Pattaya’s foodiegentsia and oenophiles gathered recently in the richness of the Royal Grill Room and Wine Cellar to enjoy the latest deVine Wine Club dinner. The host for the evening was the well-known Bordeaux Ambassador, Berenger Le Boursicot, export manager for the historical wine merchant company, Borie-Manoux, a wine house that has been creating Bordeaux wines since 1870. Six excellent and varied wines had been selected to accompany the exquisite food of Executive Chef Walter Thenisch. Graciously presided over by Panga Vathanakul, managing director of Royal Cliff Hotels Group, these occasions are eagerly anticipated and enthusiastically attended.
The welcome flute of Montaudon Reserve Premiere Brut with its fresh, floral taste was a perfect fit with Chef Andreas’ creative cocktail canapés enjoyed in the lounge before adjourning to the Royal Grill Room.
To launch the evening Chef Walter had crafted a pre-appetiser of a cocktail of scallops together with one of the most coveted Mediterranean prawns, known as Carabineros. Both rendered even more delicious by a flash of broccoli cream, a sprinkling of hazelnut crumble, nacre tapioca pearls and Pernod foam. This was an absolute stunner of a dish and paired with a Beau Rivage Bordeaux Blanc 2012, a classic blend of Semillon and Sauvignon blanc varietals, the combination was sensational.
Next up was a confit salmon with mango, radish and chilli salsa. The prettiest of abstract plating produced a culinary display of soft pink salmon artfully arranged around the plate with shaved radish and sweet mango together with the most artistic centerpiece of nasturtium flowers and arranged leaves. A very dry Turpin Muscadet 2013 paired beautifully. A ripe, full wine with a classic mineral edge, it was the ideal choice to accompany this lovely dish.
So far so gastro – the culinary romp continued building in power and weight both the wine and food. However, a short respite produced a palate cleanser in the shape of a hot red pepper sorbet. Hot indeed chef; there was a definite potent, lingering heat which would, we’re guessing, register pretty high on the Scoville scale!
Next we moved on to the reds with a pouring of Les Hauts de Lynch Moussas 2010. A big powerful mouthful, dark purple and inky, it was married to a juniper berry and thyme flavoured venison loin with gratin potatoes and cranberry enhanced red cabbage. A bodacious, robust course, lean dark meat paired with a slightly gamey red with soft tannins, it all harmonized effortlessly.
It could only be cheese to follow such a pageant of dishes and we were treated to a trio of beauties, a gourmet Swiss cheese called Monk’s Head, a mild, buttery Camembert made with goat’s milk rather than cow’s milk and the famous Roquefort known in France as the ‘cheese of kings and popes’. Keeping pace with these strong flavours we were served an excellent Chateau Batailley 2006, deep in colour with a medium to full body, it made excellent friends with the premium cheeses.
Chef Walter had even one more indulgence up his sleeve in the form of a chocolate spiral with a forest berry roulade and a Bourbon vanilla sauce joined with a Chateau Suduiraut Sauternes 1996. What a combination, this Sauternes was just amazing, rich, and luxurious with tastes of dripping honey, it was sheer nectar and enjoyed with the luscious confection it ever so sweetly brought down the curtain on another thrilling evening of wining and dining deVine Wine Club style.
Congratulations all round, the wine was wonderful, the sextet of courses superbly conceived, cooked and presented with the entire event orchestrated to precision. Serving an assemblage of 50 seasoned gourmands simultaneously is not an easy task but the deVine Wine Club delivered with bells and whistles. Do check out their website, www.royalcliff.com, for future events.