I have to admit that for all of the years that I have known Ms. Yoga, Chartreuse is not her color. She has gone through the shades of purple, pink and teal, but not Chartreuse, but we got her into Chartreuse for dinner after we left the Detroit Institute of Arts. The restaurant is in the historic Park Shelton hotel the next block over, so it was the perfect venue for dinner. We arrived a little early, but that gave the ladies an excuse to go shopping, as if they need an excuse and I went to get our reserved table. The ladies came back, but by this time I had already started some wine, it had been a little over two hours since we had a glass at the DIA. Naturally the woman did not approve of our table and wanted a location more in the thick of it all, and they said that they probably put all the “mature” (my words) people in the back, and leave the front tables for the so called “hipsters.” Since they were moving us to a new table, I had to find the original waitress and give her a special gratuity, since her sanity was saved by not having to wait on us.
We were explaining to Ms. Yoga that Chartreuse was a very unique little bistro with a very limited menu and a very limited wine carte, and both were not the run of the mill. We started off with maybe the most prosaic dish, but it is Michigan, so we went with it, and that is the Smoked Whitefish Pate; just remember that I am with women that like to nosh. The ladies eventually found their dish of choice. Ms. Yoga went with Lobster Fried Rice with Rock Shrimp, peas, Thai Basil, Lobster-Soy, egg and spicy peanuts. My Bride went with an order of Scallops with Sweet Corn Ravioli, tomato, roasted summer onions in a Corn Cob Bisque. I almost went with the Crispy Duck Confit, but at the last moment I decided to go with the Wagyu Sirloin, with Corn Bread, Oyster Mushrooms, grilled scallions pickled tomato and a Romesco Sauce, which is a blend of red pepper, garlic and nuts. It was funny, but Ms. Yoga wanted to try their Corn Bread, since she has become quite a maven living down South, and our waitress brought her one and she was happy with their version.
While the food was esoteric so was the wine carte and about the most recognizable wine was Bruno Paillard Extra Brut Blanc De Blancs Grand Cru NV. While I was keeping myself entertained while the ladies shopped, I started with Domaine de la Bongram Domaine de Roally Viré-Clessé 2015. Here was a new winery started in 2002 that has four hectares of Chardonnay growing in one of the newest appellations (1999) for the Maconnais region, and the rules are that the wine must be Chardonnay and it must the driest of the dry by measurement or it must be labeled either Macon or Macon-Villages. The taste of minerals from the terroir was totally appreciated and totally refreshing. Keeping with the theme of a White Burgundy without breaking the bank we then went to a wine by Domaine Jean-Noel Gagnard Caroline Lestime Bourgogne Hautes Cotes de Beaune “Sous Equisons” 2015. Here was another Chardonnay with a little different terroir, from an appellation where only twenty percent of the wine is white. The wine is named for the “cliff above the vineyard” and a very enjoyable bottle of wine from a well-respected house and there were only three-hundred cases made of this wine. We did need a red to finish off the evening, especially with my Wagyu Sirloin, and I might add that even though Sirloin is not that special of a cut, this steak was very rich and tender. I went with something a bit quirky, instead of the expected. We had the Quinta do Tedo 2012 from the Douro region of Portugal. This wine was a blend of Tinta Roriz, or known locally as Aragonez and known internationally as Tempranillo and both Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca. The winery gives a very mythic accounting of the founding of the winery and the area with no attest. This wine was a mixture of wines that were aged from ten to twelve months both in Stainless Steel and French Oak (both new and old). They produced about eleven-thousand bottles of this wine and I found it to have balanced and mellow tannins and some good spice, so I was a happy camper. We had no room for dessert, or any room for some unique Chartreuse, but we were all very happy and I am sure that Ms. Yoga would not object to going back to this restaurant.