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Pappardelle with boar sausage ragu.  Sautéed mustard greens on the side.

For this dinner, the wine sort of chooses itself.

2010 Fabbrica di San Martino Colline Lucchesi Rosso

A Chianti-style blend, albeit from the environs of Lucca rather than from Chianti.  Biodynamic but not natural.

This isn't an earth-shaker.  It's just a good wine.  Very highly typical -- and with pappardelle with boar sausage ragu, that's exactly what you want.

Black cherries.  Dust.  Dry Tuscan soil.

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I read all these threads about these fabulous dinners people have at home, with photogenic, obviously labor-intensive food, and legendary bottles.   I can't speak for anybody else on this board, bu

If I'm not enjoying wine when I'm seventy, then my nieces and nephews are going to be stuck with a shitload of wine they won't know what to do with.   Or my next wife, who by then should be almost

Whaddya mean? That's more than half the meals I serve. Tossed with great care, I might add.

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I'm not gonna say what it is (cuz it's something no one with any taste would ever do), but I have worked out a perfected (to my taste) easy way to "sautée" greens that overcooks them just to the point I prefer -- and not beyond.

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Leftover piperade made the same classic way.

I think it's important to make a new dish the second time.  Cuz you can fix whatever minor (or not) fuckups you committed the first time.  For this, that mainly had to do with the preparation of the egg component.  Meanwhile, of course, the piperade itself was only getting better sitting in my refrigerator for a week and a half or so.

Steamed dragon's tongue beans on the side (and some just-out-of-the-oven Olmsted baguette).

Aside from geographic propinquity (sorta), I thought the bell-pepper accents of Mencia would make a Bierzo a good pairing for this beyond-classic Basque composition.  Even if the Bierzo I pulled was a little big and grand for this breakfast-for-dinner dish.

2018 La Senda (Diego Losada) "El Aqueronte"

This is made from old-vine pre-Phyll Mencia vines.  It's natural.

Two things to say here.  First, this wine loved this food.  In terms of pure flavor synergy, this was one of the best pairings I've ever come upon.  It just tasted like the wine wanted to be drunk with this food.

Second, at risk of being hyperbolic, this was, by some distance, the best Bierzo I've ever drunk.  It has everything -- the fruit, the vegetables, the herbs -- in good proportions, just about perfectly balanced, coming through clearly -- with just a touch of piquant funk.

I'm gonna watch out for this producer.  And so should you.

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Reheated leftover Lahori Chilli food.

Because I'm pigheaded, I keep insisting on drinking red wines with food like this cuz one of the dishes is a beef curry.  I am wrong.

2019 Les Vins Contés (Olivier Lamasson) R19

R__ is a lively red wine this natural Loire producer makes each year, the cépage changing depending on vintage conditions.  The best information I can find is that the 2019 cépage contains a slight majority of Cab Franc and a substantial minority of Grolleau, which tastes about right:  I'm not catching any sometime participants as Côt (Malbec) and Gamay.

So in theory, a good match for this dinner:  two spicy grapes, one very light; a determinedly low-alcohol wine.  But even popped at cellar temperature, it clashed with the spicy, heavy food.

Now, though, after dinner, it's kind of a treat.  Red currants predominate.  Then it rides out on late-period Kool & the Gang lite funk.  Celebrate!

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Reheated leftover wild boar sausage ragu, over papardelle.  There was no question this ragu would be even better left over -- and it was.

More sautéed mustard greens on the side.  Why mess with success?  (Or disappoint voyager?)

It's unimaginative of me, but I can't think to drink anything other than a Tuscan red with this, preferably a Chianti-like blend if not a Chianti.

2012 Poggio al Sole Chianti Classico

This is overwhelmingly Sangiovese, with trace amounts of some other Chianti grapes.  And I think it suffers a bit for that.  The other grapes -- it sounds so much better if I say altre uve -- bring something to the party, brightening the flavor profile and making it less monochromatic.  That was somewhat lost here, as there was so little of them in the blend.  If I wanted a Rosso de Montalicino, I'd have opened one.

Not that this was bad.  Sangiovese by itself is a pretty delicious grape, with its forward black cherry flavor.  And Chiantis are endlessly attractive, no matter what their blend, for their characteristic dustiness (I have no idea where it comes from or why they all seem to have it -- but they do).  2012 was far from the greatest Chianti vintage any of us has seen.  But this was fine.  Fine enough, anyway.

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I think I'm turning Portuguese I really think so.

I put on some Fado and made Bacalhau à Brás (the cod quick-desalinated The Wilfrid Way(c)).  Sautéed kale on the side.  (Kale is the great unifier:  no one ever thinks it's overcooked.)

2017 Quinta de Serradinha Vinho Branco (Arinto e Fernao Pires)

This wine may not quite be orange but it's deep yellow.  Amber even.  It's made north of Lisbon, in an isolated village called Leiria, in a totally trad low-intervention way (foot-trodden, even).  The cool ocean climate keeps the alcohol level down.

This is one tasty wine.  Vibrant grapefruit.  Almonds almonds almonds.  Minerals aplenty.  A sharp acid finish that was just what the eggs in the cod dish wanted.

I'll bet they drink this with Bacalhau à Brás in Leiria.

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D'Artagnan Berkshire Porterhouse Chop (I'm giving the full commercial name because this is SUCH a superb product) with red currant/sour cherry sauce.  Sautéed purslane on the side.  And roast crookneck squash and (gorgeous) cherry tomatoes.

At first I was thinking of a Cab Franc for the currants.  But then, when I found I had some sour cherries to add to the sauce as well, my thoughts turned to Pinot Noir (I mean:  pork).  Wait!  How about a Loire Pinot Noir?

2015 Dominique Roger Sancerre Rouge "Cuvée la Jauline"

I'm not a big fan of Sancerre Rouges, to tell you the truth.  To me, they have the same flaws as Spätburgunders:  Pinot Noir without the friendly generosity.  (Of course, many New World Pinots show you that Pinot can be too friendly and generous.)

But, with this food, this hit the spot.  The fruit is dark, so it matches the dark fruit of that sauce.

After, by itself, it's seeming a bit one-dimensional.  But that one dimension is pretty pleasant.

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How are you cooking this pork, Sneak?   I sourced this locally and was not impressed.   I think I undercooked it, ie too rare, but it didn’t sing to us.   Previous pink Niman Ranch, also pastured, pork had better flavor and texture.   Where did I go wrong?

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I couldn't remember how I cooked it last time, which was perfect.  This time, I overcooked it very slightly:  2 minutes each side on high heat, and then an additional 3 minutes each side on low heat.

It was only overcooked a little.

But last time was like perfect.

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Thanks.    I have 4 more on hand to hone my skill.    Their reputation is such that I'm sure our indifference was my fault.    I think next time I'll 2 minutes each side and then finish off in the oven, usually fail-proof for pink interior.   

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