Sunday, September 20, 2009

Much fun in Powerscourt.

After six wonderful years, or something, myself and Herself decided to splash out and go to Gordon Ramsay in the Ritz Carlton in Powerscourt and also spend the night there. Normally such an undertaking would be prohibitively expensive but with a little help from an elder brother (Cheers Ro!), we were able to get a very good deal. Note: this post is quite a "foodie" post so if that offends you - leave now.

Our wine adventures started earlier than expected when, after a little snafu with our room, we were presented with a complementary bottle of red and some chocolates (see above). The red was a Beaune Premier Cru - Les Bressandes 2006 from Domaine Pavelot. As I mentioned here I haven't a huge amount of experience with Pinot Noirs and Burgundies in particular.

However the moment we opened this we knew it was something special, it was an order of magnitude nicer than the NZ Pinot Noir. It was fruitier than I expected, and it had more body than expected, lots of complexity and a big finish. After savouring most of this bottle we made our way to Gordon Ramsay where we opted for the Prestige menu as described here.

I'm going to document it here as that link may change.
  • pre Amuse bouche nibbles - Yum.
  • Amuse bouche - (Mackerel) - Also Yum
  • Pressed foie gras with Waldorf salad and spiced bread * - Hmmm
  • East coast lobster and salmon ravioli with lemongrass sauce ** - Divine
  • Sea bream with confît leeks and cauliflower velouté - Yes
  • Roast Connemara Hill lamb, ‘boulangère’ potatoes, rosemary jus *** - Double Yes OR
  • Assiette of Hereford beef with green asparagus,girolles and hollandaise sauce - More please
  • Pre dessert (Triple layer fruit thing in a glass) - Lovely
  • Pear Williams baba - Very Full at this stage but Yes
  • Petit Fours & Coffee - No Room left at all now.
  • Two slices of special Happy Anniversary cake courtesy of our hosts - lucky I'm not petite.
We also opted for the Prestige wine package where the Sommelier choses wines for each course (as denoted by stars).

* Gewuerztraminer, Meyer-Fonné, Alsace, France. A moderately sweet wine (not as sweet as a Sauternes) but delicious with this course.

** Chablis Vincent Sauvestre, Burgundy, France. We had this with the Ravioli and the Bream. An understated wine, minerally, refined and delicious.

*** Dievole Broccato 2006 (?) Italy. My first real Super Tuscan. A big inky, oaky wine with some lively fruit that went really well with the lamb(Herself) and especially well with the beef (me). I suspect this has a lot of aging in it and would be dynamite in 4/5 years.

At this point we got chatting to our lovely Somellier Nicole, she happened to have a couple of other bottles from this producer open and she generously gave us a tasting of the Vendemmia, a Chianto Classico and the Novecento, a Chianti Classico Riserva. The first of these was lovely but the Riserva was a corker. Alas, these are not currently available in the 26 counties.

All in all - a cracking experience with a level of service that I have not seen in a long time. Friendly, efficient, knowledgeable and helpful without being intrusive plus a food/wine experience second to none. My (very limited) experience of Michelin Star level food says that you should go for the tasting menu if you can afford it, you get lots of different foods in managable portions, and usually what the kitchen does best.

**Update - Just realised I never reviewed the Carianne below after drinking it on Friday. The micro review is - NO. Drinkable, but very average, not worth a tenner. Drinking the Fitou now - review to follow.


  1. Willie!

    A funny coincidence; we were all down in Powerscourt for the weekend too, for my brothers wedding. That Pavelot Beaune was the red wine for my brothers wedding (sourced at the domaine in April), so glad you enjoyed it!

    Also the Dievole wines are available in Ireland from, who will ship all over Ireland. Sounds like a good wine.