Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Wine and Food Pairing

Wine and Food Pairing Guide (from Vindulge)


Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Red Bordeaux & Meritage (blends)
Blackberry, boysenberry, raspberry, blueberry, plum, cherry, black currant, cassis, tea, cocoa, tobacco, green olive, vanilla, oak, smoky, mint, eucalyptus, chocolate

Lamb and beef dishes like stews.
Steak with rich sauces.
Duck, pheasants and other games.
Beef and chicken fajitas.
Chocolate desserts.
Smoked gouda cheese, cheddar cheese, and Camembert cheese.

Blackberry, boysenberry, raspberry, jam, plum, raisin, prune, rhubarb, pomegranate, vanilla. Spice (cinnamon, clove, black pepper)

Stews, pot roast.
Dishes with tomato and tomato sauces.
Pizza with red sauce.
Grilled or smoked meats.
Spicy meat dishes and curries.
Thanksgiving dinner.

Pinot Noir
Cherry (red, black, dried), blueberries, blackberries, raspberry, strawberry, rhubarb, pomegranate, mushrooms, earth (barnyard), smoke, vanilla, oak, cola, coffee, rose, tea

Great for dishes with earthy flavors.
Games like pheasants, wild boar, rabbit, quail, pigeon, and venison.
Casseroles of beef and chicken.
Salmon, lamb, pork, and mushroom dishes.


Blackberry, boysenberry, blueberry, jam, plum, prune, cherry, currant. Smoke, black pepper, white pepper, leather, vanilla, chocolate. Spices (clove, cinnamon).

Roasted meat, game
Spicy or heavily seasoned meats or hearty dishes.
Rich beef casseroles and games.
Barbecued meats (beef, ribs, lamb, pork).
Rich Vegetarian dishes.
Dark Chocolate.

Toast, yeast, nuts, Green apple, cherry, strawberry

Salty foods like potato chips
hors d’oeuvres, caviar
smoked salmon, shrimp, & Chinese food.
Egg dishes.
Intensely flavored and rich food like the foie gras.

(can be oaked or unoaked)
Green apple, pear, peach, melon. Citrus (lemon, lime, orange). Tropical fruits (pineapple, passion fruit, guava). Toast, baked bread, butter, vanilla, hazelnut, oak

Fatty fish dishes or dishes in rich sauces.
Gently flavored pasta dishes and risotto.
Chicken and shellfish recipes with cream based sauces.
Eastern and Indian dishes with creamy coconut sauces.

Sauvignon Blanc
Citrus: grapefruit, lemon, lime Melon, pear, fig, pineapple, passion fruit, quince, grassy, lemongrass, gooseberry

Goes well with tart sauces & dressings.
Goat cheese, asparagus, shellfish, chicken
Fish dishes with a squeeze of lemon
Japanese dishes like shashimi.
White fish and seafood
Salad, chicken salad and garden salad.
Vegetable and vegetable soups.

Pinot Gris (Pinot Grigio)
Peach, pear, lime, lemon, apple, apricot, nuts (nuttiness), minerals, lemongrass

Especially well with light fish dishes and foods high in acid.
Chicken salad. Mildly spicy chicken.
Oysters, smoked salmon.
Fresh vegetables.
Pasta with garlic pesto.

Apples, pear, peach, apricot, lychee. Floral (jasmine, rose, orchid). Honey, petroleum, minerals, stones, chalk

Pair with sweet and spicy dishes.
Pecan pie, sweet fruit pies and tarts and fruit custards.
Chinese and Thai foods.
Japanese dishes like sushi, sashimi, wasabi, tempura and teriyaki.
Pork and duck with fruit sauces.
Smoked fish pates.

Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Wild Mushrooms and an Onion-Garlic-Raisin Sauce

Sweet Potato Gnocchi Ingredients:
1 ½ pounds sweet potatoes, baked and peeled, cooled to room temperature
Whole wheat flour - volume dependent on moisture in potatoes
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan
1 egg white lightly beaten
Kosher salt
Freshly ground white pepper

Onion-Garlic-Raisin Sauce Ingredients:
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 large shallot, minced
½ pound mixed wild mushrooms (shitakes, porcini, chanterelles, morels) cleaned/trimmed/cut bite-size 
½ cup fresh peas, blanched, or frozen baby peas
¼ cup packed golden raisins
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup dry white wine
2 cups Chicken Stock
¼ cup Onion Soubise (see below)
½ teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
Kosher salt
Freshly ground white pepper

 To Assemble:
2 teaspoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 teaspoons minced fresh chives
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan, for serving (optional)

Prepare the Sweet Potato Gnocchi:
  1. Press the sweet potatoes through a ricer into a bowl.
  2. Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour. Transfer the riced sweet potatoes to the dusted surface. Sprinkle ½ cup of the flour over the potatoes.
  3. Sprinkle on the Parmesan. Make a well in the center and place the beaten egg white in the well along with salt and pepper to taste. From the edges of the well, using a fork, start stirring the sweet potatoes into the egg, continuing until the mixture forms a ball, taking care not to overwork the dough. If the dough seems wet and hard to handle, sprinkle and work in more flour.
  4. To test for texture, bring a small saucepan of salted water to a boil. Shape a couple of gnocchi from the dough, each about ¼ inch in diameter and 1 inch long. Place the gnocchi in the boiling water and cook until they rise to the surface, 1 to 2 minutes, and then remove with a slotted spoon. If the gnocchi fall apart during boiling, work more flour into the remaining dough, a small amount at a time.
  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, lightly dust with flour. Divide the gnocchi dough into 8 portions. On a lightly floured surface, roll each portion into a long rope about ¼ inch in diameter and 15 inches long. Cut into 1-inch pieces and arrange the pieces in one layer on the prepared baking sheet. Set aside at room temperature until ready to use, up to 2 hours.

 Prepare the Onion-Garlic-Raisin Sauce:
  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallot and mushrooms and sauté 3 then add the peas and sauté 2 more minutes until shallot is translucent.
  2. Add the garlic and raisins. When aromatic, add the wine and stir and scrape with a wooden spoon to deglaze the pan.
  3. Boil the wine until it has reduced to about 1/4 cup, 7 to 10 minutes. Pour in the stock, bring to a boil, and continue boiling until the liquid has reduced by half, about 15 minutes.
  4. While the sauce is reducing, bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
  5. When the sauce is almost done reducing, stir the Onion Soubise, and rosemary into the sauce, season to taste with salt and pepper, cover, and keep warm.

Assemble the Dish:
  1. Place the gnocchi in the boiling water and cook until they rise to the surface, 1 to 2 minutes. Drain well, and then add the gnocchi to the pan of sauce. Stir gently to coat and combine.
  2. Serve immediately, spooning the gnocchi, sauce, and mushrooms onto heated plates or serving bowls. Garnish with parsley and chives and pass Parmesan at the table, if desired.


Onion (or Onion and Garlic) Soubise (use to thicken sauces in place of butter)

2 Tablespoon oil
5 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 head of garlic (10 - 12 cloves), finely chopped (optional)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup Chicken Stock
  1. In a medium nonstick skillet or saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and the garlic (if using, for Onion and Garlic Soubise) and reduce heat to medium-low. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions have softened and turned a deep caramel brown, 60 to 90 minutes.
  2. Transfer the onions to blender and add the broth. Pulse until pureed. If need be, add more stock. Transfer to a nonreactive container and refrigerate until ready to use.