kelly magyarics

washington, d.c.-based wine, spirits & lifestyle writer / wine educator

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Pork and Pinot at the Park Hyatt

Here is info from a press release I received this morning about a new addition to the Park Hyatt's lounge menu. Although I typically prefer Pinot with duck or salmon, I think the rich, tender suckling pig would pair wonderfully with Pinot's earthiness, low tannins and tart cherry and raspberry flavors. And I concur with Diego Anea's review of the Belle Glos Pinot offering from Monterey--I tried all of their current bottles during my trip to Monterey last fall, and they are gorgeous, well-structured wines. The wax seal on the cork is a striking aesthetic touch, too--albeit somewhat difficult to remove.

Washington, D.C. (May 27, 2008) -- Executive Chef Brian McBride is pleased to introduce some delicious new dishes to Park Hyatt Washington’s Lounge menu with pork stealing center stage. Beginning June 11, every Wednesday evening highlights Pork & Pinot, from 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., with a whole roasted farm-raised suckling pig displayed on the Lounge’s expansive marble table so guests can enjoy a generous slice of pork accompanied with sweet potato biscuits for $8 per serving. Additional new pork dishes offered on the Lounge menu exclusively for Pork & Pinot, priced at $8 each, include Ham Hock Terrine, Glazed Pork Belly with White Beans, and Potted Pork with Garlic & Rosemary and Smoked Bacon Chips.

Park Hyatt Washington’s Lounge is also introducing the coveted Jamon Iberico de bellota. This rare, famous Spanish ham, a new arrival to the United States, will be carved on the marble lounge table for guests when ordered and is priced at $20 per ounce slice. Iberico pigs are descendants of sus mediterraneus, the wild boar that once inhabited the forests of the Mediterranean, popularly known as pata negra, or black hoof Iberico pigs. They are the last free ranging pigs in Europe. The term Iberico de bellota indicates an Iberico product is of the highest quality assuring consumers that the product is made from Iberico pigs born in the early spring and left to forage for the winter months, in the dehesa, the forest of Cork and Holm oaks of western Spain. During this time, known as the montanera, the pigs fatten up on fallen acorns or bellota and may gain up to a pound a day. This acorn-heavy diet gives the resulting hams an unsurpassed taste and sweetness to the meat.

To complete the savory pork dishes, a selection of Pinot Noir wines by the glass and by the bottle will be available, with prices ranging from $10 to $28 per glass and $95 to $180 per bottle. According to Diego Anea, the Executive Assistant Manager- Food & Beverage of Park Hyatt Washington, the wine that marries best with the Iberico is the Belle Glos 2005. “The Belle Glos is well structured, with a nice balance of fruit and tannins and its higher alcohol content, (15.1%) gives it a nice round mouth feel and a smooth, soft texture. It finishes clean but long and has a nice acidity which cuts through the richness of the Iberico,” states Mr. Anea.