22 Aug Maude August 2017 – Peach
I love peaches and look forward to the summer when they are fresh and juicy. I purchase them each week to put in a salad, a smoothie or just eat as a snack. Of course, when Maude declared peach the featured ingredient for the month of August, I looked forward in anticipation.
Peaches are more than yellow and white peaches. Per the Maude website, it explained that “there are both clingstone and freestone varieties of the fruit, indicating whether the flesh adheres to the pit. Likewise, there are white and yellow-fleshed varieties. The Red Baron, with its firm and juicy yellow flesh can be enjoyed fresh and cooked. The Rich Lady is popular for desserts and ice cream. The Donut, named for its sunken middle appearance, is mildly sweet with a hint of almonds and is perfect for salsas or halved then grilled. Nectarines are a variety of peach but are distinguished by their smooth skin and sharper flavor.”
As we sat down for dinner, we began with glasses of Bruno Gobillard Ma Sophie Rose Champagne, a lovely Champagne with aromas of strawberry and raspberry and beautiful acidity.
As we enjoyed the Champagne, the first few bites came out. There was the delicate dried thyme and peach hush puppies, the heavenly bourbon peach beignets and the extraordinary chicken skins which were so thin and crispy with a layer of peach marmalade in between.
The next dish was a bowl with lamb bacon, lamb gelée, coriander flower and coriander leaf with roasted San Marzano relish and peach consomme. The combination of peach and tomato was heavenly and the texture so delicate.
For our next courses, we enjoyed a wine that a friend brought. The Mambourg Grand Cru 2010 Alsace, a co-fermented blend of pinot gris, pinot blanc and pinot noir which was rich and full-bodied with aromas of stone fruit and flowers and minerality on the palate.
The wine paired elegantly with the barbecue spot prawn with fingerling potato chips, chili leaf and peach barbecue sauce. The vinegar of the sauce shone through and the flavors were delicate and then finished with the crunch of the potato chip.
Another delicious dish was the unripe peach salad with unripe peach puree, sorrel, purslane, grilled corn and lobster mushroom.
We enjoyed another bottle of Champagne, this time the Bollinger La Grande Annee Rose 2002, a powerful, yet delicate, wine with aromas of raspberries and blackberries.
The fluke, with fermented peach beurre blanc, wax-fermented peaches and anise hyssop was beautifully presented. The fish was perfectly cooked and the beurre blanc was rich but overall the dish lacked acidity and was a little bland.
In anticipation of the next dish, we enjoyed the exquisite Chateau Caillou 1970 Sauternes. It is always fun to drink a wine that is older than you are!
We paired the Sauternes with the hay-baked peach with foie gras mousse and sugar tuile. This dish was decadent and rich but at the same time light and fresh. I wish the dish had been triple the size!
Shifting back to a dry wine, we had the Bouchard Pere & Fils Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru 2008, a wine with aromatic layers of floral, green fruit, lime and stone.
The pasta dish was a black bean rigatoni with salted black beans, onion and peach soubise, charred onions and sweet potato leaves. Sadly this dish was a disappointment for the night. I am not sure I really understood the purpose of this dish. The pasta was a bit too al dente, the black beans earthy and yet there was nothing else exciting about the dish.
For the meat dish, we opened the Chateau Chevalier Winery 1974 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.