If you think that being a food and wine critic is an easy life, you are mistaken. We have to try and space the wine events or spend our days in recovery mode, trying to get ready for the next one. Last week went very close to being on the limit of endurance, with events at Bruno’s Restaurant and Wine Bar and four days later, the deVine Wine Club at the Royal Cliff.
The first event at Bruno’s, on Sunday, Jan. 27, and incidentally, the first local wine event for a new wine supplier Siam Gourmet Paradox, was a sell-out from the start. That’s right, a full house, showing there is no shortage of people on the Eastern Seaboard who appreciate good food and wine.
The Bruno’s venue is of course quite spectacular and deserving of its title as one of the top fine dining restaurants in Pattaya, with the business being overseen for many years by owner Fredi Schaub.
The Bruno’s venue is of course quite spectacular and deserving of its title as one of the top fine dining restaurants in Pattaya, with the business being overseen for many years by owner Fredi Schaub and the kitchen now under the supervision of Italian chef Rudy Casera, who came from Northern Italy.
The evening began with assorted canapés served in the cocktail section along with Prosecco Romio, NV Tintoretto Extra Dry. A pleasant start to the evening.
The first course was a pan-seared river trout on boiled potatoes, green beans and iceberg lettuce. This was taken with an M. Chapoutier, Granges de Mirabel, Viognier De L’Ardeche 2011. This was an interesting combination, as the trout was not strongly flavored and neither was the wine, which had little body but a very good long finish.
This was the exact opposite of the next wine, a Roux Pere & Fils, Chardonnay Bourgogne, 2010 which had a great body but very little finish. An interesting contrast. The Cepe cream soup with this wine was another very smooth and pleasant course.
After a lemongrass sorbet to freshen up the palate, we approached the first red of the evening, another M. Chapoutier Bila-Haut, Roussillon Villages, Grenach-Syra 2010. This was served with the main course of Slow-Braised veal cheeks in gremolata sauce served with cauliflower puree, wild mushrooms and zucchini. Fredi told me the veal came from Australia and it was so tender it just fell apart with little pressure from the knife. Both the food and the wine were exceptional. This dish alone was worth the charge for the wine dinner itself. Well done chef Rudy!
The main course was Slow-Braised veal cheeks in gremolata sauce served with cauliflower puree, wild mushrooms and zucchini.
A selection of cheeses was next with a Chateau Laroche Joubert, Cotes de Bourg, Merlot – Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, and this was a full bodied wine. A blend of 60 percent Merlot and 40 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Lots of dark earth on the nose with fine herbs, cherry and plum like fruit with a hint of coffee, a bit of complexity here. A nice amount of cherry and plum fruit on the tongue smooth tannins and ripe tannins with a note of bell pepper to the finish. And a great finish. This wine was universally popular with the diners.
Finally the dessert and we were not disappointed with the choice of the fresh raspberries with vanilla sauce and white chocolate home-made ice cream. A Gewurztraminer Alsace was taken with the dessert course and this one was not too sweet, so it fitted well with the very sweet dessert.
It had been a full house and many were happy to linger over their coffee and Petit Fours, asking if there was any M. Chapoutier Bila-Haut, Roussillon Villages, Grenach-Syra 2010 left, but all good things must come to an end eventually.
It had been a top event, one that was well worthwhile attending. I look forward to the next one.