Other Pages of Interest

Showing posts with label Las Canitas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Las Canitas. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Anuva Wine Tasting

We've been looking for interesting things to do with people while they visit, preferably involving food and wine. I've heard about a few people that run services out of their homes, cooking classes, dinners, but we had never booked anything until I heard of a local wine tasting put on by Anuva Wines. Anuva is an interesting concept, Daniel Karlin started a company that finds great wines on their own and then sells them to private buyers through a wine club, private tastings and home shipping. The US$40.00 tasting included all things that I find interesting, 5 wines, 5 food pairings and a chance to meet some new people in Bs.As., so I signed the four of us (Jon's parents, me and Jon) up for a Wednesday evening tasting.

Anuva Wines is located near/in the Las Canitas neighborhood of Palermo, so we immediately decided to go to Morelia afterward. We were at least 20 minutes late to our tasting reservation due to the crazy rush hour traffic when we arrived at a nondescript apartment building and pushed the appropriate buzzer. This was my moment of panic - Did I really just bring my in-laws to a stranger's apartment in a foreign country? I sure did. So I started the "If-it's-not-good-at-least-it-was-an-adventure" excuses. Luckily, we were greeted by a nice young lady that escorted us to the tasting apartment and she quickly put my mind at ease. When we arrived at the apartment, the table was set with 5 food bites that paired with our wines and 3 other people that had arrived on time to the tasting. We dove right in to the first tasting, a unique sparkling white called Hom (pictured), paired with 2 fresh sorbets served in adorable little shot glasses. I was loving the Hom, enough to buy a bottle at the end of the tasting. The wines were quite good (with the exception of one Malbec that I personally didn't like) and the food pairings were spot on to the point of impressive. We left with 4 bottles of take home wine and a case ordered for delivery to Jon's parents when they arrived back in Virginia (that's right, they ship to the States!). Daniel is extremely knowledgeable about wines and does a good job of explaining the wines as you're tasting them. It was a unique and fun night - and I recommend booking your own wine tasting or placing an order. We enjoyed our evening and are still contemplating joining the Anuva Wine Club where you can opt to receive up to 48 bottles per year.

Now for my two cents. Not that I'm any expert, but my years in the restaurant industry have made me cynical of these types of events. I have two recommendations for improvement:
1) Slow it down. It was a relatively rushed presentation that could have allowed for more conversation about the wines and between the customers that didn't. If we diverted from discussion about the wine, Daniel quickly brought us back to the task at hand. I think that slowing down the presentation would help the patrons feel more comfortable and help with the wine sales.
2) Keep everyone on the same level. As wine tasters we were all sitting around a table, tasting the food and wine while our presenter stood above us walking around the table. This gave the tasting a teacher/student feel, which would be better off played as a peer/peer feel. Sit down. Have a glass of wine. It would create a more comfortable and relaxing environment, holding true to the company's theme.

All in all, a great night with delicious food and wine. We enjoyed meeting the other people at the tasting, Daniel was a gracious host and we have a fun, unique evening under our belts. We found out that Daniel will do in-home events, so we're thinking that this may be our next party to host.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Morelia

Morelia (Baez 260, Las Canitas) is located in Las Canitas, an area of streets near Palermo Soho that is home to a major concentration of great restaurants. It is also the home of the best pizza that we have had in Buenos Aires. I'm pretty sure that Jon has been to Morelia more than any other restaurant in Bs. As. - he loves their Cuatro Queso pizza, which is saying a lot since he is a meat-pizza kind of guy. This last visit we also learned that they serve a mean fresh pasta dish as well.

It seems that every restaurant in Bs. As. serves a large basket of bread immediately when you sit down to eat. Being American, we generally have no restraint in chowing down on this bread the second we sit, and often get ourselves in trouble when it comes time to eat our meals. Morelia is no exception, although their bread deserves a spot in this post. It is served warm out of the oven and instead of a hard roll, they serve soft, puffy breadsticks. In addition to the bread, we started off with two "little tarts" that were basically a 4" diameter tortilla offered with different toppings choices, we ordered the onion and mushroom and the blue cheese and celery. Each tart was good to split among 2 people for a light appetizer. They were good, but the onion tart came with a huge pile of onions that, for the most part, didn't get eaten.

They serve thin crust pizzas with a zillion different topping options. You can order toppings separately or choose one of their specialty pizzas that have specified toppings. The only toppings that we have gotten that I didn't like was golf sauce and hearts of palm. Golf sauce is some sort of katsup/mayonnaise mixture and I don't particularly like katsup or mayonnaise so the combination is nauseating to me. I like hearts of palm, but they are often dressed in golf sauce as a pizza topping, so in this case, they're on my bad list. Anyways, like I said before, the 4-cheese or "Cuatro Queso" pizza, though simple, is really a must. I'm not even sure what the cheeses are, but I think one of them is an alfredo-style sauce used in place of the traditional tomato sauce. There are three pizza sizes to choose from, individual, small and large. Jon and I decided or split a large pizza with half 4-cheese and half spicy pepper, pepperoni and olive. The large is a good size pizza and we had slices to take home. As a side note, the pizzas are square (they don't cut corners, just like Ledo's back in Virginia. A "slice" of home, if you will.) and my Mom has always sworn that square pizza slices taste better. In this example, I have to agree.

My Mom and Pat both ordered pumpkin-filled fresh ravioli, each with a different flare. Pat went with a tomato cream sauce that was delicious, light and very simple. My Mom went with a slightly more complex dish, a wine and cream sauce with mushrooms and onions. Although their meals only came with 6-7 raviolis, both had a few to take home with us for the next day. The raviolis were enormous. In all honesty, I could have visited Morelia 50 times and not thought to order the pumpkin ravioli. I'm so glad that they ordered the meals that they did, I tried one bite of each and they were both delicious. This is going to create a new predicament the next time we eat here.

Morelia offers English menus upon request and they have a great wine list to go along with their great food. The restaurant has a large indoor dining area and a porch where you can eat outside, but still be slightly removed from the street. The service is good, albeit slow when you need to request the bill.