For something as esteemed as the Louis XIII, it’s hard to imagine pairing it with anything other than dessert. But the remarkably complex “king of Cognacs” holds its own with a wide variety of dishes, pairing well with everything from caviar to even lobster. Which is why Louis XIII’s cellar master, Baptiste Loiseau and house chef Philippe Saint Romas have come up with five pairings to showcase different facets of the prized Cognac — pairings that you can try right here in Singapore, as the experience has been replicated here at Japanese-inspired Italian restaurant 28 Wilkie.
The Five Sensations pairing comes as a glass of Louis XIII with five small bites served in a particular order, each to be savoured alongside a sip of the Cognac. You start off with caviar from a Kaluga-Japanese sturgeon hybrid, which have been bred to produce roe that is crisp, rich, and almost nutty with a well-restrained brininess. This is meant to showcase purely all aspects of the Louis XIII — the creamy caviar prepares the palate for the Cognac, while the floral and dark fruit notes play very nicely with the caviar’s clean finish.
Then you move on to something a little more left-field: European lobster sandwich graced with some lemon. While lobster would normally be considered too mild a pairing for a rich Cognac, the finesse of the Louis XIII makes this seafood pairing surprisingly apt.
After a hibiscus and pomegranate sorbet palate cleanser that highlights the other floral, tobacco notes of the Cognac, you move on to thinly-shaved bellota. Here, the fat and salt of the bellota brings out all the wonderful textures of the golden liquid: silky, dense, yet almost delightfully light.
You end of with a wagyu tartare seasoned with pommery mustard and capers, which pair with the more hefty flavours of the spirit: figs, walnuts, dried fruits — all of which are the result of a blend of over 1000 different crus of eaux-de-vies, each between 40 to 100 years-old.
The Five Sensations of Louis XIII is available at $350 at 28 Wilkie.
28 Wilkie Road #01-01, Singapore 228051. Tel: +65 9776 2828