Le Champagne onboard Silver Cloud
Last night Silversea Cruises MV Silver Cloud was at Tower Bridge in London. I was lucky to be invited onboard for a meeting with Steve Odell, the new Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing for UK, Europe and Asia Pacific. I was part of a small group of the UK’s top agents, and once onboard Silver Cloud we had some welcome Champagne and canapés whilst we chatted and caught up with each other. Then it was on to dinner!
We had been invited to dine in Le Champagne by Relais & Châteaux. This is an intimate room located by the main dining room that accommodates just 20 guests. A dining experience here consists of a six-course menu de degustation extraordinaire featuring rare wines complemented by a tasting menu of regionally inspired dishes. Some of the world’s most celebrated vintages are chosen by Relais & Châteaux sommeliers to highlight each course. Silversea ships feature the only Relais & Châteaux restaurants at sea.
Our menu for the evening was called the "Best of Burgundy"
To start we were served a glass of Pol Roger, Blanc De Blancs, from 1999. This matched our first course - Mini Delices Bourguignons. This consisted of a plate of amuse bouche, including a Foie Gras cornet and small taster bowl of onion soup - all beautifully presented on a rectangular glass plate.
Our next course was a Veal Tartare with Apple and Celeriac Terrine and Oyster Mousseline, matched with a glass of Louis Jadot, Volnay "Clos des Chenes", 2007. I was a bit wary of the veal tartare, however the flavour was delicious and it had a lovely smooth texture. The wine accompanied it perfectly.
We were then served Burgundy Snails with Parsley Butter and Tomato Fondue. The snails had been chopped and enrobed in a crust that had been double baked - and when you cut into it the parsley butter oozed out over the plate. I have never experienced snails prepared and cooked like this and they were really delicious - a welcome change from the usual presentation of snails drowning in garlic butter. Our wine for this course was a Louis Michel & Fils, Chablis Grand Cru Vaudesir from 2008 - again a perfect pairing with the course.
Our main course was Chateaubriand a la Moutarde De Dijon, accompanied by a vegetable basket. The beef was so tender and so full of flavour; this was my favourite course of the evening. The main course was paired with a Domaine de Merode, Corton les Bressandes, Grand Cru 2004. The sommelier was Fred Van Meijl and he did a wonderful job of telling us about the wines and matching them with each course.
Our dessert was a White Chocolate and Raspberry Nougatine "Mille-feuille", served with a Chateau Climens Sauternes Premier Cru 2006. I do not usually like dessert wines, however on this occasion this was delightful and was a perfect accompaniment to the white chocolate and raspberry flavours.
After the meal the chef, Rodolfo Gamad, came out into the dining area for some well-deserved applause.
The above menu is available onboard the Silversea ships for guests at a charge of $200 per person with the wine pairings, or $30 per person without.