Chicken Pot Pie … Comfort Food with Comfort Wine

Pairing: Chicken Pot Pie paired with Evolution Lucky No. 9

Food: Comfort food, simply put, is food that gives us comfort. And, for us, nothing provides comfort better than homemade chicken pot pie made with a biscuit topping. There are a gazillion ways to make chicken pot pie, probably as many ways are there are people who enjoy eating it. We like to make it from the leftovers of a roast chicken dinner, picking off all the meat left on the carcass and combining the meat with leftover gravy and stock (and a little milk … thickened as needed), cut up carrots, celery, potatoes and onions, and a handful of peas. Put it all in a pie plate or casserole dish and bake at 350 until heated through. Some folks who make it with a biscuit topping, place the formed raw biscuit dough directly on top of the chicken mixture and bake it at higher temperature (400). In our experience, that method frequently results in an only partially cooked biscuit topping (raw on the bottom of it). So we cook the biscuits separately and place the biscuits on top of the filling just before serving. Most importantly, enjoy this comfort food with family or good friends. We did … just the other day … with dear friends!


Wine: Evolution Lucky No. 9 is a white wine made by the Sokol Blosser Winery in Dundee, Oregon. It is a blend of nine different varieties of wine grapes. Yes … you read that right … nine grape varieties. They keep their blend a secret, though their website does admit to the inclusion of chardonnay and pinot gris in the mix. While drinking it, it’s fun to guess what the other grapes might be. Some might view this as a novelty wine …but this is seriously good stuff that we have enjoyed many times with many different types of food.


Tasting: This is a positively delightful wine, well balanced, and bursting with flavor. The nose has a plethora of tropical fruit aromas, perhaps most notable is the distinct and wonderful smell of the Charentais melon (a small, intensely flavored, orange fleshed, European melon). Needless to say, the palate also has a focus on the flavor of this melon, but also combines many other recognizable tropical fruits. A “comfortable” wine that complements perfectly this comfort food.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Chicken Pot Pie:  Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc, White or Red Rhone Wine

Other Foods that Pair Well with Evolution: Chicken, Pork, Turkey, Asian Foods, Mexican Foods, or just by itself as an aperitif

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A Source:  Prince Edward Island Liquor Stores (a very available wine sold in many wine and liquor stores)



Crab-Stuffed Sole with a Grechetto

Pairing: Crab-Stuffed Sole paired with 2013 Paolo e Noemi d’ Amico Seiano

Food: While my Mom was living in Portsmouth, NH after Dad died, a favorite treat of hers was to take our family out to a place called Hector’s Country Kitchen. The best thing on the menu, and what she always ordered, was their sole (flounder) stuffed with bread crumbs and crab, and drizzled with a delicate butter sauce. Our version is made with crabmeat, fresh breadcrumbs, chopped scallion, and Dijon mustard, all held together with an egg white. A light sauce is made from a dollop of butter, some chopped parsley, leeks and shallots, and 1/4 cup of the wine. Sauté lightly. Lay out the sole filets, spread the stuffing over each, roll up each stuffed filet, drizzle with the light sauce, and bake at 400 for about ten minutes.

This one’s for you, Mom, on the 107th anniversary of your birth. Cheers!



Wine:  2013 Paolo e Noemi d’ Amico Seiano One of our favorite things to do is to sample wine made from uncommon grapes or from out-of-the-way places. The Paolo e Noemi d’ Amico Seiano is from the Italian wine region of Umbria, and made from grapes in a vineyard located about halfway between Rome and Florence. This white wine is made from Grechetto and Sauvignon Blanc grapes.



Tasting: A very unusual wine, but with a welcome flavor that complements well the meal. The nose calls to mind a green meadow of grasses and clover. Some might also detect a touch of green melon. The palate has some similarity to viognier with white flowers and white fruit being most recognizable.

Other foods that Pair Well with the Grechetto: Pasta with a Light Cream Sauce, White Fish, Crab or Lobster (particularly with a light butter cream sauce)

Other Wines that Pair Well with Crab-Stuffed Sole: White Burgundy, Viognier, Albarino, Orvieto

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Tandoori Chicken … with Rossignol (the wine, not the skiis!)

Pairing:  Tandoori Chicken paired with Rossignol Isle Saint Jean White

Food: Tandoori Chicken is one of those classic East Indian dishes of which there are numerous family favorite recipes. Ours is a simple one made from boneless chicken (of course) and a medley of sautéed vegetables. These include about 4 oz each of cubed eggplant, broccoli, bell pepper, zucchini, and carrots. We mix these up with a 1/2 cup of commercially made Tandoori sauce (either Golden Temple Tandoori Simmer Sauce or Kitchen of India Kashmiri Rogan Josh). Heat and serve over brown rice. Spicy, delicious and healthy!



Wine: We continue our advocacy of local wines while we are in residence here on PEI. Rossignol was one of the first wineries on Prince Edward Island (perhaps the first) established in the early 1990’s. The winery is located on the eastern end of the island in the small community of Little Sands on the shoreline of Northumberland Strait. Isle Saint Jean is what the early French settlers called the island before the English drove them out and renamed it Prince Edward Island. Isle Saint Jean White is a blend of different cold-hardy white grapes.



Tasting:  A soft, semi-dry, very approachable wine. Gentle aromas of peaches, melon, and white flowers are detected on the nose. On the palate, peach and melon flavors persist along with a slight touch of sweetness, perhaps honeysuckle. A nice wine to complement a spicy dish.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Tandoori Chicken:  Zinfandel, Shiraz, Beaujolais, Riesling

Other Food That Pairs Well with Rossignol Isle Saint Jean: Asian Food, Ham, Turkey, Vegetarian Dishes, Moderately Spicy Dishes

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A Source:  Prince Edward Island Liquor Stores

Birthday Scallops … with White Burgundy

Pairing:  Pan Seared Curried Scallops paired with 2011 Jacques Bavard Bourgogne

Food: One of my Dad’s “go-to” Friday night meals was scallops, usually bay scallops, broiled in butter. Last evening, in remembrance of Dad on the 108th anniversary of his birthday, we enjoyed scallops for our dinner. It was a simple preparation … dredging the halved sea scallops in our favorite curry powder, searing them briefly on each side in a hot skillet, deglazing the pan with some of the wine, then browning some butter in the same pan and drizzling the butter over the warm scallops. We tossed some cooked gemelli pasta in the pan to soak up all of the remaining butter sauce. Served it with garden-fresh green and yellow beans. Delicious! Here’s to you, Dad!

Pan Seared Scallops

Wine2011 Jacques Bavard Bourgogne. For those who may not know or remember, the white wine from the Burgundy region of France is made exclusively from the Chardonnay grape. Indeed there is a village in that region named Chardonnay. There are many towns in that area synominous with great white burgundy … Meursault, Puligny-Montrachet, Chassagne-Montrachet to name but a few. The higher end wines are named for the town the grapes come from, or, for really special wines (i.e., expensive) the wine may be named for a particular vineyard in that town. This winemaker, Jacques Bavard, selects grapes from several different villages in Burgundy, combining them to create his Bourgogne. Very nice and much more affordable.

Bourgogne Bavard

Tasting:  The delicate nose of this Bourgogne hints at white flowers, peach, and apricot. The white flower aroma perhaps is drawn out by the curry in the dish. On the palate, one gets white peach, melon and a background of tropical fruits, all with nicely balanced acidity. A note about drinking white wines … there is a tendency to chill white wine a bit too much. Serving them a little closer to 55 or 60 degrees F will bring out the complexity of flavors that are too often masked by colder temperatures.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Scallops:  Viognier, dry Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, New World Chardonnay, Soave

Other Foods That Pair Well with White Burgundy:  white Fish, Chicken, Lobster, Grilled Salmon, Oysters

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