The C restaurant + bar in the Intercontinental Hotel, Cannery Row, is clean, classy, and a place to be seen, judging by the crowd attending the wine dinner. The restaurant has a wide open view of the Monterey Bay and is in a word, elegant. What a lovely setting for the wine dinner, hosted by John Jordan, owner of Jordan Winery. 
The menu read, “Tonight you will have the opportunity to try these fantastic wines that have made Jordan Winery and Vineyard a well known brand worldwide.”
The majority of the wines featured were Cabernet Sauvignon, which happens to be my favorite wine, and the Jordan wines did not disappoint.  I would have any of them again, and in fact, saw some of these wines recently on a wine list in Washington DC.  Had I not been the only wine drinker, I would have ordered a bottle.

1st Course

Heirloom Tomato & Watermelon Gazpacho
Tomatoes and Dungeness Crab
J. Cuvee, Russian River Valley, N.V.

The Gazpacho was fresh, bright and sensational.  It was the inspiration for a dish Yo prepared later at one of his events.  The J Cuvee sparkling wine’s clean flavors were the perfect compliment.

2nd Course

Lightly Smoked Alaskan Salmon
Grilled Local Corn, Toasted Farro, Pancetta
Brown Butter & Cured Lemon

Jordan, Chardonnay, Russian River Valley, 2009

The toasted farro was nutty, with a nice texture, combined with the sweet corn, salty pancetta, rich butter and the added touch of citrus, topped with a melt in your mouth lightly smoked salmon.  I could not stop thinking about this dish and have made a version of it in Texas, my first time to prepare farro.
My version was very similar and I thoroughly enjoyed every bite, but not as much as I did in the lovely setting of the C restaurant with my gracious dining companion.

3rd Course

Trio of Cabernet Sauvignons Paired with Seasonal Presentations

Pan Seared Natural Rib Eye
Bintje Potato Puree, Summer Beans
Cocoa Infused Cabernet Sauce

Jordan, Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley, 2006

Slow Roasted Lamb Chop
Goat Cheese Polenta
Ratatouille & Fennel Jus

Jordan, Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley, 2007

Thyme Roasted Duck Breast
Cherry & Prune Stuffed Ricotta Gnochhi
Foie Gras Sauce

Jordan, Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley, 2008

The meat dishes were cooked to the right temperature and I enjoyed a taste of each of them but I had favorite components of each dish.  The Goat Cheese Polenta, the Gnocchi, and the Ratatouille, with the lamb chop were my favorites.  We both loved the 2008 Cabernet, a yet to be released wine.

Cheese Course

Rouge et Noir Camembert
Plums, Star Anise Gastrique & Toasted Walnut Bread

Jordan, Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley, 2004

A rich cheese, tart fruit but sweet fruit with the nutty bread  was a nice ending.  Too full to have more than a taste, it was extemely enjoyable with the 2004 Cabernet.

A trip to the way too “cool” bar for an after dinner glass of Frangelico and a fun visit with the bartender, Louis, made me wish I could have the C restaurant and bar in Fort Worth, Texas.

Cannery Row brings back fond memories.  It was a place I visited on special occasions with my family when I was young.  The best restaurants were always on Cannery Row, including Neil De Vaughn’s, and The Outrigger.  My parents would bring me to The Outrigger to celebrate birthdays and special occasions.
I look forward to my return trip to the Monterey Peninsula.