Peacock Wild Ferment Cabernet Sauvignon

Grilled Steak

© Photo by Steve Giralt

Perfectly Grilled Steak

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 1 1/4-to-1 1/2-inch-thick boneless rib-eye or New York strip steaks (about 12 ounces each) or filets mignons (8 to 10 ounces each), trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons canola or extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. About 20 minutes before grilling, remove the steaks from the refrigerator and let sit, covered, at room temperature.
  2. Heat your grill to high. Brush the steaks on both sides with oil and season liberally with salt and pepper. Place the steaks on the grill and cook until golden brown and slightly charred, 4 to 5 minutes. Turn the steaks over and continue to grill 3 to 5 minutes for medium-rare (an internal temperature of 135°F), 5 to 7 minutes for medium (140°F) or 8 to 10 minutes for medium-well (150°F).
  3. Transfer the steaks to a cutting board or platter, tent loosely with foil and let rest 5 minutes before slicing.

© Recipe courtesy of Bobby Flay for Food Network Magazine.

MAY WINE CLUB:

Bold wine Style logoPeacock_CABSAVNV (1)False Bay Vineyards
Peacock Wild Ferment Cabernet Sauvignon

Stellenbosch, South Africa

BOLD WINE STYLE

A wine that portrays typical varietal character along with a lot of elegance and accessibility. On the nose you can enjoy subtle red berries, a hint of chocolate and green spices. The palate has a lifted freshness and soft tannins which are well integrated- the fruit also carries through well to the aftertaste. It’s great enjoyed on its own, but also pairs well with a variety of dishes ranging from a simple tomato-based pasta dish to a juicy sirloin steak.

Varietal: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis:
13.4% alcohol / volume
TA: 6.3 g/l
pH:
3.46
RS:
2.6 g/l

“Cabernet Sauvignon has always been seen as a big, bold and very tannic wine…the king of the reds. It is traditionally marketed as a wine to keep for at least three years before even thinking of opening a bottle. But at Waterkloof we believe it does not necessarily have to be big and gutsy to make an impression. We look for vineyard sites that are able to produce wines with notable elegance and freshness, allied with a fine texture.” – False Bay Vineyards

HARVEST AND PRODUCTION:
The grapes for our Peacock Wild Ferment Cabernet Sauvignon are sourced from the cooler slopes of the Helderberg ward on the coastal outreaches of Stellenbosch. Deep red soils provide moisture and nutrients, which give this Cabernet its supple, dark berry character. This cooler area also allows a longer ripening period, which imparts balanced flavors and elegant tannins to this red varietal. False Bay Vineyards use very minimal intervention during their winemaking process. The grapes are tasted regularly to determine the optimal ripeness and taste. Wines are hand-harvested after the grapes are de-stemmed. The juice is naturally fermented using “wild yeasts”, allowing for the flavors of the vineyard to be further expressed in the bottle. The skins are juice are mixed using two punch-downs or two pump-overs per day. The wine is aged in older 225L barrels for 9 months, after which it underwent a light filtration and a small dosage of sulphur is added before finally bottled. No other additions such as tartaric acid or enzymes were added.

ABOUT FALSE BAY VINEYARDS:
Named after South Africa’s most iconic bay, which frames much of the country’s premium wine-lands, False Bay Vineyards, was born from a desire to make ‘real’ wine affordable. The sister company of Waterkloof Winery, False Bay Vineyards, produces two collections: the earlier drinking, yet refined Peacock Wild Ferment range, named after the brightly plumed birds conspicuous in and around Waterkloof’s vineyards and the False Bay wine range of easy-drinking yet quality driven wines. Learn more about False Bay Vineyards here.

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May Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Lamb Chops Sizzled with Garlic

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 1/2-inch-thick lamb loin chops (about 2 pounds fatty tips trimmed)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • dried thyme
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 10 small garlic cloves (halved)
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • crushed red pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Season the lamb with salt and pepper and sprinkle lightly with thyme. In a very large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the lamb chops and garlic and cook over moderately high heat until the chops are browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn the chops and garlic and cook until the chops are browned, about 2 minutes longer for medium meat. Transfer the chops to plates, leaving the garlic in the skillet.
  2. Add the water, lemon juice, parsley and crushed red pepper to the pan and cook, scraping up any browned bits stuck to the bottom, until sizzling, about 1 minute. Pour the garlic and pan sauce over the lamb chops and serve immediately.

© Recipe courtesy of Janet Mendel from Food and Wine.

MAY WINE CLUB:

Bold wine Style logoCircle-of-Life-RedWaterkloof
Circle of Life Red

Stellenbosch, South Africa

BOLD WINE STYLE

A perfectly integrated blend with great length, combining the spiciness of the Syrah, the fresh fruits of the Petit Verdot and juiciness from the Merlot. The introduction is fresh and fruity with good acidity, evolving into riper flavors and herbaceous notes, and with elegant tannins and light acids on the finish. It is very versatile and will complement numerous dishes, but the winery recommends enjoying it with a hearty piece of lamb.
 
Varietal: 26% Syrah, 24% Merlot, 26% Petit Verdot and 24% Cabernet Franc
Analysis: 13-14% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.52
TA: 5.2 g/l
VA: 0.7
Residual Sugar: 2.3
Production:
17,400 bottles produced
 

Circle of Life tells the story of Waterkloof: A once conventionally farmed vineyard with great potential, that – since Paul Boutinot took over the property – has been transformed into a living, breathing organic and biodynamic vineyard by Farm Manager Christiaan Loots and his team. Waterkloof winery strives to produce distinctive, yet balanced wines using traditional, organic and biodynamic methods. They work with nature, not against it. Chickens, sheep and work-horses have unique and integral parts within the vineyard. Their soils are free of chemicals, and instead are kept healthy using plant extracts, fungi and bacteria from their own organic compost. The winery continuously works to understand their vineyards to harness the individual characteristics of each vineyard block. Waterkloof’s objective with Circle of Life was to produce two blends that encapsulate all the varying terroir characteristics and grape varietals found on Waterkloof.

HARVEST AND PRODUCTION:
All grapes are hand-picked and sorted in the vineyards, then brought to their cellars by their work-horses. The grapes are then hand-sorted again at the winery to ensure only the best berries are being used. The sorted grapes are then placed into wooden fermenters using their gravity system. This fermentation process starts naturally with yeast present on the grapes to enhance the flavors from the vineyards. Throughout the fermentation process, the winery performs soft punch downs twice a day to gently and slowly extract the tannins. The wines will spend around 30 days on the skins – give or take depending on taste. After the maceration time on the skins, the wine is ran down using gravity, no pumping is incorporated. The grape skins also fall through into the basket press and are softly pressed to gently extract every last bit of wine, aroma and color. The varietals are then aged separately in French oak for about 18 months. After the aging process, Waterkloof blends the Syrah (26%), Merlot (24%), Petit Verdot (26%), and Cabernet Franc (24%) together, then keeps in wooden fermenters for another 9 months. This wine is unfined and gently filtered.

ABOUT WATERKLOOF:
In 1993 Paul Boutinot commenced his search for a vineyard site with the potential to produce truly fine wine with a defining sense of origin. The classic areas, capable of growing naturally balanced grapes such as the Cote d’Or, Chablis, Paulliac, Barolo, etc. were either unavailable or unattainable (rich men’s toys), so he had to find a new classic. It took ten years to narrow the search down to a small area on the south-facing slopes of the Schapenberg, overlooking False Bay in the Cape. As soon as he was led up a steep ravine opening out into a hidden amphitheater of potential, all his experience and intuition told him: ‘THIS IS IT!’ Just like that, Waterkloof was born, and the hard work began. Learn more about the history of Waterkloof here.

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Château Roc de Candale

tagliatelles-aux-morilles-et-champignons-de-paris-entete

© Photo by Les Vins de Saint-Emilion

Tagliatelle with Morels and Paris Mushrooms

This mushroom pasta pairs beautifully with the notes from the Merlot and Cabernet Franc blend of Château Roc de Candale. We have found a French recipe from the Saint-Émilion region in France, however, for ingredients more easily accessible in the United States, this Creamy Pasta with Mushrooms from Bon Appétit is a good alternative to try.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1.1 lbs (500 g) fresh Tagliatelle pasta
  • 1/3 cup (25 g) dried morels (or substitute dried porcini or shiitake mushrooms)
  • 1 cup (250 g) fresh Paris mushrooms (substitute white or Crimini mushrooms)
  • 1 leek (white part)
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 16.9 fl. oz. or about 2 cups (50 cl) light cream (about 18% fat content)
  • sunflower oil
  • nut oil
  • salt and pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. The day before, rehydrate the mushrooms in water for half an hour. Rinse to remove sand and then soak them again in 2 cups (50 cl) of fresh cream. Place the preparation in the refrigerator overnight.
  2. The next day, drain the mushrooms and keep the liquid cream. Peel and cut the Paris mushrooms into thin strips. Slice the leek and onion.
  3. Sauté the onion, leek and mushrooms in an oiled pan. Add salt and pepper. Wet it if necessary.
  4. After ten minutes, add the fresh cream, filtered through a fine sieve. Stir regularly and adjust seasoning. Cook for 10 minutes.
  5. When cooked, boil a large pot of salted water. Cook the Tagliatelle.
  6. Once the pasta is cooked and drained, serve immediately, if you like, with a drizzle of walnut oil from Périgord.

© Recipe courtesy of Les Vins de Saint-Emilion.

APRIL WINE CLUB:

Mellow style logoChateau-Roc-de-Candale-bottle-webMagali & Thibaut Decoster Vineyards
Château Roc de Candale

Saint-Émilion Grand Cru, France

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Château Roc de Candale has a bright purple color. The flattering bouquet is charming thanks to fine notes of spices. The wine is immediately pleasing with notes of fresh, ripe and juicy fruits. Château Roc de Candale offers sophisticated and spontaneous enjoyment.

Varietal: 90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc
Analysis:
13.5% alcohol / volume
Harvest: By hand, in small crates
Average Yield: 25 hl/ha
Vinification: Soaking, pigeages (punching down the cap), and malolactic fermentation in barrels
Fermentation: 30 days
Vats: Wooden
Aging: 12 months in barrels
Production: 23,000 Bottles
Oenologist Consultant: Stéphane Derenoncourt

ABOUT THE VINEYARD
Château Roc de Candale was previously called Vieux Château Haut Béard. Its vineyard is close to that of Château de Candale and is planted at the foot of Saint-Emilion’s south-facing slope. The former owner brought together the two estates when he acquired Vieux Château Haut Béard after having purchased Château de Candale. Today, each growth has its own vineyard and cellar. In this way, the identity and style of each of them are preserved. 
Château Roc de Candale is planted on a more clay-silt terroir which gives the wine greater suppleness in its early years. Being less complex than its neighbor, it is a wine for more immediate enjoyment. Learn more here. 

ABOUT DECOSTER VINEYARDS:

Their story began in 2004 when Thibaut and Magali became wine-growers at Clos des Jacobins, though they had little ties to the world of wine-growing. Both came from Limoges, and they studied business and marketing in France and England. Eventually, Thibaut moved to the Bordeaux area and was taken on as a vineyard worker at a wine estate in Léognan. There, for a period of 3 years in the field, he practiced all the vine-growing tasks required to produce high-end reds and whites. In 2003, an opportunity came along for Thibaut and Magali to set up in Saint-Émilion. Clos des Jacobins and Château La Commanderie were up for sale, and one year later Thibaut and Magali were the new owners of the estates. Learn more about their story here. 

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Pierre Jean Sauvignon Blanc

maryland-crab-cakes

© Photo by Sally’s Baking Addiction

Maryland Crab Cakes 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 Large egg
  • ¼ cup (60g) mayonnaise
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (or 2 teaspoons dried)
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning (up to 1 and ½ teaspoons for a spicier kick)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, plus more for serving
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound fresh lump crab meat*
  • 2/3 cup Saltine cracker crumbs (about 14 crackers)
  • Optional: 2 Tablespoons (30g) melted salted or unsalted butter

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Whisk the egg, mayonnaise, parsley, dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay, lemon juice, and salt together in a large bowl. Place the crab meat on top, followed by the cracker crumbs. With a rubber spatula or large spoon, very gently and carefully fold together. You don’t want to break up that crab meat.
  2. Cover tightly and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day.
  3. Preheat oven to 450°F (232°C). Generously grease a rimmed baking sheet with butter or nonstick spray or line with a silicone baking mat.
  4. Using a ½ cup measuring cup, portion the crab cake mixture into 6 mounds on the baking sheet (don’t flatten). Use your hands or a spoon to compact each individual mound so there aren’t any lumps sticking out or falling apart. For extra flavor, brush each with melted butter. This is optional but recommended!
  5. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges and on top. Drizzle each with fresh lemon juice and serve warm.
  6. Cover leftover crab cakes tightly and refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

© Recipe courtesy of Sally’s Baking Addiction

APRIL WINE CLUB:

Silky styleJean-Pierre-Sauvignon-Blanc-bottle-webPierre Jean
Sauvignon Blanc
Côtes de Gasgone, France

SILKY WINE STYLE

Classically French with lively aromas of wildflower, lemongrass, apple and pear with a nuance of flint.  Delicious flavors of mandarin orange, peach, apple and pear lead to a crisp, long finish with racy acidity and more of that flinty terroir.  This wine is an ideal aperitif or will complement almost any light summer cuisine.

Varietal: 100% Sauvignon Blanc
Analysis:
11% alcohol / volume

Appellation: Côtes de Gascogne
Closure: Screw cap
Pairing: Serve between 50˚F-53.6˚F with aperitif, fresh fish, haddock, seafood, or salads

Côtes de Gascogne is located just south of Bordeaux, in the Gascony district and specializes in white wines. Most are local grape varieties but better-known varietals such as Sauvignon Blanc are borrowed from Bordeaux (to the north). About 60% of its wines are exported and young sommeliers have recently rediscovered this wine region. In 1979, an association of  Vin de Pays (country wine) was established and today includes 1400 wine farmers. The Pierre Jean brand is named after one of Yvon Mau’s grandsons, who developed the design for the bottle. The Pierre Jean series consists of very accessible wines that are a party every day. The beautifully styled bottle of course also contributes to this. 

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April Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Beef Tenderloin with Roasted Shallots

Beef Tenderloin with Shallots

© Photo by All Recipes

INGREDIENTS:

  • ¾ pound shallots, halved lengthwise and peeled
  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • ¾ cup port wine
  • 1 ½ teaspoons tomato paste
  • 2 pounds beef tenderloin roast, trimmed
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 slices bacon, diced
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 4 sprigs watercress, for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). In a 9-inch pie pan, toss shallots with oil to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Roast until shallots are deep brown and very tender, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine beef broth and port. Bring to a boil. Cook over high heat until the volume is reduced by half, about 30 minutes. Whisk in tomato paste. Set aside.
  3. Pat beef dry; sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper. In a large roasting pan, set over medium heat on the stove top, sauté bacon until golden. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels. Add beef to pan; brown on all sides over medium high heat, about 7 minutes.
  4. Transfer pan to oven. Roast beef until meat thermometer inserted into center registers 125°F (50°C) for medium rare, about 25 minutes. Transfer beef to platter. Tent loosely with foil.
  5. Spoon fat off top of pan drippings in roasting pan. Place pan over high heat on stove top. Add broth mixture, and bring to boil; stir to scrape up any browned bits. Transfer to a medium saucepan, and bring to simmer. Mix 1 ½ tablespoon butter and flour in small bowl to form smooth paste; whisk into broth mixture, and simmer until sauce thickens. Whisk in remaining butter. Stir in roasted shallots and reserved bacon. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Cut beef into ½ inch thick slices. Spoon some sauce over, and garnish with watercress.

© Recipe courtesy of Christine L. from All Recipes.

APRIL WINE CLUB:

Mellow style logoChateau-de-Bel-Air-Lalande-de-Pomerol-bottle-webChâteau de Bel-Air
Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon

Lalande de Pomerol, France

MELLOW WINE STYLE

On the nose, Château de Bel-Air presents notes of red fruit and floral aromas; on the palate, a harmonious balance between flesh and tannins means it can be enjoyed after just a few years of cellaring. A delicate wine that is a perfect partner for refined dishes.
 
Varietal: 73% Merlot, 19% Cabernet Franc, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis: 13-14% alcohol / volume
Viticulture: Culture Raisonnée, soil tilling or cover cropping
Harvest: Mechanical, with sorting in the cellar
Winemaking: Parcellary, in thermo-regulated concrete vats


Mentioned in the Cocks & Feret guides as one of the best wines of the appellation as early as 1922, Château de Bel-Air is situated on a sunny plateau that gently slopes southward. The historical quality of its wines and its privileged position, which guarantees the vineyard ideal sun exposure year-round, inspired owner Michel de Laet Derache to acquire the property in 2011. The vines, averaging 40 years of age, are planted on a terroir of gravel brought from the volcanic Massif Central by rivers during the quaternary era, with layers of iron rich clay. In order to best express the nuances of the site, the vineyard is managed and vinified plot by plot, with a respect for the different ages of the vines, varietals, and rootstocks. Vinification takes place in thermo-regulated concrete tanks. The wine is then mostly aged in oak barrels (45% new) for 12-18 months. 

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Casas del Toqui Barrel Series Pinot Noir

Simple Spaghetti Carbonara

pasta-carbonara_Chelsie Craig

© Photo by Chelsie Craig at Bon Appétit

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 tbsp. kosher salt, plus more
  • 4 oz. guanciale (salt-cured pork jowl), pancetta (Italian bacon), or bacon
  • 2 oz. Parmesan
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 large eggs
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. spaghetti, bucatini, or rigatoni

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat 6 qt. water in a large pot over high. When water starts to steam, add 3 Tbsp. salt and cover pot with a lid (this will bring water to a boil faster).
  2. While you are waiting on the water, do a little prep. Remove 4 oz. guanciale from packaging and cut into about 1 x ¼” strips. Finely grate 2 oz. cheese and set aside one-quarter of cheese for later.
  3. Whisk 4 egg yolks and 2 whole eggs in a medium bowl until no streaks remain, then stir in remaining grated cheese. Add several cranks of pepper and set aside.
  4. Working next to pot, heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium. Add guanciale and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp around the edges, 7–10 minutes.
  5. Remove pot from heat. Using a wooden spoon, fish out guanciale and transfer to a small bowl. Pour fat into a heatproof measuring cup, then add back about 3 Tbsp. to pot. Discard any remaining fat.
  6. Cook 1 lb. pasta in boiling water, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes shy of package instructions. Just before pasta is finished, scoop out 1¾ cups pasta cooking liquid with same heatproof measuring cup.
  7. Add 1 cup reserved pasta cooking liquid to Dutch oven and bring to a boil over medium-high. Drain pasta in a colander, then transfer to Dutch oven.
  8. Cook pasta, stirring constantly and vigorously, until al dente and water is reduced by about half, about 2 minutes. Remove pot from heat.
  9. Whisk ¼ cup pasta cooking liquid into reserved egg mixture, then very slowly stream into Dutch oven, stirring constantly, until cheese is melted and egg is thickened to form a glossy sauce. Season with salt, if needed. Thin sauce with remaining ½ cup pasta cooking liquid, adding a tablespoonful at a time, until it’s the consistency of heavy cream (you most likely won’t use all of it).
  10. Mix in guanciale and divide pasta among bowls. Top with pepper and reserved cheese.

© Recipe courtesy of Claire Saffitz from Bon Appétit

MARCH WINE CLUB:

Mellow style logoCasas-Toqui-Pinot-NoirCasas del Toqui
Barrel Series Pinot Noir

Cachapoal Valley, Chile

MELLOW WINE STYLE

The Barrel Series Pinot Noir is ruby red in color with medium intensity. It has an elegant nose, with aromas of red berries and a hint of vanilla. The palate is soft, with good balance and a long finish.

Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Analysis:
14% alcohol / volume
Viticulture: Vertical espalier
Vinification:
Fermentation at 80.6ºF-84.2ºF, post fermentation maceration and aged in oak barrels for 6 months
Closure: Screw cap
Pairing: Serve between 57.2ºF-60.8ºF with pasta or a variety of cheeses

Vincent Johnson

© Photo of Vincent Johnson

Casas del Toqui Winery was created with the intention to develop and produce high quality fine wines, to be shared both domestically and internationally. They are committed to excellence by continuously managing their quality, labor safety and environmental sustainability; allowing them to be a role model for the Chilean wine industry. Their philosophy is to achieve maximum balance, quality and identity to each of their wines, to ensure they are a direct reflection of their terroirs. The majority of Casas del Toqui’s vineyards are located in Alto Cachapoal, about 100 kilometers south of Santiago. Here, the alluvial soils and the Mediterranean climate provide ideal conditions for grapevines. 

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Casas del Toqui Barrel Series Chardonnay

Pan-Seared-Salmon-and-Gnocchi-with-Sage-Butter-Sauce

© Photo by Inquiring Chef

Pan Seared Salmon and Gnocchi with Sage Butter Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

  • 16 oz gnocchi (look for gluten-free if needed)
  • 4 (4-6 oz) salmon filets
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil (I use grape seed or avocado)
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 4 leaves fresh sage, chopped
  • 2 cloves shallots, diced
  • 2 tsp lemon juice, plus lemon wedges for serving

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Boil gnocchi according to package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, pat salmon filets dry with paper towels. Season it on both sides with some salt and pepper.
  3. Place salmon, skin-side down (or on either side if using skinless salmon), in a room temperature non-stick pan with a thin layer of cooking oil. (This is the key to crisp salmon – the salmon must be placed in a cool pan and then slowly brought up to heat.)
  4. Place the pan over medium heat and cook the salmon, without moving it, until the skin is crisp and easily releases from the pan. (After it has cooked for ~5 minutes, gently nudge it with a spatula, until it easily slides around in the pan.)
  5. Turn salmon with a spatula and increase heat to medium-high. Continue cooking until the side touching the pan is golden brown and crisp and the salmon is cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes more. (It should flake easily with a fork.)
  6. Transfer salmon to a serving platter and return pan to medium-high heat.
  7. Add butter until melted. Add gnocchi, sage, and shallots. Cook, stirring constantly, until shallots are golden brown and sage is crisp.
  8. Pour gnocchi and butter sauce over salmon. Squeeze lemon juice over top.
  9. Serve salmon and gnocchi with extra lemon wedges on the side.

© Recipe courtesy of Jess Smith of Inquiring Chef

MARCH WINE CLUB:

Silky styleBarrel Series Chardonnay 2020Casas del Toqui
Chardonnay
Cachapoal Valley, Chile

SILKY WINE STYLE

This chardonnay has a complex nose, although it still maintains fresh and fruity aromas. There are dominant notes of pineapple and citrus, while the contribution of French Oak offers hints of caramel and vanilla. On the palate it has a great deal of volume, with a pleasant acidity and long finish.

Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Analysis:
13.5% alcohol / volume

Viticulture: Vertical espalier
Vinification:
Fermentation at 80˚F-84˚F, post fermentation maceration and aged in oak barrels for 6 months.
Closure:
Screw cap
Pairing: Serve between 50˚F-53˚F with salmon or white meats

Vincent Johnson

Photo of Vincent Johnson

As a wine region, Chile is truly blessed. It has a Mediterranean climate that is similar to the climate in California and France. The climate and the geographical traits have helped Chile remain one of the only locations in the world that is resistant to phylloxera, the louse that destroyed many of the world’s best vineyards in the 1800’s. Chile is going through a wine revolution and the independents have broken away from Chile’s industrial wine culture to lovingly squeeze out small lots of wines, usually using organic, even spiritually tinged theories of winemaking. This new generation is much more conscious about the environment and committed to healthy, sustainable agriculture and also for the production of wines that have a stronger connection to local traditions.

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March Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Pork Chop Recipe

© Photo by Little Ferraro Kitchen

Pan Seared Pork Chops with Garlic and Thyme

  • 1 bone in double cut pork chop, about 2 inches thick
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp grape seed oil for drizzling
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3-4 garlic cloves gently crushed and skins removed
  • 1-2 sprigs of rosemary and thyme

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Start by removing the pork chops from the fridge and bringing it closer to room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Season the pork chops with salt and pepper on all sides and get your cast iron pan hot on the stove top.
  3. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F and drizzle the skillet with a neutral oil, such as grape seed oil.
  4. Once skillet is hot, sear pork chops on all sides, about 2 minutes per side until nicely charred, then place in oven and roast for about 6-8 minutes until internal temp reaches 135°F (mostly cooked through).
  5. Place the skillet back on the stove top and add butter, garlic and herbs and as soon as butter melts, carefully tilt the pan with one hand and use your other hand to baste the infused butter onto the pork chop for another 1-2 minutes, not letting the butter burn.
  6. Once done, turn off heat and remove pork chop to another plate to rest for 10 minutes before slicing into it.

© Recipe courtesy of Samantha Ferraro of Little Ferraro Kitchen.

MARCH WINE CLUB:

Bold wine Style logoTerroir Selection Carmenere 2019Casas del Toqui
Terrior Selection Carménère
Cachapoal Valley, Chile

BOLD WINE STYLE

Cherry red color with violet hues. Aromas of black fruits, chocolate and spices, with hints of currants, nuts and tobacco. On the palate there are silky tannins. This wine is juicy and well balanced, with a lingering finish.

Varietal: 100% Carménère
Analysis:
14.5% alcohol / volume
Aging: Native yeast vinification in neutral French oak
Viticulture:
Vertical espalier
Vinification:
Fermentation at 80.6ºF-84.2ºF, post fermentation maceration and aged in oak barrels for 12 months
Closure: Natural cork
Pairing: Serve between 60˚F-64˚F with pork chops and sausages

ABOUT CASAS DEL TOQUI:
In 1994, Château Larose Trintaudon, a major French wine producer from the Bordeaux region, partnered with traditional wine producers from the Cachapoal region in Chile and together they founded Casas del Toqui. Recently, their legacy was recaptured by a Chilean family with a great passion for wine, contributing with their own unique and distinctive mark.

The Cachapoal Valley is renowned worldwide for its Mediterranean weather, where the Coastal Range and the Andes create one of the best soils in the region to produce high quality wines. The terroir of Casas del Toqui includes a wide range of soil types. Each plot of land is handled individually according to the unique characteristics of the terroir, which through a coordinated harvest, vinification and barrel management allows Casas del Toqui to keep individual lots to show the purest expression of each component before crafting the different blends.

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M by Martellotto

Garlic Butter Cod Fish Recipe

Cod Fish Recipe

© Photo by Primavera Kitchen

INGREDIENTS:

  • Cod fish fillets – This is an affordable white fish that takes on the flavors it’s cooked with. Haddock, Pollack, or Mahi Mahi would make great substitutes.
  • Olive oil – Or use another neutral cooking oil with a high smoke point like vegetable, avocado, or safflower oil.
  • Spices: garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, black pepper
  • Unsalted butter
  • Garlic Lemon zest
  • Green onionsfor garnish

DIRECTIONS:

Season the fish

  1. Pat the fish dry with a paper towel so the seasonings adhere better to the surface. It will also help the fish crisp on the outside when seared.
  2. Season both sides of the cod fillets with the spices. It may help to mix them together in a small bowl first to get even coverage.

Cook

  1. Next, sear the fish on both sides in hot oil.
  2. Continue cooking until the fish flakes apart, flipping again halfway through.
  3. Melt the butter in the pan with garlic and lemon zest. Coat the fish in the garlic butter.

Garnish and serve

  1. Remove the pan from heat and transfer the fish to a serving dish.
  2. Then, sprinkle chopped green onions over the top and serve with your favorite sides.

© Recipe courtesy of Olivia of Primavera Kitchen

FEBRUARY WINE CLUB:

Silky stylem-by-martellotto-chardonnayMartellotto Winery
M by Martellotto
Sta. Rita Hills, California

SILKY WINE STYLE

“A Chardonnay lover’s Chardonnay. Sourced from the Spear Vineyards, located a few miles west of the winery in Buellton, off Highway 246 in the Santa Rita Hills. This area is famous for the best, cool climate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. Spear Vineyard is CCOF certified organic and located near Seasmoke, which charges $100-200/bottle of their wines!” – Martellotto Winery

The wine was stainless tank fermented and then rested in neutral French oak barrels for 12 months. This Chardonnay has a lovely natural acidity and a light zip in the mouth from the sandy loam vineyard that was covered by the Pacific Ocean millennia ago. The wine is light, delicate, and an eminently drinkable quaffer that pairs with a variety of foods. If you love Chablis and dry, nuanced Chardonnay, then you will love this wine. The M by Martellotto was naturally produced and organically farmed.

Analysis: 13.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
AVA:
Sta. Rita Hills
Soil:
Sandy Loam
Farming:
Organic
Production: 14 barrels
Oak: 11 months, neutral French Oak

“Santa Barbara remains one of the most fascinating regions in the world. Rich history, a culture of site-specific wines and reasonable pricing make Santa Barbara one of the most exciting and rewarding regions for consumers who want to discover distinctive, high-quality artisan wines that speak of place.” – A. Galloni

ABOUT MARTELLOTTO WINERY:

Winemaker, Greg Martellotto

Winemaker, Greg Martellotto

The Martellotto family roots trace back to a 17th century winery in Alberobello in Puglia, Italy. Over four centuries later, winemaker Greg Martellotto continues his family’s viticultural legacy, by making enticing, vibrant wines that speak to his own viticultural passion. From his ancestors’ traditional winemaking in Southern Italy, to his grandfather’s homemade wine during Prohibition, to production in an innovative warehouse facility shared with Barbieri Wine Co. and Lo-Fi wines, Martellotto Winery produces remarkable wines of consequence, consistency, value, and varietal expression. With each bottle, it is the Martellotto family’s desire to share extraordinary, artisanal wines.

THE MARTELLOTTO LABEL:
Professor John Langdon is famous for creating Ambigrams and inspiring Dan Brown to incorporate his graphics in the books and movie around The DaVinci Code. He has only designed one wine label, and that is for Martellotto Winery. The Martellotto label is a spiritual totem, symmetrical down the middle, and a mirror image. The ARTE of the name engages the Art & Science of winemaking. The bottle enumeration demonstrates the handmade, limited availability of these wines.

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Martellotto Melodeon

Brown Butter-Sage Chicken Wings Recipe

Credit: © Todd Porter & Diane Cu

Credit: © Todd Porter & Diane Cu

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 to 8 small sage leaves
  • 1 tablespoon ground sage
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 pound chicken wings, split
  • Kosher or sea salt, to taste
  • Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup all-purpose flout, for dredging
  • Vegetable Oil (or other high flashpoint oil), for frying

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Melt the butter and stir in the garlic. Continue cooking the butter until it is light brown and develops a nutty aroma.
  2. Remove the butter from the heat and stir in the sage leaves, ground sage, Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar. Set aside.

  3. Rinse the chicken wings and pat them dry. Generously season the chicken with salt and black pepper. Dredge the wings in flour, shaking off any excess flour, and set aside.

  4. In a large saucepan or deep fryer, heat the oil to about 375°. Fry the chicken wings in small batches until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Shake off any excess oil and place on paper towels to drain. Continue frying the chicken in batches until all of the wings are cooked.

    Toss the wings in the brown butter sauce and serve warm.

© Recipe courtesy of Todd Porter and Diane Cu of Food and Wine Magazine 

FEBRUARY WINE CLUB:

Martellotto ChardonnaySilky styleMartellotto Winery
Melodeon Chardonnay
Sta. Rita Hills, California

SILKY WINE STYLE

“A Chardonnay lover’s Chardonnay. The fruit in the Martellotto Chardonnay is from the Spear Vineyard, located a few miles west of the winery in Buellton, off Highway 246 in the Santa Rita Hills. This area is famous for the best Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes and we are pleased to be sourcing such high quality fruit. Spear Vineyard is farmed organically and located very near Seasmoke, which charges $100-$200/bottle for their wines!” – Martellotto Winery

This Melodeon Chardonnay was barrel fermented and has a lovely natural acidity and a light zip in the mouth from the sandy loam vineyard that was covered by the Pacific Ocean millennia ago. A broad mouthfeel and yummy vivacity combine with layers of vanilla, toasted hazelnuts, and nutmeg singing into the finish. If you love Chablis and dry, nuanced Chardonnay with layers of depth and a crunchy deliciousness, then you will love this wine.

Analysis: 13.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
AVA:
Sta. Rita Hills
Soil:
Sandy Loam
Farming:
Organic
Production: 14 barrels
Oak: 11 months, 20% new French Oak

“The daring, innovative spirit embodied by the region’s young producers and a vast range of first-class sites creates conditions that are idea for the production of distinctive, pedigreed wines of the highest level. Best of all, with few exceptions, these wines remain under the radar and very fairly priced relative to global peers.” – Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media

ABOUT MARTELLOTTO WINERY:

Greg Martellotto

Winemaker, Greg Martellotto

The Martellotto family roots trace back to a 17th century winery in Alberobello in Puglia, Italy. Over four centuries later, winemaker Greg Martellotto continues his family’s viticultural legacy, by making enticing, vibrant wines that speak to his own viticultural passion. Located in Buellton, California – in the hottest new AVA region of Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara – Martellotto Winery focuses on vibrant Bordeaux varietals, with a vineyard first philosophy of gentle handling and minimal intervention.

Through a deft combination of sourcing sustainably farmed grapes from California’s choicest vineyards and deploying creative, progressive blending and fermenting techniques, Martellotto produces outstanding wines that capture pinpoint varietal expression.

Greg has nearly two decades of diverse experience in all facets of the wine business, including import and distribution and working with some of the greatest wines and wineries in California, Piemonte, Tuscany, and Bordeaux, as well as Spain, Chile and Argentina. Consultant Mike Roth, an authority in the fields of biodynamics and natural winemaking, has working under Napa pioneers Mike Grgich and Nils Venge. He has made wine in Santa Barbara at Koehler, Demetria, Martian Ranch, and for his own Lo-Fi brand.

THE MARTELLOTTO LABEL:
John Langdon designed the Martellotto label as a spiritual totem, symmetrical down the middle, and a mirror image. The ARTE of the name recognizes the Art & Science of winemaking. The bottle enumeration demonstrates the handmade, limited availability of these wines. Prof. Landon’s signature ambigram design is located on the bottom right of the back label. Turn the bottle upside down to visualize how his name reads left to right.

Greg Martellotto video

Wine club logoJoin our WINE CLUB and enjoy these amazing wines and pairing recipes each month. Plus, you’ll receive 10% off all retail wine purchases!

Learn More >