Commis - Beverage pairing - [Oakland]
I haven't been in awhile, and I only did the beverage pairing once. Honestly, I was not impressed and thought the selections were ok and the pour size was quite short given the price. The pairing is now $45. I'd welcome any recent reports as to the beverage pairing experience.
We've done the pairings at Commis twice. The first time worked well, the second left something to be desired--wasn't feeling the inclusion of some kind of beer-beverage as one of the matches. [Weird wine pairings was also an issue for us at Manresa].
Our feeling--for Commis and other prix fixe places--is that in the future, we will get a glass of bubbles or a still white for the first course, then order a bottle of red for the remainder of the meal. I'm not sure if it would be any more cost-beneficial, but it most likely will result in a better overall experience.
We ended up having a bottle of white, and then a half-bottle of red - as the menu only comes afterward (unless you ask to see it first), I asked for a bit of guidance. The selections worked well, as the server suggested the menu was more conducive toward whites.
However, as a general comment about the meal, it was a home run. The last visit (awhile back, at the counter, before the counter was a special event) was a lovely meal, but this was a great meal. Not a single course came even close to falling flat, and at least a couple were memorable in a "for years to come" sense.
Service was wonderful, and very comfortable.
Two of us agreed that it blew our TFL meal out of the park in the taste and memorability department.
Had the pairing back in Janurary and it was perfect, as was every single dish served. From what I recall, they offer you a sample pour to taste and I'm sure that if you weren't entirely satisfied with any of the pairings, they'd be glad to substitute. Service was really terrific and overall experience was a knockout. I woldn't hesitate.
Agree with the wine pairings at Manresa not adding anything (though, for me, this was more than a couple years ago now).
Also, while I did not do the pairings at Atelier Crenn, their wine list leads me to believe it wouldn't be particularly inspired (and I believe their sommelier, left..not sure if they have a new one?).
Benu has an excellent pairing program.
I thought the beverage pairings were really good. Most of the pours seemed normal size to me. A couple were just tastes. There was only one I didn't like, a Marin Pinot Noir that was to my taste overripe (as are >90% of California reds).
I got some additional wine since I usually want more than comes in a pairing. It's a really great wine list with a lot of good values.
Photos of the menu listing the wines here: