As I was working during the week after Christmas, I was unable to cook for my family on Tuesday. Hence I had planned to cook on New Year’s Eve for my family instead. I had already made plans in my mind of what I wanted for the emal. My plan was to start the meal with a lovely bottle of bubbly to celebrate the end of 2016 and welcome 2017, to serve a medium-rare Wagyu Rib-eye steak with leafy salad for the main dish, and to finish off the meal with a lovely dessert .
I chose a bottle of Mumm 1999 Vintage champagne, which had been aging in my wine fridge for at least 6-8 years. Although it did not pop very loudly when opened, it still had plenty of fizz in it. It simply exuded a strong scent of honey toast and brioche, and was nutty as can be expected from a well-aged bottle of vintage champagne. And although 17 years old, it continued to let out bubbles through our meal. The added bonus was that I had another unique champagne cap to add to my collection as well. My wife enjoyed this immensely, which is great as I am sure she will have no regrets that I had dissuaded her from buying a bottle of unaged Prosecco for the occasion.
For the main meal, I served my usual dish, which is medium-rare Sous Vide Wagyu Rib-eye steak with leafy Italian salad. My wife added in sliced tomatoes, cranberries and grapes to add different tastes and textures to the meal, and to add a slight Christmas theme to the meal.
And the wine we had was a 18 year old bottle of 1998 Esk Valley Terraces. This bottle had been opened on Christmas day to have with the Christmas Roast beef, but was kept fresh using the PresorVac wine vacuum system and stored in the fridge. Now 6 days down the line, it was still lovely, with strong scent of herbs and oak, and continued to develop in glass during the meal to reveal leather and truffles – clearly signs of a great bottle of wine with the potential for further development in the glass. The fact this wine had nearly doubled in value when we drank it, was an added bonus.
For dessert, I wanted something which we would all like, which was rich and absolutely delicious. There was only one choice in my mind – Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Triple Chocolate Torte. This dessert is a Belgian chocolate cheesecake sitting on a Belgian chocolate brownie base, topped with a Belgian chocolate ganache and decorated with nibbed cocoa beans – an absolutely gorgeous dessert, and a definite favourite of my family. And the fact that it complimented the champagne so well, added to why it turned out to be the perfect choice of dessert. It tastes so lovely, I don’t even mind the calories associated with eating it – it is that good.
It was truly a wonderful meal (so my wife tells me) – and begs the question: why would we want to go out for a meal, when we can have such lovely food at home.
Here is wishing you all a fruitful and Happy New Year.