Monday, February 10, 2014

After Holiday Catch Up with Hong Kong

It seems as if everyone went from full on holiday mode right back into full on HK crazytown mode.  The office was quiet during the short week, but there was no shortage of noise in the off peak hours.

 Tuesday I joined some fellow wine enthusiasts for an "odd bottle" tasting at the Swiss Wine Store in TST.  It's actually a private club and was in a really cool, Korean area, bursting with fun little restaurants.  The idea was that everyone brings a bottle of something kind of weird.  I brought a Loire Valley (Saumur) Cab Franc (with a touch of Cab Sauv) from Chateau de Fosse Seche.  I'd been hearing about this natural kind of funky wine at work for a while so was excited to have a chance to taste it.  Perhaps it was the wines before, but it wasn't terribly impressive.  I guess it was quite characteristic of a natural wine.
 Damien set up a lovely spread of cheese and meats, and we went through wine by wine sharing impressions and appraisals.  First was Luc Massy Dezaley Grand Cru 2011.  This 100% Chasselas was one of the finest examples you could find according to Damien (the Swiss wine guy).  I thought it was just lovely with citrus and floral notes.  Next we had two wines from the Canary Islands.  They probably would have been ok if you were out at the beach or on a boat, but compared with #1, meh.

Jack, who organized, brought a magnum of 2005 Chatus.  I had never heard of this grape, and apparently that's no odd as it's no really grown outside 15 ha in the South of France.  Apparently it's pickier than Pinot and Nebbiolo to grow.  It was totally earthy, slightly floral, and very tart.  I suspect this wine was a few years past its prime.  We also had a really nice Pinot from Studack who apparently is the lesser known Gantenbein.  The last Swiss wine was Domaine Eveche 2005- a Diolinoir which I had never heard of.  It's a crossing of Pinot Noir and Rouge de Doilly.  It also was very very enjoyable.

Overall a cool night among wine dorks.  It doesn't get much better on a Tuesday!  Paul made veg soup, above, while I was out.  Slowly, slowly I'm moving him to the green side. 

 Wednesday was race night.  I never want to go, hate it for the first 10 minutes, and then realize why the races are so fun.  You run into friends you didn't expect to be there, Mike and NZ buddy Nick, the friends you were supposed to meet there, Alica, Joey, Court, Patrick, you drink a bottle of wine you brought from work and call it a night at 9.  Oh, and your horse wins.  Paul walked out of there $60hkd.  Winning.
 Thursday I had lunch with my friend Freeman at a Happy Valley Vietnamese place.  This was the tofu salad.  Not quite what I had pictured....
After work, while walking from Happy Valley to Wan Chai, I was stopped by the police saying the sidewalk was blocked off.  Perplexed, and with Paul on the phone, I was about to protest when a whole group of Muslims, turbans and all, warned me there was a bomb.  I was laughing at the absurdity of the situation while Paul on the phone is saying in a hushed tone, "You turn around, you turn around right now and get out of there.  GET OUT OF THERE."  I followed instructions, hung up, crossed the street, and continued on my way.  Above is the Mosque and the AIA buildings being evacuated.  A quick good search was enlightening.  Apparently a WWII bomb from the good ole USA was discovered buried in a construction zoone.  Doh!

 I finally made it to meet Allison for dinner at Maya Cafe on Moon Street.  I had been wanting to come for some time as I knew it to be organic and full of the kind of hippie grass I love to eat.  And boy did it impress, not in service, but the food was amazing!  Above is the zucchini "pasta" with walnut pesto and artichokes.  We also had a trio of hummus, and a raw, vegan, gluten free brownie for dessert that was to die for.  I totally recommend going and walked out really inspired to mix some things up in my kitchen.
 Friday I left work to go to a few meetings, one of which was at 121BC, another place on my shortlist of must go-tos.  It's a fantastic little space with a great wine list filled with small artisinal producers.  Simone, the Somm, very kindly poured my a delicious Franciacorta (Italy's answer to Champagne, and my god was it great) and after he finished writing the night's menu on the board I swore I would be back soon.
 Saturday I went to pick up my race pack for next Sunday's 10k.  There were some booths handing out free stuff like trial size hand sanitizer and mini Snicker's bars.   Above is a picture of all of the ridiculous people who line up in absurd queues for something they will most likely throw away.  Hey there's a 711 across the street where you can pick up that garbage for $4 and no line!  Hong Kong....
Then we had a work wine tasting of some incredible wines.  Not only did this tasting sell out extremely quickly, but it's the first time we finished all of the wines before the 2 hour allotment.  We had 3 wines from Meo Camuzet (Chambolle Musigny, Vosne Romanee, and NSG 1er Cru) all 2009 and all quite ripe and delicious.  We had a surprise bottle of Robert Chevillon NSG 1er Cru, also 2009, that was a big surprise for me because I'd never heard the guy's name before.  Amazing.  I managed to sneak in tiny pours of the last two wines; Prieure Roch NSG.  One a 1er Cru monopole 2000, the other from super old vines 2005.  Both spectacularly perfumed, exactly what you'd expect from one of the owners of DRC.

 Saturday evening we went to a warehouse warming from Marco B.  He invited his past event guests to come to the launch of his Chai Wan warehouse (which is in the middle of nowhere).  It was a really great space, filled with Italian cheeses, salamis, hams, and of course wine.  Above is Marco's own wine, not for sale, quite young at 2005, but obviously with potential for years.
 Despite looks, there were actually people at the party.  Really nice people, and we even made some new friends.  I'm going running with one of them tomorrow provided the weather holds.  It's somehow totally regressed back into the depths of winter.  Rain, cold, rain.  This sucks. 
 The cheese and ham were awesome and luckily the wholesaler was at the party.  Guess where his office is.  Sheung Wan!
After a 10k hike/run in the am, the skies opened up and the cold descended.  Paul and I holed up inside, him preparing for a review, me cooking.  I found this delicious recipe for a cashew sauce that I put with soba noodles, zucchini noodles (a la Maya Cafe), and purple cabbage.  It was really great and I left myself a huge portion for lunch at work today, when I learned a really important lessen.  I am mildly allergic- or maybe everyone is?- to loads of cashews.  Note to self, light on the cashew sauce, heavier on the noodles.

Anyway, we're now well into Frugal February, and today is day 1 or hopefully 2 detox days. And thanks to the cashews, it really was a detox day.  Ta for now!

No comments:

Post a Comment