I got back, late last night, from my little three day visit to Bordeaux. I had a fantastic time, and it's given me an added perspective of what they do there.
On Tuesday we met up at Gatwick airport for the flight to Bordeaux. We flew posh - British Airways, Im more used to flying Easyjet or Ryanair, so that was quite nice. There was four of us altogether - Edward from Rules Restaurant in London, Daria from Pied a Terre also in London, Lara from John E. Fells, the UK agents for the Rothschild wines and of course myself. We were met at Merignac Airport by Edouard Thouvenot from Baron Phillipe de Rothschild, who is the Export Director responsable for the UK. We were taken to our hotel, the Golf de Medoc to refresh ourselves then into Bordeaux for dinner.
We dined at le Pavillon des Boulevards, a lovely restaurant just off the beaten track in the older part of the city. Lara and I dined from the A la Carte menu while Daria, Edward and Edouard dined from the ten course menu surprise. I had a fantastic starter of langoustines which came in two parts. The first part was a small bowl with half a dozen langos split with some julienne of carrot and baby rocket. Over this was poured a hot stock of sauternes with ginger and spices, which "cooked" the langos. It was really delicious. The second part was a quartet of langos with an apple cream sauce and was lovely. I actually thought it was my main course and was completely confused when my main course actually followed. The main course was lobster with vanilla mash and sauternes sauce. It was divine, and the 2004 Aile d'Argent we had for the starter just set it off perfectly. By this time Edward and Daria were starting to flag and they were only on the seventh of ten courses. I nearly killed myself with my dessert which was a fanned pear with caramel mousse and spun sugar. The spun sugar pierced my tongue and it started to swell a bit nearly choking me, but soon when down when I applied wine to it (a 2004 medoc Mouton Reserve). By now we were all getting a bit tired and frankly a bit concerned that Edouard would be driving us back to the hotel having watched him sinking a fair few glasses of wine. Luckily he had arranged a taxi for us, and as he lived only a block or two away he planned to walk home. We slunked off to our rooms and prepared for an early start.