Ham Florentine Galettes … Served with a White Crozes-Hermitage

Pairing: Ham Florentine Galletes Paired with a 2015 Domaine des Remiziéres ‘Cuvée Christophe’ Crozes-Hermitage Blanc

Food:  Despite the fact that the picture below makes the galettes look like a pair of horribly disintegrated shoes dug up from some ancient archeological site, these galettes are positively heavenly and mimic well those we enjoyed in Brittany last year. Buckwheat flour adds a wonderful nutty flavor to the Breton galettes, but it may also contribute a slightly grayish shade to the color depending on the percentage and type of wheat flour combined to make the galette. Our galette recipe combines buckwheat flour, all purpose flour, eggs, water and salt. The filling consists of béchamel sauce, ham and cooked spinach seasoned lightly with salt and pepper.

Many folks use the terms “crêpes” and “galettes” interchangeably. Bretons distinguish them by referring to crêpes as sweet versions of a filled pancake (jelly, fruit, etc.) usually served as a dessert or, in our family, as a delicious Sunday breakfast spread with red currant or quince jelly. Galettes are the savory version of these filled pancakes, the filling could be cheese, mushrooms, various meats, and/or vegetables usually in a light sauce.

Ham Florentine Galettes

Wine:  Crozes-Hermitage is by far the largest appellation of the northern Rhone Valley wine region of France, accounting for more than all of the other seven appellations combined in that region. The vast majority of the wine made here is red, usually Syrah. But, lovers of white wines can find some real gems here. Among our personal favorites are the blends made from various combinations of Marsanne, Roussanne, and Viognier. Interestingly, some of these white grapes, in small quantities, are used in the making of the region’s prestigious red wines, like Hermitage. Domain des Remizieres‘s Cuvée Christoph is a delicious blend of 85% Marsanne and 15% Roussanne, a truly excellent representative of the whites from this region.

Crozes-Hermitage Blanc

Tasting Notes: Color is 18 Karat Gold … beautiful! The nose reveals layers of mango, buttered toast, and a little fresh cut grass. The taste is a broader palette of mixed tropical fruits (mango, guava, lychee, jackfruit, etc.) along with fragrant toast. The tropical fruit perpetuates on the finish. These flavors really complement nicely the buckwheat galettes filled with the lightly creamed ham and spinach.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Ham Florentine Galletes: Beaujolais (France), Chardonnay (Australia), Soave (Italy), Pinot Noir (California)

Other Food That Pairs Well with Crozes-Hermitage: lobster, crab, smoked salmon, risotto, pork

Wines of the Northern Rhone: Wine Folly

A Source:  www.klwines.com





Pan Seared Halibut Cheeks — Mind-blowing Paired with Roussanne

Pairing: Pan-seared Halibut Cheeks with Mustard Cream Sauce Paired with 2017 Sheid Vineyards Roussanne 

Food:  OK … full disclosure … halibut cheeks are not that easy to come by (the halibut fishery is appropriately a very tightly managed fishery due to the limited stocks). So, if you can find cheeks in a fish market, they can be a bit pricy. We are fortunate to have an acquaintance who is a fisherman on Prince Edward Island, from whom we can purchase a whole fish (30+ lbs per fish). The prized parts of this delicious fish are the fleshy sides of the mouth … i.e., the cheeks. Note: A fine substitute for the halibut cheeks in this recipe, and more readily available, is sea scallops. But if you can score some halibut cheeks (or cod cheeks) … well, it’s quite a treat!

Halibut cheeks can range in size from about an inch and a half to a three to four inch oval. If you are fortunate to live near a good market, you may want to inquire as to their ability to make a special order.

To make two servings, warm 2 tsp olive oil over medium-high heat in a saute pan. Put about 2/3 lb of fish cheeks in a single layer and cook for one minute on one side. Turn them over and cook for another 30 seconds. Remove fish to a warm plate. Turn the heat down to medium and add 1/4 cup white wine and a clove of garlic, minced, to the pan. As soon as the wine has mostly evaporated, add 2 Tbs of heavy cream, some chives, and 1 Tbs dijon mustard, stirring all the while. The cream will start to thicken so put the fish back into the sauce to warm. Serve with rice pilaf and baby beets and their greens.

Halibut Cheeks

Wine:  A couple of years back, my wife and I spent a delightful weekend in the charming coastal village of Carmel-by-the-Sea in California. For wine geeks like us, we couldn’t have found a more perfect locale to sample an amazing array of wines from the Central Coast wine region. The best of the best was the Roussanne made by Scheid Vineyards.

Roussanne is most often associated with the wine regions of southern France, Cotes du Roussillon and the Rhone. In these locales, Roussanne is frequently blended with Viognier, Grenache Blanc, and/or Marsanne to make the signature white wines of these regions. California winemakers have gained worldwide respect for creating New World versions of these cherished French white wines. They also make splendid single varietal wines from each of the aforementioned grapes.

Scheid Roussanne

Tasting Notes: A pale greenish-gold color. Both the nose and the palate show cantaloupe melon, white clover, and a garden of mixed flowers. Some tangy minerality completes the picture. Wonderful! One could sip this all evening all by itself. But as a pairing wine, it is absolutely perfect served with the halibut cheeks. Can’t give too many accolades to this marriage made in heaven!

Other Wines That Pair Well with Halibut Cheeks:  Chablis (Burgundy, France), Viognier (Languedoc, France), Sancerre (Loire Valley, France), Chardonnay (California)

Other Food That Pairs Well with Roussanne:  Smoked Fish, Scallops, Chicken, Risotto

View Maps and Views of Monterey Wine Region:  Monterey County Wine Regions

A Source:  www.scheidvineyards.com