Wednesday, August 24, 2011

To Poudre or Not to Poudre: A Memorable Birthday Pairing

Anyone who knows anything about wine is aware that it does NOT mix with perfume. Well, apparently those rules don't apply when it comes to the iconic Coco Chanel..specifically this pioneering French fashion designer's 128th birthday, celebrated with a recent wine and perfume pairing (gulp) on August 19 at Saks Fifth Avenue on El Paseo.
The 'no no' factor went right out the window as Vino Chick, with help from 3rd Corner Wine Shop & Bistro, paired four wines to match a quartet of Saks-exclusive fragrances, including the brand new No. 19 Poudre.
The new interpretation of No. 19 (released on Chanel's actual birthday) is floral intermingled with crisp green woods, and a touch of powder. I paired it with a 2010 Gryphus Sauvignon Blanc from Chile, which is pale yellow in color similar to the fragrance and full of fresh fruit.
Other pairings included the zippy and citrusy 2010 Zolo Torrontes, an addictive Argentinian white matched with Elie Saab, a floral scent with notes of orange blossom and patchouli.
I matched a creamy 2009 Crème de Lys Chardonnay with teh Fan de Fendi fragrance, a leathery peppery scent that reminded me of the aroma I get when I stick my head in an oak barrel...not to be tried at home, of course.

Lastly, I paired the over-the-top, sexy as hell, vanilla-spiked Sweet Redemption by Killian with a 2007 Pinot Gris from Chalk Hill. Killian is a cigar guy by trade, so this scent has some powdery smoke and heft to it, which matched well with the wine's spicy/oaky/apple/nut flavor profile.
Now what to pair with that pesky No. 5...
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Special thanks to:
Saks Fifth Avenue Palm Desert:
73555 El Paseo
Palm Desert, CA
(760) 837-2900

3rd Corner Wine Shop & Bistro:
73101 Highway 111
Palm Desert, CA
(760) 837-9600

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Roo by Any Other Name...

There is a certain magic that comes with sharing good wine and food with terrific friends; those epic meals where deep secrets are shared, right alongside platefuls of irresistable flavors.
I enjoyed one such experience recently with my friend Cheri at Johannes Restaurant, a widely-acknowledged foodie heaven with an eclectic, Austrian-influenced menu, in downtown Palm Springs.
Our closest pals playfully refer to us as Nickeroo and Cheroo, so it was only fitting that on this dining adventure, "The Roos" had been invited to try Roo...kangaroo, that is.
Intrepid foodies that we are, we eagerly anticipated Johannes' take on this organic, grass fed protein, which is sometimes hard to find here in the U.S. Our kangaroo loin w as served in an addictive Blood Orange Juniper Merlot reduction, with an orange and herb salad, roasted pear, and broccolini.
There was certainly a game-like taste and thick, fibrous texture, not as heavy as venison, but also warm and with rich flavors. Once I got over the idea that this was the most primitive thing I had ever eaten, I realized that my palate was dancing like Andy Gibb during his 1977 appearance on The Midnight Special.
Of course, a meal this exotic can't be enjoyed without a formidable wine to match. Owner and Chef Johannes Bacher brilliantly selected a 2005 Lyrique Syrah from Santa Barbara County. Lyrique is like a mouthful of smoked cherry jam and spice, some of my favorite characteristics in a big red.
Johannes offers his take on the pairing in the video below:
To Johannes' disppointment, there wasn't any wine left to share...just some fun little secrets, and an epic evening for the two Roos..make that three...

Follow me on Twitter @Vinochick75.
Special thanks to Johannes Bacher, Chef/Owner:
Johannes Restaurant
196 S. Indian Canyon Drive
Palm Springs, CA

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I am very much into earthy, woodsy flavors, especially when those tastes relate to wine. Even better are those instances when the eats match up.
 My wine and food coma pairing for the week is an '08 Felino Vina Cabos Malbec, matched up with a juicy and flavorful venison burger from cult favorite Grind Brgr Bar in Palm Springs, topped with bleu cheese crumbles and applewood smoked bacon.
There is an enbarassing amount of dark red fruit in this wine, accompanied by intense cocoa-like chocolate flavors. When you marry that sort of decadence with smooth and earthy bleu cheese blanketing organic beef, you start to hear Olivia Newton-John crooning in your ear...specifically her ethereal 1980 smash hit "Magic." 
What made this matchup even better? The side of garlic fries doused in Sriracha Chili Sauce to honor my beloved Phillies, who just happened to be chomping on The Colorado Rockies that night...
Wait, wasn't that venison from Colorado?
Follow me on Twitter @Vinochick75.