Sunday, October 24, 2010

Food and Wine Pairing, TAGGED and Maybe You Have Been, Too!

Before yesterday's baseball game, we made the four hour round trip drive to Kendall Jackson to pick up our wine club shipment. There’s a reason we don’t have it shipped to us. We always find something interesting to do there. And we usually select another new winery in the area to try as well.

We’ve done the KJ food and wine pairing before, but it changes seasonally, depending on what is fresh from the garden. There were seven pairings on the menu and we had three extra wines thrown in for comparison as well as an extra course at the end. There are definitely advantages to being a wine club member!

On the left is a buckwheat crepe with smoked ham hocks and Bellwether Farms carmody cheese paired with 2006 Highland Estates Seco Highlands Pinor Noir. The smokiness of the wine was very complimentary to the ham hocks, but we thought the ham overwhelmed the wine just a little. The other two were absolutely divine. The middle is one of my favorites that is always on the tasting menu- sweet tea brined pork belly slider with syrah BBQ sauce paired with a syrah. On the right is a Korean Kobe beef lettuce wrap paired with the 2005 Highland Estates Trace Ridge Cab. They also poured the Jackson Hills cab for comparison, but we agreed the original selection was the better choice.

If you live near anywhere that offers food and wine pairings for a reasonable price, I recommend that you check it out. I learn something new every time. Plus it is a lot of fun. At KJ, the chef provides a very good explanation of how the pairings are developed and they enjoy hearing your input.

When I got home, I had a message from Kim at Liv Life that she had tagged me in a recent round of the blogger game of questions going around. I’ve been neglecting the blog due to the baseball games, so it was good that she gave me a heads up. Here are the responses to her questions.

1. What is your favorite restaurant? Ubuntu in Napa, California

2. When dining out do you prefer a fancy, dress up affair or casual with flip flops? Anywhere that the food is good, although it is fun to dress up occasionally

3. Do you do fast food? If so, what is your favorite? Way too often. There is an amazing place in Napa and now in San Francisco called Pica Pica that has the best fast food you could ever imagine. Venezuelan arepas, cachepas, empanadas and yucca fries

4. Do you remember one of the first recipes that you ever made? If so, do you still make it? It’s a tagliarini recipe from a neighbor when I was in junior high. I made it for a potluck at work recently and everyone thought it was a fancy lasagna.

5. The world is open to you. A personal private jet with pilot is waiting for your direction... Where will you go? All over Africa

6. How close do you now live to where you were born? 3,000 miles. I'm transplanted from NC to CA

7. Wine... red, white or bubbly? Never bubbly

8. Why did you start blogging? I was recovering from two surgeries and facing several months of additional treatment. I didn’t have the energy for the fiber art I had been doing for years. I wanted to write instead. But I didn’t want to write about being sick. I wanted to write about something fun that I loved. So I started my food and wine blog. It was great as therapy and a creative outlet. I’m fine now, but haven’t returned to fiber art and have continued to love writing.

Now to continue the game I’m supposed to pose eight new questions and tag eight additional bloggers. Many people I follow have already been tagged repeatedly and some are focused on Project Food Blog, so I’m going to try to tag some new people whose blogs I really enjoy. I NEVER participate in chain emails, but this has been fun and I've enjoyed learning more about the bloggers I follow on a regular basis. Hopefully, some of these bloggers will participate as well.

The new questions are:

1. What is your favorite menu to prepare for guests?
2. Do you have a favorite winery? What is it and why?
3. What do you refuse to eat, ever?
4. What has been your worse culinary experience?
5. What is the most unusual thing you’ve eaten?
6. What is your favorite food show?
7. How old were you when you started cooking?
8.What is your first food memory?

If anyone wants to know my answers, just tag me back. And now,

Carolyn at Food Gal
Foy at FoyUpdate
Kate at kateiscooking
Brian at A Food for Thought
Matt at Thyme in Our Kitchen
Dina at Leek Soup
Leila at My Barbarian Table

Your’re it!


  1. I didn't know you started writing to recover from surgery. Glad you kept at it. Awesome to get such thorough wine pairings!

  2. The wine pairings look great. Not too many places in NH that do this which is why I started doing it on my own! We've been getting to Boston more and finding more oppurtunities.

    I got tagged as well and have to figure out my response tonight.

    My wine adventures started after my cancer treatment. I didn't immediately start writing about it, but love it now that I have!


  3. Wow, what a wonderful time! I've never done the pairing at Kendall Jackson. But now, you have me itching to try it.