Thursday, March 23, 2006

Burgundy Wine Dinner at CanCan

Last night my husband and I attended a wine dinner at CanCan Brasserie in Carytown. What a lovely evening. The theme was Burgundy. Here is a rundown of the menu and wine pairings:

Johan Crab Claws
Scallop Ceviche
2002 Bourgogne Aligote, Domaine Rollin

Notes: Aligote is a lesser grape of Burgundy and was instrumental in the invention of the Kir. The wine was a little tart, but paired well with the seafood. I'm not an oyster fan, so I abstained from this delicacy; however, I did sample the other items. The shrimp was not very sweet (too watery tasting). The crab claws were decent, but very hard to eat standing up. The scallops were heavenly and were perched on a housemade waffle-cut potato chip.

Crispy Frog Legs
Parsley Root Puree and Garlic Celery Broth

2002 Bourgogne Blanc "Montmeix," Domain Mestre-Michelot

Notes: The only type of Chardonnay to consume is a white Burgundy. White Burgundies are never cloying with a ubiquitious Chardonnay smell. It is crisp, yet full-bodied. This wine was fantastic with the crispy fried frog legs, and stood up to the richness of the puree. By the way, this was the first I had ever had frog legs. I was impressed.

Coq au Vin
Boulangerie Potatoes and Roasted Baby Carrots
2004 Brouilly, Domaine Lapalu

Notes:The great growth Beaujolais was light and fruity and was enjoyable with the chicken which had a hint of sweetness to it. The wine was even better with the potatoes, which had a smoky flavor. The wine was served chilled and this is in keeping with the French tradition of how to serve Beaujolais. I would have preferred it to be at room temperature to experience more of the fruit essences.

Pan Seared Venison
Roasted Parsnips, Carmelized Pears, and Pomme Puree
2003 Bourgogne Rouge"Emotion de Terroirs," Vincent Girardin

Notes: What a great Burgundy! The wine was well balanced and could take on rare venison and carmelized pears. Burgundies can be so expensive and so hard to find that to discover one within the reach of one's purse-strings makes for an exceptional evening.

CanCan is currently hosting wine dinners every Wednesday. The cost is ~$50 per person including taxes and gratuity. It's one of the best ways to begin discovering how food and wine pair together. Bob Talcott is the wine director. He imparts some of his vast wine knowledge in between courses and is a delight to hear. He has done a fantastic job of selecting wines for both the dinners and for the restaurant itself.

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