Louis Roederer greeted me as I entered the dining room. Louis Roederer is no ordinary stranger at dinner tables or even at glitzy parties because its brother, the great Cristal is Paris Hilton's favourite champagne. It's really an honour to be able to meet you, Mr. Louis Roederer Brut Premier.
The sight of its pale gold hue and driving bubbles is already inviting enough for anyone to steal a sip. Bring your nose near the glass and sniff the aroma filled with wonderful scents of multi-grained bread, toffee and ginger which makes it really refreshing. It's a light and lively bubbly on a dry side but you'll be able to taste the buttery notes which leads to a lengthy finish. Rated at 91 points from Wine Spectator, it's worth giving this bottle a try and it's drinking very well now.
With a wonderful company like Louis Roederer, we had two lobsters joining the dinner from Boston. The perfect way to show your appreciation is to eat them! These lobsters are best eaten plain and steamed so that the natural flavours are retained and it wouldn't affect the taste of the champagne. I have no idea how much the lobsters cost but they were really good and fresh. If you fancy, Imbi Palace also prepared a vinaigrette sauce that compliments the steamed lobsters.
The other thing I love about eating at the restaurants is their soups. It's always a double-boiled preparation style for any of the soups. That night, we had a simple home-styled corn and carrot soup sweetened with water chestnuts and pork meat. How could something so simple tasted so good?!!
Another one of my favourite dishes is actually the Sweet & Sour Pork. I have twittered this before and a friend of mine asked me how could I like such a dish?!! Why not?!! I have always enjoyed a plate of good sweet & sour pork that is fried with a nice batter and served with nice tomato sauce and pineapples. The ones in Imbi Palace was good because there isn't too much batter and the sauce isn't too watery either.
One of the new dishes we tried that night is a pot of braised beef served with wolf berries and spinach. This dish is intended to match with the wines we would be drinking. The wines itself is the highlight of the dinner.
It was in fact my first time meeting Bad Boy of Bordeaux. Jean-Luc Thunevin’s fame in the world of Bordeaux began with the first vintage his celebrated Ch. Valandraud in 1991. He is one of the founding garagists, the movement of microproducers who sought to make a purer, riper, wine than had been made in Bordeaux before.
Robert Parker dubbed Jean-Luc Thunevin as the "Bad Boy" of Bordeaux. This enfant terrible in Bordeaux loves provocation and thus in response to it, he created a Bordeaux called Bad Boy, with nearly all Merlot from 40 year old vines. Bad Boy is actually a "vins de pays" and he is definitely turning the tables with this table wine. Making a quality wine in this category is indeed a rarity in France as so far I haven't come across a "vins de pays" that is impressive.
The wine has a picture of a black sheep on the label and Bad Boy in large font. Don't you find it rare for a French to label their wines as such? In Jean-Luc's blog, he claimed that he "is not afraid for this wine, which, tasted blind with more expensive wines, will always stand out in this kind of quality-price confrontation".
We had a chance to taste the 2008 and 2007 vintages. The 2008 gets a rating of 91 points from Wine Spectator which has a nose of blackberries and dark fruits. On the palate, you can taste the intense berries and oak which results in a full-bodied wine. It did gave me quite a lengthy finish and it's recommended to be drank after 2014.
These were indeed some impressive wines considering in the category of "vins de pays". With a quality like that and the ability to be cellared, I would say these Bad Boys turned out to be quite gentlemanly...