A warm welcome from Matt Dillon
Yes, you read that right: dinner. If you’re not totally hooked up, like I am, then you’ve likely never indulged in dinner at the London Plane. Don’t feel bad, not many have. This event was the first time ever that the London Plane hads served dinner! Thankfully, I’m one of the lucky few, so I’ll share my fun adventure with you. Do you remember our fancy chef dinner at the Whale Wins last year? This was another awesome chef meet-greet-and-dine through the Alaska Airline Signature Visa cardholder program. We attended both dinners with some good friends of ours and we’ve decided to make it an annual tradition. Why? Because these dinners are good. And fun. A lot of fun.
Dutcher Crossing wines
The London Plane is one of Matt Dillon’s new restaurants in the Pioneer Square neighborhood of Seattle. It’s a shop, cafe, bakery, wine shop, bar, and events space that offers breakfast and lunch and all sorts of goodies in between. This event featured Dutcher Crossing Winery, out of Sonoma. Both the winemaker and the winery owner were at the event, schmoozing and telling us about the wines we were enjoying. Our first chance to enjoy was right when we entered the event – we were instantly handed a glass of the Dutcher Crossing 2013 Sauvignon Blanc and several passed appetizers:
- Spiced nuts and puglian olives
- Ham-wrapped dates stuffed with romanesco
- Rye crackers with tuna pate and radish
- Deep fried leeks with tahini sauce
- Smoked trout and cucumber with creme fraiche
The wine was exceptional — it was an un-Seattle-like hot spring day and the London Plane didn’t have AC — and the Sauvignon Blanc really hit the spot. It was very crisp and refreshing, with hints of pear. All of the appetizers were also good and my favorite by far was the deep fried leek with tahini sauce. It was a grown-up, fancy cousin of an onion ring. At a small, bite-sized portion, I could have eaten an entire meal of deep-fried leeks. Thankfully, the waitstaff didn’t bring them around all that often. Once we drank all of the Sauvignon Blanc and made a dent in the appetizers, we took our seats. Brandon and I sat upstairs, with our friends and several others, at a long table overlooking all of the action.
The menu at the London Plane
The second wine pairing was poured a few minutes before the second course was served. Thankfully they were very generous with their pours and I was able to enjoy the wine both alone and paired with the course, as was the case with each course. We enjoyed the 2012 Chardonnay Stuhlmuler Vineyard with an asparagus, spring onion and pea tendril salad with bacon and tarragon. While I’m not really into Chardonnay, this one wasn’t that bad. (We much preferred the Sauv Blanc to it, however.) The salad was great. The flavors were so fresh and bacon makes everything better.
Course two: a delicious salad
The third course, one half of a roasted quail, beets and rhubarb with crispy emmer, pistachios and mint was paired with the 2012 Zinfandel Maple Vineyard. The Zin was good, but it wasn’t my favorite. Brandon, however, really enjoyed it.
Course three: Quail
The fourth course, anchovy and oregano rubbed leg of lamb with potatoes, braised turnips and walnut sauce, was my favorite course of the night. (Beyond those fried leeks!) This course was paired with the 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Taylor Reserve, also my favorite of the night.
Course four: lamb
The fifth course (finally!) was a chocolate caramel tart with soft cream and a glass (well, two…) of the 2008 Port Dry Creek Valley. A great port and chocolate dessert are definitely the way to get Brandon’s seal of approval.
Course five: dessert
All in all, it was another amazing feast brought together by Alaska Airlines and Visa Signature. We’ll definitely be back to the London Plane and to another one of these fun dinners!
A few of our empties
Happy wine Wednesday!