Remember last Wednesday I told you all I was recovering from a wine-hangover from a dinner I had attended?
I am feeling quite chipper today and am so excited to share with you all the deats from the dinner.
I really lucked out on the invite and was super excited to go. This dinner featured a beautiful six course meal with a wine pairing for each course.
For those of you who don’t know, Eataly is an amazing emporium boasting an Italian grocery store, food stalls, cooking classes, wine tastings and whole hell of a lot more. Eataly has over 30 + locations worldwide and is definitely the place to go for ALL things Italian.
The dinner was hosted by 2 bad ass chefs, Dan Bazzinotti and Keith Pooler, who have been friends for many years and worked together at a previous restaurant.
I was lucky enough to be part of the opening team when Terra was first opened and got to know Terra’s concept of earth and fire really well. There is something to be said about letting fresh ingredients speak for themselves and bringing the concept of fire to life with a wood-fired grill, which is the center of Terra’s menu.
Chef Dan, Terra’s Chef de Cuisine, and Chef Keith, Bazzinotti’s mentor and Chef at Bergamont definitely did not disappoint.
The evening started with a bang as they began with an open seating arrangement.
J and I nuzzled ourselves in between 2 couples who we quickly became friends with; Shivani and Kishan, and Bryan and Elisabeth.
We designated ourselves the “fun” table, because, HELLO?
Everyone at the table was lively, outgoing, and we all genuinely were having a good time and excited to be at the dinner.
There is something so awesome about connecting with strangers. To me, the dinner table is the perfect place to do that. You rarely find people out to dinner who are miserable.
J and I were toats obnoxious with our big ass Fuji X T-10 taking up room on the table and taking pictures during each course.
Shout out to the other couples for putting up with us while we took a bunch of pictures of the food before they could dig in.
Bruschetta Valdostana paired with Grosjean Fréres, Muscat Petit Grain 2013.
A delicious piece of rye bread with speck, a smoky prosciutto and pieces of sweet garlic.
Salsiccia Di Coniglio paired with La Kiuva, Arnad Montjovet 2015
House cured rabbit sausage served with polenta pillows (little pillows of heaven) and a zesty tomato sauce.
Ravioli Di Patate paired with Bouquetin, Gamay 2016
A delicate potato ravioli with porcini mushrooms and a butter sauce to die for.
Stinco Di Maiale paired with Caves Cooperatives De Donnas, Donnas 2014
Roasted pork shank and a caper-raisin “gremolata”; perfect for this cold weather.
Tagliata Di Manzo Alla Lydia paired with Diego Curtaz, Torrette 2016
Sliced steak with a butter to die for and a peperonata.
After each course was presented the Chefs came out, described the dishes and came around to speak with the guest.
What got me really thinking during this dinner is how the menu was curated and how the wine was paired. I was feeling a French vibe with some of the dishes and wines, which made sense since Vallé D’Aosta is so close to France. Vallé D’Aosta is an area well know for curing its own meats and base many of their dishes off French preparation.
After speaking with the Chefs, a lot of the food was based around the things that they loved; after that it was a matter of meeting up, tasting all the wines and figuring out what profiles would work together.
My favorite pairing of the night was the Ravioli Di Patate with the Bouquetin Gamay. The Gamay, being high in acidity, helped balance out the richness from the Luigi Guffanti butter. The wine was subtle enough to bring out the earthiness in the mushrooms too.
Though everything on the menu was crazy good, my favorite dish was the Salsiccia Di Coniglio; a rabbit sausage with polenta, pomodoro passato and baby fennel. If you haven’t had rabbit sausage yet, you have to get some, like now. Holy shit. This was THAT good. The flavor was bold, but not gamey and made it easy to wipe the tomato sauce off the plate clean. The only thing that got me about this dish, was its size. The portion was a little too big (not complaining though!) so it did keep me pretty full as I was heading into the ending courses.
What was most interesting to me though, was all the meats that they cured themselves! I forgot to mention earlier a bonus course was added with just hand cured meats by the chef’s.
A nice touch was that half the meal was served family style. This really allowed us to get into the spirit of being around a table; laughing, sharing stories and enjoying a wonderfully prepared meal.
If there is one thing we call all agree on, whether it be for necessity or pleasure is FOOD.
In the near future I will be taking Sweet and Masala into the pop-up food scene with my in-home dining experience with Eat With. Food is one of my biggest passions and I am so excited to share it with all of you!
I will have more details to come soon.
What was YOUR most memorable food experience?