Back home from our road trip, Friday night dinner, we were treated to dinner with son Sean and d-in-law Michelle to celebrate their new home down the street from our in the Hobson Road corridor.
We dined at one of our favorite eateries in the City (Chicago), Chez Joël on Taylor Street. As usual the service was outstanding, food was delectable and the price was agreeable.
Chez Joël is quaint, artsy, intimate, tasteful, comfortable, authentic yet unpretentious in its French Bistro setting and faire. We had a perfect lat summer evening sitting outside in the adjacent courtyard.
I had my oft-time usual fare, the Duck Confit, Linda had the salmon, Sean the daily special Blue Fish, and Michelle had the lamb, Michelle's cousin Ola had the Coq au vin.
|Chez Joel Patio|
|Chez Joel Confit Duck|
|Chez Joel Lamb|
All the entrees were excellent - well prepared, artful presentations, ample portions, and with appropriate accompaniments.
With the starters and seafood entrees we had a selection of WBTG (Wine By The Glass) offerings from the winelist, the Sauvignon Blanc, Daniel Olivier, Montravel, Bergerac and this California Chardonnay.
Bishop's Peak Tally Vineyards San Luis Obispo Chardonnay 2020
Vinous rated this 91 points reflecting high QPR in this entry level label.
Straw colored, medium bodied, notes of pear and peach fruits with hints of lemon, floral with bitter citrus tones.
RM 89 points.
Repeating that earlier blogpost the notes about Domaine Chevalier and brother and sister team of Nicolas and Marlène Chevalier, tonight we tasted the newer, later 2020 vintage of this label.
Marlène & Nicolas Chevalier Les Voleyses Crozes Hermitage 2020
Once part of the cave co-operative at Tain-Hermitage, since 2008 the family vineyards of Domaine Chevalier are gradually being reclaimed by the brother and sister team of Nicolas and Marlène Chevalier. Nicolas tends the vineyards and crafts each cuvee, while Marlène handles all of the sales and marketing for Domaine Chevalier.
Following his formal agricultural studies in France, Nicolas spent four years honing his winemaking skills on estates in Australia, California and South Africa. After completing studies in agronomy and enology in France, he headed to South Australia’s Clare Valley where he mastered various techniques for fermenting Shiraz (Syrah). He then worked with Kendall Jackson in California crafting white winemaking skills. To further his post-graduate wine studies, he spent 2002 in South Africa working at legendary three-hundred-year-old Boschendal estate in Stellenbosch, South Africa, a winery renowned for its superb Syrah-based wines.
Marlène and Nicolas Chevalier farm three small vineyards at their meticulously tended family property comprising 3 1/2 acres in Crozes-Hermitage from which they produce on average 500 cases of red and white Rhône wines in tiny lots which are highly allocated. Their wines are found only in a couple of importer direct wine clubs and renowned restaurants in North American.
This is from Crozes, the village adjacent the more prestigious appellation that shares part of its name, but operates in
Hermitage’s shadow. The Crozes-Hermitage appellation area extends about 10 miles (16 km) both north and
south of Tain and Hermitage itself and is known to produce more approachable
wines than its higher profile neighbor. By 2017, almost 4,200 acres (1,700 ha) of vines had been
planted among the local cherry and apricot orchards. Unlike Hermitage,
land in Crozes-Hermitage is relatively affordable and available providing an
opportunity for enthusiastic newcomers, as well as a number
of local growers, who want to bottle the fruit of their own labors,
rather than send their production to the Cave de Tain co-op, the case
of this wine too.
Deep inky purple colored medium-full bodied, full round layers of blackberry and plum fruits, notes of black tea, spice and leather overtake the fruits, turning to soft chewy textured tannins on a medium finish.
RM 91 points.https://www.cellartracker.com/wine.asp?iWine=3495672
Earlier vintage release blogpost - https://unwindwine.blogspot.com/2021/12/intimate-dinner-suzettes-creperie.html
With the dessert course Sean had the Tawney Port and I had another wine we know well from previous visits here as well as from our home cellar, this WBTG Sauterne offering.
Château Suduiraut Lions de Suduiraut Sauterne 2016
This is the second wine of a well known prestigious Bordeaux Grand Cru.
Resembling its flagship first label big brother this was delicious and a perfect perfect accompaniment to the Creme Brulee and Chocolate Lava Cake.
The history of Château Suduiraut began in 1580 with the marriage of Nicole d’Allard and Léonard de Suduiraut. Classified as a Premier Cru Classé (First Growth) in Sauternes in 1855, it has always been known as a superb property (its neighbor is Château d’Yquem).
In the 1990’s, the estate was sold to French financial insurance conglomerate AXA, who invested in the Château making significant investments in its vineyards and winemaking facilities. This eventually translated into a dramatic increase in the quality of the wines.
The Suduiraut vineyards span 92 hectares consisting of gravel, sand, limestone and clay soils on sloping hillsides. They are planted to 90% Semillon and 10% Sauvignon Blanc. The wine is fermented in French oak barrels and aged on its lees in 50% new French oak for 18-24 months. Lions de Suduiraut, their third label, is produced from almost nearly 100% Semilon. This release was a blend of 93% Semillon and 7% Sauvignon Blanc.
It was aged 50% in new barrels and 50% from barrels of one vintage, for 16 to 18 months
Dark golden, weak tea colored, medium bodied, sprites of sweet honey, apricot with note of peach and glints of pear, citrus and notes of lychee, stone fruit on a tongue coating unctuous finish.
RM 91 points.
As usual and to be expected at Chez Joel, a wonderful, relaxing fun wine and dine evening.