Thursday, May 22, 2008

Napa Wine Bar & Kitchen

My friends took me out to dinner at a very chic restaurant called Napa Wine Bar & Kitchen in Shanghai. It is situated in an old colonial chinese building and of course renovated with a contemporary design & decor. We decided to sit outside on the terrace which was split into a dining area and a lounge area. The terrace we very inviting with lots of candles lit. Sorry, I could not take proper photos of the terrace because it was too dark. It was also still cold in Shanghai in the evenings and we needed to wear sweaters.

Napa Wine Bar & Kitchen is popular for their french food. So, the first dish I had was white asparagus grown in china (it was the season), accompanied with parma ham and a baked cheese dish. The white asparagus was cooked perfectly and were good but I thought they were not as sweet as the ones from france.

The next dish I had was a house special, their cod. I was not surprised that the cod was cooked perfectly. The cream sauce was a wonderful match adding just enough flavour to the fish but did not overwhelm it.

The first wine we had was an australian sauvignon blanc from Saltram Wine Estate, Makers Table 2006. Fresh & crisp with a hint of grapefruit and passionfruit but I was not too impressed with this wine.

The second wine we drank was a 2004 Hermitage (Guigal). It was easy to drink, had clean acidity, and good fruit defined this Hermitage. A long finish which made this wine very good.

The next wine was a wine I never had was Secrets, De la Gineste from Cahors. A hint of oak but had ripe & sweet fruit. At first, we were asked to blind taste this wine and I could not have guest it was from Cahors.

Napa Wine Bar & Kitchen is a very cool & nice place to eat and drink. The building, architecture, decor and food is fantastic. But the one thing that makes Napa stand out is their sommelier, Mr. Vance Yeang. He was not only knowledgeable about wines, he was friendly and knew exactly what he was doing. He knew that we liked wine, so he did two blind tastings for us. Offering us rare and unique wines by the glass for the blind tasting. It was fun trying to guess where the wines came from. Mr. Yeang was giving us clue after clue, but at one point we were totally lost, so we had to cheat and call a friend in Bangkok to help us with the answer. Which to our amazment, he knew the answer right away.  

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