the Cordon Bleu (LCB) folks arrived shortly after 3 PM - laden with lots of trays and containers and found storage for all -
we went through various china for serving and various flatware - course by course.
we went through the wine pairings and various glasses for each course...
they started cooking! eight chefs or chefs in training in my very own small kitchen and they seemed to be right at home- if they needed something they looked into cabinets and drawers to find it or something that would substitute...
Phil came home from his afternoon concert and brought the ice for the water cooler-
Don & Jim were the first to arrive with the lovely centerpieces that Don had created with flowers from his yard supplemented with tulips and roses from Costco-
Neil had sent his wines here ahead of time but showed up with yet another fabulous bottle upon arrival- more about that later.
and so we began the evening with a perfect 1990 Cuvee Winston Churchill from Pol Roger and a 1995 Gosset-Brabant (from Neil and from my cellar respectively)
our appetizers were fabulous arancini and some amazing little (beautifully executed) spoon based pea and parmesan crisp thingie - as well as the ginger and carrot foam shooters.
these were passed appetizers and we ate and drank until the last guests had arrived and had their starters - sitting down shortly thereafter...
I know the menu has been posted before but for a refresher- here it is again-
first I will do photos of the table and the flowers and then the team prep and then go back to the courses and finally the wines-
Le Cordon Bleu in my (limited size) kitchen! It hasn't seen this level of cooking ever!
below- the pea puree with the parmesan crisp and mint flowers and a teeny bit of bite with the pepper - super!
so to start off the meal the amuse of salmon belly tartare with dill crème fraiche and capers and some of their homemade crackers!
paired with the NSG Clos d'Arlot white from 2000 (still showing very nicely)
then the next course: followed with a veggies course of chilled summer peas , pancetta, pickled ramps and the parmesan tuille which we paired with the exquisite 2002 Corton Charlemange from Delarche
(sorry no photo- LOL- bottle "went missing" LOL)
the wines included the wine of the evening - the 1978 Echezeaux and the 2008 Mersault (photos follow)
the simple salad of boston bibb and chives with melted tomato in lemon vinaigrette was fabulous- and we worked with the same two wines above-
the handcut pasta with truffles was paired with a very nice Corton Renardes from 1996 vintage- also showing nicely with lots of fruit and very young- still lots of time on this one-
the 1982 Bordeaux in the photo was up next for the chicken course of herb roasted chicken with haricot vert and pan jus-
we served the intermezzo of cucumber sorbet with the 1986 Y'Quem Sauternes
which followed into the dessert course of green apple soaked pound cake with a chocolate ganache and almond crumble - which was also accompanied by Neil's surprise wine ! A 1989 late harvest gewürztraminer which was really incredible.
and the 1977 Taylor Fladgate PORT-
and a final mini course for all of us groaning from so much good food- a white chocolate and truffle shooter - fabulous ending to an all around amazing meal!
sorry I seem to have been eating while the arancini were being served (no photo) - but here are the champagne pics for the record-
the 1990 Cuvee Winston Churchill from Pol Roger
the 1995 Cuvee Gabriel from Gosset-Brabant