Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Spanish Sensations

Food, wine and flamenco on a gorgeous, sunny day. Could there be a better way to spend a Saturday? I think not. We spent the day at the Kendall Jackson Wine Center for the annual summer wine club members barbecue. The theme was Spanish Sensations.

We were greeted in KJ’s beautiful 120 acre garden with wine (of course), hors d’oevres, and their famous verjus sangria slushie. A beautiful, deep purple, fruity drink, the slushie was perfect for a warm afternoon with a Spanish theme. You can find the recipe on their website, but I’ll include it here, in case you want to create it for an upcoming party. The recipe makes 2 ½ gallons.

Ingredients:

• 1 bottle Kendall-Jackson Pinot Noir
• 5 bottles Kendall-Jackson Zinfandel
• 2 bottles Kendall-Jackson Syrah
• 1 1/2 C. sugar
• 1 bottle red verjus
• 1 C. pomegranate molasses (Carlo brand)
• 2 oranges, juiced
• 2 lemons, juiced
• 1 C. Pama pomegranate liqueur
• 6 C. assorted frozen red fruits and berries (such as blackberries, cherries and strawberries)

Make the wine mixture and refrigerate overnight. When ready to serve, add the frozen fruit and blend until smooth. Also works with a slushie machine if you happen to have one! If you're using a slushie machine, you can use fresh fruit.

We wandered through gardens and the rows of grapes in the vineyard. The grapes are all ripening a little behind schedule from the cool weather. Lunch was a buffet of paella cooked on the spot, brimming with shrimp, chicken and mussels, as well as a buffet of Spanish meats, cheeses and vegetables. And of course, a varied selection of their wines was available to go along with the meal. My favorite to accompany the Spanish flavors was the Grand Reserve Zinfandel, but I did try several of the other offerings.

After lunch we were entertained with flamenco music and dancers. There was a raffle with lots of prizes, but of course, I never win anything. Never mind, it was a great event, we picked up our shipment, bought a couple more bottles of wine and my only regret is that I didn’t take more photos.

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