Champagne Dom Perignon Vintage
Exploring the 7 Sensualities
came first? — and we’re not talking chicken
and egg. In food
and wine pairing exercises, it’s
always a good question. Are we going to figure out what
to pair with that 1961 Mouton that we
just bought, or are we going to match one of our cheap
bottles with the organic products
that we proudly purchased at out local Farmers Market?
In a recent case, the Vintage 1999 Dom Pérignon crafted
by Richard Geoffroy was the starting point. He was lucky
to have staff chef Pascal Tingaud to collaborate with him
on creating the perfect matches to challenge the versatility
of the beverage.
Richard’s words: “How can it be so complex,
so subtle, yet mature? That’s the wonderful paradox
of Dom Pérignon Vintage 1999.” We found the wine to
be extremely approachable and round. Young, certainly,
but with an ability to age, an extreme versatility with
food and good from the get-go. It has also mastered the
primary task of what defines a prestige
cuvee Champagne: complexity. It has a huge propensity
for ageing to boot.
Throughout the over three-hour voyage, perched in the first
class penthouse lounge of the legendary Sunset Tower Hotel (where John Wayne kept a pet cow on the patio) we started
sipping the luxurious beverage and were treated with a
sensory experience, jet-setting through continents in search
of noble ingredients: French caviar from Aquitaine, Mexican
black mole from Oaxaca and flavorful items along the lines
of kafir lime leaves and yuzu. Everything worked for the
well-rehearsed performance, with the Culatello ham ageing
the Champagne and giving it a territory character.
Oh — we
almost forgot to mention the caviar à la royale to be
practiced with a cherished one, either at the beginning
of the meal or perhaps later on… Can it possibly
get better than that?
The 7 Sensualities
Prunier Saint James caviar, a superior, mature
caviar from the Aquitaine region, is eaten from the
small indentation made between the thumb and index
fingers when a fist is formed, bringing out the freshness
and spice of the Champagne. This visceral first taste
is followed by a more subtle combination of caviar
and avocado cream.
Three Marine Metamorphoses
Dashi broth, a clear kelp base for many Japanese
dishes, is combined with clams that bring out the
minerality of the Vintage 1999. Fresh Irish oysters
with a hint of ginger follow, ending with squid-ink
risotto. The peppery flavor of the black rice brings
out the freshness of the wine.
Thai Langoustine Soup with Lime Leaves and Coconut
cream and fragrant lime combine with langoustine
meat in this palate-cleansing soup. The Champagne’s
fruity notes shine through when combined with the
A tangy, oval fruit from Latin America, the Granadilla
gets heat from a hint of Espelette pepper. The simple
fruit brings out the dry, brilliant flavors of the
is an Italian ham made from the upper leg of an
adult pig. The dry meat melts in your mouth,
a texture that comes from a long period of aging. The
Dom Pérignon Vintage 1999 responds with aromas
of almond and plum, exhibiting its fruity, floral
spicy, warm flavors of the traditional Mexican dish
combine effortlessly with the intense, mature flavors
of the Dom Pérignon Vintage 1999. The pairing begins
with a gingery mole and langoustine, which the wine
enhances by bringing out the chili peppers and cocoa.
Next is squab, smothered in the thick mole sauce,
which is complemented by the wine’s fruity
mole flavor lingers on the palate thanks to Davidoff’s Special “R”,
which emphasizes the complexity of the Champagne.
Floral spices and fruit flavors combine in the
last step of the 7 Sensualities experience.
Top 10 Prestige Cuvées