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Tuesday 29 May 2012

Restaurant Review: Pontus by the Sea, Sweden

The hottest day of the year in Stockholm with high expectations for the evening, 8 people went out for a lovely dinner. We thought we would choose the famous restaurant Pontus by the Sea in Stockholm were the seafood is famous. We all ordered and shared 3 bottles of Crémant bubbly wine. Some of us wanted starters and some did not. My wife and I ordered 7 oysters for starter and everything was well. However, when the order arrived my wife and I received only 3 oysters and one of our guests received her main course while the others had starters. We told the waiter politely that she missed our order and came out instead with 6 oysters. We had to tell her again and she finally came out with 7 as ordered. When we finished our starters and our beloved friend finished her main the rest of the main course arrived. Although our other friend did not receive any main course which of course the waiter had forgotten about. This meant that everyone ate their main while one waited and when her food finally arrived, which was crab, they forgotten to provide her with napkins.

When our friend asked for napkins the waiter rushed and instead of given it to us she gave it to our neighbouring table which looked surprised and handed it to our table.

When a high profile restaurant does this some compensation is in order and of course some apology is needed from the staff however nothing of this has happened. Pontus by the Sea is an expensive restaurant with good food however the staff, service, creativity and appreciation for guests is extensively bad. Unfortunately I cannot recommend Pontus by the Sea to our readers and the end result is a bad grade. 

Even though the restaurants performance was poorly managed, Western Taste always provides a second chance and we will have to see what the restaurant can bring to the table on another occation.

Restaurant Grade: 1,5 out of 5

Written by Alexander Yü

Pictures from Pontus och Alexander Yü

Tuesday 8 May 2012

Wine of the Month: Planeta Dorilli

This wine originates from careful selections of vines that surround the amazing Dorilli estate just nearby the river of Dorilli. The wine will give you a very well balanced union between the history and tradition of Sicily, namely Nero d’Avola with Frappato di Vittoria that has character of maturation in wood.

The colour is ruby red with fine hints of violet. The nose gives you a more complex version than for a normal Vittoria wine. The Aromas are of ripe cherry, small red fruits, strawberry, sour cherry, conserve, chestnut honey and prickly pear. In the palate it provides you with softness and balance between the slight fine tannin of Vittoria wines and a background of wood.

Nr Systembolaget: 90008
Cost in Sweden: 149 kr
Cost in China: Unkown (imported by EMW-Fine Wines)
Cost in US: Appr. 20 USD

Thursday 3 May 2012

Vinordic & Gastronord 2012

Vinordic and Gastronord 2012 are now over and of course Western Taste was there to enjoy some of the finer things in life. The extravagant trade fairs that are the biggest of their kind in northern Europe went on for four days and it was not enough!

Below are some of the most interesting titbits and news that Western Taste came across at the fairs.

A lot of “new wine countries” were present at Vinordic with the goal of establishing themselves on the Swedish market. From Eastern Europe you could find individual show-cases with wines from Georgia, Bulgaria and Moldova. The Georgian wines were top tier and you should especially look out for the grapes Rkatsiteli and Saperavi when the wines go on sale at Systembolaget in May or June. The Moldovan show-case mainly recommended their Chi Cabernet Sauvignon from Cimișlia Wineries. Unfortunately it tasted like something you buy for one euro at a gas station outside Paris.

American wines that are not from California are also on the rise in Sweden. Oregon sported its own show-case with several wineries represented. Oregon is known for Pinot Noirs that are heavier and fruitier then the ones we are used to from the old world. They are actually quite pleasant and we particularly recommend the wineries Maysara, Wine by Joe and A to Z. 

One oddity that turned out to taste really good was the Russian mead Medovarus imported by the Swedish company Tre Svampar. In Russia there is actually a state run mead institute that do research and certify all domestically produced mead. There are four different flavours called Wild, Amber, Apple and Winter. They are all lighter but with more pungent spices such as ginger, cinnamon and cloves than the mead we usually drink in Sweden. They come in glass bottles with screw tops and contain 33 cl. The price is as low as 15 SEK a bottle!

Luigi Righetti is a high quality winery in Valpolicella that makes excellent Recioto, Ripasso and other heavy red wines. Western Taste met with Signor Righetti himself and he told us about their latest wine on the Swedish market. Swedes love to drink rosé wine in the spring and summer so Luighi Righetti is soon launching their own pink delight called Righetti Rosé (75 SEK, nr 73725 at Systembolaget). You should absolutely try it!

Södra Maltfabriken (The Southern Malt Factory) is a new brewery on the outskirts of Stockholm. They have the outspoken goal of making experimental beers that still shouldn’t be “difficult” to drink. Available now are the bears Poking IPA, Rude Lager and Initial Pale Ale.
Usually I’m an IPA-man but I must say that Rude Lager is my unconditional favourite.

We will have to wait two years before we get to go to Vinordic and Gastronord again but I’m sure it will be worth the wait!

Written by Kristian Kull and Sofie Yü