Last week I went to the perfect breakfast hosted at one of London’s favourite restaurants The Wolseley by the champagne house Billecart-Salmon in aid of Britain's Biggest Breakfast - a month long fund raising event for Cancer Research UK The charity is urging everyone to hold a breakfast for their family, friends or colleagues during March (still 17 days to go . . . ) and it struck me that this would be a particularly nice way to celebrate Mother’s Day.
Breakfasts in posh hotels and restaurants are always amazing and The Wolseley’s is no exception: A choice between home made granola with sliced bananas and cream (mmmm) or fresh fruit salad followed by scrambled eggs and smoked salmon or eggs benedict. And lots of very good viennoiserie - crisp buttery croissants, pain au chocolat and pain aux raisins.
The most interesting thing from a food and wine matching point of view was just how well Billecart’s fresh strawberry-scented non vintage champagne went with the sweeter things on the menu - the granola and banana, the croissants and other pastries. Because champagne has a sweet liquor added to it just before bottling (the dosage) it can handle desserts and pastries better than any other dry wine.
Interesting too that the superior vintage Cuve Elizabeth Salmon to which we we treated wasn’t such a good pairing - simply too rich and powerful for that type of food at that time of day. (It was actually full-bodied enough to take on rare roast beef or lamb, as they would no doubt serve it in Champagne where they drink champagne with everything, poor dears.)
You could easily adapt this menu for a Mother’s Day treat - the smoked salmon obviously being a slightly easier option than the eggs benedict. And Billecart ros comes in the dinkiest half bottles . . .