Wines From California Wines

Angels Landing Chardonnay

This bottle has elegant notes of apricot, peach, lemon, and vanilla. The wine is fuller in body, off-dry, and has moderate acidity. The Chardonnay has buttery qualities, which will pair well with any light fish or chicken cooked with butter. Additionally, this wine will pair nicely with Mozzarella.

Food Pairing

Crispy Oven-Baked Catfish

When a couple of our seafood shacks close down for the winter, this recipe will surely satisfy the weekend fish fry cravings. The texture of the bread crumb is satisfying against the flaky, tender fillet of catfish. It is a simple, quick, and easy dish to execute that has minimal dishes to clean up afterward. Fuller bodied Chardonnays would make for a lovely pairing because the body will match the fish in intensity. The crossover of buttery notes between the dish and the wine will be incredibly satisfying as well.

Cooking Tips:

  • Do not turn the fish and opt to rotate the pan 180 degrees while cooking. It will lower the risk of damaging the fillet.
  • Keep one hand in dry ingredients and one in wet ingredient to avoid frustration while breading.
  • Dry the fillet with a paper towel or dredge in white flour before coating in egg, so that the breadcrumb has something to stick to.

Napa Cut Cabernet Sauvignon

This bottle has deep and complex notes of black cherry, black currants, cocoa, and baking spices. The wine has a big bold body and tannins, yet it remains bouncy through its acidity. This Cabernet Sauvignon will pair nicely with grilled and braised red meats, by match each other in intensity. Sharp Cheddar cheese would also make for a lovely pairing.

Food Pairing

Red Wine-Braised Short Rib

Braising tenderizes chewy cuts into succulent fall off the bone meat. Cooking in a flavorfully seasoned bath of red wine allows for beneficial flavor exchange. It is one of the simplest ways to unlock the fullest potential of tough high activity red meat. It would be valuable to cook with the Napa Cut or another Cabernet Sauvignon and serve that same wine with the meal. It will match the dish in intensity and is complemented by bridging notes between the meat and the wine.

Cooking Tips:

  • When browning the meat be careful to not crowd the pan. It is best to work in slower smaller batches so that the meat browns and not steams.
  • Use a fork to test the tenderness, if it enters how you would expect it to on the plate cook it a little longer. The cooking temperature is much higher than when you are going to eat at so the meat will firm up slightly after coming out of the oven.
  • If you notice that the meat is pulling away from the bone without any assistance, then it is past done. It is important to be tender, but not so tender that there is no texture to the meat

Angels Landing Sauvignon Blanc

This bottle has aromatic notes of pineapple, grapefruit, butter, and allspice. This wine is pleasantly dry with a present body and moderate acidity. The Sauvignon Black would pair well with pasta and poultry dishes. Bright and fresh goat cheese would also make for a wonderful food pairing

Food Pairing

Cacio e Pepe

It seems impossible to think that cacio e pepe could not have been popular since the creation of noodles itself. Cheese, pasta, and fresh ground black pepper, what is not to love? Surprisingly this dish is considered a modern classic and most likely created around the mid 20th century. It was propelled into the international spotlight when three-star Michelin Chef Massimo Bottura attempted to save the Italian Parmesan industry from a devastating earthquake by promoting the heavy use of the product in this recipe. It is deliciously addictive because of the umami-packed within the cheese, and the heat black pepper gives adds to the simple complexity of flavors.

Cooking Tips:

  • Use a block of cheese and whole black peppercorns before using pre-grated cheese and pre-ground peppercorns. They lose a bit of their flavor edge when they are prepared in the latter form.
  • Reserve the pasta water before draining. It is easier to do this than to try to catch the water or perform risky hot metal juggling.
  • When adding the remaining butter, make sure to continuously stir. It will create an emersion sauce that will be creamy if successful. If it looks oily it separated and will need a tab of butter and a repeat of stirring to save it.

Copper Corkscrew Cabernet Sauvignon

This everyday bottle has lovely notes of blackberry, cherry, and fresh cedar. The wine has a confident body and is leaning dry, with moderate tannins and acidity. This Cabernet Sauvignon will pair nicely with grilled and seared red meats, by match each other in intensity. Mild Cheddar cheese would also make for a lovely pairing.

Food Pairing

Pan-Seared Steak with Red Wine Sauce

A perfect meal to consume on a chilly fall day that pairs wonderfully with red wine sauce reduction. Together, the flavor components balance each other in intensity to create a savory delight.

Cooking Tips:

  • Be generous when salting the meats in order to create a delicious Maillard reaction.
  • Always wait to cook with a hot skillet, if the meat is placed too early, no reaction will form.
  • Let steak rest of the equal amount of time it took to cook.

Cocktails To Try

Mai Tai

“Tropical Paradise In A Glass”

Victor J. “Trader Vic” Bergeron brought the exotic far east to the west coast in 1932. He opened his first pub called Hinky Dink’s, which eventually got renamed Trader Vic’s. The theme was “Polynesian inspired,” and many more like it opened across America. Trader Vic was creating all sorts of tiki drinks, like the Mai Tai. It is tropical, sweet, and tangy and makes for excellent escapism. Unlike many drinks in the Tiki category, it is probably the most straight forward to mix. The only hang-up will be making your Orgeat, but that beautiful wild topical notes it provides the drink will make all the hassle worth it.

Ingredients for one:

1 oz white rum
1 oz aged rum
1/2 oz orange curaçao
1 ozlime juice
3/4 ounce orgeat

Steps for making:

Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker.
Add ice and shake until chilled.
Double strain over crushed ice into a rocks glass.
Garnish with an umbrella, a lime wheel or spent lime shell, and a sprig of mint (optional).

Orgreat Recipe:

1 cups blanched almonds
¾ cups of sugar
1 1/8 cup water
¼ teaspoon orange flower water
½ ounce brandy
Steps To Make:
Blitz the almonds in a blender or food processor until they are ground finely.
Combine your sugar and water in a saucepot and bring to a simmer, stirring until sugar dissolves wholly.
Bring the liquid to a boil and add in the ground almonds.
Take the heat down and simmer for another three and a half minutes.
Pull off the heat, cover, and let sit at room temperature for at least 3 hours and up to 8 hours.
Then strain it through 2 layers of cheesecloth or a fine-mesh chinoise. (Separate the ground almonds for another use.)
Stir in orange flower water and the brandy into your syrup.
Funnel the Orgeat into a vessel and store refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. Do not freeze.