Mussels O’Neill … with a Nova Scotia Tidal Bay White

Pairing:  Mussels and Pasta Paired with 2016 Benjamin Bridge Tidal Bay White

Food:  Confession time … we love mussels … REALLY love mussels! Our favorite food to eat when we’re on Prince Edward Island is mussels. We pig out on potfuls of mussels steamed in a little water and some wine, maybe a leek and some herbs for added flavor. Back to the confessional …our eyes are often bigger than our stomach resulting in … are you ready …leftover cooked mussels! What to do? Our favorite thing is make what we call Mussels O’Neill, our adaptation of a recipe found in the wonderful cookbook, A Well-Seasoned Appetite by Molly O’Neill. Simply boil down about 2 cups of the mussel stock left from steaming the mussels to about a cup. Add about 1/2 cup of wine, reduce again. Add 1/2 cup  half and half or cream to make creamy texture to the sauce. Add the cooked mussels and some pepper to taste. Mix the cooked linguini into the sauce. Serve then sprinkle with chopped, fresh parsley. Amazing.

Note: Prince Edward Island mussels are, in our humble opinion, the best mussels on the planet! Oysters, too!

Mussels O'Neil

Wine:  Nova Scotia wines are becoming a hot item among oenophiles in Canada and elsewhere. Tidal Bay is the first wine appellation for Nova Scotia, and Benjamin Bridge is one of twelve wineries across the province making a Tidal Bay wine. It is made from L’Acadie Blanc, Oretega, and Geisenhiem grapes, all cold-weather varieties developed for their flavor and hardiness. L’Acadie Blanc is perhaps the most widely grown white wine grape in Nova Scotia.

Tidal Bay Benjamin Bridge

Tasting Notes:  A pale straw color, almost colorless. The nose hinges on the delicate aromas of green melon and green apple, with a background smell of fresh ocean breezes (appropriate for a wine called Tidal Bay!). Green melon and Granny Smith apple persist on the palate, with a real tang of the green apple … but definitely not citrusy. One can almost detect some pleasant, light salinity in the taste that carries over to the finish. The tanginess of the wine acts as a nice foil to the creamy taste of this mussel dish. Some wines have intangibles that make them great pairings with certain dishes. Tidal Bay has these traits that make it a great pairing for locally sourced, maritime seafood.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Mussel Dishes:  Chablis (France), Muscadet (Loire Valley), Verdicchio (Italy), Sauvignon Blanc (New Zealand), Chasselas (Switzerland)

Other Foods That Pair Well with Tidal Bay:  Stuffed Bar Clams, Raw Oysters, Grilled Shrimp, Pan-Seared Scallops, Smoked Salmon

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A Source:  Prince Edward Island Liquor Agency

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