Volcanoes and wine: A night (almost) with Frank Cornelissen

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Berkshire, dinner party, event, Eyjafjal

Volcanoes and wine: A night (almost) with Frank Cornelissen
On the 21st April L'Ortolan held an exclusive event in the main restaurant celebrating the wines of renowned producer Frank Cornelissen, from Etna, Sicily.

The decision was taken early on to create an Italian style dinner with dishes taking inspiration from L'Ortolan's repertoire, in consultation with Alan Murchison and Frank himself.

Unfortunately, the Eyjafjallajokull ash-cloud hovering in UK airspace left Frank stuck in his Sicilian vineyards, but L'Ortolan staff hosted the event in his absence. The irony of a volcano preventing Frank traveling, considering he works on the side of one, was not lost.

Guests enjoyed a specially constructed meal including antipasti in the bar accompanied by the 'baby' red, the Contadino, and red mullet with fennel risotto that went perfectly with the complex MunJebel Bianco. There was even the chance for guests to try Frank's rare top wine with carefully selected cheeses, the epic Magma Rosso.

"My first try of Frank's wines four years ago remains one of my most profound tasting experiences." explains L'Ortolan Sommelier Stephen Nisbet, "His wines are like almost none other; combined individuality, elegance, effortless power and concentration. A wonder to contemplate by themselves, they really come alive with good food."

The evening was perfectly rounded off with espresso from Caffe Giamaica and a splash of Cornelissen's formidable grappa distilled for him by Giovi, one of Italy's greatest distillers.