Next stop on the Bourgogne Takes New York Tour – Ai Fiori

| June 18, 2013

Before our next stop, our guide and Certified Wine Educator Sunny Gandara gave us a detailed overview of the Cote Chalonnaise which produces a wide variety of wines including; white, red, rose and sparkling. The vineyard is formed of clay-limestone soil dating all the way back to the Jurassic Era.

We arrived at the Setai Hotel and proceeded to the enchanting Ai Fiori restaurant. A spiral staircase leads you to the restaurant on the second floor – away from the hustle and bustle of Fifth Avenue. The décor is modern, yet warm at the same time.

Ai Fiori’s executive Chef Michael White is a true master and in this endeavor, he is inspired by the regional favorites from the French and Italian Riviera. His creative touch elevates them with a contemporary flair and the end result is a sensory delight.

At this stop, we had three dishes prepared by Chef de Cuisine, PJ Calapa paired with three Bourgogne wines selected by Sommelier Emilie Perrier.

Our first dish was Cannolicchi: charred razor clams, fennel and chorizo in a Manilla clam vinaigrette with lemon. This paired beautifully with the Domaine Louis Latour Montagny 1er Cru La Grande Roche 2010. This Chardonnay was an excellent choice for this course.

Next the outstanding Trofie Nero: Ligurian crustacean ragu, seppia, scallops and spiced mollica. This pasta was heavenly and the pairing with the Bouzeron, Clos de La Fortune, 2011, Domaine Chanzy was delightful.

They saved the best for last with the Agnolotti: braised veal parcels, chickpea pesto, mint, parmesan, black truffle sugo. This dish was truly a masterpiece and Mercurey 2010, Domaine Michel Juillot only made it better. This Pinot noir was one of my favorites.

We tasted each wine individually at first and then paired with the assigned dish, but the beauty of these wines was they really worked well with all of the dishes.

Ai Fiori was the ideal setting to demonstrate how the wines of Bourgogne compliment and enhance the experience of Italian fine dining.

ai fiori logo

Ai Fiori is located at 400 Fifth Avenue

(212) 613-8660

Filed in: Daily Dish