Grilled, Marinated Lamb … a Classic Pairing with a Margaux (Bordeaux)

Pairing: Marinated Lamb Grilled in an Open Fireplace Paired with a 2012 Chateau D’Issan Margaux  

Food: Roasting a leg of lamb that’s been studded with thin slices of garlic has been the traditional way of preparing lamb … at least in our family. But … hold on. Boning the leg, butterflying the removed meat, marinating it, then grilling the lamb over a hot wood fire is rapidly becoming our new favorite way to enjoy this delicious meat. Butterflying a leg of lamb is relatively easy … if you are comfortable around a sharp knife (!). This video provides good, easy to follow, guidance for accomplishing this task. We use Martha Stewart’s excellent recipe as the basis for this wonderful meal. Season the lamb generously with salt and pepper, then marinate the meat overnight in a combination of olive oil, fresh lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, garlic, rosemary, and oregano. For rare to medium-rare doneness, grill the lamb over a hot fire for about 8 minutes on a side, then let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes. We like to cook the meat over an open wood fire (which adds a wonderful smokey flavor) and serve the sliced lamb with asparagus and popovers. What a treat!

Wine: The Haut Medoc wine region of Bordeaux is home to arguably the four most prestigious wine districts in all of Bordeaux, Maybe, according to some, even in all of France (Hmmmm … really?) Anyway, these four districts are Pauillac, Saint-Estephe, Saint-Julien, and Margaux, and all have a well-deserved reputation. Located in Margaux is Chateau d’Issan … this estate dates back to the 12th Century, there being claims that wine from the estate was served at the wedding of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henri Plantagenet, the future king of England, on 18 May 1152. Their 2012 vintage Margaux is made from Cabernet Sauvignon (67%) and Merlot (33%). This is a wine for special occasions.

Grand Cru Classe En 1855

Tasting Notes:  The color is red with a reddish-brown tint. The bouquet is that of fresh hedgerow smells, including service berry, blackberry, red currant, and bay. Some new leather sneaks in there, too. The palate is delightfully complex with layers of hedgerow (including some of the wood), spice notes (allspice and cloves), rosemary, oregano, black olive, cigar box and leather. Quite extraordinary. The rosemary and leather carry the long, lingering finish. The herbs in the marinade tease those flavors out of the wine. The pairing of the margaux and the lamb couldn’t be better. The wine complements the food, the food complements the wine. That’s what pairing is all about.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Grilled Lamb: Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa, California), Aglianico (Italy), Zinfandel (Dry Creek Valley, California), Hermitage (Rhone Valley, France)

Other Food That Pairs Well with Red Bordeaux (Margaux): Roast Chicken or Pheasant, Venison, Duck, Filet Mignon

Maps of Bordeaux and the Haut Medoc Wine Region: Haut Medoc

A Source: www.wine.com

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