A quick note to let you know that if you missed this week’s Saturday Kitchen it’s now available to view on BBC iplayer, via the BBC website. The wine bits are at 0:16:30 and 0:55:45.
This week I matched the zippy, thirst-quenching La Basca Verdejo 2008 (M&S £6.99) to Adam Byatt’s (Trinity Restaurant) delicious Rosemary-roasted Monkfish with Nutty Couscous and English Asparagus. The La Basca is a punchy, summery wine that’s drinking beautifully right now and, to my delight, it was a real hit in the studio.
James Martin kicked off by agreeing (with me!) that it was a perfect match and Adam Byatt added his approval saying ‘I love it, it’s really citrusy, fresh and zingy, great’. Adam also felt that it worked really well with the asparagus which is something that studio guest, Loyd Grossman, picked up on too.
As an aside, it’s great for us when the chefs and guests know about wine and Loyd Grossman clearly does. He was spot on when he said asparagus is difficult to match, and the fact he’s even heard of Verdejo is again impressive as it’s really not a well-known variety. As you can probably tell Loyd is now my new best friend! John Campbell summed up declaring it a ‘great wine match, on the money’.
When it came to John’s fabulous Chocolate Fondant Pot with Caramelised Hazelnuts, Coffee Sabayon Mousse and Orange Cream, fate dealt a crushing blow. The fan oven broke down and failed to cook the Chocolate Fondant. John must have been so disappointed, as must everyone waiting to dig their spoons in.
However, the coffee mousse and orange cream were clearly so heavenly that they managed to save the day and everyone remained remarkably upbeat, with John generously taking the imaginative leap required to state the Campbell’s Rutherglen Muscat (widely available from £9.10) I’d chosen to go with it ‘would sit beautifully well with the bitterness of the chocolate’. This from a man who doesn’t like muscat dessert wines and who had just watched his chocolate pudding fail to cook. Adam Byatt added ‘I think the wine goes brilliantly with it [the coffee mousse and orange cream], I really like the combination.
I just desperately hope they all got to taste John’s superb chocolate fondant when the cameras stopped rolling and the oven started to behave.