Crab Cakes … Utter Perfection with Condrieu

Pairing: Crab Cakes … Paired with a 2015 E. Guigal Condrieu 

Food: The crab cakes of Northern New England are not like those of the Gulf Coast or the Chesapeake.  Our’s are made from Atlantic Rock Crab or Jonah Crab — two cold water species. Maryland crab cakes are made from blue crabs harvested from Chesapeake Bay while Gulf Coast crab cakes are made from blue crabs harvested (guess where) in the Gulf of Mexico. In Florida one might use Stone Crabs, while crab dishes served on the Pacific Coast might use Red Rock Crabs or Dungeness Crab. They all have their unique flavor and ingredients and flavorings indigenous to the particular region.

The tasty meat from these rock crabs from cold northern waters are not, as is too often done, to be smothered in mayonnaise and cracker crumbs and butter.  Rather, the picked over crab meat here should be handled gently and lightly combined with a little plain yogurt, Dijon mustard, minced onion, and fresh bread crumbs, formed into patties that just hold their shape. Done this way, the delicate flavor of the crab is retained.  Todd English’s book The Olives Table is the source of this and many other fine recipes from his Boston area restaurant. His crab cake recipe is by far our favorite.

 

Crab Cakes with Condrieu

Wine:  The northern part of the Rhone Wine Region in France is home to one of the most highly regarded red wines in the world, Syrah. Hermitage and Côte Rôtie are considered the finest expression of this grape. But we are here to talk about a white wine made in the northern Rhone region that could be, among the many wonderful whites from around the world we have tasted, our very favorite … Condrieu. Condrieu is made exclusively from viognier grapes ripened along a tiny stretch of the northern Rhone River. Many believe Condrieu to be the standard by which all viognier wines should be measured. Count us among those faithful.

Condrieu

Tasting Notes:  Beautiful straw-gold color. Fragrance (like a fine perfume) of mango and honey-suckle. There’s some lovely white flowers there, too. The rich flavor of mango joins vanilla cream and peach on the palate. My lord, this wine is absolutely amazing (!!), and a perfect complement to the crab cakes that have been graced with a dollop of aioli. This is a marvelous wine for a very special occasion.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Crab Cakes:  Riesling (Alsace), Chardonnay (California), Sauvignon Blanc (New Zealand), Cava (Spain)

Other Food That Pairs Well with Condrieu:  Lobster, Scallops (dredged in curry powder, seared quickly, then lightly covered in brown butter), Mushroom Risotto

Maps and Views of the Northern Rhone Wine Region:  northern rhone region

A Source:  www. klwines.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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