Men Drink and Dine into Late Jazz Hours

Anticipating the Mayan calendar end-of-days as 12-21-2012 approaches, the original tBoW team tasters hit the road for a final fling at manly endeavors. We drove to Silverlake which is a bohemian neighborhood east of Hollyweird. Dotoré and tBoW were hosted by Steve Goldun formerly of Palate and Woodland Hills Wine Co, and proprietor of the soon-to-be announced Eno-Merchant, an online vending site for all things delicious and beyond well-priced in mostly Old World wines. Steve made dinner, we pulled corks. We let the jazz selections from Coltrane to Metheny drive the conversation to any topic that came to mind. Here is the down low.

First, Dotoré would like everyone to not wait another minute to hang out with your male pals over an evening of eating and drinking. It can be a very good thing. The tBoW team likes to hang with Steve G. Not only is he a professional jazz bass player who can speak about music from classic jazz to the origins of opera – each topic coming with a personal side bar. He also can up your wine-Q. Aside from the obvious carnal distractions what can be better?

2005 Bruno Giacosa Classic Method Spumante Extra Brut $25: A Blanc de Noirs made from Pinot Noir grapes in neighboring Oltrepò Pavese. Piemonte producers are regular customers of grapes for the sparkling wines under their own labels. This is bright, acidic wine with great effervescence. Slugged it down smoothly. 13%

A conversation about Neapolitan opera broke out. Naples was home to the first opera house in Italy. Opera was the pop music of its day. Fans sat in boxes eating and drinking like we might today at the Playboy Jazz Fest. When Steve G brought up the Neapolitan 6th chord the tBoW team realized now we were out of our depth although quite willing to get wet. Time for the next bottle of wine.

NV Domaine de Deux Mondes “Deux C” $50: Blend of two Viognier batches wines each produced by the top two Viognier vintners of the New World – Morgan Clendenen – and the Old World -Yvess Cuilleron. When I interviewed Morgan this year she readily acknowledged the cost of producing the wine is formidable in multiple respects. I believe only two vintages were produced and this was my only bottle! Her Cold Heaven Sanford & Benedict Viognier is the best I have known. This wine is spectacular. Golden color with an aroma like Chardonnay. The flavors are peachy and pithy. A sunrise and a sunset in a glass. Truly exceptional wine. 14%

Steve G exhumes a custard

We reviewed Arafat’s exhumation for polonium poisoning. We were each aware that Russia is best known for this particular kind of assassination delivery method and speculated, briefly, why the Russians would want Arafat out of the picture. Of course, that is not in the news. We considered whether Arafat was the Jesse Jackson of the Middle East. Opinions varied. That led to the paradox of Miles Davis whose vision far exceeded his trumpet playing chops. “Playing did not matter. Miles was the Bob Dylan of jazz. He led and everyone else followed.” Steve G. assembled us in the kitchen where he showed us the marble slab he uses to roll out his pasta. I asked if he ever hurt his back lifting the 60 pound white Italian slab. He has. With his pain in mind we moved on to the next bottle of wine.

2009 Domaine Francois Lumpp A Vigne Rouge, Givry Premier Cru $40: This was the red wine of the evening. tBoW suggests if this wine was served to a taster who had only been exposed to New World Pinot Noirs from Santa Barbara or Anderson Valley or the Russian River or New Zealand even that taster would immediately recognize this wine did not hail from any of those locations. A Pinot Noir with this amount of stuffing, and a beat-your-chest combo of earth and fruit, can only be made in Burgundy. Givry is in the Côte Chalonnaise which is one of the lesser Burgundy regions. However, Mssr. Lumpp has made a wine that stands with other Premier Crus from more prestigious communes. Two thumbs up and one in your nose. If you see it buy it. 13%

The Givry bottle is why we are so excited about Steve’s new project the Eno Merchant. We covered the merits of current online celebrity wine vendor Garagiste versus what we expect from the Eno-dude; and that would be (i) a perfect palate match, (ii) most attractive pricing, and (iii) unfailing standards to offer and drink only the best wines on a value scale. Oh yes. No waiting 6 to 9 months for delivery! Not to worry. When he goes live readers will know.

The bolognese pasta was served and consumed while we pondered how heroin addiction impacted Coltrane’s unbelievable riffing. Steve waited an hour before serving the pan sauteed chicken thighs. We used the time well finishing most of the open wine bottles. Dotoré asked Steve whether, when playing, he thought of melody or rhythm. Steve G thought about that and suggested pairing the unopened Beaujolais with the pollo.

2009 Domaine Calot Morgon VV Cuvee Unique $16: This was a perfect complement to the Givry. Steve G said it was his favorite wine among the 09 Beaujolais. The similarities were remarkable. Dark red robe, firm aroma. Full mouth flavors, perfect middle weight. Youthful. We noted that the Côte Chalonnaise and Morgon are near each other and how this proximity surely contributed to the similar profiles. Naw. Morgon is actually one of the southernmost Beaujolais communes. Others such as Julienas and Fleurie are 40 km closer to Burgundy. No matter. The only U20 wine of the evening was superb. 13%

Steve Goldun’s Sformato recipe: Blend egg, chicken stock, handful of grated English cheddar cheese, sea salt and pepper. Italians use a bagna maria. Steve uses a wok and bamboo steamer over very gentle flame. Serve with chicken thighs.

the only apocalypse witnessed

1 Comment

  1. Wavatar
    doc says:

    No worrying about the time. No worrying about the amount of wine consumed. No concern about the “agenda” of the meal. Gourmet food. Free flowing conversation, without rancor, ranging from politics to music to wine. No dress code. Gracious host. I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. Yes, men, it can be done!!!

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