10 January 2007

Twelfth Night Gathering

On Saturday, The Girlfriend and I were honored to attend a Twelfth Night party hosted by local professional wine critic and fellow wine blogger Fredric Koeppel. A good time was had by all, and due to the size of the crowd and for ease of mingling, I stuck to the sparkling wine on offer: the 2004 Bailly-Lapierre Crémant de Bourgogne. A delicious wine with mild aromas, proper bubbly structure and a touch of lemony tartness on the palate. Perfect for a big party, not to mention its pairing with the wonderful cheeses and other hors d'oeuvres.

I have to confess that this was the first time I'd met Fredric in person, despite having read his columns in the paper for most of my life and having a few mutual friends in the city. He's an excellent host and it was pleasant to chat about wine and food in person for a change. I consider myself a self-educated amateur and heavily experimental wine enthusiast, and enjoy those conversations with someone where we can say things like... "Kéfrankos?" "Ah yes, known as Blaufränkisch in Germany." "Deep and structured flavor." "Indeed." ...without chuckling derision from the peanut gallery.

And he's got an incredible collection of cookbooks that is bigger than the equivalent sections in many libraries and bookstores. (I'm terribly nosy when it comes to bookshelves: I grinned at the books we had in common, like those by Marcella Hazan and Jacques Pépin, and had to restrain myself from sitting down and reading what appeared to be a couple of first edition Alice Waters books.)

Once again, I had a blast, and to anyone from the party who has found their way to this site, welcome, and enjoy nosing through the archives!

3 comments:

Big Mike said...

Ben,

I have had several interactions with Fredric. You can’t find a more professional, engaging person. He has always treated me wonderfully. And you know me, sometimes, I do not deserve that treatment!! Glad you had fun and thanks for the sparkler mention another William Harrison selection!!!

fredric Koeppel said...

Aw, you guys are too freakin' nice. But thanks. We served that cremant at my daughter's wedding reception.

Big Mike said...

Ben,

I went to nominate you for best wine review blog. Which I did anyway, but, about 10 people have beating me to it, congratulations, my friend. I know you will not quit your day job, but it has to make you fell good. Keep up the good work