Oh boy do I have something for you and your loved one. It’s Wine, Sex & Chocolate, a “Wine in Heels” event hosted by the Kitchen Hotline, to be held this February 10th at The Limelight Lodge in Aspen.
Personally, I don’t think I could handle it for I have just attended last Monday night’s event that took the term Apres Ski to greater Alpine heights. Talk about sophistication, education and satiation, it was almost more than I could handle. Throw chocolate and sex into the mix and I might have to get thyself to a Nunnery. Hah!
I walked into the conference room at The Limelight Lodge, picked up a glass of sparkling wine, a Gran Sarao, Cava Rose from Catalonia Spain, and a Parmesan Crisp with a Colorado Goat Cheese Mousse and joined in on a conversation with two young and happening women. They were talking about surfing in Costa Rica, my kind of gals. The mingling was just the warm up. Soon we were all seated in front of a flight of wine with a sheet of paper for taking notes on Color & Appearance, Aroma & Bouquet and Body & Taste.
Getting Educated in Wine:
The education began when Master Sommelier, Jay Fletcher, introduced himself and from that moment on he told great stories and packed in the information, teaching us the language of wine for one hour and thirty five minutes.
Jay is truly a Master, a title earned back in 1996 when he passed his Masters Exam in London, England and became the 30th American to join the Court. There are now only 117 Masters is America. He currently holds the Title as the Executive Director of Fine Wine and Master Sommelier for Southern Wine and Spirits of Colorado, a ten billion dollar privately owned company and the largest wholesale wine distributor company in America.
He began by teaching us the art of “blind tasting” which entailed searching for clues to deduce where each wine came from. We used our senses to register aroma and bouquet, acidity, tannin and alcohol levels as well as to detect fruit, earth and mineral nuances. As he spoke I felt roots growing from my feet firmly planting me closer to the fruits of our earth, reminding me that it is true that, “Wine and food are a pairing made in heaven” and that meals should not be a perfunctory chore in life but something to look forward to and to be celebrated.
Pairing Wine with Food:
Chef Ulises Salas was the other half of the experience preparing an International menu derived from Apres ski food from ski towns all over Europe. It was Jay’s job to pair the food with wines. He chose Old World wines.
The first course was a traditional Cheese Fondue served with toasted bread, fingerling potatoes and a skewer of apple and lightly blanched broccoli. Truly, the fondue was the best I had ever tasted. Clearly I wasn’t alone in my thinking for as I looked around the room I witnessed the other participants painstakingly scooping up the last drop of their soup with their skewer, most of the food was fingerfood thus omitting the use of utensils. The Fondue was paired with a Fendant Les Murettes from Switzerland.
I wrote notes as Ulises shared his secrets like, “Emulsify with Kirsch and Corn Starch” and “Sugars puts the fire out of the food, Tannins put the fire in”. Toward the end of the evening my notes became a bit fuzzy and more difficult to read but the big No Nos were there like how to avoid bad pairings that could ruin the food by adding a metallic taste to the meat or make fish taste even fishier.
Throughout the evening our taste buds and senses were in a heightened state of awareness as we tasted, sniffed and drank. The second course was a a Kartoffelkloesse, say that ten times fast, a German Potato Dumpling stuffed with German Allgauer Emmentaler Cheese and Bacon. It was angelic. I gave up immediately on thinking that I could ever make it, unless I committed myself to the kitchen indefinitely to perfect it. It was pared with a Riesling from Germany.
The next course was a Charcuterie and Cheese Plate with Proscuitto Di Parma, the sweetest most tender Quince Paste shaped into a star, Spanish Manchego Cheese, Cornichon and Spanish Marcona Almonds paired with a Cotes du Rhone Vielles Vignes Cuvee Unique.
We finished the evening with a Chianti from Tuscany paired with a Ribollita Soup and toast with fresh Pesto made with Ricotta. Now this I could attempt to make and so I bombarded Ulises with questions as to where the intense flavor came from. One thing is for certain, I will never use canned beans again for soup. The beans were the perfect texture with a rich flavor. Next time I’ll make the time to soak dried beans over night.
Before we left, Mawa McQueen, the beautiful and dynamic hostess who lights up any room when she walks in, informed us that we would be receiving the recipes and wines by EBook. I was impressed but not surprised. The event was well organized and the menu with the wines cleverly orchestrated.
On The Kitchen Hotline website, a hotline to call for all of your entertaining needs, it explains the concept behind Wine in Heels, “Wine is more than just an alcoholic beverage. It is sensual and emotional. And who better than women understand senses and emotions? Wine in Heels creates an environment where women embrace wine and their palates without any desire to prove a point. Wine and food are powerful pleasures that we want to celebrate. Whether you are a novice or an expert, this two hour event is sure to elevate your knowledge! Chefs will share new cooking techniques, tips, and recipes, perfectly paired with wines chosen by Advanced and Master Sommeliers. We have gathered the bests that aspen as to offer, from Advanced Sommeliers Vilma Mazaite and Sabato Sagaria to Master Sommeliers Jonathan Pullis and Jay Fletcher and M&M Home Dining Services’ own Executive Chef Sarah Helsley.”
So grab your hunka, hunka, put on your sexiest pair of high heels and join Mawa and her incredible staff for the Wine, Sex and Chocolate. You won’t be sorry.
All members of The Kitchen Hotline receive 20% – 30% off each event. Click here to learn more.
Private events are available. Perfect for bridal showers, birthdays, team building, corporate retreats, and any other special occasion in any location. Due to the exclusive nature of this event, online reservations are required in advance. Please book online now, or call The Kitchen Hotline at 877 773 8485. Each event is only *$98.00 per person, all inclusive.