The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Rocking it Artisanal Style

Posted on | August 27, 2010 | Written by Tida Lenoel | 2 Comments

Our fondue starter.

My work friends and I decided to go to Artisanal Bistro in midtown for a wine and cheese extravaganza after work this past Wednesday night. We started out sharing the Gouda and Stout fondue served with pieces of bread, potatoes, green apples and kielbasa. The cheese was incredibly creamy and smooth, and the Stout provided the right amount of kick to enhance the flavor. It was the perfect beginning to our evening and kept us hungry enough for the main event of the night: our wine and cheese pairings. Artisanal has a separate menu for their wine and cheese pairings with twelve different choices, all with different themes. There were four of us in total, and we each ordered a different pairing. Just to give you an idea of how many wines and cheese we tried, the full list from our dinner is below (I had the Sinful Experience):

SINFUL EXPERIENCE

Cheese:

Délice de Bourgogne (Cow, France)

Robiola a Due Latti (Cow/Sheep, Italy)

Langres (Cow, France)

Wine

Bourgogne Aligoté Olivier Leflaive ‘07

Riesling ‘Vom Schloss’ Graf Hardegg Austria ‘08

Fréderic Lornet Crémant du Jura Arbois France NV

FEISTY REDHEADS

Cheese:

Taleggio (Cow, Italy*)

Prima Donna (Cow, Holland)

Bleu d’Auvergne (Cow, France*)

Wine

Pinot Noir Walnut City Willamette ‘08

Garnacha ‘Old Vines’ Atteca Catalyud ‘08

Cab Sauv./Merlot/Syrah ‘Claret’ Newton Napa ‘07

FROMAGER’S SELECTION

Cheese:

Pierre Robert (Cow, France)

Monte Enebro (Goat, Spain)

Époisses (Cow, France)

Wine

Domaine Chandon Blanc des Noirs California NV

Graves Chateau Haut Selve ‘06

Jurançon ‘Cuvée Jean’ Chateau Jolys ‘04

AROMATIC CHEESES

Cheese:

Affidélice (Cow, France)

Livarot (Cow, France)

Shropshire Blue (Cow, England)

Wine

Riesling Kabinett Markus Molitor Mosel ‘07

Jacquère St. Boniface Apremont ‘08

Malbec/ Cab./ Syrah ‘Clos de Los Siete’ Mendoza ‘07

My first pairing was a direct testament to the adage “what grows together goes together,” for both my cheese and wine were both from Burgundy and they were sublime together. The cheese was very creamy and started to ooze on the plate as it warmed up. It was a little tangy, so it went very nicely with the smooth Aligote. Next I had the Robiola (one of my favorite Italian cheeses) paired with a Riesling from Austria. The Riesling was semi-dry, yet the wine’s natural apricot and peach aromas really accentuated the Robiola. Last but not least was the Langres, the stinkiest of the cheeses, placed in a small dish to contain the ooze and to ensure that I could salvage every last yummy bit. It was served with a Rosé from France from the Jura region between Burgundy and Switzerland. They produce some very interesting varietals there, and this Rosé was made of 95 percent Poulsard and 5 percent Pinot Noir. The acidity and bubbles of the sparkling wine helped cleanse my palate and cut through the bold flavors of the cheese.

Luckily, because my friends were so generous (or maybe because Artisanal gave us so much cheese) we all got to taste each other’s cheeses. I tried twelve cheeses that night, not including the beginning fondue. If the same group of us goes back two more times, we could potentially finish the entire tasting menu. Looks like I’ll be eating a lot more cheese in the foreseeable future, something I feel pretty good about.

Comments

2 Responses to “Rocking it Artisanal Style”

  1. Tina Benitez
    August 27th, 2010 @ 4:27 pm

    I DEFINITELY need to go there one night with some friends!

  2. Kerry-Jo
    August 27th, 2010 @ 4:52 pm

    IT WAS AMAZING!! I can’t wait to go back! 😀 😀 😀

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