Cocoa & Lavender

Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Chilling With Friends

It was the eve of a minor surgical procedure that was to keep me off my feet for four to six weeks. What was I to do? Naturally, I invited friends over for meal-worthy charcuterie board to chill, try out some wine ... and to keep my mind off the knife. What would you have done?

While there is no one “recipe” for putting together a charcuterie board, I invite you to visit Cocoa & Lavender to see what I did. It might give you some ideas, and you might have some to share with me! What would you add to a charcuterie board that I omitted?

The wine of the evening was a 2017 Patricia Ortelli Blanc from Château la Calisse. It was highly recommended to me as the perfect wine to accompany a charcuterie board, although I honestly didn’t expect it (a white wine) to hold up to some of the more intense items on the board. In the end, it paired really well with every single morsel on the board — from the venison rillettes, to the chicken liver mousse with...
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Clubbing

I’m not one to join country clubs. And I definitely don’t frequent night clubs. However, when wine is concerned, joining clubs has its benefits, especially when one (me, for example) lives in a bit of a wine desert.

Yes, Arizona has all the national...
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Smooth Operator

When I started writing this column - can you believe it has been four years? - I had never had a French Viognier. I was used to the sweet, strongly spiced American vintages which, I believe, have their place at the table. They are well-liked and, as soon as anyone here says, “Lobster with drawn butter,” someone else in the rooms puts a Viognier...
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Intentional

No, Dorothy, we aren’t in Kansas... or Provence, for that matter. But I did this intentionally. I planned to share a cassoulet on New Year’s Eve with Susan and Towny, and wanted the wine to pair perfectly.

Since I got the basic recipe for the cassoulet from John and Nicole...
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Provençal Pairings: Wine with Food

Mix and Match

Generally, when serving a meal, I like to pair the wines with the region from which the food comes. It’s not always possible - Asian food, for example - but, when making Italian dishes (even as specific as Sicilian fare) there are so many good local wines available for pairing.

However, if you look slightly northwest out your window in Palermo, Sicily, you might be able to see the coast of France, and - more specifically today - the Costières de Nîmes region, from which today’s wine comes. (Yes, Sardinia is in the way of your view... but work with me.)...
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