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Monday, June 25, 2012

Le Creole and Roux Wine Team Up on a Wine Dinner

MenuLe Creole recently teamed up with Roux Wine and Spirits to put on a Romantic Summer Dinner crafted by Chef Ryan Andre.  Fresh off the news of being named as one of the five 2012 Chefs to Watch by Louisiana Cookin' Magazine, Chef Andre picked a great way to show off his skills in the kitchen.  Myrna Arroyo from Roux Wine and Spirits paired each dish with amazing wines that are available in her shop on Airline Highway.  The match quickly proved to be magical with the onslaught of passed hors d'oeuvres and sparkling wine.  Chef's first dishes included a one-bite fried Gulf oyster with micro greens and spicy tuna toast that nearly melted in my mouth.  The Brut wine gave the diners an excellent excuse to toast each other, and it partnered very nicely with the seafood appetizers.Le Creole and Roux Wine put on a romantic wine dinner in Baton Rouge

The friendly wait staff at Le Creole brought out the wild salmon crudo for our first course after being seated in the spacious dining room.  The plentiful slices of wild Atlantic salmon were topped with a salad of arugula, red onion, crispy capers, and white truffle salt.  Though the salad provided a whole meal of food, I can't complain about large portion sizes!  Plus, everything tasted so well balanced and flavored that I couldn't stop tasting... then tasting again.  The raw salmon had an ideal texture and the truffle salt provided just the right amount of flavor to compliment the dish rather than overpower it.

Spicy Tuna BreadFried Oyster at Le Creole

Wine at the Le Creole Wine Dinner
The next course is the one that I smiled about the most when glancing over the menu before the meal.  The "battling rabbits" featured a rabbit liver bruschetta with spicy tomato jam along side a rabbit boudin gallette.  The livers themselves were delicate and delicious, cooked down to a spreadable form over the crusty bread with a spicy tomato jam that could be bottled and sold.  Chef took his house-made rabbit boudin and formed it into patties before coating them in panko bread crumbs and flash frying them.  Add a couple pickled watermelon rind slivers, and we had quite a plate before us.  The gallette provided an excellent contrast of textures between the crunchy exterior and the moist interior.  I applaud the creativity of the dish as a whole, and it lived up to my high hopes.

The "bayou to nest" dish featured tempura battered and fried soft shell crawfish along with a roasted squab with patty pan squash and baby zucchini.  Another dish with plenty to eat, I tried my hardest to take the whole thing down.  Squab is a decent sized pigeon for one person, but I enjoyed the presentation of the entire bird on the plate.  It had a sweet sauce along with it that actually worked quite well.  And the soft shell crawfish were amazingly unique and delightful.

The meal ended with a mousse tuille duo conjured up by Le Creole's pastry chef.  The plate came with a Ponchatoula strawberry mousse along with a dark chocolate-espresso mousse.  The mousse duo dish provided a great way to end the stomach-stuffing meal.  They were light and refreshing enough to still enjoy them despite having very limited gastronomic real estate for them to go.

The dinner as a whole lived up to all expectations.  I'd like to congratulate Chef Ryan Andre and manager Clark Ellis on the phenomenal event hosting and the meal.  Also props to Myrna Arroyo for the wine pairings!  Though not mentioned much here, the wines were all exquisite and wonderfully paired with the cuisine.  I'd be happy to go to any tag-team dinner like this again.  Not to mention, I really enjoy two businesses in the food and drink world coming together to support and promote each other.  Nothing like some good collaboration!  Cheers!

Salmon, Arugula, Red Onions, Capers, Truffle Salt
Salmon, Arugula, Red Onions, Capers, Truffle Salt

Rabbit Liver Bruschetta with Spicy Tomato Jam, Rabbit Boudin Gallette, Pickled Watermelon
Rabbit Liver Bruschetta with Spicy Tomato Jam, Rabbit Boudin Gallette, Pickled Watermelon

Tempura Soft Shell Crawfish, Roasted Squab, Squash, Zucchini
Tempura Soft Shell Crawfish, Roasted Squab, Squash, Zucchini

Chocolate Espresso Mousse, Ponchatoula Strawberry Mousse
Chocolate Espresso Mousse, Ponchatoula Strawberry Mousse

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