I started reading a blog, Samantha Sans Dosage, quite some time ago. I'm not even sure how long it's been actually but I know it has been long enough that I felt comfortable referring to her as a friend. Sam's writing is raw, poignant & without pretense which is exactly why I fell in love with her. We began to learn more about each other after becoming "friends" on FaceBook. We communicated more & made each other laugh & obviously talked about food & wine along the way.
Just after I started reading Sam I started reading a blogger who was a little closer to home...actually a lot closer since he was in my hometown. Ben Carter is an all around lover of cocktails, wine, cigars & the culinary arts in general. Unlike Sam & I he isn't in the business...the wine/liquor biz that is. The man is a workhorse writer though, always putting up posts & makes me feel like I am way far behind in this whole blogging thing.
Sam's son just turned 21 & she & her husband Carl (Call-o to everyone in their 'hood) were going to celebrate with him in Louisville. Jeremy is a Junior at University of Louisville & if he's anything like his mama then he's pretty awesome. Sam mentioned awhile back that she was coming into this neck of the woods. She said Call-o was watching a show about Memphis on Travel Channel & he said "I miss Memphis". Since they were going to be in Louisville for the birthday they decided to make a trip to Memphis as well. When she mentioned that I was all over it. I lobbied hard for the Memphis side trip & was ecstatic to finally meet her. I messaged both Ben & Sam & invited them over for dinner to my house so we could get to know each other, geek out over wines, & eat some good food. When Carl & Sam pulled up in front of the house in the LA Party Van I ran out into the yard to greet them with a big hug. It's hard to believe that Sam & Carl have a son who is 21 because the two of them look so young! We started with a little chit chat & how was your trip & all that & then we popped the bubbles.
Finally I was tasting Agrapart. I've read Sam wax poetic about how wonderful this Champagne is & salivated over her words. Dammit I wanted some of this too! But alas poor Memphis never gets a lot of the good stuff. Don't get me wrong we get some great wines here but when it comes to Champagne we are seriously lacking. The Agrapart was clean, razor sharp & elegant. I would show a picture but I was so caught up in it all that I simply forgot.
My very good friends Justin (aka The Chubby Vegetarian) & Amy joined us for dinner & brought a super delicious stuffed eggplant that satiated even the carnivores at the table. Justin said he was just going to sit back & listen in on the wine talk but both he & Amy know what they like & thats what really matters. Just as we sat down to dinner Sam popped open the Didier Dagueneau Pur Sang 2007. I had been waiting for this moment for weeks. She'd mentioned that perhaps she'd be bringing along a bottle of it. The first sip was jarring, I just couldn't believe I was actually tasting wine from such a crazy genius like Dagueneau. We popped open a Clos Rougeard Saumur (2005 Sam?) that was everything I love about wine. It was gamy, feral, earthy, stinky, funky & truly smelled of a horse barn. To me these are all positive things but I know there are many out there who just want their wine to taste & smell of sweet fruit so obviously they should avoid this one. The Rougeard was positively one of the most excitingly sensual & unique wines I've ever experienced.
I love saying I have new friends.
French Breakfast Radish with Baguette and Honey - In our first cookbook, Chef John Currence closed his foreword by saying, "Radishes with softened butter are WAY underappreciated." We think about his quote...
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