Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Wine tasting and lunch at Cafe Elan -- Nov 2008

Here's to us! A wine tasting at 10am in the winery of Chateau Elan. Yes yes....10 am. We hadn't even eaten breakfast yet. The only wines worth noting at Chateau Elan are from the muscadine grape. The muscadine is native to the Southeast and has a light, crisp sweet, low alcohol flavor.
To make it all worthwhile these grapes are packed full of those healthy compounds and antioxidants just like blueberries, green tea, red wine and dark chocolate. You get the picture-- make mine a double. The winery's literature says, "Compared to other grapes, muscadine grapes have 40 times more resveratrol -- the polyphenol, found in red wine that is proven to benefit cardiovascular health, blood sugar levels and the aging process, among other health issues."
So the best selling wine -- for a reason is "Summer Wine" which is made with their muscadine grapes and a splash of peach. It is great over crushed ice, though I don't think the wine snobs would approve.
Because we were pretty relaxed and happy by 11am and couldn't really drive home, we walked around the grounds and decided to have lunch at Cafe Elan which is located in the same building as the winery.

I picked the grilled salmon sandwich which was marinated and thinly sliced with grilled red onion and caper dijon aoli. It was served on fresh pumpernickel bread. I talked to the waitress about changing the bread since I thought the pumpernickel flavor would just ruin the whole thing. She assured me it didn't, and I had to trust that someone would know better than me. Turns out, someone did.
I didn't think the food could get any better from the night before. But I almost enjoyed this more. It was small attention to detail and flavor with a fresh greens salad on the side.
My Hunka ordered the delightful little number pictured toward the back of the plate (above) the Herb-Roasted Portobello Foccacia Marinated Portobello Mushrooms, Roasted Peppers, Arugula and Mozzarella.
The maitre'd walked around telling everyone (except for us before ordering) that the Crabmeat Crusted Orange Roughy was really the signature dish and MUST be tried.
I'll have to go back.

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