Today’s post is a celebration for Despoinarion‘s Oscar Awards.
The celebration is double in nature: we celebrate first the award for imagination given to Despoinarion by her friend Taste Advisor
and secondly the award that Despoinarion has given to some bloggers, including myself.
The guests are:
Yiannis Tsarouchis, Iannis Xenakis, Manos Chatzidakis, Karl Popper, Parmenides, Hoelderlin, Paul Celan, Paul Cezanne
Today’s dinner party is seated and the menu is a combination of dishes I have created, with dishes I have tasted in Italy, Spain, Turkey, the Basque country and Austria. The wines come from Italy, Austria, Greece and Spain.
To start, I will serve Amalia Brut by Tselepos, a fruity fresh sparkling wine, made the traditional way from moschofilero grapes in the area south of Tripoli, Greece.
Amuse Bouche: Pies with hot sudjuk (my creation)
Home made closed pies with a filling of hot sudjuk from Turkey, onions, peppers, sun dried tomatoes and spices.I imasgined this combination one day while I was tasting the hot sudjuk from Turkey and was wondering how to temper the fire and the heat without levelling it to something boring.
They are hot enough to get the human machine started, so that my guests will endure throughout the process.
My Greek sushi uses vineleafs instead of sea weed, rice, and lightly marinated sardine fillets. I think it is one of the best antipasti because of the unique combination of the oily fish flavors’ and the vine leafs. The rice acts as a mediating agent.
Antipasto: Joselito – Pata Negra
Nothing can describe the taste of a slice of Joselito’s pata negra. Keep your eye lids closed, slip into your half open mouth, roll it a bit around without chewing, let it rest for a few seconds, and then open your eyes, and start the cheweing process. Unforgettable!
Vino: Albarino – 2006 Granbazán Ambar
The first wine I will offer is albarino made by Granbazan. Albarino is a wonderful grape, it produces a ehite wine with a good kick and a lot of acidity. I love it and hope you will love it too!!!
Primo 1: Sea urchin eggs with Bacalao Tripe (Ristorante Uliassi, Senigalia, Italia)
I now come to one of the absolutely fabulous dishes of the evening created by chef Uliassi. Frozen sea urchin eggs with cod tripe. What a pandemonium of tastes, aromas and all of them encased on the tender silky texture of the cod tripe!
Primo 2: Egg with grilled octopus (Restaurante Andra Mari, near Bilbao, Basque Country)
This minimalistic dish is absolutely stunning. One of the most unusual combination of tastes, married by the chef of Andra Mari in Vizkaya.
Secondo: Iberian Pig’s Tails with crayfish (Restaurante Mugaritz, near San Sebastian, Basque Country)
The humble tail with its skin intact and crispy combines with the white immaculate flesh of the crayfish in a never ending game of pure pleasure, amplified by jamon iberico crisps.
The flesh of the tail is surrounded by streams of fat, the best tasting fat in the world!
The contrast in the texture between the skin and the subliminally soft, almost creamy fat is unbelievable.
And when you get back to Earth after this excursion into extreme pleasure, the crayfish comes into play and with its soft flesh and sweet flavor takes you to the cool ocean of elevated joy.
A crisp of jamon iberico completes the palette of tastes and you find yourself asking the simple question:
“How could I ever taste something more satisfying than this?”
The Princess has danced with the Serf, the lights are off, and the Prince with the skull on hand walks by wandering:
“To be or not to be?”
He obviously didn’t manage to get even one bite!
P.S. This dish is on the menu of the re-opened Mugaritz Restaurant, near San Sebastian in the Basque Region, which was completely rebuilt after a fire destroyed the entire kitchen and a big part of the dining area on the 15th February 2010.
Terzo: Bistecca Fiorentina
The queen of meats could not be absent from this dinner. Bistecca Fiorentina, bought from my good friend Dario Cecchini, in Panzano, Chianti.
The meat is marbled, and it melts in your mouth dear guest, enjoy it!!!
Vino: Poeckl Admiral 1995
The Admiral, a cuvée of Zweigelt, Blaufränkisch and Cabernet Sauvignon, has been one of Austria’s great red wines for years.
My brother Manolis introduced me to this battleship of reds and I am enslaved by it ever since.
Dolce: Tiramisou (Ristorante Uliassi, Senigalia, Italia)
The tirami-sou, another creation of chef Uliassi, is deconstructed and absolutely fantastic! The mascarponeisintense and ever present, the cream golden and thick, the chocolate dressed in coffee chunky and bitter! A caramelized wet biscuit on top provides the necessary absorbing agent.No cake needed!
Dolce: Dark chocolate praline with campari sauce in the middle, accompanied by blood orange sorbet on the left and orange grog on the right.
And now the second dessert! The grog was mildly hot, and contrasted beautifully the cold sorbet (Restaurant Vestibuel, Vienna, Austria). What a wonderful way to end the dinner!!!
Vinsanto: Barone Ricasoli – Castello di Brolio
The Castello di Brolio Vin Santo, true to tradition, expresses one of the “historic” grapes of the area, Malvasia del Chianti.
It is silkyy, aromatic, and can stay with you for a long time. The aftertaste is memorable.