Where there’s wine, there’s, well, me. Pair it with food (good food mind you) and you make me a happy woman. We recently visited the Dylan Hotel in Amsterdam to try their High Wine. I didn’t know of the concept and I’m sure I haven’t seen it anywhere in London yet. But I’ve said it many times before, Amsterdam’s food scene is highly progressive and innovative these days and I am so proud of that. So, what is a High Wine? In short, it’s a concept where you enjoy an afternoon wine (instead of tea) and have amazing food prepared for the wines (instead of the other way around). Now, I’m no wine connoisseur, which I regret, because I think a decent food blogger should know about wines. I am planning on taking a wine course in the future so I can write more about it. So I apologize beforehand for any weird notions I’ll be making.
We start with a 2014 Manz Scheurebe Kalkstein from Germany, paired with a starter of albacore tuna, poached egg, crispy seaweed and pink pepper. The salad was light and tasted like summer – it went well with the citrusy flavor of the wine. We continue with a 2014 Domaine Massic Vionier, paired with a fish soup served with mulled filet, mussels, squid, potatoes from Texel and a cheese crostini with aioli. The white wine’s beautiful tropical aroma brought out the intensity of the soup. This was our favorite!
As a ‘main’ (of the high wine), we have an Agriverde Riseis Montepulciano d’Abruzzo from Italy, paired with a roasted pheasant breast with sauerkraut, bacon and laurel sauce. This Italian red comes from the Montepulciano grapes grown in the Abruzzo region and has a well-rounded plum and cherry scent. Lastly, we have a 2014 Tschida Angerhof Spatlese, paired with a Gateau Opera of dark chocolate, coffee mousse and a Mascarpone sorbet. The dessert wine was a lusciously sweet wine that I kept on drinking. I tend to dislike dessert wines as they’re often overly sweet, but this one was much lighter, which I enjoyed more. The mascarpone ice cream by the way – heavenly. I kept on scooping until there was nothing left on the plate (I may or may not have licked the plates clean – no one will ever know).
The High Wine at the Dylan Hotel is an interesting tasting of wine and food pairings. I don’t know if it was meant to be this way, but in a way it felt like we went through a cycle of seasons, starting with summer (salad), fall (soup), winter (hearty pheasant), ending with spring (light notes in the dessert wine). The high wine is probably best enjoyed if you have a better understanding of wines, but even if you don’t, I feel like it’s something you can enjoy anyway. Mind you, the dishes are small in portion, they’re supposed to be bite-sized.