Monday, November 30, 2009

~ Foiled Again ~

...and another lovely evening at Seasonal Restaurant in W58 St...

I shall just say here at the outset that Seasonal is a delightful restaurant, one of my favourites—but also a good customer of mine, and even though this weblog is several stages removed from any official journalistic responsibility, I shall infer that such accountability does in fact exist, and state the fact at the outset that I do sell them a number of items: liquid, containing alcohol, coming from Burgenland and Niederösterreich...

chefs Wolfgang Ban and Eduard Frauneder—from Donnerskirchen in Burgenland and Vienna, respectively, have created a little oasis of civility and sophisticated flavour around the corner from Carnegie Hall—importing to NYC what strikes me when I'm over there as best about contemporary Austrian cuisine: it can become rather adventurous at times, without every losing sight of its national heritage—

and you would never know from the intro, but this is actually heading toward a couple tasting notes...

I showed up for dinner with three Austrian wine professionals, and two bottles clad in tin-foil.

...and after fifteen minutes of the wines loosening themselves up in the glasses, the Austrian wine pros were actually ready to believe me when I told them that the first of the two heady reds came from California, and the second from Bordeaux. What a scoundrel ~!

— it was a pair of ten-year-olds from south of Vienna in Burgenland that I had hauled out of my cellar and concealed in Stanniol...

1999 Paul Achs ‘Ungerberg’
1999 Kollwentz ‘Steinzeiler’

These are both examples of the potentially excellent indigenous variety Blaufränkisch—the Achs, from Neusiedlersee, having been blended with Syrah & Merlot, and the Kollwentz—other side of the lake, Neusiedlersee-Hügelland—with Zweigelt and Cabernet Sauvignon.

The two bottles were both in perfect shape, and had done diligent duty during their days and nights of aging in my basement.

Achs showed aromatic notes of dried fruit, cocoa, raspberries and blackberries—had soaked up any oak, and made quite a satisfyingly rounded impression, beautifully layered with ripe tannins and full body. Excellent with a hunk of beef.

Kollwentz, in comparison, seemed a bit younger, a bit of black cherry and less blackberryish—and truly bordelaise in style. It hadn’t lost all of its edges, showed a magnificently complex bouquet, great depth of aromatics, a little more demanding on the palate, but very fine, and likely to live a little longer—

—although given the proclivities of the Austrians to drink their wines young, one might have a hard time finding any supplies of either wine in Austria now.

I laughed neither long nor loud, and so the colleagues were all good sports about being victimised by my little joke—or as one says in Austrian,“led behind the light...”

1 comment:

Restaurant Pizzerie Vechile Coline said...
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