Back in May I spied a Gilt City promotion for an Enomatic Wine Experience for Two at The Forge Restaurant & Wine Bar in Miami Beach. It included The Forge Enomatic Wine Card to be used at the Gilt City wine station (filled with wines chosen by Lee Schrager). The card is pre-filled to cover two selections of two specially-designed Enomatic flights (white or red) in 4 three ounce pours, paired with Chef Dewey Losasso’s tasting plate. A Lee Schrager curated deal, the man behind both the New York and South Beach Wine & Food Festival, no less this should be good. Immediately I hit purchase.
Finally, with only a week left to use it, I made my reservations for two at The Forge. My fellow foodie and I arrived at the completely renovated historic Forge Restaurant & Wine Bar. A staple in Miami Beach since the 1930′s it underwent a massive renovation in 2009-2010 and the results are stunning. See here for the photo gallery. We were quickly seated at the lavish bar with the most gorgeous Murano glass chandeliers overhead, surrounded by the enomatic systems, encasing 80 different wines available by the glass. The bartender cheerfully greeted us and explained how the card and enomatics worked and we were joined by a sommelier to discuss options, which was very helpful due to the abundance of options. (They even have an app to assist.) We started the wine tasting at the Gilt City station with the Terlato Family Pinot Grigio and A.P. Vin Pinot Noir, both from the Russian River Valley, but once I spied Duckhorn & Caymus at neighboring stations, it was goodbye Gilt City. (Note each wine is priced individually, with choices of 3 different sized pours. My choices were on the, ahem, more expensive side, so I opted for smaller pours and adding additional cash to my “black card”.)
Back at the bar we were presented with the tasting plate, consisting of: Pomegranate BBQ Lamb Spare Ribs, Crispy Corn Ravioli, Smoked Salmon Croquettes, and Lobster, Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Each was a tasting portion for two. We were split on the plate, which wasn’t a bad thing. I preferred the sweet, salty crunch of the corn ravioli topped with parmesan. My counterpart preferred The Forge’s take on the traditional peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Not your typical Wonder Bread with creamy pb and grape jelly, this sandwich starts with toasted brioche, filled with chopped fresh peanuts, onion marmalade, and diced chilled lobster. Also tasted : pomegranate bbq lamb spare ribs with red cabbage slaw and smoked salmon croquettes with “hot” guava sauce, and peppered cream. We had a feeling the tasting plate would be just that, a taste, so when we ordered we added on a few more dishes.
I opted for a Pan Seared Crab Cake, with roasted apple and calabaza salad, topped with whole grain mustard aioli. The apple was really what clinched this decision for me (Anyone else make decisions based on accoutrements? Just me. Ok.), and I was not displeased with my choice. The crab cake was slightly crisp on the outside and full of rich meat, not filler, inside.
My dining companion today, a Foodie Flyboy (The girls were all out of town.) ordered from the Miami Spice promotional menu: Red & Yellow Tomato Gazpacho, followed by the Grilled Salmon and ending with the Lemon Pannacotta. The gazpacho, much like the name suggests is half red and half yellow and altogether delicious. The salmon, perfectly grilled (aka: fork flake-able), rested atop a mound of creamy basil mashed potatoes and was topped with hearts of palm and mixed greens and surrounded with a two orange reduction. The crisp hearts of palm offset the otherwise soft textures for a nice contrast.
As a dessert connoisseur, I eagerly anticipated the final plate, which I knew would be quickly surrendered to me upon arrival. The pannacotta, with lemon and fennel, was both light, velvety, and tart. Paired with toasted almond gelato and a biscotti, it was a fitting ending to our meal.
After dinner we were treated to a private tour of The Forge’s extensive 8 wine cellars, including one with a private dining area (where J Lo chose to host her 42nd birthday this July), housing over 300,000 bottles. This collection is considered one of the finest in thee world, and can be seen on request only, providing the private dining area is not occupied.
Book your own Miami Spice experience now through Sept. 30th.
*UPDATE* Gilt City is running another Enomatic Wine Tasting for 2 promotion. Get yours HERE.