We try to frequent the restaurant Chartreuse, after every visit to the Detroit Institute of Arts. It is in the legendary Park Shelton, which was originally the Wardell Hotel, named after Fred Wardell of the Eureka Vacuum Company. When Diego Rivera was painting the famed murals at the DIA glorifying the automobile and the assembly line, he lived at the hotel, with Frida Kahlo. Later the hotel became the Wardell-Sheraton, then the Park-Sheraton and went from a residential hotel to condominiums.
Chartreuse Kitchen & Cocktails opened in the corner of the hotel in 2015 and became the Restaurant of the Year in 2016. We got in and started off with a couple of appetizers that the three of us could share. The first was Lamb Tartare with Carrot Puree, Crispy Mushroom, Shallot, Pickled Mustard Seed, Chive, Crema and Grilled Sourdough. The other has become the dish that they get the most raves for, so we tried it. The Twice Cooked Egg with Werp Farms’ Greens, Brussels Sprout, Salty Cheese and Warm Shallot Vinaigrette. The two ladies both had the Linguine with Butternut Squash Puree, Parsnip, Rutabaga, Turnip, Brown Butter, Sage and Chestnut. I went a bit more Old School, if there was any doubt, with the Berkshire Pork Chop with Andouille, Calypso Bean Cassoulet, Corn Bread and Honey Mustard. We then shared the Chocolate Cookie with Raspberry Jan, Chocolate Ganache, Candied Almonds, Cardamon Anglaise, and Toasted Almond Anglaise.
The three of us also enjoyed a bottle of Xavier Courant “Merci La Vie” Bourgueil 2020 from Domaine de L’Oubliee. Bourgueil is an appellation for red wines in the Loire Valley and must be at least ninety percent Cabernet Franc, and most of the time, the wines encountered are pure Cabernet Franc. The local name for Cabernet Franc is Breton, and not a reference to Bretagne, but to the 17th Century monk, Abbot Breton of Bourgueil Abbey who has been credited as the one who brought the variety to the region, planting and tending the vines. The region also is known for the alluvial gravel along the banks of the Loire River. The Domaine is organically farmed. After the harvest the grapes undergo maceration and fermentation in a concrete vat for thirty-one days, and then aged for ten months in concrete and bottled unfiltered. This pretty ruby red wine offered notes of red fruits and spices. On the palate a softer medium-bodied wine with tones of raspberry and cranberry with secondary tones of green pepper and the ethereal quality known as undergrowth, with a nice finish of terroir. The wine I would describe as more like an elegant Beaujolais Cru, instead of a Bordeaux feel. A wonderful way to spend the day.