Friday, December 17, 2010

Baby why don't we go... down to Coconuts, with Cotes-du-Rhone

Aruba Jamaica ooh I wanna take ya
Bermuda Bahama come on pretty mama
Key Largo Montego baby why don't we go...

Off Ramona street in Palo Alto, there's a place called Coconuts. That's where you wanna go to get away from it all! (remember Beach Boys?)

Oh those hearty delicious Caribbean flavors! Makes me feel on vacation every time. They have "di small tings", "di big tings", all kinds of "tings" :)!

The place is perfect for family style eating, and passing a magnum around like in a communal wine. The wine pairing is not always easy with that jerk-laden, spicy, peppery, limey, sweet, beany, and all-kinds-of-other-flavors filled cuisine. But the 2009 Saint Cosme Cotes-du-Rhone 100% Syrah-based magnum tames those "tings" like a crusty old cowboy. The wine basically tastes like the liquid version of the Caribbean food - hearty, spicy, sweet-and-sour, thick and satisfying. Not sophisticated (and you can hardly expect that from a basic Cotes-du-Rhone), but neither is the food, the wine is sure as heck worth $30 a magnum. Gotta love St. Cosme - always a great value and never a disappointment. Drinking out of a magnum is not only a lotta fun, but it allows to greet your friends at home with the wine, cheese and charcuterie, and then "bridge" the remainder over to the restaurant. And you might not even get charged corkage. Enjoy!

All of the above were delicious and highly recommended. From top to bottom, left to right: start at home with 2009 Saint Cosme Cotes-du-Rhone magnum with cheese and charcuterie. Then off to Coconuts: Chef Sampler Platter (Ackee Rolls, Mini Patty, Crab dip, Jerk Wings), Fried Plantain, Shrimp Creole (Gulf White Shrimp roasted in Sofrito Sauce, Tomato, Plantain Tostones), Tun Cornmeal Cakes (Caribbean Style Polenta Cake with Stewed Okra, Kabocha Squash, Lentil), Six-hour braised oxtail.

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