The Capital Grille hosts its Generous Pour Wine Event through September 2nd
Through September 2nd, The Capital Grille is hosting their Generous Pour Wine Event offering wine enthusiasts the chance to try unlimited pours of nine world-class wines chosen by Master Sommelier George Miliotes for $25 per person at dinner. When you make your reservation for the Generous Pour event, one of their servers will guide you through your dinner experience offering extensive knowledge about the wines poured and pairing suggestions for each of your dishes. For $25, you can drink like a Master Sommelier even if you don’t have an elaborate wine cellar in your home. Through this drinkable journey, maybe you’ll find a new favorite wine… or two.
Recently, I headed up to The Capital Grille in Scottsdale to check out the Generous Pour Wine Event for myself as I’m already a big fan of George’s wine picks from my experiences at Seasons 52. Gina, our server, had such great information to share of the wines, the labels, and what best to pair them with. Her advice and mouthwatering descriptiveness was invaluable throughout my meal. Upon arrival, she gave an overview of the wines available and offered her expertise to pair each course with a new wine – in hopes that by the end of the evening, we would have tried most of them. It would have been sacrilegious not to follow her lead!
To commence what was to be an evening full of delicious sips, Gina brought out an aperitif – the Lunetta Rosé (a sparkling rosé) while we scoured the menu. Already a Prosecco-lover and I was really excited for the beautifully pink rosé as I always prefer sparkling wine over champagne. Delicate, crisp and bubbly, the Lunetta was like a dance I wanted to join in.
For appetizers, my dining companion and I chose the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio and the Pan Fried Calamari with Hot Cherry Peppers. Gina chose to pair our second wine with the calamari appetizer and insisted we try two different wines against the indulgently spicy treat to see which we preferred. She poured the Gary Farrell 2009 Chardonnay from Sonoma that is known to pair well with seafood and the Kanu Kia Ora 2006 Chenin Blanc from Africa. Though the Chenin Blanc is usually coupled with dessert, Gina raved about how well it marries with the calamari. She explained that because the calamari and hot peppers pack quite a punch of heat, the sweetness of the dessert wine would help cool it down (what is known as ‘residual sugar’). The verdict? Gina was right. Although the Chardonnay seemed to be more of the traditional pairing, I really loved the Chenin with the spiciness of the dish and found that it was not quite as sweet as most dessert wines I’ve had. Perhaps my favorite pairing of the evening – such a lovely complement to the dish.
All wines aside, The Capital Grille’s calamari dish is by far my favorite in the Valley. First sautéed in garlic butter, the calamari is gently fried and tossed with a house blend of fiery hot peppers. It will definitely put a pep in your step.
Be sure to try the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio too – another favorite appetizer of mine here. The beef is seasoned with seven spices, then seared, chilled and sliced razor thin and served with arugula and dressed lightly with lemon vinaigrette. Its plating and flavors are beautiful.
Because of the abundance of beverage, we skipped the salad and soup courses and headed straight for the entrees. While we took a quick “rest break” from noshing, Gina poured a glass she thought I’d love since I’m a red gal – the Villa Mt. Eden, Grand Reserve 2007 Pinot Noir from Russian River. This wine was noted as one of George Miliotes’s personal favorites and he describes it as, “A spectacular red with strawberry, cherry and toffee notes accented with spiced tea, toasted oak and hints of cranberry.” No contest about it, it was my favorite glass of the evening; little did I know, it would soon become a personal favorite of mine as well.
For the entrée course, I chose the 22oz. Porcini-Rubbed Delmonico with a 12 Year Aged Balsamic Drizzle and my tablemate selected the Filet Oscar. Gina and her wine genius selected two wines to pair with the entrée course – a New World and an Old World. First, the Conn Creek, Anthology 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon (New World) made from Napa Valley’s finest Bordeaux grapes with a scent of black currant, dark raspberry and spicy flavors. Our second pour was the Chateau du Pin 2009 – a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Gina explained that some ‘Old World’ wines have been “Americanized” such as this one to appeal more to our palates today – picking up more fruits notes and less ‘mustiness’. I did prefer the Cabernet, though I appreciated every sip of Old World flavors. Perhaps I need to sophisticate myself a bit more!
Though the Delmonico was cooked just a bit more than I requested, it was still every bit as good as I had hoped. The balsamic drizzle and porcini rub really made the dish with its tangy/sweet, earthy flavors. I found that the steak itself had a lot of natural flavor and my meat-to-fat ratio was spot on. Once it is plated and hot, they finish it with a modest drizzle of olive oil for richness right on top of that gorgeous crust the porcini rub creates – a definite reorder for me.
My companion’s Filet Oscar didn’t appear to disappoint either.
Can’t forget the sides! Two of my favorite Capital Grille creations: their seductively-crisp Truffle Fries and the sinfully indulgent Lobster Mac N Cheese.
Always saving room for dessert, I had my eye on the Flourless Chocolate Espresso Cake and couldn’t wait to dig in. Sweet, but not too sweet, the cake fulfilled every craving I had for something rich and delectable.
My counterpart opted for a lighter choice – the colorful Trio of Sorbet including lime, raspberry and mango.
To cap off the evening, Gina brought out another pour of the Chenin Blanc (served earlier with our calamari) to pair with my cake. Oh, how I loved that Chenin…
All of the wines I sampled this evening were a part of the Generous Pour Wine Event and there were even a few I didn’t have the opportunity to try (one can only have so much in one night!). Wine pairings are priced at $25 per person (with unlimited pours), with the purchase of dinner.
For more information about The Capital Grille or to view its locations, visit thecapitalgrille.com.
Recap by Amy Martin, PhoenixBites Editor in Chief
The Generous Pour Wine Event was provided complimentary as a part of a media invitation. However, this has no effect on our opinions and comments regarding our experience. View our Disclosure Policy for further explanation.