July Beer Club: Iowa

Manzana LinTrabanco
Manzana Lin Sidra Natural
Gijón, Asturias, Spain

Manzana Lin is a special, limited production release from Trabanco. This single-site cider is made of Lin apples sourced from the San Pedro de Anes orchard. The juice is fermented with indigenous yeasts and in accordance with the guidelines for “Sidra Natural,” producing a low-alcohol cider that is tart and lacks carbonation. Sidra Natural should be served cold in a wide glass and poured from great height to break up the residual carbonic gas. Only a small amount (one sip’s worth) should be poured into the glass at a time.

BeerStyles: Fruity and Spicy
Style: Sidra Natural (Cider)
ABV:
6%
Apples: 70% Lin with a blend of local apples sourced from the San Pedro de Anes orchard.

Vinification: This cider has been fermented with indigenous yeasts and in accordance to the guidelines for “Naturally Fermented Quality Ciders.”

ABOUT THE CIDERY:

Like most families from the Asturian countryside, the Trabanco Family made their own cider from their own apples, but in 1925 Emilio Trabanco decided to turn this household hobby into a family business; creating Trabanco Cider. Using the best apples of selected varieties and following traditional methods, Trabanco Cider quickly became known throughout the region as the premier natural cider from Asturias. Not much has changed since then, the Trabanco family is still using traditional methods, augmented with modern technologies, to produce exceptional Asturian ciders. From a very young age, all of the members of the family are involved in the production process, from the apple picking and weighing, to operating the press. The family business continues to grow, as their inheritance is passed from one generation to the next.

Asturias Map

Asturias Map by Paul Dangel

Trabanco Orchard

Trabanco Orchard. Photo by Steven Alexander

Isastegi CiderIsastegi
Sagardo Naturala
Tolosa (Isastegi), Spain

Sagardo Naturala, or “natural cider” is from the Basque Country in Spain, where basque ciders have been produced for over 2,000 years.  Golden-green hue in the glass, Isastegi’s Sagardo Naturala has ripe notes of apple on the nose, but lead to an acidic, malted apple on the palate. The finish is crisp and fresh. This cider goes through a completely natural fermentation process in large wooden barrels and is bottled fresh without filtration. Sagardo Naturala is more bitter than most ciders, with only mild residual carbonic acid. It should be served cold in a wide glass and poured from great height to break up the residual carbonic gas. Only a small amount (one sip’s worth) should be poured into the glass at a time.

BeerStyles: Fruity and Spicy
Style: Sagardo Naturala (Natural Cider)
ABV:
6%
Apples:
A blend of over a dozen native varietals
Vinification:
After fermentation in kupelas (old, large, oak cider barrels) the cider is bottled fresh and without filtration before each shipment.

ABOUT THE CIDERY:

Isastegi is an old family estate located in the town of Tolosa in the Basque Country of Spain. The estate was originally covered by pastures for cattle, with only a few apple trees for the family to make a small amount of cider for itself. In 1983 they decided to switch from livestock to cider output and started selling their cider to the public. Over the years the demand for Isastegi cider has increased and the family’s country house has adapted to the changes. Pastures were replaced by orchards, while renovations added new state-of-the-art pressing and bottling rooms and a larger spaces for the kupelas (old, large, oak cider barrels). Isastegi prides themselves on their local focus and adhere to the strict guidelines of Basque Ciders by using only local apples with no added carbonation or sugars.

Basque Country

Map by Paul Dangel

Isastegi

Isastegi Cidery

 

Broken Earth Estate Merlot pairing recipe

Grilled Lamb Chops Gorgonzola Crusted

INGREDIENTS:lambchops

• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper, plus more for bread crumbs
• 1 tablespoon sea salt
• 2 tablespoons freshly chopped oregano leaves
• 2 racks lamb rib chops, frenched
• 3/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola
• 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
• 2 tablespoons minced garlic
• 1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro leaves

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat the grill over medium heat. In a medium bowl, add the olive oil, pepper, salt, oregano, and toss together. Cut the racks into chops and add them to the oil mixture. Turning them to coat well.

In a separate bowl, add the cheese, bread crumbs, garlic, cilantro and a pinch of black pepper. Mix gently.

Remove the chops from the marinade and arrange them on the grill. Grill for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Flip and top each chop with a heaping tablespoon of the bread crumb mixture. Close the lid of the grill and cook until desired doneness, about 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and serve. Serves 4 to 6.

WC_Feb_2014_Broken_Merlot_bottleBroken Earthmellow
Estate Merlot Sauvignon
Paso Robles, CA

“The resulting wine opens with ripe berry fruit with a hint of tobacco leaf and ‘cigar-box’ notes. The palate is rich and the finish is quite firm but balancing. There are underlying characters of dark cherry with some green coffee bean, emulating the great Bordeaux wines of the Right Bank. This wine will ChrisCameronlook more intense than most Californian Merlots with the structure of a more ‘international’ style. A fabulous food wine, it will go a long way to restore consumers’ faith in the variety.” – Chris Cameron

Winemaker: Chris Cameron
Appellation: Paso Robles, CA
Varietal Blend:  100% Merlot
Analysis: 13.51% alc/vol

Broken Earth Estate Cabernet pairing recipe

Sticky 5-spice Short Ribsspicy-short-ribs

INGREDIENTS:

• 1 1/2 cups dry sherry or Shaoxing wine (Chinese rice wine)
• 1/2 cup oyster sauce
• 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
• 2 1/2 pounds short ribs, English cut
• 1 tablespoon kosher salt
• 2 teaspoons five-spice powder
• 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
• 6 medium garlic cloves, smashed
• 1-inch piece ginger, sliced
• 1 small serrano or Thai bird chile, or jalapeño pepper, halved

DIRECTIONS:

Heat the oven to 350° F and arrange a rack in the middle. Mix together sherry, oyster sauce, and brown sugar until evenly combined; set aside. Pat ribs dry with a paper towel and season well with salt and five-spice powder.

Place a 3-quart Dutch oven or other heavy-bottomed, shallow pot with a tight-fitting lid over medium heat and add oil. When oil starts to smoke, add ribs and sear until well browned, about 2 minutes per side.

Remove ribs to a plate and set aside. Discard all but one tablespoon drippings, return pan to stove, and add garlic, ginger, and chile and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in reserved sherry mixture and bring to a simmer.  Return ribs to pan and bring to a simmer. Cover and transfer to oven to cook, turning occasionally, until meat is knife tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Increase oven to 400 degrees F and cook, covered, until ribs are sticky, about 30 more minutes. Serves 3 to 4.  Recipe compliments of Aida Mollenkamp, Food Network.

WC_Feb_2014_Broken_Cab_bottleBroken Earth
Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
Paso Robles, CA

Bold_sticker“This lush Cabernet Sauvignon offers densely concentrated fruit flavors supported by sweet vanillin spice. Classic flavors of black cherry, cassis and aromas of cocoa and sandalwood make this wine inviting and easy to enjoy. Grilled meats with rich wild mushroom paella pair wonderfully with this wine. We hope our efforts provide you the reward of a wonderful glass of wine at a tremendous value.” – Chris Cameron

Winemaker: Chris Cameron
Appellation: Paso Robles, CA
Varietal Blend:  100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis: 13.7% alc/vol