Arzuaga Wine Dinner @ China Club Hong Kong
Grace à Monsieur Jean-Claude, the Arzuaga wine ambassador who extended the invitation to me and chef, we enjoyed a lovely wine dinner with six Arzuaga wines paired with dishes at the China Club. Don’t have sufficient vocabulary nor knowledge to write about the wines, although I’m really learning to enjoy the whole process of experiencing the wines. Liked all of it and have very fond memories drinking the Fan D’oro and Pago Florentino when I first met chef, so I am a little biased. ♥♥
Eclectic, gorgeous space and amazing ambience. Nevermind the delicate Chinese dishes are catered largely to please the foreign palate. Over here, it’s the experience that really matters. I was bowled over by the space, perfect 1930s Shanghai ambience filled with art deco lamps and beautiful, tastefully put together chinoserie pieces. One thing I really love about Hong Kong is the ambience and the general vibe dining out, I have to say the ambience of the China Club Hong Kong beats the Beijing one handsdown. It’s not fair to compare the food, I had a really great lunch at the China Club Beijing, a different kind of cuisine and theme altogether.
From a detail point of view, I didn’t understand why sometimes they used traditional Chinese characters and other times, simplified. It bothered me a little that there was no consistency in branding and communications. Just the usual work, proofreading reflex…small but important details.
We started the evening with a boutique Villemarte champagne, moving on to a Fan D’oro and then pairings proper.
The suckling pig was delightfully crisp (note: not greasy) and amazing with a hint of salt, a perfect way to whet the appetite. They give you plastic gloves to go all barbaric eating your huge piece of roasted pork—best way it’s enjoyed, paired with an Arzuaga Crianza 2008.
Unfortunately, photos of the food in the low light setting didn’t turn out too well. I hope I got the pairings in the right order as I got progressively more tipsy through the evening. Following our suckling pig, we had prawns served with cashew nuts and then a vinegar cod paired with the Amaya Arzuaga 2006—my favourite wine of the evening. I loved how it turned from floral notes (mainly lavender) into liqourice over the evening.
Amaya is named after the daughter of the wine maker Arzuaga, with a beautifully customed packaging, featuring her designs. (you can find the luxury designs of the Spanish designer at Lane Crawford under the Amaya label)
The crab claw with salted egg and minced pork was followed by a spicy lamb curry, paired with the Gran Arzuaga 2004. Both dishes laying the gradual ground work for the spicy beef noodle soup paired with the Arzuaga Gran Reserve 2001.
In between, the Pago Forentino made an appearance. I remember this wine particularly well because it smells like a a mix between leather and a wet horse to me for lack of better description and is nice and chocolatey. (the sort of comforting smells of wet pets… if you know what I mean). I had this for the first time at a xmas dinner in 2009 when chef cooked venisson with a chocolate and berry sauce which was amazing.
Another fantastic tipsy evening. Merci Jean-Claude pour partager les moment delicieux!
Part of the eclectic art collection – Liu Jianhua’s masterpieces.
And the best feature of the evening was some noodle kungfu.1930s shanghai, amaya arzuaga, art deco, arzuaga wines, China Club, david tang, Hong Kong, loewe, shanghai tang, spanish vineyards, zara