Undercurrent Restaurant Virtual Dueling Sommelier Wine Dinner

Synopsis, Our Opinion: A GREAT wine dinner format that gets everyone thinking about the wines and how they pair with the food.


    Prolog: Not long ago we had an Undercurrent Restaurant Virtual Wine Dinner where the wines were selected and presented by guest sommeliers Jenny Ayers and Laurence Vuelta. The three course dinner for two and six half bottles of wine cost $150. The food came with heating and plating instructions and was simply OUTSTANDING. The sommeliers described the wines via a Zoom internet connection as each course was eaten and at the end of each course everyone voted on which of the two wines they thought best paired with the food.

    Following is a brief review of the wine served with each of the three courses:

    Roasted Bekah’s Bay Oysters, parsley shallot butter, almond-panko bread crumbs, honey crisp apple-lemon zest salad and fennel cream.
    The wines were Three Pears Pinot Grigio ($9.99) and Whitenhaven sauvignon Blanc ($9.99).

    The Pinot Grigio was crisp and fresh and the Sauvignon Blanc was a traditional New Zealand example that was full of goose berry and tart lemon. We found the Pinot Grigio had well-grounded flavors and texture making it a better pairing that really reenforced the oysters and made them more tasty.

    Country ham Wrapped brioche-winter squash, stuffed Joyce Farms chicken breast, Boxcarr Creamery “Campo”, house cured bacon, steeped apricot and parsnip puree.
    The wines were Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc($8.99) and Fleur de Mer Provence Rose ($11.99).

    The Sauvignon Blanc was smooth easy drinking and didn’t have the tart flavors that dominated the first course Sauvignon Blanc. The Rose was tart, almost bitter, but had both depth and breath and less acidity making it significantly better with the food.

    Cocoa-thyme rubbed beef ribeye, smoked mushroom ragout, black garlic-Cabernet reduction, grilled sourdough bread, Goat Lady Dairy “Providence” and peppercorn-fig preserves.
    The wines were Joel Gott 815 Cabernet Sauvignon ($10.99) and Louis Martini Cabernet Sauvignon ($13.99).

    Both of these Cabernets were dominated with black cherry flavors, had ripe tasting tannins and were typical of California Cabernet at this price point. Having to make a choice we both thought the Louis Martini was slightly less sweet and fruit forward, but the food for this course was so superior to either of these wines we almost opened a Cabernet from our cellar!!!

Comments: Learn more about the Undercurrent Restaurant wine dinners.

See our reviews of other Undercurrent Virtual wine dinners.