Friday, October 31, 2008
a couple exceptional wines at Forge...
...so had dinner down in Tribeca with the lovely and companionable Cynthia Sexton on Wednesday night, enjoying the flavours of Marc Forgione, along with two bottles that weighed in somewhere between outstanding and memorable.
The first of these was my bright idea. Knowing that Cynthia willingly dines fizz-first I had already ordered a bottle of Pierre Moncuit Cuvée Delos, Grand Cru Mesnil by the time she got decanted out of her taxicab—this was a bottle that didn’t get hurried out of Champagne and shoved on to a boat, so in addition to the expected exuberance and depth, the lemon and grapefruit explosion, there were wonderful mineral tones, and an expansive body underneath with a bit of dough and satisfying yellow fruits. Deluscious by itself, it fared well alongside a slightly citric grilled octopus with various mushrooms and contrasting greens.
Our second bottle was chosen by sommelier Matthew Conway, who sympathised with a certain amount of indecision over what colour wine to drink with the combination of veal medallions and sweetbreads that we’d both ordered. We chose this special for all the wrong reasons, mainly that the chap who was sitting at the adjacent table when we arrived—who pitched his Blackberry to the floor via my lap as he was extricating himself from his seat— remarked in passing how much he hadn’t liked the veal medallions with sweetbreads—but I couldn’t help but notice that he was also slightly polluted (although in no way personally unpleasant) so perhaps not in the best shape to judge fine flavours... We consulted the server, asked her opinion, were given a most articulate defense of said menu item, and decided both to order this dish in solidarity with her and the house—whereby we indulged in a bit of contrariness with no victim, and were fed excellent veal as a result. So what to drink? Agonised over the ’90 Olga Raffault Chinon Picasses, but let Matthew choose, and were rewarded with his pick of a 2006 Mas Daumas Gassac blanc, which showed itself to be a totally splendid olofactorama... It got sloshed into a decanter and sat off ice on the table for the better part of an hour as the aromatix just continued to develop. Grown from various vines of viognier, chardonnay, chenin blanc and gros manseng, each whiff of the stuff out of big burgundy glasses ventured farther and farther off the beaten track—continuing the pineapple theme of the champagne, but reaching fuurther beyond into the realms of mango and candied peach... the wine’s presence on the palate was substantial without being heavy, showed a very nice and finely tuned texture.