Because of the pandemic, Michele and I have limited the number of people that we see and we do not go out often. Fortunately, we have some close friends who live nearby that we know are as careful as we are. They invited us for dinner on Saturday night.
We started with Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve made from 40% Pinot Noir, 20% and Pinot Meunier and 40% Chardonnay. 40% is reserve wine. This is a rich complex Champagne with hints of brioche, toasted almonds, apricot, plum and a touch of dried fruit.
With the champagne, we enjoyed a smoked trout pate on toasts.
Chateauneuf du Pape Chateau De Vaudieu Blanc 2012 made from 75% Grenache and 25% Roussanne. The winery is located in the heart of the Chateauneuf du Pape appellation. The name comes from Val de Dieu (Valley of God). The vineyard is 10 hectares in the southern part of the estate and the soil is red clay, gray silex limestone and pebbles. Manual harvest in boxes of 15 kg with double sorting of the grapes in the vineyard takes place. Grapes are vinified and aged separately until blending. There is soft pressing with whole bunches. Static cold settling and alcohol fermentation is between 18 and 22 degrees. The wine is aged for 6 months. Most of the wine is aged in stainless steel and a small portion in barriques. The wine has hints of white fruit, grapefruit, refreshing citrus notes with nice minerality and good acidity.
Warm Bean Salad with Grilled Shrimp, a recipe from Michele’s book, A Fresh Taste of Italy, was our first course.Cöte de Nuits-Villages 2010 Domaine Bachrelet made from 100% Pinot Noir from vines planted in 1952 in Queue de Hareng in Brochon-3 plots, Vignois-3 plots, and Creèole-1 plot. The soil is limestone and clay, the exposure is east and the vineyard is at 300 meters. The grapes are destemmed, crushed and fermented with indigenous yeast. The wine is aged for 16 to 18 months is barrel, 25% new oak. This is a wine with hints of dark fruit, black cherry, blueberries and blackberries with a note of violets, a very pleasant finish and long aftertaste.
Our main course was a perfectly roasted chicken with roast potatoes and carrots. I was too busy enjoying it to take a photo, so I will leave it to your imagination as to what it looked like.
Dessert was an apple tart in a tender, buttery crust. We ate the tart with dollops of creme fraiche.
A glass of Calvados complemented the tart and ended a delicious meal.