Combining food with beverage to create a perfect match is by no means an easy task. It takes not only a combination of the perfect ingredients to blend together in harmony, but also a perfect match between Chef and Mixologist, to understand what the other is thinking, what the design behind the food is, and how to take that concept and decide how you want your drink to move seamlessly with it (for those of us who have much experience being around chefs, understanding what they’re thinking can be an impossible challenge in itself!).
The Entrée I’ve chosen to use this week to give as an example of a pairing between food and beverage is our ‘Pan Glazed North Stonington Scallops.’ With sun chokes, ginger sweet pea puree and an apricot gastrique, this dish in itself is a balance of many flavors coming together to excite the senses (as well as satisfy the appetite). Tasting cool, peppery and sweet, my job is to find a drink that can blend well with all these flavors. I think we’ve done that with the ‘Perfect Pear Martini’. Grey Goose ‘La Poire’ vodka and Xante premium pear flavored liquor are the two main ingredients in this cocktail, combined with muddled pear to give it that all too familiar and enjoyable texture one gets when eating an actual pear, this drink will hit you instantly with a semi sweet taste that will combine perfectly with the apricot and sweet pea in the scallops dish. However, as the scallops have more than one taste behind it, so does the drink as well. To finish off the martini, we top it with Valdo Prosecco brut. This not only tames the sweetness of the pear in the cocktail, but also wonderfully compliments the peppery taste of the ginger in the scallops and cleanses the palate for the next bite to experience the flavors all over again!
The joy of dining is to experience the many different combinations the world has to offer. Join us at the Doubletree in our Timeout lounge or Willows restaurant and create for yourself your very own ‘perfect pear’.
Doubletree by Hilton, Bristol