If you can’t get up to The Shops at Legacy in Plano to enjoy a glass or bottle off their award winning wine list, visit their Dallas location as they continue their Generous Pour event through September 4.
I had an opportunity to experience this Generous Pour over dinner the other evening and found it to be one of the best wine deals in town for both discovering high rated, highly allocated and interesting wine at an exceptional price. For just $25 (per person with dinner) guests will taste a generous pours of 9 different wines hand selected by Capital Grille Master Sommelier George Miliotes. You can try as many or as few as you like, creating your favorite pairing throughout your meal.
My sweetie and I started with a clean, light Marquis de la Tour Brut Cremant sparkling wine from the Loire Valley of France. A blend of Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, this bubbly is filled with aromas of honeysuckle, wild flowers and light citrus followed by melon and light citrus flavors. A perfect aperitif to start any meal, or a great way to end to an evening.
Albarino continues to be one of the hottest white varietals and the La Cana 2010 Albarino is a good example why it is so popular. Created from 45 year old vines in the Rias Baixas region of Spain this wine marries lively citrus flavors with green, herbal notes and balanced minerality. Not as dry as some Albarino wines I have had, but this is a refreshing and lively summer white wine.
We paired Capital Grille’s cold smoked salmon appetizer with Chateau St. Jean Belle Terre Chardonnay. A classic pairing. Chateau St. Jean is one of my go to wineries for great Chardonnay, from their affordable, approachable Sonoma County Chardonnay, to their reserve and single vineyard offerings, like this 91 point Belle Terre. A full-malolactic style Chardonnay from Alexander Valley, the wine opens with aromas of ripe pear, green apple and vanilla with toasty, nutty flavors of almond, baked apple and honeysuckle with spice and oak. The creamy, toasted notes paired with the smokiness of the salmon, salty capers and dill mayo perfectly, accenting the flavors of the wine bringing out layers of citrus and cream.
A smooth, succulent Byron Pinot Noir filled with blackberry, raspberry, black cherry and spicy, herbal notes was a spot on pairing with a Field Green and Fresh Herb salad with lots of blue cheese. This Santa Barbara County Pinot is fruit forward with soft tannins, balanced acidity and a lush finish, a great food wine.
Over main courses of a decadent, medium rare Filet with Foie Gras Butter, and a Sesame Crusted Sushi Grade Tuna, seared rare and presented with soy sauce, wasabi oil and a ginger broth we got into the bolder reds. First up, an Italian Merlot from the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region, Conte Brandolini Vistorta 2006 Merlot. Made from 100 year old vines, hand harvested in their Northeastern Italy vineyard this medium bodied wine is filled with concentrated fruit flavors of black currant and black berry with hints of cedar and nutmeg. A classic Merlot with velvety tannins and a long finish.
The 2009 Tarima Hill Monastrell from Alicante, Spain was a big surprise. A newly imported wine to the US from Spain making its debut at Capital Grille for this event. Though still young, this medium-bodied wine was filled with ripe berry flavors with layers of spice and vanilla and a soft, silky finish.
Two Cabernet Sauvignon selections are being poured during the event, a 2003 Freemark Abbey Cabernet Boshe from Rutherford and a mineral rich, bold Chalk Hill Estate 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon from Sonoma. Both bold wines, the Freemark Abbey had big, intense, powerful fruit, with enough age on it to round out the tannins and pair well with a hearty, meaty Capital Grille steak. Usually priced at $125 a bottle, just this would equal a great deal at $25.
The Chalk Hill Estate Cabernet Sauvignon is a dense wine with smokey, mineral rich flavors from their estate fruit grown in volcanic soils. Ripe berry, black cherry and licorice fill the palate with a long finish.
An Australian Port from RL Buller, The Portly Gentleman, finished the extravagant meal. A delicate dessert wine filled with strawberry jam and dried cherry with hints of toasted nuts, ending this night of incredible pairings. Overall the Generous Pour event is an ideal opportunity to try wine you may not order or buy on your own, and have as little or as much as you like. If you purchased each of these wines on their own the tab would run upwards of $750, so it is a great value, with wine that is something special making it a great way to spend a date night or guys or girls night out.