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Per Se wine pairing

I have reservations for Per Se next week (very stoked about it!!!!), and was just curious if anyone knows the current wine pairing with the 9 course tasting menu price? Basically, I would love to do a pairing with each course but not sure if I can afford it. Any information on Per Se wine $ at all would be very much appreciated.
-Adam J

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  1. Our dinner at Per Se in July 2007 ended up being $600 per person with the nine-couse wine pairing (the good stuff) and two additional glasses of champagne at the start. And a kobe beef add-on. BTW: unless you can really hold your booze, nine glasses of wine (let alone my eleven) is a lot and you might get very drunk. It does make the bill more tolerable, though (until you sober up).

    If you want to be more cost-effective you could choose, e.g., a dry white and a Burgundy and just get one bottle of each.

    Here are several more posts about Per Se pricing that you may want to peruse:

    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/492646
    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/468401
    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/361713

    1. Thanks for the response! You make a very good point, while I would love to experience a wine paired with each course, I do not want to get drunk- thats for sure. Perhaps the somm. can suggest two half bottles that would fit the first and second half of the meal? Maybe cheaper too?

      4 Replies
      1. re: Adam J

        Was the 600$ a person price with the $210 or current $275 a person food cost?

        1. re: Adam J

          They are very flexible on the wine pairings. For example, you could decide after you found a wine you liked, to just stick with that wine for the rest of the meal. Every meal there begins with a glass of champagne. You are still looking at a very enjoyable two and half to three hour degustation at around $500-$600 per person.

          1. re: Adam J

            I don't remember whether it was $210 or $275. Whatever it was last July. We weren't exactly shopping on price so I didn't even pay attention.

          2. re: Adam J

            If you're going with someone, you might ask about splitting the wine pairing with one of your companions (so each person would get a pour of 2.5 to 3 oz with each course). I'm a real lightweight and I've done this at a few upscale restaurants. They've been fine with it once they understood what we wanted.

            We always tip as though there were been 2 pairings.

          3. What they usually recommend is a budget equal to the cost of the meal i.e. $275. They will pair a different wine with each course. Just be careful when you stand up! People forget they just 12 or so glasses of wine.

            You could also order some 1/2 bottles. I believe you can bring 2 or 3 bottles yourself. Corkage is $90! I've done all 3 options and like the pairing by the somellier the best.

            I'm going in May and can't wait!

            1 Reply
            1. re: stevel

              Thanks for the info! I think that half bottles might be the way to go ( or splitting the tasting), it is just me and my wife and both of us do not want to get to hammered. I would like to spend more like $150 a person on wine, would two 1/2 bottles at 150$ a piece allow me to get something decent? Or would I need more $ than that for two good 1/2 bottles?

            2. How many people in your group? Is it 2 people?

              I have had wonderful wine experiences at Per Se, and the sommeliers have been wonderful. The wine prices are not cheap, as the markup is about 2.5-3 times retail. But they have a very wide range of prices and selections, and I can tell you that even the lower prices bottles have been carefully selected. There is very little garbage on their list! The last time, we went with a group of ten, and had a lot of really great wine but were able to stick to a budget of $90 per person. We did not feel like we were skimping at all, because the wines were great and interesting, and went very well with the food.

              If you are going with 4 people, then you can easily go the bottle route. But if you are two, they have a reasonable selection of half bottles and wines by the glass which I am sure you could share. Ask for the sommelier, they can help you navigate the wine list and the food pairings. The wine list has "recommended bottles" listed at the beginning of each category, and most of these bottles are very reasonably priced (between $60-$150 per bottle), and they are excellent wines. You can drink very well and still have a very wonderful experience.

              If you are two: Start with a glass of champagne, this will hold you over several courses (well, depending on how fast you drink! But it sounds like you want to stay sober enough to remember your experience, so I bet you won't chug through the stuff!). Then maybe order off the wine by the glass list for a white for the fish courses (their selection of white wine is very interesting! If they offer the Txomin Txacoli by the glass, take it, it is inexpensive and fabulous with the earlier courses!). Then a half bottle of red or even a full bottle of red, a Pinot might be a good compromise because it will go with heavier fish courses, but still be reasonable with the meat courses. Or pick and choose from their wines by the glass selection, tailoring the amount to what you know you can drink. But I like ordering a bottle, they have some really interesting wines that aren't offered by the glass. You can always not finish the bottle (giggle. have yet to do that.)

              If you go with this plan, you can spend much less that getting a full wine pairing with each course (although I understand they no longer have a strict wine pairing with each course, they have recommendations for each course). Champagne will probably put you back $20-30 per glass, a reasonable glass of white can range from $15-35 per glass. So say, $45 per person for this, then add a full bottle of red, not even a half bottle (you can get some fabulous reds for $70-125 per bottle), another $40 per person, let's say. That's a lot of wine for one meal, and you can budget for $85 per person, and have some really great wines. The wines won't match perfectly with every course, but with the help of the sommelier, it will still be very good, and you might get to try some more interesting wines that you can't get by the glass. This is definitely a wine list that rewards exploring! Plus, if you budget for $85 a person, and you go a bit above, you won't be blowing your budget completely.

              My long winded point is that you don't need to spend a lot to have a really wonderful wine experience here. It will help a lot if you can guide the sommelier in the styles of wines you like, such as grape varietals, wine regions, etc. This will increase your chances that they will recommend wines you will enjoy. And if you have a very particular palate and can only enjoy very high-end wines, well, then we can't help you! If you are flexible about your wines choices, and willing to try different wines, you'll have a lovely time, even on a restricted budget. Have a great meal!

              3 Replies
              1. re: moh

                Moh,
                Thank you for the response!! Great advice, your plan actually sounds perfect to me, and it is wonderful to know that I can do this on a decent budget. Thank you again.

                1. re: Adam J

                  Adam, I just saw your post on your budget. If you are willing to spend $300 for the two of you, you will do very very well. It is a nice list.

                  For the current wine list, you can email the restaurant (just search their web site) and they can send you the most recent wine list by email.

                  I found the wines we had in December 2007 with our meal. They were all great! I have included a price too:

                  Pierre Gimonnet Blancs de Blancs, Cuis, 1re Cru Champagne: $25 per glass (great thing about Champagne, it goes with so many foods!)

                  Txomin Etxaniz, Txacoli (Spanish white) 2006: $65 per bottle (all bottles are full here): was great with Oysters and Pearls, Salad of hearts of palm, and striped bass dish

                  Donnhoff Reisling Auslese "Schlossbockelheimer Felsenberg" 2005 (Sweet white to match fois gras au torchon oh yum!): About $20-30 for the glass, can't remember exactly, but if you have the fois, it's so great to have a sweet wine with it!

                  Yves Cuilleron Saint Joseph Blanc "Lyseras" (Rhone white) 2006 with scallops: $95 for full bottle

                  Ata Rangi Pinot Noir (New Zealand) 2005 with capon: $125 for bottle

                  Alto Landon, Manchuela (Spanish red) 2004: $90 per bottle, with Calotte de Boeuf Grille (maybe the best piece of meat i have ever had....)

                  All of these bottles were wonderful with the food, and wonderful straight too. Some of them were chosen by us, some were recommended by the sommelier. So when you get the full wine list, don't be intimidated by the $1000 bottles, you can do so very well for much less! The wine experience at this restaurant is amazing.

                  1. re: moh

                    Moh,
                    Thank you so much for your reply, I was a little nervous before that I was going to have to eat plain bread for a month, but now I am getting even more excited!! Thanks again,
                    Adam

              2. I don't know if there is any PM function on this board. If so I have the current wine list and could email it to you!

                3 Replies
                1. re: stevel

                  Stevel,
                  WOW! That would be amazing!! To tell you the truth I am VERY computer challenged and do not know what a PM function is (maybe private message?) I do not mind throwing my email out there to recieve the list..are you sure you wouldnt mind? I would be so appreciative!

                  1. re: Adam J

                    Yes it's private message. If you put your email up I'll send you the list. It's up to date from a few weeks ago.

                    1. re: stevel

                      Again, I have to say thanks. This is awesome, my email is:
                      ajaxjenes@hotmail.com

                2. Wall Street Journal Tastings recently compared wine pairings at New York restaurants:
                  http://online.wsj.com/public/article/...

                  1. Interesting thread, mostly because I can't imagine the words "Per Se" and budget, in the same post.
                    At any rate, we were at Per Se 2 years ago, and at that time, they did not have specific wine pairings, but asked what budget we wanted, and gave us the pairings. From my experience with pairings, they do not give you a full glass for each course, but rather an amount that will go with each course, which is great. Even my husband, who has great tolerance for alcohol, would fall over with 9 glasses of wine.