Barely a month after we were there, we returned to El Ideas again, this time for a quiet ring in of the new year. The chefs change the menu on a weekly basis, but we could still recognize enough of the main ingredients after the 3-week metamorphosis. It was actually very interesting to see how they’ve reworked the dishes.
We brought two bottles of wine, fully intending to drink maybe half of the champagne, before having half of the red for the rest of the courses. But the wines were so delicious that we’d polished off both before we realized it. Heh. (We were supposed to stop by a friend’s after our early dinner which ended at 9pm, but had to go home to crash instead).
The champagne was the Vilmart Grand Cellier Brut Premier Cru. Focused bubbles, soft and yeasty nose – not quite the usual French barnyard stink but instead a nose evocative of freshly baked bread in the oven. Well rounded body, with some hints of blood orange with toast. Absolutely delightful! The red was a bottle of 2007 Brennan Pinot Noir that we’d lugged back from New Zealand a year ago. We’d tried it in a tasting room in Queenstown, and had been blown away by how gorgeous the fruit was. Once again, the wine worked its magic. I can’t remember the last time I’ve had a wine with such an elegantly soft perfume of rose, strawberries, and lychee in the nose, and which carried through all the way to the finish without being cloyingly sweet. It was so smooth, so, so perfect!