Last week we attended a 5 Course Wine Dinner in celebration of 15th anniversary of Brasitas in Stamford. We were invited by Brasitas General Manager Ingrid and Wendy of Connecticut Bloggers. Accompanying us were fellow Connecticut bloggers whom we met for the first time: Alicia from Local Food Rocks, Anatoli from Talk-A-Vino, Bonnie from Home Place, and Greg and Wendy from Connecticut Bloggers.
|The evening started off with toast and group shot of our flutes, a tradition Wendy follows at blogger dinner events.|
Dinner started with glass of Codorniu Brut Cava, Penedes paired with Ensalada Catalana (Baby Spinach, Manchego Cheese, Golden Raisins, Pinenuts, Caramelized Quince, Blue Cheese and Sherry Vinaigrette). This salad is perfect for summer. Sweet shredded Manchego cheese, sweet and tart quince, rich blue cheese, crunchy pinenuts – and sherry all complemented each other.
For the second course, we enjoyed Pulpo a la Portuguesa (Roasted Portuguese Octopus, Baccala & Potato Cream, Charred Scallions, Chorizo, Mojo Verde). The first thing I was looking for was the baccala (cod fish). After tasting each element of the dish, we found it within the Crème fraîche and Mascarpone mixture. It wasn’t overpowering, but a nice touch. The pulpo was perfectly cooked – well seasoned and not too tough. The dish was paired with a refreshing glass of 2012 Mar de Frades Albariño, Val do Salnés, Rias Baixas DO.
|Pulpo a la Portuguesa|
Pajespo con Romesco (Monkfish, Jamón Serrano, Saummer Pea Casserole, Ramesco Sauce, Pisto and Clam Broth) was the third dish, and my favorite. The monkfish was wrapped in crisp Serrano Ham and served with 2010 Ramon Bilbao Crianza Rioja, Spain. The tempranillo and meaty monkfish were an excellent pair.
|Pajespo con Romesco|
My favorite wine of the evening was the 2008 Cruz de Alba Crianza Ribera del Duero, Spain. Another Tempranillo with (quoting the tasting notes) “massive fruit on the palate with hints of juicy plums, smoke and mineral in the background.” It was paired with another great dish – Chicharrón (Pork Belly Brined in Smoked Paprika, Cauliflower-Manchego Foam, Crispy Cauliflower, Chanterelle Mushrooms, Solera Vinegar, Pickled Cherries). The chef described the way he prepared the dish – he ‘confit’ the pork…poached and pan seared the skin. The skin could have been a little crispier as it was hard to cut through it, but overall it was excellent.
For dessert we had the Torta de Aceite (Olive Oil and Rosemary Cake, Grapefruit Sorbet, Cosecha Miel Marinated Grapes). It was a perfect way to end a big meal – not too sweet nor too rich. The sorbet was light and refreshing. The dessert was paired with Licor 43.
Overall a great dinner, with great company. If you’re in town, it’s worth a visit. Don’t let the exterior discourage you. Brasitas is a neighborhood gem.
954 E Main Street
Disclosure: Dinner was free of charge. The opinions expressed are my own and I received no further compensation from Brasitas or their representatives.