Friday, March 3, 2017

Dinner at Chef Daniel Boulud's DBGB DC with the Wines of Tablas Creek Vineyard in Paso Robles and Château de Beaucastel in the Rhone Valley, USA/ France

Picture: Dinner at Chef Daniel Boulud's DBGB DC with the wines of Tablas Creek Vineyard in Paso Robles and Château de Beaucastel in the Rhone Valley, with Andrew Wooldridge, DBGB DC Head Sommelier

Annette Schiller and I enjoyed an outstanding dinner at Chef Daniel Boulud's DBGB DC with the wines of Tablas Creek Vineyard in Paso Robles and Château de Beaucastel in the Rhone Valley. The reason why we went there is that Annette plans an Ombiasy Public Relations and Wine Tours wine tour to the Rhone Valley.

The wines were presented by Danny Haas, co-owner of Tablas Creek, and Andrew Adair Wooldridge, Head Sommelier of DBGB DC.

Picture: Dinner at Chef Daniel Boulud's DBGB DC with the wines of Tablas Creek Vineyard in Paso Robles and Château de Beaucastel in the Rhone Valley

Tablas Creek

Tablas Creek Vineyard is the result of a decades-long friendship between the Perrin family of Château de Beaucastel and Robert Haas, longtime importer and founder of Vineyard Brands. The families created a partnership in 1985 and in 1989 purchased a 120-acre property in the hilly Las Tablas district of west Paso Robles for its similarities to Châteauneuf du Pape: limestone soils, a favorable climate, and rugged terrain.

Pictures: Christian Schiller with Chef Robert Wiedmaier and Tablas Creek's Managing Director Jason Haas

Robert Haas is the founder of Vineyard Brands – a major American wine importer - in 1971. Robert Haas began his career in 1950, as the buyer for his father’s wine shop in New York City. Today, Vineyard Brands employees more than 50 people and represents over 25 growers of estate-bottled wines in Burgundy, Chablis, the Rhône, Loire Valley, Alsace and Southern France as well as some of the best wines available from Argentina, Spain, Portugal, Chile, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Germany and Italy.

The Perrin family owns the famous Château de Beaucastel winery in the southern part of the Rhône valley in France.

Tablas Creek in Paso Robles follows the centuries-old Châteauneuf du Pape tradition of blending varietals. Each varietal is hand-harvested when completely ripe and fermented separately. Winemaking preserves the wines' ties to their soil, climate, and varietal character by applying native yeast fermentation and using neutral French oak barrels for aging.

The winery's flagship Esprit de Beaucastel and Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc wines debuted in 2000 and 2001 respectively. Total estate production ranges between 12,000 and 20,000 cases depending on vintage, with an additional 7,000 cases of non-estate Patelin de Tablas beginning in 2010.

Pictures: Danny Haas

Château de Beaucastel

Berry Brothers and Rudd: Château de Beaucastel has 200 hectares of vineyards which makes it one of the largest wine estates in the Châteauneuf du Pape region.

Chateau Beaucastel has been run by several generations of the Perrin family, beginning with the late Jacques Perrin (who died in 1978), then the brothers Jean-Pierre and Francois, and now their sons Thomas, Marc, Pierre, and Mathieu. The Perrins own an impressive portfolio of wines, from the extraordinary values, to the top-end world classics, including a sizeable operation under the  Perrin et Fils label, as well as the well-priced negociant brand La Vielle Ferme, all of which showcase the complexity and diversity of terroirs in the Rhone region.

Beaucastel was one of the very first domaines to practise organic viticulture - namely no use of herbicides, insecticides or any other chemicals. Unusually, all 13 permitted grape varieties are grown although it is Mourvèdre which is Beaucastel`s signature grape, often making up a third of the final blend.

Beaucastel is renowned for its controversial vinification "á chaud" which involves rapidly heating the incoming grapes, which extracts colour and aroma and kills harmful bacteria. Beaucastel's wines are matured in 500-litre oak casks and, after blending, are bottled with a light fining and without being filtered.

From vines in close proximity to the great Châteauneuf-du-Pape property itself, the Coudoulet de Beaucastel is famous in the Wine Trade for being vastly superior to its Côtes du Rhône appellation tag. Low yields and high quality fruit underwrite the quality, and six months ageing in foudre completes the picture. The Perrins consider this wine to be an integral part of their impressive portfolio.

Daniel Boulud

Daniel Boulud is a French chef and restaurateur with restaurants in New York City, Washington D.C., Las Vegas, Palm Beach, Miami, Montreal, Toronto, London, Singapore, and Boston. He is best known for Daniel, his eponymous, Michelin 2-star restaurant in New York City.

While raised on a farm outside of Lyon and trained by renowned French chefs, Boulud made his reputation in New York, first as a chef and most recently a restaurateur. His restaurants include Daniel, DB Brasserie, Café Boulud, DB Bistro Moderne, Bar Boulud, DBGB Kitchen & Bar, and Boulud Sud in New York City.

Andrew Wooldridge, Head Sommelier

Raised in Colorado and educated in Texas, Andrew Wooldridge initially studied entrepreneurship and international business before pursuing a culinary education at the Cordon Bleu in Paris. Upon his return to the United States, he began working as a chef at a winery.

For a time, Andrew Wooldridge shifted to the world of advertising and even earned a Masters in Humanities from the University of Chicago. Throughout that time, his exposure to wine was simmering under the surface, so he headed west to pursue wine classes at the Culinary Institute of America’s Greystone campus. By the time he moved to D.C. in 2014, he had keenly honed his taste buds. Before joining DBGB DC as Head Sommelier, Andrew Wooldridge opened the buzzy French bistro Chez Billy Sud in Georgetown and worked at The Inn at Little Washington.

Danny Haas

Danny Haas is a co-owner of Tablas Creek. The son of Robert Haas, Danny Haas spent his career working for Vineyard Brands. He is now retired. Danny Haas speaks French and still has a close relationship with the French producers represented by Vineyard Brands in the US:


Pictures: Reception - Annette Schiller and Danny Haas


Warm Hawaiian Blue Prawns
saffrom braised baby fennel, arugula, espelette oil

Tablas Greek Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc 2013 (US$46)
Tablas Greek Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc 2001

Wild Mushroom Manti
king trumpet mushrooms, meyer lemon sabayon, sorrel

Château de Beaucastel, Blanc, 2014 (US$85)
Château de Beaucastel, Blanc, Roussanne, Vielle Vignes, 2014 (US$149)

Grilled Salmon
smoked potatoes, red cabbage, onion compote, sour cherry jus

Tablas Greek Esprit de Beaucastel, 2014 (US$50)
Tablas Greek Esprit de Beaucastel, Panoplie, 2008

Provencial Herb Crusted Venison loin
coco bean, root vegetable, bacon lardon, castelvetrano olive, orange, anise jus

Château de Beaucastel, 2005
Château de Beaucastel, Hommage à Jacques Perrin. 1999

Crème Brûlée
concord grape sorbet, roasted pineapple

Tablas Creek, Vin de Paille, Quintessence, 2010

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