ALEX: Altanta born, fluent in three langauges, hired at Domestique two weeks pre-COVID
Takeout: Yookge Jang (spicy beef stew), $18
Pairing: Chateau Peybonhomme L'Amour du Risque Pet Nat, $23
As May approaches, I find myself reaching for the things that bring me comfort. April was full of nervous energy and uncertainty. Thinking about food became an exercise in creative resourcefulness as opposed to something that brings joy, celebration, and communion. I spent April thinking of sourdough starters, turning veggie scraps into stocks, and 63 different ways to eat chickpeas.
Tonight, instead, I reached for the sense of community that I feel so detached from this month. I miss all my talented friends and the dynamic food scene that has kept me grounded in this city for so long. Tonight, I relied on an old late night favorite, Mandu.
Within the hour, fermented kimchi, fried pork mandu, and sticky-sweet rice dumplings graced my dining room table, and the smell of spicy beef stew filled the air. In the fridge, I reached for the only thing guaranteed to pull everything together: A large glass of bubbles. Tonight it was “L’amour Du Risque” by Chateau Peybonhomme, a Pet-Nat Cab Franc coming from the largest certified biodynamic estate in Bordeaux. Off-dry, foamy bubbles filled my glass. Then peaches-and-cream on the tongue followed by a touch of minerality. My pandemic-related anxieties faded, replaced with a moment of normalcy.
Tonight, we devoured the food and cheerfully finished the wine. Tonight, we didn’t worry about dishes or leftovers. Tonight, for a couple of hours, all was right in our house.
- Alex Bianco