In Vino, Veritas

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The Domain Hotels aims to bring back the grand old days when the hotel was an integral part of café’ society.  Gulf Insider sat down with Sommelier Chad Cloete to talk about his plans  to achieve this.

Perhaps, the old adage that “In vino, there is truth” has merit. And indeed when Gulf Insider sat down with Domain Sommelier, Chad Cloete to talk about his favorite topic, we were bowled over by his knowledge, extensive research, and romanticism in this area.

Chad is a South African sommelier with over ten years of experience in the trade and hospitality industry with excellent qualifications. His ambition and enthusiasm about grapes stems from two other passionate sommeliers: Christine Parkinson and Ian Cable, his mentors. In The Domain, Chad offers his culinary and gastronomic experience  on the restaurant floors of the hotel. Being a colorful storyteller, he enchants  guests with his knowledge and passion for the vine and is especially sought after for advice on vino and food pairings.

The Master Trio: Chad Cleote, Chef Rukmal, & Edwin Sarmiento
The Master Trio: Chad Cleote, Chef Rukmal, & Edwin Sarmiento

Chad wants to create a culture where grapes are at the forefront. In short, he is creating excuses for people to drink vino. One such cause for celebration is the Masters Dinner, a truly gastronomic experience that was dreamt of by the dynamic trio of Master Chef Rukmal, Sommelier Chad, and Domain Restaurant Manager Edwin Sarmiento.

Modern Day Elegance

In making the Domain a cultural destination in Manama, the Domain’s signature restaurants Imari and Le Sauvage, come into the fore bringing a tradition of elegance and grandeur. It is clear that The Domain aspires for historical significance in modern Bahrain, and with the new changes coming up, they are closer than ever to their goal.


Into this untapped grandeur, the Domain introduces the Masters Dinner, which combines a night of gastronomic adventure within the dynamic atmosphere of Le Sauvage. Priced at BD39++ net per person, it’s a great way to experience the vine culture at an inimitable price.

The Vintage inspired dinner starts off with Yellow Fin Tuna & Blue Crab Carpaccio with an avocado & mango salad paired with a 2012 Baron Philippe de Rothschild Bordeaux Blanc. It’s round and refined with fresh and floral notes that mirror the carpaccio and tropical salad. From freshness to richness, the second course is a wild chicken roulade and foie gras with dark chocolate and rum truffles paired perfectly with a 2010 Rocca delle Macie Chianti Classico. This grape is an expression of prestige has ripe cherry and earthy flavors which complement the truffle and chocolate.

Everything tastes better


The next course is a perfect foil to the second, with Seared Norwegian Salmon paired with a 2007 Jean Claude Boisett Nuits St George. The light red fruit and savoury nature of the grape is the perfect counterpoint to the rich, slightly sweet pink meat of the salmon. Guests then move on to the next course which is Grilled Black Angus Medallions with 12 months aged Beef Prosciutto and potato fondant. The meat and potatoes found its match in a 2008 Chateau Marjosse Grand vin Bordeaux. The harmonious reaction between the muscle in the meat and tannin in the grape make for a scintillating pairing.

Finally, guests are treated to Goat Cheese Cake with Blueberries & Cognac Compote. The pairing for this dish is a 2005 La Fleur d’Or, a time-tested vino from the legendary slopes of Sauterns, riding the line between sweet and tart, making it the perfect ending to a memorable meal.

Aside from the dinners, Chad is also putting together a vino calendar that would highlight and celebrate the great ancient grapes of the old world, such as Sauvignon Blanc, the infamous Sancerre and Pouilly Fumé as well as the ever adaptable and well travelled Chardonnay and Merlot varietals. Apart from all the history and culture you will get, there’s nothing quite like savoring fine vino in the presence of other culturati. We are predicting that Chad’s Open that bottle night, where fine vintage grapes will be taken out of the cellar and sold at a reduced price, will take off very quickly. Don’t forget to watch out for Chad on Social Media as he will explain to the unitiated answers to your deepest vino questions, for example “What grape do I pair with sushi?” Check out their page for more details.


Valentine’s at The Domain

The Domain is a place of unparalleled elegance year-round, but they pull out all the stops on Valentine’s Day:

The Domain’s Romantic Retreat (BHD99) includes an upgrade to a premiere room, a tantalizing, three course dinner prepared by Master Chef Rukmal at Le Sauvage, and a couple’s Chocolate Massage at Vie Lifestyle Lounge. The romantic retreat ends with a sumptuous breakfast in bed and a late check-out. This room package is available for the entire month of February 2017.

The Suite Hearts (BHD145) package is specially designed for the hopeless romantic who can enjoy the Luxury Suite, with heart-shaped chocolates, a Jacuzzi bubble bath, and breakfast in bed. A three-course dinner at Le Sauvage and late check-out are de rigeur. This package can be booked from February 12-18, 2017.



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