Wine & Dine with Lifford’s Mike Buck and Chef Kirk Weiss and his RB Team – October 21, 2021

It has been a very long time between our last wine and dine gathering (September 27, 2019 when Nick hosted his last event at RB) and last Thursday’s event. We did have a Zoom Wine and Dine session in April, 2021 hosted by Mike Buck. That was a great stop gap but it was a delight to join fellow RiverBenders and wine and food lovers in person after such a prolonged separation.

Introducing the hosts

Mike Buck, Lifford Wines and Spirits

Mike Buck started the consignment wine business in London in the early 1990’s. He was a former partner in Lifford Wine & Spirits. Degrees in History and Geography fuelled his interest in and passion for wine. He is a supporter of domestic and international wines.

Chef Kirk Weiss

Kirk develop his interest in the culinary arts as a hungry traveller. Those travels have given him a great respect for all types of cuisine and cultures. RiverBenders have certainly benefited from his expertise.

Shawn Greco

Shawn came to RiverBend in February 2016. He has considerable experience in the F&B business particularly in golf clubs. He also had a 10-year career as a competitive flair bartender, resulting in 2 top 5 finishes at the World Bartending Championships.

Locale and Team

Shawn organized the seating in the dining room with a u-shaped set of tables – not as intimate as the library but one step at a time!

Now for the food and wine pairings


First Course

Prosciutto wrapped scallops with watercress and parsnip frites.

Accompanied by the Laurent Miquel Albarino 2020 from Languedoc, France. Mike gave an extensive intro to Laurent Miquel and his winery. Albarino as a grape varietal is mostly associated with Spain. This choice was delicious with the scallops and the saltiness of the prosciutto.

Described as follows:

Aromas of grapefruit with a delicate floral overtone, the palate its lively and refreshing with generous white peach flavours and a hint of lime on the finish. A soft yet crisp and aromatic white, it illustrates Laurent’s signature style of clear pure fruit.

Second Course

Hazelnut crusted camembert with wild blueberry and fennel slaw.

The wine for this course was CKW Speri Rosso Veronese 2017 from Valpolicella, Veneto Italy.

Described as follows:

This wine is from young vines and shows the vitality of the youthfulness. Fresh and fruity, it is a lighter style of red wine perfect for a summer day. It’s light, easy drinking and versatile with some nuanced dried spices and fresh acidity.

Third Course

Braised Beef Short Ribs on sweet potato mash with a truffle jus.

The wine served with this course was Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red Lot 72 from California, USA

Described as follows:

Bright and juicy, with strawberry and black raspberry supported by savoury notes of briar and slate. Fruity and fresh Zinfandel is given added complexity and length by barrel aged Syrah and Petite Sirah. A touch of Grenache and Barbera add a more complex red fruit character and hint of red licorice and white pepper.

Fourth Course

Lemon and rhubarb flan with white chocolate and vanilla ice cream.

Served with this course a local wine – Tawse Chardonnay Ice Wine 2013, VQA Niagara Peninsula, Ontario

Described as follows:

This is the second vintage of Chardonnay ice wine produced by Tawse, the first being in 2008. Ageing this dessert wine for 12 months in 100% new large oak barrels has resulted in aromas of vanilla, apricot, honey and a touch of oak. On the palate is caramel and a touch of smoke, followed by a surprising tart finish.

To top off the 4th course chef delivered a gluten-free offering for the dessert (the rest of the courses were already gluten free).

Looking forward to the next…

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