Tomato Tarts … Absolutely Delicious with an Italian Chardonnay

Pairing:  Tomato Tarts Paired with a 2012 D’Amico Chardonnay Calanchi di Vaiano

Food: As the autumn harvest nears it’s end here in northern New England, we cherish the last few evenings that are warm enough and light enough to enjoy dinner on the terrace. It is also the time to catch the last of the heirloom tomatoes before the frost hits. These tomato tarts capture the rich, deep flavor of the heirlooms and showcase them as the centerpiece of the meal. We use the recipe found in The French Culinary Institute’s Salute to Healthy Cooking from America’s Foremost French Chefs, a fabulous cookbook. The recipe calls for making a savory pastry from flour, egg, olive oil, canola oil, salt and water. Chill the dough, then shape it into six-inch rounds. Top the rounds with overlapping thinly sliced tomatoes and sprinkle with parmesan cheese, fresh basil, salt, and pepper. Bake at 375F for about 8 minutes. Unbelievably good!

Tomato TartsJPG

Wine:  For fun … over the next few months we are going to sample Chardonnays from several different parts of the world, exploring different expressions of the Chardonnay grape.  This Calanchi di Vaiano winery is located in the Lazio wine region of central Italy, the locale of the ancient city of Rome.  The D’Amico’s Chardonnay is unoaked allowing only the terroir created from the eroded lava hillsides where the vineyards are planted to shape the flavors of the wine.

Calanchi ChardonnayJPG

Tasting Notes:  A beautiful medium-gold color. Inhale deeply … one is almost knocked over with the delightful aromas of honey, honeysuckle and peach. On the palate, one recalls one’s youth eating a bowl of honeyed peaches. But it’s not a sweet wine … there is just enough acidity to brighten and balance the flavors. Another sip … is that apricot there in the orchestra of tastes … maybe a little bit of spice, too … nutmeg? Gosh, this is a really, really nice wine. One of the top 5 Chardonnays I’ve ever tasted! And … $14 … get more! Oh, and it’s a brilliant pairing with the tomato tarts. Just brilliant. (do I detect a little bit of head-swelling? … nay). The wine, the tomatoes, the crust, the cheese … all work together to enhance each flavor. Wonderful!

Other Wines That Pair Well with Tomato Tarts:  Soave (Italy), White Burgundy (France), Pinot Grigio (Italy), Vouvray (Loire), Albarino (Spain).

Other Food That Pairs Well with Italian Chardonnay:  Pasta with a Light Cream Sauce, Crab Cakes,  Fresh Tuna and Tomato with Pasta, Pasta Salad with Mushrooms & Tomato.

Read More About Lazio Wines:  http://winefolly.com/review/the-wines-to-know-from-lazio/

A Source:  www. klwines.com

 

 

 

 

 

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Mushroom and Chicken Risotto … with an Unoaked Chardonnay

Pairing:  Mushroom and Chicken Risotto Paired with a 2012 Iron Horse Unoaked Chardonnay

Food: Marcella Hazan was arguably the leading authority on Italian cuisine for generations of home cooks, and her seminal work, Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, is widely considered to be the bible of Italian cooking. Our dish is an adaptation of her Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms from this cookbook just with some pieces of cooked chicken added to the risotto at the end. Follow the link for the recipe. If you are a fan of mushrooms (like we are), the wonderful earthy flavors of this dish are without equal. But the chicken doesn’t let the mushrooms overwhelm the dish. Can’t think of any superlatives to give it justice.

Mushroom and Chicken Rissoto

Wine:  Many of us associate Chardonnay with big, bold, buttery flavors. Those flavors are actually a result of aging the wine in oak barrels for part of the aging process. The influence of the oak on the wine depends on the length of time the wine stays in the barrel, whether it is new or old oak, French or American oak. The skill of the winemaker in managing the oak determines the taste and quality of the Chardonnay.

Some winemakers, however, choose to forgo the oak and let the pure, unaltered flavor of the Chardonnay grape be the centerpiece of the wine … an Unoaked Chardonnay. That part of Burgundy called Chablis is probably the most well known wine region in the world producing Unoaked Chardonnay, though for this meal we are pairing one from the Green Valley in Sonoma, California.

Iron Horse Unoaked Chardonnay

Tasting Notes:  A clean, smooth golden wine, but with a crispness reminiscent of a Soave or Pinot Grigio. The nose brings forth aromas of some light citrus and green apple, while flavors of ripe peaches and tropical fruit (even a little pineapple) emerge on the palate.  A lovely complement to this risotto.

Other Wines That Pair Well with Mushroom Risotto:  Pinot Noir (California), Soave Classico (Italy), Pinot Grigio (Italy), White Burgundy (France)

Other Food That Pairs Well with an Unoaked Chardonnay:  Curries, Guacamole, Grilled or Roasted Pork, Grilled Shrimp, Grilled Salmon

Read About:  http://www.ironhorsevineyards.com

A Source:  www.wine.com