds like this was great fun, Pama! I am so sad to have missed it -Maria