Time for the summer installment of #jaimiestuesdaytestkitchen!

I had completely missed the announcement, so we were glad that Koen & Erica invited us last week for the quarterly test kitchen event. Due to a mini heatwave, all tables were on their terrace. An appropriate setting to be sampling their “soon to be” dishes from the summer menu.

As before, the menu consists of 6 courses (3 x regular, 1 x vegetarian), amuses, and friandises for €60 per person, excluding drinks. The optional boozy oyster (€4 apiece) was present as well.

The only difference to the previous test kitchen events was that we didn’t get to sample 2 wines per course and decide which one paired best with the food. The set wine pairings (€45 / €22,50 for halfsies) were spot on, especially the South African red from Joostenberg was an excellent accompaniment to the fillet of beef.

The only downside was due to the weather. Despite serving chilled whites, the heat (we starting off with a brooding 34℃/93℉ and ending several hours later with bit more comfortable 28℃/82℉) had already warmed up our wines before the food came. Therefore, they were always a tad too warm to our liking. Otherwise, there was nothing to complain about. We thought that the summer test kitchen menu was very well balanced, light, refreshing, and full-on from a flavor perspective. Everybody did have their personal favorite dish, although it was tough to single out just one.

We kicked off dinner with a refreshing summer cocktail and a glass of champagne. The amuses started with a shot of fresh gazpacho stock to get the tastebuds in gear. After that, they served grilled and miso-glazed mini aubergines as well as beetroot macarons with horseradish cream and apple.

This time the boozy oyster received a delightful subtle Tequila Sunrise treatment.
1. Cherry Tomato
Tomato, Citrus, Vanilla, Basil.
2018 Gemischter Satz by Tom Dockner Traisental, Austria
(a vineyard blend of Grüner Veltliner, Frühoter Veltliner, Riesling, Neuburger, Muller Thurgau, Riesling, and Muskateller grapes)

2. Hollandse Nieuwe
Herring, Daikon, Horseradish
– Chantal had pickled daikon and red onions as a base instead of the fish –
2018 Campotino Colli Pescaresi by Tenuta del Priore, Abruzzo, Italy
(a blend of Pecorino, Trebbiano, and Passerina grapes)

3. Mullet (Harder)
Smoked Mullet, Green Herbs, Egg Yolk
– Chantal had additional risotto and grilled spring onions instead of the fish –
2018 Colli Tortonesi Bianco by Oltretorrente, Piemonte, Italy
(a blend of Cortese, Timorasso and Moscato grapes)

4. Plaice (Schol)
Plaice, Lamb’s lettuce (Lamsoren), Hollandaise, Rice Vinegar
– Chantal had grilled bok choi instead of the fish –
2017 Cantayano Blanco Verdejo by Isaac Cantalapiedra, Castilla Y Leon, Spain 

5. Dutch Beef
Fillet of Beef, BBQ’ed Asparagus, Umami sauce
– Chantal had a roasted celeriac and courgette base instead of the beef –
2017 The Family Blend Red by Joostenberg, Paarl, South Africa
(a blend of Syrah, Mourvedre, Cinsault, Touriga Nacional, and Viognier)

6. Raspberry
White Chocolate, Raspberry, Furikake
2018 Merlot Spätlese by Tschida, Burgenland, Austria
The friandises to go with our coffees and teas were an apricot macaron filled with chocolate ganache and a tartelette with cream and tangy blackcurrants.

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