We can always count on Tom Saunderson, Young’s Columbia rep, to bring good stuff when he does a wine tasting at Gretchen’s, and he definitely didn’t disappoint this time. And the food wasn’t too bad, either.
We started off with a bang, with flutes of sparkling Riesling from Pacific Rim Winery, and an assorted plate of goodies including scallops, shrimp, green onion gougères, green salad and blue-cheese-wrapped grapes rolled in pecans. The following wine, a 2007 Willakenzie Pinot Gris, went beautifully with the food but almost everyone had cleaned their plates already.
The main plate looked a little sparse but packed a punch of flavor. Jon made a huge vat of rich mushroom risotto, and there were two cubes of steak to go alongside a small dish of horseradish cream. The risotto was beautiful with the first red wine, a delicate Pinot Meunier from Oregon (with a beautiful hand-written label), and the steak was perfect with the next wine, a huge, kick-ass Merlot from Spring Valley Vineyard in Walla Walla.
To finish, Susan had made a sort of baked cream cheese-based pudding called Coeur à la Crème, which she claims is the easiest dessert in the world to make but is wildly impressive and tastes rather like lemon-infused marshmallow creme. We served scoops of it on pools of locally produced raspberry sauce, and Tom served up the final sip – Framboise (raspberry cordial) with a bit more sparkling wine poured over.
It was all so good, we bought some of everything.