I had a bottle of 2012 Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon on the wine rack, awaiting the right dish to open it with. Beef seemed like a natural, and I figured mushrooms would make the pairing even better. The tasty result was this Sirloin Steak with Chanterelle Mushrooms and a Cabernet recipe I posted over on Cooking Chat recently.
This wine is definitely steak-worthy! The Halter Ranch Cab is deep red in the glass. I got eucalyptus on the nose. I tasted blackberry and cherry fruit, along with notes of charcoal. Tannins are well-integrated. It’s approachable now, but I suspected decanting or aging would really make this shine. So I decanted after the first small tasting pour. Just 15 minutes or so in the decanter really help show a nice long finish on the wine.
No surprise that this robust Cab paired nicely with the steak. In addition to standing up to the beef, there was enough nuance to the wine to play well with the subtle flavors of the chanterelle mushrooms. A winning match for sure!
One more note on the wine: this Cab is comprised of 79% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot. I’d say the grapes blended in with the Cab add to the depth and complexity. Halter Ranch is a SIP Certified sustainable winery, too. One more reason to grab a bottle! More details on the winery can be found here on their website.
Full disclosure: I received a courtesy sample of this wine from the winery. As always, the opinions expressed here are entirely my own.
Typically I pair our wine to go with the entree. I consider the type of meat or fish and how it is prepared, paying attention to ingredients in any sauce or rub. But sometimes there are two distinctive items being served together, which was the case for us the other night. I was making Orzo Salad with Kale Pesto as part of a #SundaySupper virtual picnic theme. While this dish could be a main course, in this case I was serving it as a side dish along with some Grilled Ribeye with Garlic Cumin Rub.
Pesto has a distinctive kick that tends to have me choosing a white such as Sauvignon Blanc or Picpoul. But serving the orzo dish along with steak, I wanted to pair a red that would work with the beef as well as the pesto. I thought a good Italian red might fit the bill, given pesto’s Italian roots. I went with a 2011 Tenuta di Gracciano della Seta Rosso di Montepulciano, which supplied enough depth to work with the steak along with some finesse to go with the orzo salad. This is a great quality wine for under $15!
I was called upon to make dinner for our wine club this winter when we were focused on wines from Tuscany. After much experimenting, I came up with this slow cooked Tuscan Beef Stew, which featured rosemary, garlic and other tastes of the Tuscan countryside. We had a good time at wine club trying a variety of wines with the stew.
We wound up with enough leftovers to serve the Tuscan Beef Stew for dinner the following night at home, and focused on one particular bottle of wine with it. I chose the 2008 Il Novecento Riserva Chianti to go with it, and got black cherry fruit, nice smooth finish, a good match for the stew. This pairing worked well, but I’m sure one of your favorite Chiantis would do well this stew, too!