The room contains many photographs of Daniel with celebrities over the years – the one I found most fascinating was the picture with Andy Warhol when Chef Boulud was at Le Cirque. One also finds little souvenirs that guests have given him over the years, such as a pair of enormous sneakers from Shaquille O’Neal.
Our host introduced our waiter, Yannick, who brought us glasses of Pommery champagne and two flights of canapés and amuses-bouche such as “chickpeas three ways” (three different presentation styles) and oyster/lemongrass shooters.
Now that we are going into the food and wine pairing section of this article, it is important to note that all the wines were served in the appropriately shaped glass – a very unique indulgence, even at high caliber restaurants such as Daniel.
Wine to be paired with first course: Balthazar Ress Riesling Spätlese “Oestricher Doosberg,” Rheingau 1995
First Course Dishes
Parsley Emulsion, Littleneck Clams, Sweet Garlic Custard
Eckerton Hill Farm Heirloom Tomatoes
Salad with Peekytoe Crab, Avocado, Burrata
Chilled Soup with Sherry Vinegar
I found this Riesling an excellent match with both dishes, especially with the porcini velouté and felt it went well with the heirloom tomatoes. If you recall from the last article, Raj said he chose this wine because it had great freshness and minerality.
I agree – there was a savory element in both dishes that just paired excellently with this slightly off-dry wine from a quality producer.
Wine to be paired with second course: Nigl Grüner Veltliner “Freiheit”, Kremstal 2008
Second Course Dishes
Olive Oil Poached Cod Salad
Artichoke Purée, Anise Hyssop Dressing, Lemon Zest
Tai Snapper Ceviche with Persian Cucumber
Shaved Radish, Tapioca Pearls, Dill Oil
If you recall from the previous article, Raj explained his wine pairing choice by saying that the green, herbaceous flavors of the Gruner tap into the green, herbaceous notes of the dishes. He was so right! Once I tasted the burst of fresh green herbs in the dishes – especially the Tai snapper – I found Raj quite prescient. Sauvignon Blanc, I thought, could have also worked.
Wine to be paired with third course: Château de Pibarnon Bandol Rosé, Provence 2008
Third Course Dishes