Chocolate and Wine – Our Next Wine Dinner on June 26th

Chocolate and Wine
A Paired Wine Dinner

June 26th 2009, 7:15pm, $35

Sol Del Sur Bistro 31115 Rancho Viejo Road, Marbella Plaza, San Juan Capistrano
Reservations: 949-487-5225

Madness has set in. Enough of the recession! Time to feel good for a while!ell_rey_choc_beans

Chocolate. Yummm! Wine. Ummm! Let’s put ’em together!

Chocolate inspired dishes paired with the perfect wine to bring the combination to a sensuous culinary climax. Whew!

Generally speaking, chocolate on its own, especially dark chocolate, is hard to pair with wine.  But the complexity and depth that chocolate can add as a component of a dish lends itself to some inspired wine pairings.

So join us for a special tasting of a chocolate infused menu paired expertly with an array of award winning wines!

Chocolate and Wine – A Paired Wine Dinner Menu
Presented by: Dave Emery – Chef / Owner and

Michael Blasquez – Quintessential Sommelier

Two Angels Sauvignon Blanc 2007el_rey_beans
Chocolate Pasta Carbonara with Chocolate Dipped Grisini Wrapped in Prosciutto de Parma

Elsa Chardonnay 2007
Mixed Green Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette and Chocolate Nibs

Shot of White Chocolate and Saffron Soup
with Dark Chocolate Chili Lid

Famiglia Bianchi Carbernet Sauvignon 2006
Grilled NY Strip Steak with Chocolate Coffee Spice Rub and Cacao Cinnamon Potato Chips

Bianchi Extra Brut Sparkling NV
Chocolate Chai Sherbet on Armagnac Sauce with Raspberry Truffle and Almond Tuiles

Cold Brewed Coffee served over Ice with Cardomon and Dark Chocolate Sprinkles

The Chocolate

Venezuelan chocolate is world renowned as the most flavorful and aromatic in the world.

All dishes for the evening will be made with El Rey brand chocolate from Venezuela.

We are using El Rey Carenero Superior Apamate 73.5% cacao for all dark chocolate dishes. El Rey’s Carenero Superior line was launched in 1994. Each bar is made exclusively from one type of bean: the highly acclaimed Carenero Superior. Carenero grows in the fertile and humid region of Barlovento, just northeast of Caracas. The well-fermented and better quality beans get deemed “superior”—hence the Carenero Superior designation. The beans are prized for yielding a complexity of spicy and fruity flavors and aromas.

We are using El Rey Carenero Superior Icoa White for all white chocolate dishes. Icoa is simply the best white chocolate in the world. Because El Rey does not deodorize its cocoa butter (a chemical process in production meant to rid undesirable odors, but which also strips flavor in the process), this is the one white chocolate that still possesses its natural chocolate flavors, and not just dairy tones.

The Wines

Two Angels Sauvignon Blanc 2007

Producer: Two Angels
Country: United States
Region: High Valley, CA
Grape Variety: 100% Sauvignon Blanc
Alcohol Strength: 13.4% by volume

This fruit-forward wine has pleasing intensity in the nose with herbal hints of dried thyme and sage that integrate nicely with lemon peel and gooseberry notes. The wine has a wonderful presence on the palate from entry to finish. The flavors mimic the aromas with added nuances of kiwi, crenshaw melon and basil.

Winemaker’s Notes:
The grapes for Two Angels come exclusively from the Shannon Ridge Ranch vineyards which boast extremely volcanic, red pumice stone terroir. Hugging the mountain rims along the east edge of the High Valley AVA at close to 2,200 feet, the area is reminiscent of the Rhone Valley’s
Crozes-Hermitage vineyards. From the top of the steep, north-facing slopes of the Sauvignon Blanc vines, there is a commanding view of California’s largest natural lake, Clear Lake. While the vines bask in warm sunshine most of the day, the cooling westerly winds off the lake lower
temperatures significantly, creating ideal growing conditions for Sauvignon Blanc. For the 2007 vintage, 60-percent of the grapes were whole cluster pressed, with 40-percent crushed, chilled and allowed to undergo skin contact for six hours before pressing.

Elsa Chardonnay 2007

Producer: Valentin Bianchi S.A.
Country: Argentina
Region: San Rafael, Mendoza
Grape Variety: 90% Chardonnay, 10% Semillon
Alcohol Strength: 14.3% by volume

There are bright, medium-intense aromas of honeyed lemon, peaches and tropical fruit, making this wine immediately attractive. A soft entry and enjoyable crispness combine for enjoyment as both an aperitif and the perfect accompaniment to lighter dishes.

Winemaker’s Notes:
Valentin Bianchi’s Chardonnay and Semillon grapes come from the Estate’s Dona Elsa Vineyards, which is situated in Rama Caida, San Rafael, Mendoza, at around 760 meters above sea level. This is one of the coolest areas in San Rafael. Hand-picked and twice sorted by hand, the Chardonnay grapes are crushed and fermented over ten days at controlled temperatures of 15 degrees Celsius in stainless steel tanks with medium-toasted French oak innerstaves. After blending with the Semillon, the wine goes through one month’s aging in the bottle.

Famiglia Bianchi Cabernet Sauvignon 2006

Producer: Valentin Bianchi S.A.
Country: Argentina
Region: San Rafael, Mendoza
Grape Variety: 90% Cab Sauv, 4% Cab Franc, 4%Petite Verdot, 2% Merlot
Alcohol Strength: 14.8% by volume

A classic Cabernet Sauvignon that can compete with the best from around the world, this wine has an intense red/purple color and an enjoyable, complex nose that is reminiscent of berries, spice, cedar, chocolate and much more. The nose carries through to the palate, delivering rich, full texture and berry-spicy-cedar flavors. It is a well-balanced wine with a lingering, pleasing finish.

Winemaker’s Notes:
The grapes come primarily from the Asti and Doña Elsa Estate, situated in Rama Caíida, San Rafael, Mendoza, around 760 meters above sea level. It is an ideal climate for the Cabernet Sauvignon grape because of the warm days and cool nights that are typical of the area. The soil is of sandy calcareous composition and alluvial origins. Picked by hand, the grapes went through classical crushing and fermentation, with periodic pump-over and maceration on skins for three weeks. It was aged 10 months in 90 percent French, 10 percent American barrels – 33 percent new, 33 percent one year-old and 33 percent two year-old. After stabilization, filtering and bottling, the final wine was bottle-aged an additional five months.

Bianchi Extra Brut Sparkling NV

Producer: Bodega Valentin Bianchi, SA
Region/Country: San Rafael, Mendoza, Argentina
Grape Variety: 60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir
Alcohol Strength:12.3% by volume
Residual Sugar: 10.49g/l

This Extra Brut Sparkling wine has an attractive greenish yellow color, slightly golden with delicate and persistent bubbles, typical of a sparkling wine that goes through a second fermentation in the bottle. The wine seduces through its fine and delicate nose of tropical fruit, with marked notes of toasted nuts.

Winemaker’s Notes:
The grapes come from Valentin Bianchi’s Dona Elsa Estate and Las Parades Estate, which are situated in the San Rafael DOC of Mendoza at 730 to 790 meters above sea level. The soil is sandy calcareous of alluvial origins. The grapes were hand-harvested in cases of 17 kg each. Made in the traditional French Champenoise method, the wine sees one year of “sur lies” aging in the bottle, where it undergoes a second fermentation.


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