This month we were glad to be invited to an exclusive wine dinner in the Azzur Restaurant of Intercontinental. K. Glen Roberts, the culinary director, created an amazing set with the beautiful Hua Hin beach on one side and the intercontinental gardens on the other. The guest star of the night was Judit Llop Gasull, the chief wine maker at Morlanda and Vinas del Monsant in Catalunya. Judit is based in the Spanish wine producing region of Priorat which has built up a reputation for powerful, full bodied wines from Grenache and Carignan with recent plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah.
The 4 course dinner was paired perfectly with the Spanish wines and the whole experience together with the live band and the stunning guests created a wonderful evening. We were greeted with a cold glass of Freixent Cordon Negro, the biggest selling sparkling wine in the world. For our appetizer we had Phuket lobster medallion with lemon grass, basil pineapple jelly and flaked Alaskan crab meat. This dish is a fusion of Phuket and Hua Hin; using Lobster from Phuket, a place very close to his heart, and pineapple from Hua Hin. It was served in a martini glass, chilled and paired beautifully with a glass of Solar Viejo white wine which is made from Viura and Chardonnay. It was smooth and fruity, one of my favourites of the night. We continued with slow poached chicken galantine with candied apple, balsamic reduction, rocket lettuce and Melba toast.
The chicken is cooked slowly for 1.5 hours at a low temperature which keeps the natural moisture within the meat. Mr. Glen chose to cook the chicken in a slightly different way in order to compliment the strong taste of the wine, ‘Valdubon Crianza’; which is a vintage, full bodied wine, stored in a 67% American oak and 33% French oak barrel for 12 months thus giving the wine its strong taste and colour, lovely for cold nights. Our main course was grilled beef tenderloin and foi gras with creamed celeriac, potato mash, asparagus tips, glazed cherry tomatoes and red wine reduction; the dish looked and tasted excellent. I think everyone appreciates well cooked beef and the foi gras lovers, including me, were very happy with this choice.
The last wine we had was made by Judit herself and is another award winning wine and, of course, it was the pick of the night. Thank you to Alison Harvey and Judi Liop from Freixenet Group for the great wines and Glen Roberts for the fantastic food and organisation, we had a wonderful evening.