The Annual Induction Dinner of the Cincinnati Bailliage was held on May 17, 2014 at the Cincinnati Country Club. The event was graciously sponsored by active club members Chevalier Jack Osborn and his wife Marilyn. Upon arriving at the club in the gorgeous Hyde Park area, we were led into a large entryway and served glasses of Perrier-Jouët Nuit Blanche. While members gathered, they were able to gaze out the back windows upon the grounds of the country club while being served passed appetizers of crab cakes with mustard horseradish sauce, Parmesan cheese puffs, and assorted canapés. The cheese puffs with Champagne made for a winning combination and my wife and I were on a first name basis with the server dishing out the treats! We could have eaten our weight in them but knew that this would be a mistake as the night had many more treasures in store.
Following the appetizers, we were led into a windowed alcove for the induction ceremony. Bailli George Elliott and Chambellan Provincial and Bailli Provincial Elect Renee Wilmeth were the masters of our ceremony where they elevated Barbara Lancor as our new Vice Conseiller Gastronomique. Barb works as Operations Manager of Patriot Hill Vineyards and is eager to share her wine and food expertise with all of us. Clayton Daley Jr. was elevated to Professionnel du Vin and he also joined the Académie de Gastronomie Brillat-Savarin. Bethanie Butcher, Thomas Gill, Andrew Jobe, and Suzanne Kaluti were inducted as new Chaîne members followed by the Mondiale inductions for Dame Mary Ivers and Vice Conseiller Gastronomique Barbara Lancor.
At the conclusion of the ceremonies, we were ushered into a beautifully decorated dining room with windows overlooking the gorgeous grounds. Our first course consisted of green pea velouté and crème fraîche (pea soup for us non-French types) paired with 2012 Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Gris. Individually the soup and Pinot Gris were good, but paired together they were exceptional. The second course was a lime-cilantro grilled shrimp skewer served with 2011 Domaine du Pre Semele Sancerre, followed by a trio of melon with prosciutto paired with 2013 Domaine Triennes Rosé. The main course consisted of Montana grass-fed filet which was accompanied by 2010 Gaja Ca ‘Marcanda Magari and 2010 Darioush Cabernet Sauvignon. Both pairings were excellent but most agreed that the Gaja selection nudged out the Cali cab by a nose. For a grand finale, a light summery gelato trio with pirouette was served in a martini glass. In my informal poll at the end of the evening, the members were impressed by all of the pairings by Vice Echanson Mike Monnin but the pairing of the melon and rosé drew the most rave reviews.
At the conclusion of the evening, we all thanked the Osborns for providing us with a wonderful venue for our induction dinner, Bailli Elliott and Bailli Provincial Elect Wilmeth for officiating the event, Vice Conseiller Gastronomique Honoraire Marilyn Harris for her final triumph, and Vice Echanson Monnin for his wine pairings. We also thanked the staff of the Cincinnati Country Club for their courteous and attentive service throughout the evening. It was a nice way to spend a Saturday evening in May with friends we have known for years and inductees who most certainly will become good friends in the future.
Graig W. Smith, MD, Vice Chargé de Presse