I’ve been contemplating a trip to Napa Valley, California. It’s been seven years since I went and remains, to this day, one of my favourite food and wine experiences, ever. Time keeps ticking, and I travel a lot, but it seems I can’t get anywhere near Napa. So, when you can’t go to Napa, one must take advantage when Napa comes to you.
Chef Buzak’s first dish was an artful display of lake trout, delicate fennel and beet slices with silky emulsions. The wine pairing for this dish was Mitsuko’s Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc — an elegant elixir, full of citrus, nectarine and tropical fruit, with a lively yet polished minerality.
The second dish was a celebration of all things good and holy: pork belly in a jerk style, earthy black eye beans and a velvety yam puree. This was flavour, texture and art on the plate, and a surprisingly voluptuous Pinot Noir in the glass. Brilliant.
Wine tastings at a winery or at winemaker’s dinner strikes deep in the heart. Wine tastes better when you meet the maker and look him/her in the eye. You hear of the wine’s story, connect with its people, its history, and every time you drink it thereafter, you remember how you felt at that moment of the taste. That’s powerful.
I can only imagine how these wines would taste under the California sun. Napa in September sounds perfect.