French dining in Orange County: '85 Dampierre and '82 Haut Bailly

My lady and I went to Bistro Bleu in Anaheim with two bottles: 1985 Comte A. d Dampierre Blanc de Blanc Champagne and 1982 Chateau Haut Bailly-Graves. I brought a backup for the Champagne for obvious reasons. But it was not needed! The Champagne was, of course, quite mature but still lively and effervescent. It had a great complexity and was superb with two great starter dishes: house-made duck liver terrine and escargot provençale. I gave the wine 92 points with one point awarded for longevity. [basic-smile.gif]

The '82 Haut Bailly was still youthful on the nose and in the glass (no orange on the edge). It had that slightly herbal cabernet nose and dark chocolate on the finish. Not my favorite '82 (I would give it 89 points max) but it certainly went well with the food. I had the duck a l’orange ($21!) which was excellent and my date had the bœuf bourguignon which was even better if that is possible.

Bistro Bleu is authentic French and David Kesler does wonders in the kitchen. A very reasonably-priced wine list, $10 corkage, good glassware and free parking. What’s not to like? For another opinion see: Bistro Bleu is a French revelation – Orange County Register.