Monday, November 12, 2007

Dinner with Brooklynguy at AOC Bedford

(source: AOC Bedford, Neil conveniently sat under the copper frying pan...)

Dinner and wine with a fellow blogger is a treat, but twice in a month? Rare, indeed.

Neil (Brooklynguy) was kind enough to supply the wines for a tremendous dinner on my last trip to NYC. AOC Bedford is a quiet little French Bistro (apparently NYC's "most romantic restaurant", so I hope Neil took Brooklynlady there sometime!) in Greenwich village, just a few blocks from where I used to live in New York. Sunday is bring your own wine night, with no corkage on the first bottle (Ha! One bottle...).

Neil was late, but that was ok as the server set me up with a Pinot Blanc from Germany. Very nice, but I can't recall the name of the wine (no notebook tonight). What I absolutely can recall is that the restaurant was obsessive about using the proper stemware for each wine, and the glasses did not betray the manner in which they were cleaned - Bravo!

Neil opened with the Henri Billiot Brut Rose NV Champagne that has previously written about. His comments were "nearly perfect", and I would agree. While the rose colour was subtle, I found the pinot noir came through quite clearly, with nice blackberries and that crisp white champagne backbone and a great mousse. Neil correctly refused the ice bucket, allowing us to observe the flavour and aromas evolve throughout the evening. Like Neil, I am not a huge fan of rose Champagne, but this was a great one.

With appetizers we opened the 2002 Domaine du Closel Savennieres Clos de Papillon, a delicious Loire white that Neil has tasted on multiple occasions (I don't see the '02 there). Anyway, this was a delicious, but ageing, white, which we both remarked was remarkably similar on the nose to a Sauternes (apricot, noble rot). An elegant, balanced, white that is losing some of the crispness I love in Loire whites, perhaps peaking in my mind.

For the main course Neil shared a 2002 Sylvain Cathiard Vosne Romanee, which he wrote about here. Cherry red in the glass, it started musty, but followed with earthy vanilla, blackberry/raspberry, and smoke. On the palate it showed dry, dusty tannins, with a nice - but short - finish. A terrific red Burgundy showing that paired well with my lamb, drink now.

Many thanks to Neil, who was surprisingly close to how I pictured him! My apologies, Neil, as I was very disorganized for this event - I didn't even bring a gift (how embarassing - I was going to bring the de Villaine Bouzeron I sampled here). Unfortunately, airline travel with wine is frustrating these days. Speaking of de Villaine, tomorrow is WBW #39....

13 comments:

Brooklynguy said...

hiya joe - iw went with the romantic atmosphere because i figured that since we're both dads, and you with 3 kids, that neither of us has had a romantic dinner out in a while, so why not have one together. is that so wrong?!?

i'm glad you dug the wines I brought, and i agree with your notes. i've been hanging onto the few precious bottles i have of the 02 closel papillon because it was such a great vintage. i've been reading here and there that the wine is aging faster than many people expected. strange...i thought it was pretty classic mature savennieres nose, that's the only place i would part from your notes - i didn't get the sauternes nose.

thanks again for the hanging out that night, it was great to meet you and a great dinner. we'll do it in montreal next time (unless you come back here before I get out there, which seems likely). and by the way, next time we have a romantic dinner, i expect a little more than a firm handshake at the end, if you know what i mean...

Marcus said...

Neil's hilarious.

I feel like I was right there with you guys reading this... SIGH! - but it's not the *romance* that's getting to me. It's that photo. I sat right under the copper frying pan when I was there.

Had the duck or something. Actually I think I blogged about it.

OK Joe, only one Montreal wineblogger can do AOC Bedford per annum. But since you've already gone and posted, tell me what you ate before you forget.

Joe said...

Hi Neil, definitely liked those wines. I will admit that I don't have a depth of experience tasting aged savennieres, so I have no idea if it was classic, but now I have a benchmark and for that I thank you. I will probably be in NYC before you get here, so I will definitely make sure we hook up again. You guys with newborns have it tough...

Hi Marcus - I think that must be his preferred table - regulars always have a regular table. So why is Neil hanging out in the village so often? I had lamb, I had a great goat cheese and beets appetizer. Neil had snails, and maybe duck? Neil?

Brooklynguy said...

yup, snails and duck. both were very good, better than in most restaurants in the overpriced and undergood NYC restaurant scene. and this was my first time at AOC Bedford, not my regular table at all. maybe they put bloggers back there.

Joe said...

Hi Neil - Those snails were great! I thought you had been to AOC Bedford before. Anyway, I have been recommending it to everyone...

David McDuff said...

Ok, now I'm really bummed I didn't drag my sorry ass up to NYC to join you guys for dinner. Talk about romantic, it could have been a threesome!

Lyle Fass said...

Curious what that Weissburgunder was . . .

Joe said...

We missed ya David.

Lyle - I have terrific tasting notes on that Weissburgunder, but without the maker/vintage I left them out. I thought I would get to that later in the evening, then...well three bottles of wine happened. The web site is screwed up, listing their reds and scotches, but not their whites. I will definitely remember that wine if I see the label in a shop - let you know if I find the details. I may even call just to find out - will let you know. PS - loved your wine snob post!

Lyle Fass said...

Please let me know as I love Weissburgunder and AOC Bedford and it is good to see that more and more is available.

David said...

sounds like fun!

Joe said...

Lyle - Sorry for the delay. The Weissburgunder was a 2005 Weinhof Scheu.
My note: "Shiny gold (and served in proper stemware), it was floral with nice apricot, lemon rind and green melon, some buttery. Slightly off dry, mild effervescence, quite minerally, mild acidity. So easy to guzzle this, 17.5/20"
Cheers!

Lyle Fass said...

Joe,

I have had the Schue and it is a perfect Weissburgunder to pour by the glass. Comes with a glass cork to boot. Lovely stuff.

Joe said...

Glass cork?! Very cool. Not available here in Montreal - will try to find it in NYC.