Porsche and Wine

Porsche and Wine

9th Dec 2010

Vroom Vroom

Thewineremedy has done a food and wine matching guide, so why not a Porsche and wine matching guide? Well Porsche, food and wine to be exact. Our team was invited on November 9th to the press launch of the Fuel your Passion experience at the Porsche experience centre at Silverstone. When we first heard of the evening’s title, Fuel your Passion, our minds drifted back to some 'select' clubs in Berlin we were coerced into visiting last year. We didn't know where to put our faces. Thankfully this event bore no relation!

Fuel your Passion was apparently conceived by Porsche's hard working PR men and women after people who had visited the restaurant for lunch and a spin at the Porsche experience centre (must do wonders for your appetite being driven around a racing track) asked if they could use the restaurant in a stand-alone capacity. Voilà, Fuel your passion was born, a series of seasonal evening dining experiences at the Porsche Restaurant in conjunction with four of Britain’s most celebrated Michelin-star chefs. This was the press taster with the first public evening in March 2011. 

We liked the concept - be driven around at high speed and if you are not feeling too queasy afterwards then feast on 6 courses of Michelin starred food. Our chef for the evening was Nigel Howarth, Chef Proprietor of Northcote Manor and founder of the Obsession food festival that takes place at his hotel in January. An affable chap, Nigel explained why the evening would appeal to motor sport lovers as well as those people (like us) who are primarily interested in the food and the wine. The novelty was not lost on us, but if the food was awful, the location is meaningless. Thankfully it did not disappoint.

Porsche have kept the formulae nice and simple. The dining experience includes a unique tasting menu, canapés and glass of champagne on arrival, with an additional wine pairing service available from the sommelier. Four evenings, four chefs. Oh and a spin in a Porsche beforehand. We were met by a fleet of Porsche cars, although sadly not any 911's. Always wanted a spin in one of those. On arrival, as promised, we were given some Champagne in the foyer.

The restaurant overlooks the experience centre, with Porsche cars dotted around and names of famous racing drivers. Nice novelty to be able to sit in cars we could never afford in a million years. We now see what all the fuss is about Porsche cars, you feel like you’re in a well manicured tank with power and grace. We think there should be a raffle with a car as top prize. Suggested it to the head of PR, she will come back to us!

After the introductions and ogling of cars, dinner was served. Now, we should mention at this point that we are not fussy eaters, only two things in the world we are not fans of - Beetroot and goat's cheese. So pretty slim chance those two would turn up.

 The starter was goats cheese ice cream and beetroot. We politely declined and enjoyed the very unrose like rose (actually had some flavour) while contemplating our setting. The Porsche restaurant is for lovers of minimalism, quite simple and clinical in design. We liked that fact that there will only ever be 64 covers, you don't feel crowded or hemmed in at the restaurant. Let's hope they don't decide to squeeze in a few more tables!

Next course was Beef Tartar, exquisitely presented and designed for those who hate overcooked food. It's not an easy dish to make and to be fair, it was brilliantly executed. Our personal favourite though was the lobster tail and squid Risotto that followed; the flavours were in perfect harmony. The John Dory hit the right note as did the rich and intensely flavoured deer (Bambi was delicious one very tall Irish Woman exclaimed). Less of the guilt trip please. By now we were too full for dessert but the Sauternes finished off the feast nicely.

We ate very well that evening. However, the wine was slightly less inspiring, bit of a mixed bag. The rose and the Sauternes were very good but the 2007 Chablis was typical of the vintage - lots of woody tannin cannot disguise the fact that it pissed down all summer in Chablis that year. We were served Zinfandel with the deer, which didn't really work. Basically it was fur coat but no knickers. You were left wanting some Hermitage or similar.

Still, minor points should not detract from what was overall a very lively and successful event. You can instantly see the appeal of these evenings for food and petrol junkies. The atmosphere was relaxed and fun; the service provided by the always professional BaxterStorey catering group was excellent. You take a spin and feast on delicious food.

Just make sure they take you for a ride before, not after dinner!

Full Details:

·        The Porsche Restaurant at Silverstone launches “Fuel your Passion”, a programme of seasonal dining evenings hosted by Michelin starred chefs

·        Priced from £95/head, each evening features a seasonally inspired tasting menu designed by the host culinary expert

·      To register interest for evenings running in March, June, September and November 2011, call 08443 573 911  


                                     Fuel Your Passion with Nigel Howarth  

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