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.
Culinary Camilla photo
Not only did Camilla do a great job hosting the “Fall Fruit and Wine Pairings” for #winePW 5, she came up with a great recipe and pairing for it! I wouldn’t have thought to make a lasagna with pumpkin, but that’s my bad because it sounds and looks great! Then she pairs that Pumpkin Lasagna with a Halter Ranch Côtes de Paso, yum! Here’s a link to the recipe and pairing details on Culinary Adventures with Camilla.
I’ve enjoyed a few different wines from Halter Ranch in Paso Robles, including the Syrah I paired with grilled tuna for the #winePW 4. I’ve got to try their Côtes de Paso blend! I love a Rhone style blend, and in addition to the traditional Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre, it has a good bit of Tannat, too. Interesting blend!
Be sure to check out all the other tasty #winePW 5 pairings with fall fruit and wine pairings! Rounded up here.
Could a Syrah paired with fish work? It sounds like an unorthodox pairing, but I like to try new things! I had a bottle of 2011 Halter Ranch Syrah from Paso Robles that I wanted to use for the September Wine Pairing Weekend event. I’ve enjoyed this before paired with steak, but in the spirit of trying something new, I wondered if grilled tuna paired with a Syrah could work.
There were a few factors that helped make this a good pairing. For starters, a meaty tuna steak is very substantial, matching the body of the Syrah. Then I added some spice to the dish, by serving the tuna with grilled eggplant with spicy peppers. These veggies bridged to the wine nicely, as did the cumin garlic mixture I rubbed onto the tuna steak. Get all the recipe details over on Cooking Chat.
Now, more about that Halter Ranch Syrah. This wine has a big fragrance of violets and forest floor. I got blackberry jam and white pepper taste. I had my initial taste before I started grilling the tuna. By the time we settled down to eat about 10 minutes later, the Syrah had really opened nicely and was showing a lot of finesse on the long finish. This helped it make a nice harmonious pairing with the tuna–plenty of substance for this meaty fish with the spice element to work with the food. A good wine and a nice pairing! In fact, one thing that reminded me to blog about it this morning is I’m making it again for a gourmet get together with friends tonight!
I get to experiment with pairings for this Grilled Steak with Garlic Cumin rub fairly often. The rub packs enough flavor for grownups, but my 9 year old also loves it, so it gets used often! A lot of big, bold reds can work with the meaty dish, but there’s also the spice element to pick up. That gets me going more in the direction of a Zinfandel or Syrah for this grilled steak recipe.
You could do well with any of your favorites in the Syrah or Zin department, but one specific pairing for this grilled steak recipe that has worked very well for us is the 2011 Halter Ranch Syrah from Paso Robles. It’s got big berry flavors to stand up the beef, and some nice spices to pair with the flavors of the rub. Give it a try or let me know with you come up with for a pairing! (you are going to try this super-easy rub, aren’t you?).
Here on Wine Pairing Weekend, I typically just link over to the original recipes. But if you’re in a hurry, the rub is simply equal parts cumin, garlic powder and salt, and you can add a pinch of cinnamon and/or other dried herb (sage is nice) to vary the flavor.
This wine pairing started with a bottle of 2011 Castoro Cellars Sauvignon Blanc, which the folks from SIP Certified had sent for me to come up with a food pairing. I came up with this Pasta with Chicken and Goat Cheese, based on sauv blanc’s affinity for both chicken and goat cheese. The dish also features lemon, capers, and basil, flavors to consider with the wine pairing. I noted I didn’t have a Sauvignon Blanc pairing on the site yet, so I grabbed this one from the Cooking Chat archives!
I got a bit of hibiscus on the nose of the wine, and a fresh and lively taste. I detected kiwi, lemon and a touch of pepper. This picked up the lemon, herbs and onion in the dish nicely. I’d say we got this pairing done right, if I do say so myself! According to the Castoro website, this is their first year producing Sauv Blanc, and I’d say the did quite well. There’s a bit of Gewurztraminer blended in, which gave I’d say gave it just a touch of spice. A good value at around $15. Castoro Cellars currently has the 2013 vintage of their Sauvignon Blanc out; I’d imagine that would work well, as would other crisp sauv blancs you like.
Full disclosure: I received a complimentary bottle of the wine from SIP to sample. The opinions and recipes here are entirely my own!