A celebration of luxurious creative collaboration marked the debut of the new Gaggenau showroom and intimate JCB Lounge last week. Bringing together the best of l’art de vivre, the cutting edge German brand, along with the Boisset Collection and Caesarstone partnered with event sponsors Bernardaud and Baccarat for a truly marvelous experiential evening. As the increasing intermingling of luxury and lifestyle has defined the high end market, developing collaborative events like this between like-minded brands is a brilliant way to express their true value in an immediate, intimate and tangible way.
Two heavy hitters in the world of food and wine provided gastronomic treats for the evening. Renowned chef Daniel Boulud and his team cooked up a variety of delectable morsels and the debonair Jean-Charles Boisset, proprietor of the Boisset Family Estates, a collection of over twenty historic and unique wineries, served impressive selections from his own JCB line of fine wines. Above, the two toasted the evening, Boulud’s birthday the day before and the impending birth of his son. During cocktail hour, we were treated to a variety of passed amuse bouches including my two favorites, crispy parmesan baskets with goat cheese and salmon a l’oseille.
In the sparkling JCB Lounge, outfitted with Baccarat chandeliers and sleek Gaggenau wine storage (not visible here), we started with two JCB Bubbles, No. 21 and the rosé No. 69. I tried the former, a vivacious, light yet smooth Crémant de Bourgogne. In his exclusive limited edition line, Boisset’s distinguished Burgundian wine heritage mixes with a forward-thinking passion to produce a modern collection named by a number, each personally meaningful to the maker (21, for example, is the French government’s original “department” assignment given to the Côte d’Or in Burgundy, Boisset’s home territory). It was a delight chatting with the devilishly charming Jean-Charles who embodies a sophisticated mix of Old World and new vision perfectly in synch with the evening’s classic meets contemporary approach to taste and style.
Behind the counter of the chic Gaggenau kitchen, chef Boulud cooked two main preparations, both featured in his new book Daniel, My French Cuisine.
Sea scallops with brussel sprouts with crispy rice and black miso sauce represents his signature mix of traditional French cuisine with a modern Asian influence. Below, chef demonstrated the technique for opening and extracting the scallops. He also walked us through the amazing features of Gaggenau’s full surface induction cooktop, at the bottom of shot, and the Vario induction wok and Teppan Yaki, which allows roasting, cooking or warming directly on a single , smooth metal surface with up to 1800 watts of power, all of which Boulud uses at home.
Here are the scallops beautifully plated, ready for the guests.
The second dish, vadouvan-spiced squab with spring radish, avocado and nasturtium, was a masterful melange of flavors exquisitely presented on Bernardaud Fusion plates.
The wines accompanying the main course included JCB No. 33, a true fusing of French and California styles resulting in a smooth round Chardonnay with no overreaching oak but a touch of citrus minerality – delicious! The reds started with No. 7, a Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir, easy drinking and flirty. The No. 3 is a heady Pinot Noir born of both French and California parents. Three separate vineyards in the Russian River Valley supply 60% of the grapes while the remaining 40% hail from three vineyards in Burgundy – a divine and decadent marriage of old and new. And lastly No. 1, a sensuous Napa Valley Cabernet with the strength and gutsiness of a classic cab yet mellowed with the refined finesse of a French Burgundy – a magic melding. All were served in the elegant and innovative new Château Baccarat glass, below, with a unique trapeze shape that helps to enhance aromas and flavors while minimizing alcohol.
During the evening, we enjoyed the cool jazz of trumpeter Antoine Dyre and band while wandering throughout,
enjoying our full immersion in an evening carefully orchestrated for the best in class. Even art was included with the latest Jeff Koons collaboration with Bernardaud.
Kudos go to all involved for innovative creative collaboration, great taste and a perfect melding of the 4 E’s – emotion, experience, exclusivity and engagement. This is how it should be done!