Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Vintage Bank

Wine & Cheese: 4.5
Food: 3.25
Service: 4.5
Ambiance: 4.5
Overall: 4.5

The blog is becoming a little fancy these days and in keeping with that tone, I paid a visit to the wine and cheese bar in the newly opened Hilton. The theme of Vintage Bank is elegant, old-world luxury and the decor amply reflects that. Lush, cushioned chairs, wooden ceilings and a heavy air of opulence dominate this place.

They have a wide selection of wines and if you are undecided on which ones to order, I suggest you ask their super helpful sommeliers or take the wine flight option (At Rs. 1000, I think the wine flight is a great VFM option). The wine flight option comes with three wines and a selection of cheeses. I chose the red wine option while YJ and Nipsy picked the white wine. I started off with a light and sweet Beaujolais, transitioned into a medium bodied and smoother Riscal and ended with a dry Terrazas. Of the three my favourite was the Beaujolais. The red wine was complemented with some hard cheeses: Provolone, Emmental and Manchego. 

The white wine flight kicked off with the light and fruity Sauvignon Blanc, transitioned to the more mineral and refreshing Gavi and ended with the dry and sophisticated Pinot Grigio. 

Personally, I preferred the cheese pairing in this selection (Bree, Borsalino and Camembert) . The lively, herb-infused Borsalino was my favourite. Both red and white wine flights start light and fruity, move on to a medium body with more mineral notes, and ends on a more sombre and dry note. Those preferring a drier start and sweeter finish might want to reverse the order of tasting. Outside of the wine flight option, most wines are served by the bottle.

So much cheese

Of course, we had to try the food there too. The sauteed prawns was unanimously elected as the favourite. The fresh, tender prawns had a wonderful texture and were cooked in a well-spiced, red sauce. 

Sauteed Prawns

The grilled provolone was a fine choice too. It was interesting to contrast the flavours of the raw and the grilled provolone. It was a little cumbersome to handle though. The mezze platter was only so-so. The smoky flavour of the babaganoush was the highlight of the dish and YJ loved the addition of the green chilli.

Mezze Platter

The desserts were a bit of a let down. The creme brulee tasted a lot like lemon meringue and the overwhelming citrus taste is all I remember of it. The curd-cheese flan tasted more like cheesecake and the refreshing raspberry sorbet didn't do much to salvage the dish. 

Creme Brulee

Curd Cheese Flan with Raspeberry Sorbet

They did have this lovely pear jam that we all drooled over. It was fresh and rooomba good. 

Service was excellent and a huge shoutout to Ashlin for being such a great host. 

Vintage Bank is unique in the Chennai food scene. The place is classy, the concept different and the wine & cheese is fabulous. If you feel like an indulgent evening or if you are looking for a special date place head here. 

As Nipsy likes to say, 'Wine and Cheese is a love story'. And this one ended happily ever after. 

Pricing: Rs. 2000 per person (if you don't take the wine flight option)
Location: The Hilton, J.N. Salai, Ekkaduthangal, Chennai (Click here for the Google Maps direction
Phone: 22255555

Thanks to YJ and Nipsy for accompanying me and sharing their considerable knowledge on wine and cheese

L to R: YJ, Ashlin, Nipsy

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