Winemaker’s Dinner with Marrenon and Eat Event

I’m a pretty lucky monkey sometimes. Like when I receive an invitation to take a few hours off work on Friday afternoon so that I may travel to Copenhagen to partake in an exclusive Winemaker’s Dinner featuring five wonderful dishes accompanied by a total of 11 different wines. Yep, foodie life does have its advantages and apparently being first in line for interesting culinary experiences is one of them.

The invitation came from my buddy Kristian from Vestergaard Wines ApS who was one of the organizers of the dinner along with French wine company Marrenon, who supplied the wines, and EAT EVENT, a Copenhagen-based food company catering to companies, parties, events and the likes and whose HQ provided the kitchen and seating area for our little wine-fueled get-together.

Marrenon winesWine tastings? I could get used to this!

The concept, briefly put, was that some 30 food and wine geeks from all walks of life would get together and pay a mere DKK 400 ($80) for an evening of food and wine. During the evening, we would get a thorough introduction to the wines and philosophies of Marrenon and get to taste a total of eleven of their wines, all paired with dishes created for the evening and tailored specifically to match the wines. Now, I don’t know about you, but that sounds like quite a promising Friday evening to me!

The only problem, if it could even be considered a problem, was that the dinner was to be held in our nation’s capital Copenhagen reasonably early Friday evening, meaning I’d have to cash in on some overtime and take a half day off work in order to make it. “Oh, the sacrifices I make for food and wine!” I thought, then packed my bags (well, my laptop, phone, credit card and ticket anyway) and jumped on a train to Copenhagen  to wine and dine with Vestergaard Wines, Eat Event and Marrenon.

What follows is an honest account of the events that took places, the wines that were consumed, the food that was eaten and my thoughts on these matters… But first, for those who have not been along for the ride long enough to have read my other post on the wines of Marrenon, here’s a brief background on one of our hosts for the evening and the supplier of the wines to be consumed:

 

Who are these Marrenon guys of which you speak?

Marrenon is a large-scale producer of wines in the Ventoux and Luberon regions of France. Marrenon operates as a so-called cooperative under which a number of smaller growers deliver their grapes to the company which then blends and vinifies the grapes to create a certain number of wines to express the sum of the grapes and microclimates throughout the region. What is somewhat special about Marrenon, though is that even if the grapes are supplied by hundreds (make that thousands) of growers, the grapes used in Marrenon’s various wines are limited to grapes from specific smaller geographical areas, sub-areas or a single vineyard even. And, unlike other large cooperatives, we’re told that Marrenon strive to not mix grapes from a myriad of growers to produce their finished wines. Rather, they aim to keep mixing to a minimum, especially as quality and price increases and for their flagship products. Here they rely on one single vineyard per wine!

In that spirit, Marrenon offers three basic lines of wines, all presumably aimed at expressing the unique quality of the areas from which they were sourced. Naturally, all three lines were represented in the dinner:

Les Classiques: Marrenons most affordable range. Made from grapes sourced from a number of growers located all over the Ventoux and Luberon regions. Meant as an entry-level introduction to the world of Marrenon, and the regions in general.

Les Terroirs d’Altitude: A more upscale range of wines sourced from a limited number of selected vineyards located exclusively on mountain slopes at an altitude between 300 and 500 meters above sea level.

Les Sélections parcellaires: Single Vineyard flagship wines made using selected grapes from selected vineyards that are vinified separately and with extra care and precision.

The object of the evening was as simple as it was exciting: to get to grips with parts of Marrenon’s wine lineup and the philosophy and thoughts behind the individual wines. All of this in a proper setting along with an expert on the subject and some well thought out food pairings to go along. Hey, once again, this sounds like a pretty smashing good time to me, so let’s go!

 

Arriving late, but not fashionably so…

Having made the most of the day walking around Copenhagen, having lunch, checking out sights, even meeting up with some business partners, I arrived at Eat Event HQ a few minutes to fashionably late; that is about three minutes late. I would have been on time but the place was a little oddly located at the base of a big grey building on a busy road nestled private housing, large business and the shadows of the Bella Sky hotel and other larger buildings. It really looked pretty nondescript to be honest and hard to find. But then again, I’ve dined at New York City’s WD~50 and know that great atmosphere and really good eats can sometimes be found behind really nondescript exteriors.

When I stepped inside, though, it all started to make sense to me. Eat Event do catering and not regular restaurant service. We had therefore been invited to the heart of operations; their kitchen and canteen area where they cooked up and served lunch for local companies as well as prepared meals to be shipped elsewhere. So where we had ended up was somewhere between a crash test industrial kitchen and a lunch area but a pretty nice one at that with straight lines, nice seating arrangements and a lot of white shades, black nuances, stone and stainless steel as Danish design tradition demands. It may sound cheap to some, but as a foodie, I really appreciated being invited almost into the beating heart of operations, and they really had done a good job of making the interior everything that the exterior was not: warm, welcoming and lavish with nice tablecloths, great dinnerware, live candles, plants and little rosemary bushes strewn across the tables..

And, perhaps most importantly, in the middle of the room, stood two large oak barrels, each holding gorgeous bottles of wine and a myriad of tasting glasses. Behind one such barrel stood Julien Sanchez, a friendly representative from Marrenon, with a few beautiful magnum bottles of Rosé wine and enough glasses to go around. He, along with Kristian, my contact with Vestergaard Wines, heartily welcomed us with open arms and a bit of a surprise: a welcome (in more ways than one) glass of Marrenon’s newest addition to their lineup: a gorgeous rosé, but not just any rosé.

Marrenon PetulaWhat? Just a couple of Magnum rosés is all!

 

Apéritif: Pétula and the rise of Rosé

Rosé wine is on the rise in Europe this summer and with good reason. People have finally been waking up to the fact that I’ve been trying to get across for years: that rosé can be much more than expressionless, easy drinking thirst quenchers. Rosés, if done right, can be beautiful wines full of character and expression, showing both fruity characters as well as complexity and a faint tannic bite of the red grapes from whence they came. All on top of a wonderful freshness and acidity quite like that of a crisp, young white wine. Rosé is not a girly drink anymore, but a drink to be taken seriously and a drink that is on the rise all over Europe this year. Finally!

Our apéritif wine, Pétula, is Marrenon’s attempt at creating a serious rosé wine and they’re not being shy about their intentions. The name on the label, Pétula, is also the name of the lovely lady who in 1966 inherited a country house in Provence named Marrenon. Here she held many a lavish party and eventually asked a bunch of her friendly neighborhood wine growers to put together a special cuvée of wine, the label of which she signed Marrenon. Business eventually grew and the rest, as they say, is history.

In other words, Pétula is Marrenon’s tribute to their founding mother, and quite a nice one at that! Made from Syrah and Grenache grapes and poured from gorgeous magnum bottles, this wine sported a lovely, deep, pinkish hue and a wonderful smell of ripe, red fruit. The taste was crisp, clean and refreshing. Not in your face powerful as some better rosés can be, but rather pleasing, complex yet straight forward, lengthy and, again, refreshing with just a hint of sweetness. A very nice apéritif to kick things off and get our palates ready for things to come. Score: 88 / 100

 

1st heat: Classique Single Varietals

With a faint caress of Marrenon’s Mother Cuvée still on our tongues, we were kindly asked to find a seat and sit down. I, being pretty much the only one silly enough to arrive alone, found an empty seat at a table with five other friendly people and settled in for the ride. We were first welcomed by Kristian from Vestergaard Wines, then by Jakob from Eat Event and finally, in English by Julien Sanchez who gave a quick intro to Marrenon and the Ventoux and Luberon regions before sending us off on a five hour guided wine journey.

Throughout the evening, wines were served in sets of two. Two wines for every dish, allowing us diners to not only compare the wines and appreciate (or scoff at) their individual characters, but also to realize that two seemingly very different wines could pair well with the same dish and create some very different yet (hopefully) equally pleasing overall expressions.

The first set of the evening was what could be considered the weakest wines from Marrenon. Wines I’ve tried before and until now never really understood. Classique Single Varietals is a line by Marrenon made using only a single varietal of grapes per wine, in the case of this tasting a Chardonnay white and a Merlot Rosé. The wines are meant to be crisp, fruity, easily drinkable and express the sheer character of the grapes rather than the terroir of the plots they came from or the secondary flavors that can be achieved through the vinification process.

A fun fact about Classique Single Varietals is that these wines are made from grape varietals that are really not typical for the area. Chardonnay, traditionally is a Burgundy (and Champagne) grape meant for colder climates whereas Merlot is probably most famously grown in Bordeaux. The mere thought of growing them in such a completely different area is interesting, but does it work?

2012 Classique Single Varietals, Chardonnay – This wine comes off as a little thin, very crisp, refreshing and easily drinkable. It shows only light fruit, a bit of acidity and not much character. Chardonnay, famously, is a grape that is said to bring very little flavor of its own to the party but rather acts as a great expressor of terroir. If this is true, and I think it is, Marrenon did well in creating a true expression of the grape, for better or for worse. I, being a fan of the Chardonnays of Burgundy and Champagne found it refreshing but dull, as was the case of some people next to me. Others around our table quite enjoyed it, though, including many of the red wine drinkers, strangely enough. Score: 79 / 100

2013 Classique Single Varietals, Merlot Rosé – “I never expected such a typical Merlot nose from such a light and pale wine” said the diner next to me, head halfway buried in his glass of Merlot Rosé. “He’s right,” I thought. The nose, though subdued was amazingly typical of Merlot and rather nice indeed. The flavor was nice, too, more pronounced and fruity than the Chardonnay with more roundness and character. It was still a little light and thin, though, and completely paled in comparison with the last of the Petula in the glass next to it, though. As could probably be expected. Score: 85 / 100

Snacks by Eat EventFirst course: Assorted snacks

Food pairing: Assorted snacks

For our first wines, the boys at Eat Event had compiled a nice little selection of Mediterranean snacks: assorted olives, salted almonds, two varieties of crisp flat bread (white and rye), an olive tapernade and a classic basil pesto. Simple, unpretentious and satisfying, they fulfilled the purpose of stimulating our appetites as well as heightening and showcasing the characters the wines without completely overpowering their somewhat delicate expressions. A simple, classic, safe bet that was spot on.

 

2nd heat: Les Classiques, Luberon AOC

The Classiques range are at the core of Marrenon’s lineup and are supposedly meant to showcase the two different growing areas from which Marrenon source their grapes: Ventoux and Luberon. The wines from this line we had at the tasting were both classified as Luberon AOC, meaning that they will have to adhere to the rules set forth for producing wines in the Luberon appellation. Marrenon, being a large cooperative, have access to grapes grown by a plethora of growers from all over the Luberon region and with a seemingly endless supply of grapes from all over the region, their aim with this line of wines (as I understood it) is to show the unified expression of the Luberon terroir in two, distinct (and affordable) wines: one white, one red.

2012 Classique Luberon, Blanc – Made with a classic Luberon white blend of 40% Grenache Blanc, 40% Vermentino, 20% Ugni Blanc, Luberon Classique Blanc sported a very light yellow color and was both crisp and crystalline. On the palate were definite hints of lemon and tropical fruit. I would consider Luberon Classique Blanc a very refreshing entry-level wine and had we not already had the beautiful Pétula, it would have gone down very well as an apéritif on a warm, early summer evening such as this one. Score: 85/100

2012 Classique Luberon, Rouge – The Luberon rouge is an equally classic Luberon red blend of 60% Syrah and 40 % Grenache. I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing this wine before on this blog and in the interest of saving time and space, I’ll stick to quoting my original tasting notes: Quite nice but subdued fruity nose. Wild berries? Cherry? A little thin on the palate, well-balanced with no single element really standing out. An average wine that wouldn’t harm anyone. It’s not that it’s a bad wine, far from it, it’s just not terribly exciting. Score: 79/100

Bruschetta with salsa and anchoviesSecond course: Bruschetta with salsa and anchovies

Food pairing: Garlic oil-roasted Bruschetta, chunky salsa and anchovies

This was the kitchen’s first real chance to show what they could do and one thing they certainly could do was to deliver a simple but pretty plating. On a large, oblong slate plate sat a garlic roasted bruschetta topped with a gorgeous, chunky salsa of ripe tomatoes, yellow and green bell pepper, onions and assorted herbs. Perched on top were a couple of fatty anchovy fillets and a drizzle of olive oil and Maldon sea salt that extended as a beautiful pattern across the plate.

Now, I’m not the biggest anchovy fan in the world – not by a long shot! But for once, I really enjoyed the oily, salty little filets that I otherwise detest. Their meaty, salty, umami-packed flavors blended really well with the sweet fruitiness of the sweet and mild tomato and bell pepper salsa. The garlic notes, too, were wonderful and the crunch of the bruschetta added contrast to the softness of the salsa and anchovies. A little too much contrast, maybe, as my bruschetta, for some reason, had gone rock solid to a point where I had to make use of my fingers to eat it. Tough luck, literally, as the flavors were absolutely wonderful and paired extremely well with the flavors of the wines, both white and red. But hey, at least I got an excuse to eat with my fingers at a fancy dinner!

 

3rd heat: Les Selections Parcellaires

With Les Selections Parcellaires we’re moving into the upper echelon of what Marrenon has to offer. The wines in this range are from selected small plots of vines with unique characteristics. All of the wines are from an altitude of at least 300 meters above sea level, many of them are sourced from old vines and all of them are single vineyard wines. In Marrenons philosophy, these are the top expressions of their line and proof that even cooperatives can create outstanding wines in much the same way that smaller, focused growers can.

2011 Les Selections Parcellaires, Grand Marrenon – When first tasting this wine, it immediately became evident that we had moved a step up in quality and dedication. The Grand Marrenon stood complex and intense yet balanced with a nose full of jammy ripe fruit and light tobacco. The taste was primarily fruit driven with some leathery and oaky notes. It was well-structured with some tannins showing through yet at the same time remained pretty silky and pleasing. At its place in the tasting, it was easily the most well-made and balanced wine of the evening so far. Unfortunately, though, it paled a little in comparison with its buddy served next to it and reviewed below. Score: 89/100

2011 Les Selections Parcellaires, ORCA – This is a wine I’ve actually reviewed before and have had very nice things to say about. At the time, I tasted it on its own without food and was very impressed. This time, I had it with food and was no less impressed. ORCA is made up of 90% Grenache with a mere 10% of Syrah thrown in for balance. The Grenache grapes are all hand harvested from a single plot of very, very old vines. The average age of the wines are 85 years with some of them reaching 100+ years. The result if a knockout of a wine: powerful, deep, concentrated, fruity, and with an almost chewable, tannic, Grencache-like woodiness to it… In a surprisingly charming kind of way, mind you! But that’s not all, the smell of this wine alone was a knockout: Deep notes of dark fruit, concentrated woodland soil and tobacco. This wine can be enjoyed young with quite a lot of air, but has a long, promising life ahead of it with a tannic structure that speaks of good things to come. Score: 90 / 100 (should improve considerably with age)

Beef tenderloinThird course: Red wine braised beef tenderloin

Food pairing: Red wine braised beef tenderloin, bacon, glazed vegetables and brown butter Pommes Duchesse

For our main course of the evening, we were served beef tenderloin. And, well, let’s just be honest and put it this way: it’s not often, I get excited about beef tenderloin. To say it takes quite a lot to get me excited about tenderloin, would be putting it mildly. But thanks to the wonderful boys at Eat Event, for once, I was actually pretty excited. What arrived before us were perfectly tender, thick flavorful slices of wine-braised beef tenderloin swimming in an even more flavorful, intense, thick, almost over the top sauce made with plenty of red wine, plenty of stock and plenty of quality smoked bacon. Scattered on top were a selection of glazed vegetables and alongside lay a beautiful pommes duchesse (French piped baked potatoes) made with browned butter.

The experience was intense, almost too intense, even for a foodie such as myself and the boys in the kitchen were definitely pushing the limits in terms of saltiness, smokiness and pure overpowering beefiness of the sauce – in a good way! This dish completely stood its ground against two very powerful wines for an all out onslaught of concentration and flavor. This sounds like a sales pitch, I know, but it’s really not… I’m sorry, I’m in love!

 

4th heat: Les Terroirs d’Altitude join the party

The fourth set of the evening saw the first member of Marrenon’s Les Terroirs d’Altitude line of wines. Terroirs d’Altitude wines are sourced from selected plots located between 300 and 500 meters above sea level. The aim of the line is, in Marrenon’s words, to produce wines with distinct fruity characters on top of luscious bodies. Now this is all well and good, but for me this set first and foremost brought a wine that I had gone back and forth with quite a bit:

2012 Terroirs d’Altitude, Terre de Levant – This is a wine I’ve tasted on numerous previous occasions and it’s always been a bit of a hit or miss wine for me. Some days I love it, other days I hate it (well, hate is a strong word), some days I’m completely indifferent. Why such differences in opinion? Possibly because it’s such an edgy wine. Made from 100% un-oaked Grenache grapes, Terre de Levant packs a spicy punch full of with black pepper, spice and a fair bit of woodiness despite the lack of oak. Grenache to me has quite a bit of a woody/branch-like feel to it, kinda like the squashed seeds or branches of the wines, and with the lack of oak or other grapes, this is one wine where these characters really shine through – along with a lot of black pepper and other assorted spices. Love it or hate it, this wine is special! In this day, I was somewhere between the two – it’s an interesting wine, and a bold one if you ask me, it just didn’t do it for me. Score 80 / 100

2011 Les Selections Parcellaires, Doria – “Here comes your favorite white wine, Mr. Johansen,” said my friend from Vestergaard Wines with a smile as he poured Marrenon’s top white wine into my glass. And he’s right. Well, sort of. Doria is definitely one of my favorite white wines. Since first tasting it last summer at a local tasting, I’ve lost track of the number of bottles bought and consumed, but it’s probably somewhere just shy of a shit-ton. So, yes, I’ll admit I’m biased in my review but hey, even Robert Parker’s boys agree that we’re dealing with a pretty fine wine here!

Why do I love Doria so? Well, I’m spoiled, I think. I’ve gone and raised myself on the white wines of Champagne, Burgundy and Alsace. Consequently, when I’m looking for great (not good but great) white wines, I aim for character, complexity, roundness, fruit and minerality. Maybe a bit of oak. And Doria has it all, at a comparatively affordable price:

With Doria, we’re back in the top line of  Les Selections Parcellaires wines. Made with a grape combination of 60% Vermentino, 30% Grenache blanc, 10% Rousanne, Doria sports an intense and complex nose of ripe fruit, warm slightly toasted wood and a buttery toffee-like note. The mouthfeel is both thick and pleasant with deep, rich flavors that mirror the nose: ripe tropical fruit, toffee, a slight bit of spice and a nicely balanced acidity with a sprinkling of minerals. Add to that a long, refreshing and interesting aftertaste and you’ve got a wine to reckon with in my book. Score: 90/100

Warm goat's cheese, nuts and grape glazeFourth course: Warm goat’s cheese

Food pairing: Lightly baked goat’s cheese, honey-roasted nuts, fresh herbs and riversaltes glaze

A lot of people love to hate on goat’s cheese, I just love to love it. The deep, spicy, tangy flavors and that goat-like oomph are just wonderful to me. It may well be an acquired taste, but it’s one, I think, that can be acquired by all. It just takes a little time and courage. If you’re one of those people who think they don’t like goat’s cheese, try heating it in the oven as the boys from Eat Event had done this evening. It makes a world of difference.

Warm goat’s cheese is an entirely different breed of animal: softer, milder, more rounded in flavor with a slightly roasted nutty flavor to it. Throw in a few roasted nuts, a bit of honey and a drizzle of Grenache grape glaze like the boys had done on this evening and you’ve got yourself a dessert or pre-dessert fit for kings. Simple, delicious and hearty. Well done, boys!

5th heat: A wine most legendary!

I’ve said it before and I’ll gladly say it again, I’m not a big fan of sweet desserts! But if dessert is either really well-made, really interesting or come in the company of iconic and rare wines, I’ll usually make an exception. And as a result of this exception, I was actually quite excited about dessert on this particular, mainly because the dessert came paired with a wine I’ve been wanting to try for several years now: Gardarèm, the finest and rarest red that Marrenon has to offer.

In his short introduction to the last set of wines, Julien made no effort to hide that what we were to try was, in his mind, something truly exceptional and a wine unlike any other. So, I’ll admit that it was with some excitement that I got started on the last set of wines for the evening, starting with something very different from a legendary red.

2010 Terroirs d’Altitude, Viognier Les Grains – Another wine from the Terroir d’Altitude line. Viognier is a pretty interesting grape, light, fruity and with quite a noticeable sugar content. Wines made with this grape are usually never bone dry but rather have some residual sweetness in them. This, along with their natural tropical fruitiness, make them a pretty good choice for a dessert wine for those of us who are not overly crazy about cloyingly sweet wines. This particular Viognier had a little age to it which made it more golden, more concentrated and slightly more dusty than most Viogniers I’ve ever come across while still displaying typical Viognier notes of apricot, peach and other stone fruits. Score 88/100

Marrenon GardaremBeing poured a glass of Marrenon’s iconic Gardarèm

2010 Les Selections Parcellaires, Gardarèm – Ah, the shining star of the evening. Gardarèm is an old Gallic word which basically translates into “We will keep”. Carefully selected, carefully produced and exceedingly rare, Gardarèm is the best that Marrenon has to offer. And keep it, they do. A mere 120 bottles of the current vintage has made it to Denmark and as such, whether you’d love it or hate it, even being offered a taste was a privilege. That being said, being poured such an iconic wine this late in the game after so many other glasses was probably a bit of a shame, but alas, the best must be saved for last:

What can I say about Marrenon’s Gardarèm? Well, for starters this was undoubtably one of the smoothest, silkiest wines I’ve had in a long, long time and this without it ever getting dull or just simply quaffable. It was a beautifully crafted wine that demanded respect and silence and that it received from our entire table. To be honest, I was actually a little surprised by how seemingly light Gardarèm was compared to other powerhouses in Marrenon’s upper echelon of wines, but it was a nice kind of light, one that spoke of an immaculately balanced wine. Still in its infancy but already enjoyable, this wine should continue to improve for at least a decade to come and actually reminded me of a silky, light, fruity Burgundy but without the insane price tag that comes with the Burgundy real estate.

Score: I’m gonna be careful with this one and score it 91/100 saying that I think it has the potential to improve a lot in the time to come. Its time to shine is definitely not here yet, but it’s still incredibly charming and drinkable.

Chocolate fondantFifth course: Chocolate fondant with vanilla ice cream

Food pairing: Chocolate Fondant, vanilla ice cream and fresh berries

“These guys have some balls cooking up chocolate fondant for 30+ people,” said the guy sitting next to me, pointing towards the kitchen, “usually when four people at one table order this dish for dessert, the kitchen panics… And they’re gonna attempt 30 servings? Good luck!”

My knowledgable co-diner was right, of course, chocolate fondant or bleeding heart chocolate cake as it is also known is a dish that has many cooks panicking because it requires pretty immaculate timing to execute both in terms of preparation, temperature and time to table. Chocolate fondant, for those who don’t know, is a single serving chocolate cake which is (ideally) perfectly firm and cooked around the edges, yet remains soft, velvety and runny in the middle. It’s a Valentine’s classic which has many a home chef scared about the thought of doing just two servings, and we were about to witness 30+ servings going in at once along with two servings of wine. Could this even be pulled off?

Well, yes and no. I’m happy to report that my chocolate fondant arrived at a perfect state of runny goodness as did some others, but I did hear some chirps from around the table about solidified centers. Again, though, executing 30+ of these little runny bites at once and getting them to the table at the hands of only a handful of waiters while pouring wines and waiting for them to be introduced… It’s a task I wouldn’t want to mess with, and I work with logistics!

Regardless of texture, though, the fondants were deep, rich, chocolaty, decadent, tasty and over the top, as they should be. The star of the show, though, in my book was the vanilla ice cream which was really only meant to be a side: perfectly creamy, airy, luxurious and bursting with flavor. With so much crap ice cream out there, you nearly forget how heavenly vanilla ice cream can really be – and this was pretty close to heaven. Seriously.

The berries? I tried trading them in for more ice cream, but no one wanted a piece of that trade. So I settled for what I had, mixed them up with the last remaining scoop of vanilla ice cream, then sat back with a happy and content look on my face, raising the last of my glass of Gardarem to a job well done, both to Julien Sanchez, his Marrenon wines, the boys back in the kitchen and to Vestergaard Wines for bringing it all together.

 

The afterglow

As the last plates were cleared from the table and glasses started to empty, the kind souls from Vestergaard Wines and Marrenon brought forth the few remaining open bottles from the dinner and allowed people to slowly mingle amongst the tables maybe picking up a bottle for themselves and revisiting their favorite wines of the evening. Because everybody knows that’s what you really need after 11 glasses of wine… More wine! For me in particular, this meant revisiting the excellent Les Selections Parcellaires line while getting a chance to chat with all of our hosts as well as a few other humble guests such as myself.

Sipping wine, laughing, chatting and getting possibly every so slightly buzzed, we talked almost into the wee hours exchanging highlights, opinions, thoughts and curiosities from the evening. We then, when we could no longer justify hanging around, touched glasses one last time to a night well spent and started pouring out into the cool Copenhagen night, some of us with the intention to head back home, others heading for pastures greener; i.e. the Copenhagen nightlife.

How does one adequately sum up an experience like this? Well putting it shortly: It had been a night of surprises, of great culinary pleasures, of wines ranging from the mundane over the interesting (for better and for worse) to the downright phenomenal. It had also been a chance to pick up interesting facts, tidbits and insight into wines you either didn’t know or (in my case) thought you already knew. And lastly, it had been a chance to make new acquaintances both in terms of wine, food and new exciting people…

All of this for a price of DKK 400 ($80)? Man, someone isn’t doing their math right! Count me in next time!

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