It was a such a pleasant day that we had with our son and his wife, first the Immersive van Gogh exhibit, then off to a street side wine bar at The Royce and finally dinner at Vertical Detroit. Vertical Detroit opened in 2015. It is located in a rehabbed former residential hotel, in the perfect part of the new Downtown Detroit, where everything is happening. They were also the first high-end, wine-centric restaurant and wine bar in the city.
We started off by insisting that they had to have the Grapes as an appetizer, I know it sounds odd, but Grapes rolled in Brie, coated with grated Pistachio and drizzled with a Gastrique; we had to have a couple orders of it. We also shared the Smoked Trout Toast with Radishes, Pickled Onions, Mustard Seeds and Dill. The women then had Pork Belly with Black Bean Puree, Pineapple Salsa and Micro Cilantro; Vertical Caesar with Romaine, Focaccia Crouton, Parmesan and Scallops and an order of Wild Mushroom Risotto with Caramelized Onion, Parmesan and Chives. The wine was Domaine Daulny Sancerre Le Clos de Chaudenay 2020 and Etienne Daulny owns fifteen hectares of vines divided into about fifty different plots within Sancerre and none of these wines see Malolactic fermentation. Les Clos de Chaudenay is a single vineyard cuvee of Sauvignon Blanc, right next to the winery. Most of the aging occurs in Stainless Steel, but about twenty percent is aged in well used six-hundred-liter “puncheons” and then the wines are blended at the end. A nice straw-colored wine that had notes of grapefruit, lemon and herbs. On the palate, tones of a classic Sancerre, a bit racy, well balanced with a nice long crisp finish with terroir.
The men’s choices were a bit heavier with our son having a Double Bone Pork Chop with Grits, Greens and Red Eye Gravy. I had an order of Soy Glazed Beef Short Ribs with Sticky Rice, Charred Broccolini and an Herb Salad. A red wine was called for and Domaine Monthelie-Douhairet Porcheret Monthelie “Clos du Meix Garnier” Monopole 2017 from the Cote de Beaune region of Burgundy. The Domaine was created over three hundred years ago, and they still use the original vaulted cellars. The estate covers thirteen hectares of vineyards in Monthelie, Pommard, Volnay and Meursault. Monthelie is a subregion that has its own appellation since 1937 and there are fifteen Premier Cru climats in the area, and a village of only two-hundred count population. The Meix is an early Middle Ages collection of buildings from a large-scale farming operation. It is their Monopoly of this vineyard of 1.36 hectares with vines that average about sixty years. The fruit is hand-harvested in small crates to avoid compressing the crops and all the grapes are de-stemmed. The wines are aged for eighteen months in classic Burgundian barrels and ten percent are always new to the mix. The wine is a beautiful ruby red with notes of red and black cherries. On the palate, the tones of cherries are blended with herbs and spices and finished off with a nice long count of terroir. A delightful wine and a wonderful meal, until the next time we get there.