Events
Hedonist's Gazette

Emergo Foundation Charity Event

For The Benefit of Children with Autism in Montreal I was on maximal social discourse duty for this event and barely had a chance to taste the food, but what I did have was very good (even though it was a catered meal at Quebec’s top bank), so I will concentrate on the wines. Billecart-Salmon is always an incredibly reliable, consistent, outstanding producer of Champagne, and the 1996 Blanc de Blancs that was served as a prelude to the meal was superb. It...

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Ray Signorello, Jr. Charity Meal

An extraordinary lunch and wine tasting was sponsored by the Ray Signorello, Jr. to benefit Daniel Boulud’s favorite New York charity, Meals on Wheels. All the Rhône wines as well as the Coche-Dury cuvées came from my cellar, and the rest were generously donated by Ray. My favorite courses included the wonderful Burgundian Egg Meurette with crispy pork belly and porcini ragout and the Boudin Noir served over delicious onion mashed potatoes. The baby goat was also sublime. As for...

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Master Class for a Group of Baltimore Surgeons

This was a tutored wine tasting I conducted for a group of renowned surgeons from Baltimore’s top hospitals, primarily Johns Hopkins. I provided all the wines from my cellar. The theme of the tasting was to compare Old World wines to those from the New World, with the provision that most New World wines tend to be 1-2 percent higher in alcohol, more exuberant, and less restrained than their European counterparts. The only exceptions to this rule were Flight 1...

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Charity Gala Dinner

I have been fortunate enough to attend a lot of extraordinary dinners where some of the world’s top rated wines have been served. However, I don’t think I have ever been to an event where the wines were as consistently superb as they were at this charity gala dinner sponsored by the Fullerton Hotel that benefitted indigent families in Singapore. I thank Mr. Soo Hoo and his partner Arnault Compas as well as Lisa Perrotti-Brown for putting together this extraordinary...

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Gala Dinners 1 and 2

One of the objectives of the two meals I had at Hotel Shilla was to prove to high end Korean wine lovers that their traditional cuisine matches beautifully with European wines. This was my fourth trip to Korea, and I have had some remarkable dishes. Most Westerners think of Korea cuisine as simply the spicy, garlicky, peppery, fermented cabbage dishes generically called kimchi, and of course, Korean barbecue. However, the country’s food is far more sophisticated and refined than those...

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Veritas: The Park B Smith Invitational

Veritas is becoming world-renowned for what may be the greatest wine list in not only the United States, but on Planet Earth. Moreover, the food here is as good as anywhere in the world as well. The young (barely 30 years of age) Executive Chef, Grégory Pugin, trained under no other than Joël Robuchon, and his genius comes through in the simplicity, but beautiful, not overly complicated dishes that allow all the fresh ingredients to strut their personality and flavor...

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Charleston, Charity Dinner

A charity dinner held at Baltimore’s Charleston restaurant began with two sensational magnums of Chardonnay from Marcassin and Aubert. It is difficult to find as well as afford the few magnums that are made at Marcassin, but the 2000 Alexander Mountain Upper Barn was sensational. Notes of lemon, orange custard, and a waxy, leesy character are followed by a wine with a full-bodied texture, a strong underlying minerality, and a fabulous finish. The 2005 Aubert Chardonnay Lauren is out of...

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Charleston, Charity Dinner

This was an enjoyable evening of terrific wines (from my cellar) and fine food prepared by Baltimore’s most brilliant chef, Cindy Wolf, at her beloved Charleston restaurant. A group from Charlotte, North Carolina flew in for this charity event that benefitted a well-known hospice in that city. As always, Chef Wolf’s food is as good as it gets, beginning with her world-class cornmeal fried oysters. She also demonstrated her terrific talent as a sushi chef with her Irish salmon tartare...

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The Park B. Smith 2000 Châteauneuf du Pape Invitational

The great wine collector and restauranteur, Park B. Smith, annually hosts a lunch for his friends at his restaurant, Veritas. On this occasion, the theme was to taste through the 2000 Châteauneuf du Pape vintage, as well as to introduce his new chef, Grégory Pugin, who was a Robuchon protegé. At 29 years of age, Pugin is obviously a very talented chef with an exceptional future. The food was sensational, from the exquisite, perfumed carpaccio langoustine, to the Robuchon-like cold...

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