Tuesday, 22 February 2011


I went with the wife and a couple of friends to Benares for lunch on Saturday. We had the Grazing menu with wine, and it was amazing.  The food was fantastic but the wine matching was absolutely superb. The grazing menu consists of an amuse bouche, plus 4 courses each of which is a trio of tasters. Which come with 5 wines.

So most of the wines have to match 3 dishes, which is incredibly hard. But it was amazingly successful.

The Amuse Bouche was a little crispy fried mozarella ball, with a coriander and chilli puree and served with Atul's Signature Sauvignon Blanc 2008, Domaine du Grande Mayne, France. Great acid cut through the cheese the whole thing was really light and herby.

Soave "La Rocca" Pieropan 2008 accompanied curry leaf and Tarragon infused Lobster Rilet, Prawns Pickled with Indian Five Spice and Confit Duck Terrine with Orange Jelly.

Journey's End Chardonnay 2009 went with Tandoori Monkfish Tail with Squid Ink Mayonnaise, Chilli and Garlic Marinated Chicken Tikka and Tandoor Roasted Pigeon with Vanilla Beetroot.

Muddy Water Pinot Noir 2008, had to cope with Sea Bass with Kadhai Mushrooms, Seared Tiger Prawn with Celeriac Pureer and Spiced Lamb Kofta with Punjabi Chickpeas and Rogan Jus

Dessert was Pear Sorbet, Star Anise infused Dark Chocolate Mouse and Poached William Pear with Paul Cluver Riesling Late Harvest 2008, South Africa

All completely amazing, the wine matches were fantastic, and surprising. The Soave and the Chardonnay were particular surprises for me, not normally styles I would have thought I'd like but both fantastic.

We went to Atul Kochhar's other restaurant Vatika last year, and had the tasting menu with wine there, that was also spectacular but I completely failed to tell you all about it, sorry.