Yesterday was a long day. It was hot and I was miserable. I’m still new to the desert. I grew up in Riverside, went to college in Riverside and eventually made homes of Sacramento, the Bay Area and Los Angeles before returning back to the Inland Empire. Everyone kept saying, “Oh, you’re just not used to it.”
No, I’m not. It was hot and I was miserable.
So when I arrived at Miramonte for a for a wine dinner featuring Chateau St. Jean, I was not in the best mood. I didn’t’ care about the spectacular views or the cool Fume Blanc served at reception.
It was hot and I was miserable.
As the sun set and everyone ventured to their tables, I found myself meeting some interesting folks. There were wine writers, travel writers and just wine lovers at my table sharing stories and chatting about whatever came to mind.
First course was the pan seared sea bass paired with St. Jean’s chardonnay. While I prefer reds over whites, I can enjoy a good chardonnay. As the sun set and the day began to cool, the chardonnay came at a perfect time. The aroma was an amazing scent of apple. And the sea bass was a light and flavorful dish that began to turn my day around. For starters, I love sea bass. It’s one of my favorite fishes and this one, crispy on the outside flaky within, got me cleaning the plate.
Second course was a ballantine of capon with wild mushroom, seared baby rainbow chard and truffled frisee and mache paired with the pinot noir. The capon was flavorful although slightly too dry for my taste. The star in this dish for me was the vegetables mainly because the saltiness cut through the soft buttery pinot ever so delicately creating an amazing contrast in taste. The pinot was a light smooth vino, an easy to drink red for those who prefer whites.
The third and main course was a roast brandt beef paired with one of the vineyard’s popular wines, the Cinq Cepages a cabernet sauvignon. You’ll have to excuse my photos for this post as I wasn’t using the flash on my iPhone. Nonetheless, the dish and pairing was amazing. The beef was tender and potato leek pave side was a great palate cleanser. The wine offered that great bite I look for in reds. Together the pairing was a powerful statement.
The dinner ended with a trio of mango, black raspberry and meyer lemon sorbets complete with fresh fruit and an almond tuille paired with a pinot gris. A light dessert to finish off the hot day.
After everything was said and done, the dinner completely turned my day around. The food was amazing but what topped the night was meeting some wonderful people and discussing our mutual love for food and wine. It’s true what they say, wine is about the experience.