Pascal Jolivet @ Uncorked

Thursday, March 08, 2018

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It was one of those invites that took Thursday Food mere minutes to confirm. By the end of the evening, not only were we thrilled to have been part of the gathering at Uncorked but impressed enough to have made discreet enquiries about a few of our favourite wines. The food was impressive. The service, though not flawless, warrants words of encouragement.

Always on the cusp of what's new, different and appealing to their customers, Select Brands principals David and Tania McConnell and Andrew Desnoes, having heard news of wine producer Pascal Jolivet's oversubscribed wine event at the recently concluded South Beach Food & Wine Festival, suggested that Jamaica be added to his itinerary prior to his return to the Loire Valley in France. He said yes, and both Montego Bay and Kingston were added. The former for Monday, February 26, the latter, Tuesday, February 27. Both evenings proved successful.

Those fortunate enough to have grasped the one-night-only opportunity are still applauding the six-course dinner complemented by wines from the Pascal Jolivet cellar. The laid-back affair, wine introductions only when deemed necessary, allowed pros and novices alike to tap into the wine producer's expertise. Jolivet, himself, was approachable — like his wines.

Roasted beets and chevre salad with crunchy walnut brittle drizzled with dark cherry balsamic vinaigrette was the evening's first course. The selected pour — Pascal Jolivet Sancerre Blanc — which many ( Thursday Food included) would have happily held on to for the evening. Light, refreshing and, dare we suggest, at the right temperature, the tone was set for what was to follow. Indeed, the Pascal Jolivet Pouilly Fume “Terres Blanches” allayed all fears of holding on to the Sancerre Blanc. Served with a yin of pepperpot bisque and a yang of lobster bisque, the notes were in perfect harmony even with the pepperpot sans lobster.

As conversation became more animated — wine does that — patrons engaged Jolivet about their preferred wine and he in turn encouraged all to add the Loire Valley to their next travel itinerary.

The anchovy and fresh herb angel hair pasta — complemented by the Pouilly Fumé — was magnificent in its simplicity. Could things get any better? They certainly could, and did, with a hearty choice of mains: bouillabaisse with a garlic wine butter sauce dusted with fresh basil or chilli rubbed pork tenderloin in a ginger-coconut broth. The selected pour was the Pascal Jolivet Sancerre Rouge. Both options were well received. The pork, which was excellent, could have however done with a little less broth.

Dessert — poached Bosc pears with capra; goat cheese and pistachio brittle served with Cockburn's Reserve Port — ended the evening on an even more perfect note.




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