My boyfriend and I recently tried ABC Kitchen, Jean-Georges Vongerichten's farm-to-table restaurant focused on local, organic ingredients and eco-friendly design. We were drawn by the ample vegetarian fare on the menu (for my boyfriend; meat for me please) and executive chef Dan Kluger, who is a friend from my restaurant days.
The food didn't disappoint; I particularly enjoyed a pasta dish with spaghetti squash and tomato that was highlighted by a subtle citrus zest note. The restaurant had a good energy to it. It was full without being crowded, while the servers were easygoing and friendly yet still attentive and helpful. However, like any good "winovore," for me, it was the evening's bottle—the M. Lapierre Morgon 2009—that won out.
For France's Beaujolais region, 2009 is a standout vintage, arguably one of the best in the last 50 years. Marcel Lapierre, who sadly passed away last fall, is a top name for the area. So I was extremely pleased by this first opportunity to try the 2009 Morgon, particularly at an affordable $48 a bottle. The wine layered spice and sandalwood notes with abundant dark berry and fruit flavors. It had silky tannins and good focus throughout, but in a deft and elegant package. I rated it 93 points, non-blind, and from soup to cheese to pasta to mushrooms and pizza, this red provided a fine pairing with every aspect of our meal.
35 East 18th St., between Broadway and Park Avenue South
New York, N.Y. 10003
Telephone: (212) 475-5829
WineSpectator.com members: Get scores and tasting notes for more recently rated 2009 Beaujolais.