Posts Tagged ‘recipes with wine suggestions’

The coolest wine tasting room – a red caboose!

Posted by Julie

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010
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Savvy Selections wine of the month club
features 33 Vines Winery
Canada’s wineries delivered to your doorstep
 

 

Owner and winemaker of 33 Vines Winery, Paul Minaker, says “there is nothing like the excitement of tasting fermented grapes straight from the barrel to have the first sip of new wine”. Making wine along with driving his tractor keeps him ‘close to the land’ – his vineyard that is located on the Loyalist Highway #33 in the north eastern part of Prince Edward County, or ‘The County’.

 

The Savvy Team is delighted to introduce you to 33 Vines this month as we have had a deeply rooted connection to this winery.  In 2006, Paul called on us to be the Sommeliers for a VIP event he was having for the winery’s ‘Founders Circle’ members – friends, family & wine enthusiasts who were watching this property transform from a corn field into a vineyard.  Members were invited to sample County wines, provide feedback on the 33 Vines label designs, plant vines and see the renovations of the heritage barn as it readies for the first harvest.  Then in 2008, the Savvy Team were involved in the grand opening of the winery complete with winery tours, Sommelier led wine tastings in the barrel room and the evening continued with a celebration private concert featuring the Jim Cuddy Band.  Now with the winery in its second year, the wines are turning heads and the winery has become a ‘must visit’ stop with its tasting room housed in the red CN caboose.

 

When not devoting his life to being a winemaker, Paul is a network designer in his spare time or maybe it’s vice versa?  Hard to tell depending on the season however there is no doubt that the lure of the land is embedded in his blood, his upbringing and as he says, where he calls home.

 

This month, your Savvy Selections includes:

– 33 Vines Pinot Noir VQA 2008 – take note how this wine evolves in your glass

– 33 Vines Merlot VQA 2007 – a crowd pleaser

– Red Caboose Rosé VQA 2008 – medium bodied with a natural sweetness that keeps you salivating & wanting another sip!

 

You won’t find these wines at the LCBO! 

33 Vines is the smallest winery that has been a Savvy Selections feature. With its limited supply 2000 cases of wines handcrafted each year, their wines are only available at the winery.  To stock up on more bottles of your favorite wine, simply call on us to arrange a special delivery for you.

 

Watch a Savvy video on 33 Vines!

Get a taste of 33 Vines and meet Paul by watching a video that I created on a recent tour to the winery.

 

Cheers & Enjoy!

Debbie & the Savvy Team


 

Introducting…
33 Vines Winery

Presented by Sommelier Julie Stock

 

Paul Minaker says he does not have a particular winemaking philosophy nor a magic formula, rather his challenge as a winemaker is basically to make a good quality wine. Sounds simple enough?

 

In 2003, Paul purchased his property just east of Adolphustown on Loyalist Highway 33 (near Glenora Ferry) and immediately planted Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc grapes. This was not a spur of the moment purchase. Rather, Paul spent years of researching, analyzing vineyard growth and wine history in the area, talking to other winemakers to find the right spot for planting his vineyard. While Paul had the advantage of being born in and growing up in Picton (aka The County), he says that he devised a checklist of all the pre-requisites required for the vineyard before endeavouring on such a purchase. His check list included such items as: first and foremost, the proper soil, secondly; being close to water, third; the land had to have the right slope and elevation, to name only a few. This brings to mind the concept of terroir, which aside from land and soil and which way the wind blows, is part and parcel of the heart and soul of the person who farms the land and harvests the crop.

 

Paul’s first harvest was in 2006 with and his first release of wine in 2007. On his 15 acres of premium clay loam soils – similar to the soils in Burgundy, France – this small boutique winery produces a zippy Riesling, an impressive Chardonnay, an award winning Cabernet Franc, a notable Pinot Noir.  In 2007, he added Merlot to his portfolio. While one of Paul’s favorites is his Chardonnay, he is also passionate about Pinot, and he laughs saying “it can sometimes take getting used to the aromas” but with conviction, “a velvety smooth Pinot is like no other wine”.

 

In 2008, the focal point for the winery’s grand opening was the private concert at Crystal Palace in Picton headlining Jim Cuddy Band (Jim is Paul’s cousin and the lead singer in the popular Canadian band Blue Rodeo). With celebrity status entertainment, coupled with first rate wines, the celebration drew attention to the new boutique winery and attracted more attention to already growing popularity of Prince Edward County.

 

Working in the vineyard

Despite its small size, Thirty Three Vines requires the same workhorse management as larger wineries. The Thirty Three team includes a full time vineyard manager, two workers on the land, a person with tasting room expertise and additional grape pickers during harvest.

 

“One of the advantages of a small winery is that during harvest, grapes can be picked in the morning and crushed in the afternoon – the winemaking process begins immediately.” How does Paul decide when the are grapes ready?  “Weather can be of influence, coupled with the Ph (acidity) in the grape, the brix (sugar levels) and ultimately the taste of the grapes. Pinot Noir grape ripens first, then typically followed by Chardonnay, Riesling, Cabernet Franc and Merlot and by the time we’ve entered well into October, five to seven tons of grapes have been harvested.”

 

Grapevines usually have a 30 year lifespan. However, due to the harsh winter conditions in The County, unique to this wine region, winemakers must “hill up” whereby the grapes are literally buried down to the cordon – the main branch in a grapevine. Hilling up is often done by tractor, which can be pretty hard on the vines. The exact timing to hill up takes place is tantamount to their growth and success the following year since if the vines are hilled too early in November, any significant rain that follows causes rot and vines do not like to be wet. Subsequently, the vines are “hilled down” in the spring – meaning the protective soil is removed. This too is time sensitive because hilling down too early exposes the plant to frost or leaving too late could cause the vines to shoot branches too low.  Paul and other County winemakers will attest that winemaking is neither for the short-lived or faint of heart.

 

The love of winemaking is sometimes juxtaposed with issues of the Federal and Provincial rules, regulations and sales that ultimately dictate what is sold at the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO). While this may be considered as a disadvantage to wine enthusiastis, it also makes a visit to small wineries worth seeking out. Highway 33 also known as the Loyalist Parkway offers blue lake on one side and vast green country farmland on the other.  Stop in to say hello at the red CN caboose and sample the variety of 33 Vines wines. It’s not only worth the stop; it’s worth the drive. After all, finding a great new wine is in part, the journey. 

 

Cheers & Enjoy!


 

~ Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes ~

33 Vines Pinot Noir VQA 2008, $24.95
Paul is passionate about Pinot Noir and he laughs saying “with this one, give it some times to get used to the aromas.” Then he continues with conviction, “a velvety smooth Pinot is like no other wine.” With that type of determination, we are sure that Paul will indeed create a great Pinot Noir.  Take note how this wine changes and evolves in your glass.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: This young light to medium bodied beauty has aromas of sour cherries, violets, raspberries, a hint of tobacco and sweet spice; all the delicious aromas often found in a well balanced pinot noir. With its medium tannins, acidity and slight peppery finish it makes a perfect summer pinot noir. 

Suggested Food Pairing: The Savvy Selections tasting panel all agreed that a vast selection of foods could accompany this easy drinking pinot from pork roast to salmon or turkey and we decided it was definitely a year round wine to have on hand.

SOMMELIER TIP: lightly chill your Pinot Noir wine (10-15 min in the fridge) for a different wine experience. As the wine warms up to room temperature, you will experience an array of aromas and tastes.

Cellaring: Best enjoyed now, or cellared for up to 2 years.

33 Vines Merlot, $19.95
The eyes of our Savvy Selections tasting panel lit up when we sampled this wine. It is no doubt that Sommeliers at some of Ottawa’s restaurants agree that this wine is a crowd pleaser.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Medium garnet coloured, this Merlot is polished and practically glistens in the glass. Juicy red fruits, cranberry and a hint of blueberry penetrate the nose and follow through with silky elegance on the palate. The medium tannins and acidity play into a lingering finish of plums and dusty dark chocolate. 

Suggested Food Pairing: We were all in agreement that this wine would be a great complement to BBQed burgers, game or pasta with tomato sauce. The wine is balanced, smooth and friendly. Anyone on for making a new friend? 

Cellaring: Best enjoyed now, or cellared for up to 2 years.


33 Vines Red Caboose Rosé VQA 2008, $16.95   
Savvy Sommelier Julie declares that this is my a favourite Thirty Three Vines wine for the summer. A unique blend of Riesling and Cabernet Franc – none of the Savvy Selections tasting panel had experienced anything like this before. While rosé wines can range from bone dry to sweet, this one falls somewhere in the middle. Perfect to sip on its own, serve before a meal or do as Paul does when tasting the range of Thirty Three wines at the tasting bar – serve this Rosé chilled after enjoying red wines.
 
 

 

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: It has a crisp clean strawberry and cranberry looking appearance that tastes great on its own or with everything from grilled fish to our featured watermelon and feta salad. It is light weight in body and aside from red berries, displays slight aromas of mineral and an earthiness that can only come from the soil in Lennox and Addington County. 

Suggested Food Pairing: The Savvy Selections tasting panel was unanimous that this was lunch or afternoon wine and by the time we agreed to brunch, it was unanimous that one glass is not enough to enjoy its refreshing characteristics! A great sipper not to mention a great match to food including roast turkey, grilled shrimp, BBQed pork chops or picnic fare.

Cellaring: Ready to drink now, ripe but not overly sweet.

 

 

~ Recipes to enjoy with your Savvy Selections ~

 

With 33 Vines Pinot Noir … 

Peppered Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Salsa

From: www.Epicurious.com

Serves 2 

This is an easy but elegant summer dinner, can be served at room temperature.

                

Ingredients

1/2 pound dark sweet cherries, pitted and chopped (about 1 cup)

2 teaspoons fresh lime juice

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest

1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion

1 teaspoon finely chopped seeded fresh jalapeño chili pepper (tip: wear rubber gloves while chopping)

1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh coriander

3/4 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed of excess fat

2 tablespoons crushed black peppercorns

1 tablespoon olive oil

 

Method

1.     Preheat oven to 425°F.

 

2.     In a bowl stir together cherries, lime juice, zest, onion, jalapeño, and coriander.

 

3.     Season pork with salt and press peppercorns into it. In a large heavy skillet heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and brown pork on all sides.

 

4.     Transfer pork to a shallow baking dish and roast in oven until a meat thermometer registers 155°F., about 20 minutes. Transfer pork to a cutting board and let stand 5 to 10 minutes. Slice pork into 1/2-inch-thick medallions and serve with salsa.

 

With 33 Vines Merlot …

 

Capellini (aka Angel hair pasta) with Tomatoes and Basil 

From: Barefoot Contessa

Serves 6 

A great celebration of summer – fresh basil and cherry tomatoes from the market!

 

Ingredients

½ cup good olive oil, plus extra for the pasta pot

2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)

4 pints small cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes

18 large basil leaves, julienned

2 tablespoons chopped fresh curly parsley

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

¾ pound dried capellini or angel hair pasta

1½ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Extra chopped basil and grated Parmesan for serving

 

Method

1.     Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add two tablespoons of salt and a splash of oil to the pot.

 

2.     Meanwhile, heat the ½ cup of olive oil in a large (12-inch) sauté pan. Add the garlic to the oil and cook over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, basil, parsley, thyme, two teaspoons salt, the pepper, and red pepper flakes.

 

3.     Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for five to seven minutes, tossing occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to soften but don’t break up.

 

4.     While the tomatoes are cooking, add the capellini to the pot of boiling water and cook for two minutes, or according to the directions on the package. Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta water.

 

5.     Place the pasta in a large serving bowl, add the tomatoes and Parmesan, and toss well. Add some of the pasta water if the pasta seems too dry. Serve large bowls of pasta with extra basil sprinkled on top and a big bowl of extra Parmesan on the side.

 

 

With 33 Vines Red Caboose Rosé …

 

Watermelon, Feta and Black Olive Salad

From Nigella Lawson’s Forever Summer Cookbook and her recipe web site

This is one great summer salad!

 

Ingredients

1 ½ kg sweet ripe watermelon

250 g feta cheese

Bunch of mint and parsley chopped

1 small red onion

2-4 limes depending on juiciness

3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

100 g black olives

Black pepper

 

Method

1.     Peel and half the red onion, cut into fine half moon shapes and put in small bowl with lime juice.

 

2.     Remove rind and pips from the watermelon, and cut into triangular chunks (bite-size)

 

3.     Cut feta into similar sized pieces and put both into a wide shallow bowl.

 

4.     Tear off sprigs of parsley so that it is used like a salad leaf rather than a garnish; add to bowl along with the chopped mint.

 

5.     Sprinkle or tip the glowing onions along with the now pink lime juice over the salad in the bowl; add the oil and olives then using your hands toss the salad gently so that the melon and feta do not lose their shape.

 

6.     Add a grinding of black pepper and taste to see if any more lime is required, to taste.

 

 

Cheers & Enjoy this month’s Savvy Selections!

 

 

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Jump into a new year with Frogpond Farm Winery

Posted by Susan

Thursday, January 7th, 2010
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Savvy Selections wine of the month club
Featuring Frogpond Farm Winery

Canada’s wineries delivered to your doorstep

 

With the increasing focus on fresh, local ingredients, the ‘100 Mile Diet’, and healthy food choices, what better way to launch into 2010 than with the wines of Frogpond Farm – Ontario’s only certified organic winery.  With a well-established reputation for well-made wines, Frogpond is leaping ahead with an expansion to their wine portfolio – new grape varieties from a newly purchased vineyard that has recently been certified organic.

 

Frogpond Farm is located on a quiet road near Niagara-on-the-Lake. Savvy Sommelier Susan Desjardins stopped in to visit with the enthusiastic owners, Jens Gemmrich and his wife Heike Koch. Heike recalls that she and Jens came to Niagara on a summer ‘holiday’ after Jen’s brother Martin bought property in Niagara to establish a grape nursery operation.  “I can remember helping graft grapevines in Martin’s basement”, recalls Heike.  Enchanted by Niagara, Jens came back for an extended stay to help his brother.  So began Jens’ dream of moving his family from Germany to Canada and establish his own winery.  Heike took some convincing but they eventually emigrated in 1994.

 

While working as a winemaker at a local winery, Jens kept his eye out for a farm that would suit his young family as well as fulfill his dream of his own vineyard and winery.  In 1997, he planted his first vines – Merlot and Cabernet Franc – on the 10-acre property. Soon afterwards, he planted Riesling – honouring his German roots.  With notions to break ground as a pioneer and commit his new business to both organic viticulture and viniculture is consistent with the couple’s commitment to their children, their terroir (property) and on a larger scale the environment.  With the release of their first vintage in 2001, they launched Frogpond Farm as a unique alternative for consumers seeking an organic choice among Canadian wines. We were proud to feature Frogpond Farm to Savvy Selections subscribers in 2006.

 

When Martin recently decided to stop farming, Jens and Heike had the opportunity to expand their business and production to include the new property named “Martin’s Vineyard”.  Since the land was already planted to vines, they began cultivating the property organically and in three years received organic certification. 

 

To get a taste of all of their hard work, we are delighted to feature wines from both properties:

·         2008 Vidal VQA

·         2007 Cabernet Franc VQA

·         2007 Cabernet/Merlot VQA

 

We hope you enjoy bringing in the New Year with these unique Savvy Selections.  Let us know how you enjoyed the Frogpond wines, as well as the recipes our Savvy Selections tasting panel picked to enjoy with the wines. 

 

Want more Frogpond wines? 
It is easy – simply call on us to arrange an order for you.
Heads up: the 2007 Cabernet/Merlot is in limited supply….it is anticipated to be gone by March.

  

Cheers & Enjoy!

– Debbie & Savvy Team



Frogpond Farm Winery
Presented by Sommelier Susan Desjardins


Jens and Heike are passionate and committed to their land as both grape growers and wine makers.  “As organic farmers, we’ve learned to move away from the approach of always being ‘in control’ of nature.  We consciously work on creating a healthy environment for the vines to flourish. With trust in nature and our patience, we have been awed by the ability of the natural environment to remedy imbalances and heal itself”, proudly explains Heike about their winery. 

 

At Frogpond Farms, they are pioneers and leaders of organic viticulture (winespeak: grape growing) and winemaking in Niagara. As their business has evolved over the years, they are pleasure to see other wineries in the region adopting organic practices.  Some wineries choose to proceed with certification while others simply use organic growing strategies to enhance the health of their vineyards.  Frogpond, however, is the only winery currently to vinify (winespeak: to make wine) its grapes organically.

 

What does being an organic winery mean?
There is a difference between wines made with organically grown grapes, and wine vinified organically with organically grown grapes.  The former wines are made with grapes grown following the principles of organic agriculture.  These include the use of only natural fertilizers (no synthetic herbicides, pesticides, fertilizers or chemicals of any kind), more labor intensive management, often including hand harvesting, and lower crop yields so the vines are not stressed.  In addition to using only organically grown grapes, the wines are vinified following very specific requirements defined by Canadian Organic Standards regulations.  The critical aspects of organic winemaking are:

– no synthetic additives, for instance in fining

– no genetically modified yeast, bacteria or enzymes

– restrictions in the levels of sulfites used to preserve the wine and then found in the completed wine

– use of only certain permitted substances in the winemaking process or for cleaning the winemaking facilities. 

 

For individuals who feel they may have a sensitivity or allergy to sulfur or to synthetic chemicals, organic wines are a great choice.

 

Confused yet!?!  As more ‘organic’ wine and food labels appear on the market, it’s often difficult to know what you are actually buying.  Certification is a provincial responsibility, so standards are not necessarily consistent across the country.  In Ontario, you want to look for products “certified organic” by an agency such as the Organic Crop Producers & Processors (OCPP) – which certifies Frogpond wines.  The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has stepped into the breach to some degree, establishing standards and requirements for wines sold across Canada.  To concur, Frogpond will be adopting the new CFIA designation on their labels. Look for this identity: biologigueCanadaorganic.

 

Always up for a challenge, Heike and Jens have expanded their organic winery business by tripling the size of their acreage under vine.  This allows them to broaden their portfolio of wines and enables them the ability to craft quite different styles of wine arising from the different terroir of their properties.  For instance, “Martin’s vineyard” has two definite sections. One area is composed of heavy clay soils and is situated near some thick bush that shelters the land and traps the heat in the summer. The soil keeps the vines in check, but the additional heat allows the fruit to ripen more and may possibly extend hang time (winemaker speak: ripening time on vine). In comparison, the other section comprises of lighter, sandier soils.  Here, the vine roots reach grow deep, drawing minerals into the grapes which, when vinified, create a vibrant, fruity and more elegant style of wine.  When you visit Frogpond Farm, sample the Cabernet Franc from the original vineyard and compare it to the wine made from Cab Franc grapes on the new property – they are remarkably different, although grown in the same appellation.

 

Want to try something completely unique?  You can even drink it before lunch!  Enjoy the same health benefits of red wines in the non-alcoholic, pure grape juice produced by Jen’s brother Martin Gemmrich at Niagara Juice Company.  Aptly named – Gesundheit (meaning good health) – can be ordered directly from Savvy Company.

 

As they say in Germany…Prost (Cheers)!


 

 ~ Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes ~


Frogpond Farm Vidal VQA 2008, $12.00

Vidal is a grape varietal usually associated with Ontario’s famous ice wines.  This particular dry crisp white wine is produced from 5 year old vines grown on heavy clay in ‘Martin’s Vineyard’.  The soil structure helps keep the vines in check and fruit yields low and optimizing the fresh fruit flavors.  

This wine was just released in December – perfectly timed to be included in the Savvy Selections. Enjoy!

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes:  Pale gold, this bright wine has floral aromas and those of tree fruits (can you find yellow plums, peaches and ripe apple?). These fruit aromas carry through into the flavors, riding on a refreshing seam of acidity.  The finish is long, crisp and citrusy.

Suggested Food Pairing: This easy drinking wine will pair well with firm cheese, light appetizers, white fish, roast chicken or the Pork Chops with Herbes de Provence recipe Susan selected to enjoy with this wine.

Cellaring:  Made to enjoy now!


Frogpond Farm Cabernet Franc VQA 2007, $17.00

The grapes for this wine come from the lighter soils of Jens’ newly certified vineyard. Both this wine and the Cabernet/Merlot (the other Savvy Selections red wine) were aged in large oak casks, adding both body and flavor without overwhelming the aromas and flavour of the fruit. While visiting the winery, Susan found it interesting to compare the 2006 Cab Franc from Jens’ original vineyard side-by-side with a taste of this wine.  The 2006 vintage was more structured and robust, while Susan and the Savvy Selections tasting panel found the 2007 more fruity and delicate. 
Yin & Yang, perhaps!

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes:  A deep ruby red, the 2007 vintage beckons you with aromas of ripe berries, cherries, sweet spices and a hint of red licorice.  Medium-bodied, the wine balances sweet berries (raspberries and blackberries perhaps?) with fresh acidity and perceptible tannins.  It has a persistent finish with hints of toasty oak. Delicious! .  

Suggested Food Pairing:  This wine will pair well with chicken or veal dishes with a rich mushroom sauce or with roast salmon with autumn vegetables.

Cellaring: Drinking well now, the wine could cellar for a couple of years.


 

Frogpond Farm Cabernet Merlot VQA 2007 $16.00 (500ml)

From the outstanding 2007 vintage – considered by many winemakers as a Gift from Mother Nature – this red wine has been flying off the shelves at Frogpond Farm.  Susan wanted to make sure that there was enough of this wine for our Savvy Selections subscribers to enjoy!  Winning silver at the Royal Winter Fair, this blend of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Merlot is from Jen’s original vineyard, where the combination of sandy loam underlaid with heavy clay produces a wine of complexity and structure. 

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes:  Our Savvy Selections tasting panel loved everything about this wine – the structure and its balance.  It’s opaque and inky appearance, plush fruit aromas with subtle hints of leaf and vanilla.  The bold flavors engulf the palate with tastes of blackberry, blackcurrant, dark fruit cake and cracked black pepper.  It is full bodied and velvety, with all the components in harmony on the long warm finish.  This wine has limited availability…if you want more, be sure to call on us to help you stock up!

Suggested Food Pairing: Enjoy with grilled fillet mignon with pan-fried mushrooms, charcuterie, or the Beef Fondue recipe that we offer on the following pages.

Cellaring: You will definitely want to taste this wine now to determine if you want additional bottles to cellar for another 3-5 years.

 

~ Recipes to enjoy with your Savvy Selections ~


With Frogpond Farm Vidal…

Pork Chops with Herbes de Provence
From Call of the Flame, ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen
Serves 4

Ingredients
¼ C fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp finely chopped green onion or shallot
1 Tbsp honey
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
2 tbsp herbes de Provence, crumbled
¼ tsp salt
4 thick boneless pork loin chops

Method

1.      To prepare marinade, combine all ingredients except pork in a heavy zip-lock plastic bag.  Add pork and squeeze bag to coat pork with marinade; seal bag.  Let stand for 30 minutes.   

 

2.      Remove pork from marinade; discard marinade.  Grill pork over low heat on natural gas BBQ until done, about 20-25 minutes for ¾” thick chops.

 

3.      This recipe can also be made with pork tenderloin, which may be grilled or oven roasted.   

 

With Frogpond Farm Cabernet Franc….

Fragrant Chicken with Mushrooms
From The Globe and Mail, Lucy Waverman
Serves 4-6

Ingredients
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3 Tbsp flour, seasoned with salt & pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
2-4 cloves garlic, peeled & chopped
½ C carrots, chopped
1 onion, chopped
½ tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf

1 1” piece of orange peel
1-2 C dry red wine
1 C chicken stock
1 Tbsp tomato paste
2 Tbsp brandy (optional)
1 8 oz. package cremini mushrooms, sliced and sautéed in butter or olive oil
2 Tbsp chopped parsley

 

Method

1.   Trim fat from chicken & coat lightly with seasoned flour.  Heat oil in large skillet on medium heat.  Add chicken & fry 3-5 minutes each side or until golden.  Remove from skillet.  

 

2.   Add onion, carrot & fry until onions begin to turn color, about 3 minutes.  Then add garlic, stir in thyme, bay leaf & orange peel.  

 

3.   Add wine, stock, tomato paste & brandy to skillet.  Bring to boil & cook 3 minutes.  Return chicken to skillet.  Cover & simmer gently 20 minutes.  Add mushrooms & cook 5-10 minutes longer, until juices run clear.

 

4.   Remove chicken & veggies.  Raise heat to high and reduce stock for 3-5 minutes or until slightly thickened.  Season as desired with salt & pepper & pour over chicken.  Garnish with parsley. (Depending upon how much wine used, you may not have to reduce the stock.)

 

With Frogpond Farm Cabernet/Merlot…

Heart Warming Beef Fondue

Recipe from the kitchen of Savvy Sommelier Debbie Trenholm

Serves 4-6

Ingredients

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 C fennel, chopped (optional)

3 cloves garlic, chopped or pressed

5 C beef stock

2 C dry red wine

2 bay leaves

1/16 tsp powdered saffron (2-3 strands)

 

Suggested items to dip into the fondue:

Thinly sliced beef tenderloin, or fondue beef (ask your butcher for this cut), pre-cooked sausage cut into pieces, assorted mushrooms, green onions halved lengthwise, strips of red, green and/or yellow pepper cut lengthwise

Method

1.  In 3 quart sauce pan over medium-high heat, heat olive oil, then sautée onion, fennel and garlic until onion is soft.  

2.  Add broth, red wine, bay leaves and saffron.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer until vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes.  (Broth can be made the day before, covered and stored in the refrigerator).

 

3.  Add broth to the fondue pot, warm, and then spear beef on fondue fork, hold in broth for 2-3 minutes depending upon desired doneness.  Do the same with other dipping ingredients.

 

4.  Serve with crusty bread (another great dipping item).  Remaining broth can become tomorrow’s hearty soup – simply add cooked rice, lentils and more vegetables. 

 

 

 

 

Cheers & Enjoy this month’s Savvy Selections!

 

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