Location: 7540 Garvey Ave, Rosemead, CA 91770. (626) 280-8188
Date: April 10, 2018
Cuisine: Cantonese Chinese
Rating: Amazing Lunch
A couple weeks ago I had dinner at a new Cantonese place in the SGV. Jonathan Gold wrote it up and our dinner was great. So I jumped on the opportunity to meet a few Babykillers and some Instagram wine folks out there again for lunch — really as part of a SGV double header (I had dinner later at Newport Seafood).
It’s one of these big formal Cantonese places.
1993 Moët & Chandon Champagne Cuvée Dom Pérignon. VM 91. Understated, pure aromas of musky stone, orange, smoke and truffle. Full, ripe and harmonious; not a huge or superconcentrated wine but quite subtle and fine, with brisk, juicy flavors of orange and minerals. Lingering, ripe finish.
NV Jérôme Prévost La Closerie Fac-Simile. VM 94. Jérôme Prévost’s NV (2012) Rosé Fac-simile is flat-out delicious. In this vintage, the Fac-simile is decidedly lifted and understated in style, with gorgeous aromatics and lovely overall balance. The Pinot fruit is incredibly expressive, but the 2012 is not a wine of impact, rather it is a Champagne that draws the taster in with its allure. Prévost only makes his 100% Pinot Meunier Rosé Fac-simile in top vintages, which makes it one of Champagne’s rare birds. After the disappointing 2011, the 2012 put things back on track.
1996 Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Brut Millésimé. 90 points. Not a lot of bubbles left in this one – has become quite a mature champagne. It’s good drinking at the moment, but nothing in the glass wowed me. An enjoyable drink nevertheless and still some nice acidity/lemon/sherbert at the end of the palate. I would drink these up now.
1995 Charles Heidsieck Champagne Blanc des Millénaires. VM 95. The 1995 Brut Blanc des Millenaires shows just how compelling this often overlooked vintage can be. Layers of lemon, pastry spices, crushed rocks and savory herbs literally jump from the glass in this exquisite, perfumed, beautifully delineated Champagne. The 1995 shows lovely flavor complexity and nuance from its extended time in bottle, yet it also retains plenty of freshness, verve and acidity. This is a great showing from Charles Heidsieck. The 1995 was made before the tenure of the house’s current team, headed by CEO Cécile Bonnefond. It will be very interesting to see what develops at this historic property over the coming years.
NV Laurent-Perrier Champagne Grand Siècle Grande Cuvée. 93 points. from the latest lot, mostly 2002 and a bit of ’99 and ’98. Took a bit of time to open out completely; honeyed flowers mixed with bits of toffee, caramel and almond shadings. Poached yellow orchard fruits, apple and pear, long line of acidity, shows more width and concentration with air time. This bottle was tighter than others I have had recently. 93-94 points.
NV Emmanuel Brochet Champagne Le Mont Benoit Extra Brut. VM 93. The NV Extra Brut Le Mont Benoit 1er Cru is terrific. Dried flowers, almonds, dried pears and chamomile are some of the many notes that flesh out. Ample, broad and creamy, with plenty of depth from the red grapes that make up most of the blend, the Mont Benoit is terrific today. Specifically, the Mont Benoit is rich and vinous on the palate, yet also remains wonderfully light on its feet. Don’t miss it. Disgorged April 2016. Dosage 4 grams per liter.
1999 Dominique Laurent Clos Vougeot. BH 88-91. Austere and regal in its reserve yet the density is breathtaking. A good deal more structured than the Clos de la Roche and not nearly as forward yet there is more finesse here than most young Clos de Vougeots offer. Solid in every respect.
2014 Domaine de Montille Corton-Charlemagne. VM 94. Bright yellow. Very ripe aromas of lemon oil, grilled nuts, toasted bread and brown spices. Fat, rich and very ripe, with mineral and spice flavors accented by lemon zest, lime and lavender. This initially struck me as weightier and less classic than the 2015, but the wine’s strong spine of stony acidity gives it terrific penetration and really frames and extends the fruit on the long finish. Still, this big, smooth wine is showing beautifully today. Winemaker Sieve notes that the south/southeast exposition of the vines gives this wine a crunchy fruit character along with considerable weight.
2016 Walter Scott Chardonnay Cuvée Anne. 92 points. Nice for a fake chard. The wine paired pretty well thanks to its terrific acidity. Loads of crisp yellow apple. I’m going to try to give this wine at least a year before opening another bottle. Delicious!
Truffle siu mai. The dumplings were good, but this canned truffle “relish” (more olive probably than truffle) actually diminished them. Might have been better with real truffle. As it was, just get the sui mai.
The service was absolutely first rate. The manager above really took care of us. The food was great too. The pig and crab were as good as it gets and the crab was a total deal at only $25/lb. The duck was very good too as were a number of the other dishes. I would like to order more dimsum on a return to get a real feel for it, and we just had a few dumplings (all good) and the chow funs.
But the lunch itself was tremendous fun. The wines, particularly the champagnes were stellar and a great crew of people.