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Good grapes and great food

Padron peppers with chorizo, maldon salt and smoked pimento. Photos courtesy of Riedel

The setting: Dimly-lit Riedel exudes the oaked feels of a swanky cellar, with one side lined with state-of-the-art wine dispensing and preservation systems that store a carefully curated and rotating selection of Riedel's 250 labels. Originally a wine glass company dating back to 1756, Riedel's known for producing those super elegant handmade glasses that complement and unleash the magic encapsulated in its bottles. Stepping into Riedel is thus like stepping into a classy sipping experiment that you end up carrying out on yourself, or with others. "Which bottle should I choose?" "Which glass-shape complements this bottle best?" "What is it about this particular shape of glass that brings out the earthy characteristics of bottle X?" "Which one should follow?" "Which one goes well with such-and-such-a-dish?" "How many sips do I need before Y happens..." You thus become your own master of the grape, a makeshift connoisseur for an evening. Of course, you're guided by sommeliers who know what they're doing, so you know who to blame if it all goes heads up.

THE MENU

White anchovies with grilled pear and lemon oil.

To truly unleash the magic within every bottle, Riedel understands not only must you pair it with the perfect glass and an inviting atmosphere, but also the right food. The menu is thus constantly changing and being fine-tuned to suit the selection that Riedel find particularly worthwhile during any given week or month. When we visited, there was a specific focus on, not strictly Spanish, but a more elevated and European-centred type of tapas. This menu, particularly gorgeous, shall be available up until April, at least. We started off with the Stracciatella (B300) which came with bottarga (Italian cured fish roe) mixed in with olive oil and lava salt. Stracciatella is actually where burrata cheese comes from and if you know burrata then you know what we mean; absolutely delicious and paired with the shredded pieces of bottarga, it worked wonders on our taste buds. We also tried the Padron peppers (B350) with chorizo, maldon salt and smoked pimento; this came with a much needed slice of perfectly toasted bread to wipe clean the delicious red oily sauce left by the chorizo. #yolo. The White anchovies (B400) were delightful, coming with grilled pear and mixed in with some lemon oil. For a main, we tried something from the à la carte menu: the Dry cured rainbow trout (B550) made with house made pine nut butter, cherry tomatoes, capers & black olives; consumed at lightning speed, of course.

INSIDER'S TIP

To take your dining experience to new heights (and your head too, perhaps) we recommend you ask for the "flight" option, where the sommelier picks out five different bottles for you to try. He'll give you a bit of the low down on each and give you a chance to try each of them by the glass. It's like travelling through time and space, while sipping. We were lucky enough to travel from Chile to France, with two pit-stops, Burgundy and the Rhone Valley; then through to Italy, then New Zealand, between the years of 2005-2014. It'll be the cheapest flight you ever take, for sure.

VALUE & VERDICT

Drinking good grapes with good food in good company is one of life's most civilised pleasures. This could very well be Riedel's modus operandi. With good food, great sips and a cosy yet elevated atmosphere, all you need to bring with you is good company, or yourself. Need we say more?


RIEDEL WINE BAR & CELLAR

European Cuisine
Open daily, restaurant: 11am-midnight; kitchen: midday-3pm; 5pm-10:30pm
2/F, Gaysorn Village
www.fb.com/Riedelwinebarbkk
02-656-1133

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