Match of the week | Foie gras and white Hermitage

Match of the week

Foie gras and white Hermitage

Those of you who remember the post I wrote 10 years or so ago about why I wasn’t going to eat foie gras any more might reasonably ask how come it’s appearing in this match of the week?

I can’t really defend it other than to say I I never order it. If I’m asked before a meal if there’s anything I don’t eat I say foie gras but if it turns up on a menu at an event at which I’m being hosted like the Diner 4 Etoiles I attended at Tain l'Ermitage last week I take the rather weak-minded view that it would be rude to send it back. Which is how I’ve discovered what a great match it is with white Hermitage.

It also happened to be in the fabulous form of an artichoke and foie gras terrine, a signature dish from the two-Michelin-starred La Mère Brazier in Lyons. You’d think with the artichokes that might be tricky with wine but not at all. The richness of the Hermitage (I tried a couple with it including the 2013 Les Vins de Vienne La Bachole Blanc) offset it to perfection.

It bears out a theory I’ve held for a while that Sauternes, while a classic match, is not the perfect pairing for foie gras because it’s hard to kick off a meal with a sweet wine. A rich white like Hermitage, especially an older vintage is a better if somewhat more expensive option. The same would apply to a lush white burgundy or white Chateauneuf-du-Pape too.

I attended the dinner as a guest of Inter-Rhône.

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