I spent a fabulous evening at West Baden Springs hotel on Friday hosting a wine pairing dinner at Sinclair’s, their five star restaurant. Wine Dinners, as they have become to be known, have been a focus of ours in the past year. The opportunity to share with foodie types a great meal paired with Oliver wine gives us a great opportunity to showcase our drier varietal wines in an intimate relaxed setting. West Baden delivered the goods for us with a big receptive group, creative and well prepared food, and fantastic service.
Have you ever read a menu where more work was put into flowery descriptions of the dish than the actual preparation? Not the case at West Baden. The “Truffle-Maple Glazed Pork Tenderloin” tasted even better than it sounds and paired perfectly with our 2006 Zinfandel. On another pairing note, I was floored by our 2009 Pinot Grigio served with a fresh and tasty Avocado Crab Salad. That wine was bottled a mere four weeks earlier and might be our best Pinot Grigio ever. Bottom line is the food was creative and well prepared and made our selection of wines all the better.
I had the opportunity to spend a little time at each table during the evening and there were two common comments; “I had no idea that you made wine this good,” and “We come here all the time. We love West Baden.” This grand hotel has a rich history culminating with its recent resurrection by Bloomington’s iconic entrepreneur, Bill Cook. I always wondered how Bill Cook manages his diverse enterprises. After my experience at West Baden I believe I know the answer: Hire the best and get out of their way.
West Baden is an amalgam of history and modernity – 1800s ambiance and a flat screen HDTV in your room. Mix in wonderful food, first rate service, and maybe 18 holes of golf and you have a first class resort. Don’t take my word for it. Treat yourself to weekend at West Baden and see for yourself.