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Dept dinner at Kome

August 26, 2009

A case of deep venous engorgementThis has been one of the very best Dept dinners in recent memory. This time, we held it at Kome, with chef Lawrence and his able assistants at the helm. The food was outstanding, the service prompt and attentive in spite of the complete range of misbehaviour across all ranks, everyone enjoyed themselves thoroughly, at least 4 large format bottles of sake were drunk, and we also drank the following at the high table.

The Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve NV that started the evening was simple but fresh, doing its job of setting the stage for the pair of German rieslings that followed. The 2007 JJ Christoffel Erben Uziger Wurzgarten Riesling Kabinett (Kieron), from an outstanding vintage, showed a level of complexity and sophistication way above its classification. Dull golden, with a very immediate and enticing bouquet of honey, peach and apricot that followed through onto the palate. Very good body and density, and fairly complex, finishing on a sweet note that suggests more of a spatlese. Quite a complete wine. Excellent. In contrast, the 2003 JJ Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spatlese, which is the second time I’m having this within a month, was more delicate and floral, coming across as a more elegant riesling, but it has more body, with that extra layer of “petrol” quality in the middle only found in German rieslings, creating more depth and complexity, finishing quite long, with the sweetness nicely tamed. I picked up a faint durian note on the nose, but Kieron vehemently disagreed. This is performing better than the previous one I had earlier this month. Perhaps the food pairing was more appropriate, compared with chilli crab.

Lawrence's masterpiecesKieron also brought a 2002 Domaine Jean-Jacques Confuron Vosne-Romanee 1er Cru “Les Beaux Monts”, a truly classic Burgundy rouge. Pale but clear rusty red, it exuded the sort of oily, slick character on the mid-palate, which I find only present from good producers. Very good fruit quality, producing a very fragrant nose of red fruits and cherries. Just lacking that extra depth and power, but this went very well with the cuisine.

In contrast, the 1998 Ch Clos Fourtet, showing an evolving red with a tawny rim, was rather shy on the nose. It took a while to settle, eventually morphing into a soft, mellow wine with predominantly red fruit characters, finishing with fairly sophisticated tannins, the merlot component just discernible. Would not have guessed that it’s a Right Bank, but it doesn’t taste like a Medoc either. Doesn’t quite possess power nor depth, but it is drinking well, a good match with the JJ Confuron.foie gras sushi

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