Oeno-File, the Wine & Gastronomy Column

by Frank Ward

Archive for the ‘Gastronomy’ Category

A few recent tastings

Posted by Frank Ward on April 10, 2018

April 2018. Our friends Philip and Cathy recently hosted another dinner, an evening of fine food and wine. It’s seldom that fewer than 8- 10 bottles are broached on these occasions, and all are tasted blind. The latest get-together took this form: As aperitif, a 1990 Riesling Rauenthaler Baiken Spatlese. Bigger than most Spatlesen, close to an Auslese in weight and body, it was medium dry (10.5 ABV) and smelled like apricot with a hint of barley sugar. The ample Riesling fruit was balanced by fine orangey acidity. Fine on its own, off-dry rather than sweet, it could easily have accompanied a fish dish too. [….].

Read article

Posted in Gastronomy, Tasting notes | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A retrospective review of Eating Out in Stockholm

Posted by Frank Ward on July 14, 2017

July 2017. In 1972 – 45 years ago – I published a guide to the restaurants of Stockholm: “Eating out in Stockholm”. Nobody had ever before tried to make an objective, critical appraisal of the Swedish capital’s eating out scene. To my amazement – and dismay – it created a bit of a sensation. It turned the country’s leading krögare (restaurateur), Tore Wretman, incandescent with rage. He led a campaign not just against me personally but also against my publisher, Bertil Hökby of Prisma Books. He induced gossip columnists in the Swedish press to print defamatory tales about him – he, a scholarly person of transparent honesty and integrity. As for me, Wretman banned me from his restaurants, the prestigious Operakällaren [….]

Read article

Posted in Gastronomy, Other Countries | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Calon Ségur Tasting & Visit to Manoir des Quat’Saisons

Posted by Frank Ward on July 14, 2015

AvatarJuly 2015. I’ve twice been to Lutyens restaurant on Fleet Street in the last year, in both instances for a dinner combined with a vertical tasting of wines from Bordeaux estates. On this second occasion the Château in question was Calon Ségur – a property I’ve always respected, and even had a kind of nostalgia for, since drinking a quite wonderful 1947 with the late owner, Philippe Gasqueton, at his dinner table at the Château many years ago. Lutyens is a restaurant I might never have visited had I not chosen to attend those two dinners. [….]

Read article

Posted in Bordeaux, Bordeaux, Gastronomy, Tasting notes | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A Tale of Three (Italian) Cities

Posted by Frank Ward on October 5, 2014

AvatarOctober 2014. On a quick visit to three north-Italian cities – Verona, Mantua, and Bologna – I was able to sample a few delicious dishes (and some appalling ones too) and a couple of splendid reds. One of the best meals was also the cheapest: A lovely cep risotto taken in a tiny, unpretentious bistro, l’Orlogio in Verona, chosen more or less at random. It came with a perfectly decent glass of red and finished with one of the best espressos I’ve had in years [….]

Read article

Posted in Gastronomy, Italy | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

English cuisine today – Farewell to the “goo anglais”

Posted by Frank Ward on January 2, 2013

December 2012. Winston Churchill, when First lord of the Admiralty, is quoted as saying, “British naval tradition? Nothing but rum, sodomy, prayers, and the lash!” Had he been asked about British culinary traditions, he might well have characterised them as “fry-ups, ketchup, and orange tea” (he never did so, however). Only recently has cooking in Britain started to recover from the devastating effects of the industrial revolution which, of course, started in these islands.

Read article

Posted in Gastronomy | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Three days in Budapest – and some tastings of older rarities

Posted by Frank Ward on June 26, 2011

June 2011. The Vàsàrcsarnok market in Budapest is the biggest indoor market I’ve ever seen – as vast as a main line railway station and just as busy. Hundreds of stalls are festooned with almost every imaginable item of food, smoked, preserved, salted, tinned, or fresh. Arrays of ham hang like bloated wineskins, while below are ranged every conceivable cut of pork, beef, or lamb.

Read article

Posted in Gastronomy, Tasting notes | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Three days in Budapest – and some tastings of older rarities