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Food Wine & Friends Page 42

PAUL & SANDY
HOST
NEW YEAR'S EVE


December 31, 2003
OBESTER'S BY THE SEA

We arrived shortly after 7pm, the Van Blanc loaded with holiday gifts, wine and a few provisions for this wonderful event.

Marjorie had ordered some caviar from "Bob The Fish Man At Trag's".



Henry took care of serving the Caviar.


Delightful!


Sandy Obester made a huge batch of Blini and these were outstanding with the Caviar.


We had a platter of three different varieties of Oysters, accompanied by a wonderful magnum of Laurent Perrier Brut Ros.


Henry dives in!

Paul got busy preparing some "Bombas," a Mediterranean bread to accompany Sandy's White Bean, Turnip and Fennel Soup.

He's rolling out a series of these dangerous breads.

After a few minutes in the super hot, wood-fired oven, the "bomba" begins to rise.


A certain amount of supervision is required.


And, finally....Voila!  Ecco!!!



Meanwhile the soup was waiting patiently.


And it was time for serving the soup and accompanying bomba...not to mention a couple of Sauvignon Blanc wines.

Chteau Smith Haut Lafitte
1999 Pessac-Lognan
&
Tement 2001 Sudsteiermark
Sauvignon Blanc
"Zieregg"

The Smith Haut Lafitte displayed its marvelous green, melon-like, herbal notes, while the Tement offered a mlange of  mango, peach, nectarine and citrus fruits.  Both were dynamite with the Bomba and soup!


Paul "painted" another bomba with olive oil.
Magnifique!

Earlier in the day, meanwhile, Sandy had a trio of live crabs crawling around the kitchen.
By this hour, they were not crawling anymore.

Sandy magically produced her magnificent West Coast Crab Cakes.


These were accompanied by a duo of interesting white wines:
GUIGAL
2001 Condrieu "La Doriane"
&
AUBERT
2001 Sonoma Coast
Chardonnay
"Ritchie Vineyard"

The Guigal offered its marvelous apricot-like notes of Viognier, while the Aubert was a big, smoky California Chardonnay with a wallop! (Nearly 15% alcohol!)


Marjorie was hungry and thirsty.
So was Alexia.

After this we had a little "break," serving a Granit of "Domaine de Colette" Beaujolais.

This was a deliciously chilled palate-cleanser, having nice acidity and a lovely strawberry-like flavor.

As Paul Obester was busy putting the finishing touches on his Veal "en Feuilltons", Sandy was working on a Truffle Risotto.  A bottle of 1982 Barolo "Cannubi Boschis" made by our dear friend Luciano Sandrone was decanted.

It was at cool cellar temperature and blossomed beautifully once poured as it aired and warmed up.

Paul made a fabulous Madeira Sauce for the Veal.

This was fantastic.

Sandy's Risotto was coming along.


And finally Paul sliced the Veal "Feuilletons" which featured Foie Gras and Truffles.


What a masterpiece!

The combination of flavors was sensational!

The Sandrone Barolo was still VERY fine and marvelously energetic!  The wine was superb.


Gourmand Robert Gorman was savoring the finesse and complexity of these taste treats.


Paul was thrilled that this "experiment" (the first time he's made this dish!) turned out so well, precluding a call for pizza delivery.

But Paul still had much work to do!
Another course featuring red meat and the wood-fired oven was coming.


Racks of Lamb.
Paul said "We needed something to accompany the Haricots Verts and the Cipollini."


Onions in Balsamic Vinegar...Green Beans.


Perfectly roasted!

Do those look good, or what?


Meanwhile, we opened a number of prospective accompanying red wines.

A 1970 Chteau Lynch-Bages proved to be an "off" bottle, displaying a musty aroma due to a bad cork.  A "back-up" bottle of a 1961 Chteau Lynch-Bages was "shot," having been a ullaged bottle.
But a 1970 Gemello Cabernet Sauvignon was its usual magnificent self.
And a 1972 Heitz "Martha's Vineyard" Cabernet Sauvignon turned out to be amazingly good.

The Gemello 1970 was ripe, showing a warm fruit note...I felt it took on a jammy note as it sat open.  Smooth, medium-bodied and with an "old-style" woodsy note.
This wine was matured for about a decade in large cooperage.

Meanwhile, the 1972 vintage from Heitz was a stunning surprise.  This vintage featured a rainy period towards the end of the harvest season and many 1972s were lighter than the more highly-regarded 1973s and 1974s.  You could sense a more "modern" style of wine from Heitz compared to the Gemello.  It was smooth, supple and magnificent, with its textbook "minty" and mildly "eucalyptus" notes.

Both wines proved exceptional with the lamb.


Marjorie reminded the group that "1960 isn't all THAT old and 1972 is positively YOUNG!"

And the evening progressed....
As you'll see if you click here.



















 





 

 

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