This month I was afforded a wonderful opportunity to sample some of English Newsom Cellars’ newly released wines. I was asked to think of some pairings that would compliment the wines and I joyously and humbly accepted the task. After tasting the wines, I made notes of pairings that came to mind and then I came home and tried out my ideas. After reviewing my notes and pairing my suggestions, the pairing menu below came alive and created a culinary experience on our palates.
Wine: White Gold, 2018
Pairing: Prosciutto and Havarti Cheese
- I feel a creamy cheese would pair well with this wine. The green apple notes of the wine create a prosciutto, havarti cheese and apple slice hors d’oeuvre on the palate.
Wine: Dry Muscat, 2018
Pairing: Bacon Wrapped Apricot (dried apricots)
- The savoryness of the bacon and the sweetness of the apricot remind me of sweet and sour pork (Texas-Style). This is a common Asian dish as English Newsom recommends pairing this wine with Asian dishes. This wine also compliments the different textures of the appetizer. The sweetness of the apricot balances out the dryness of the muscat and plays on the bouquet of apricots in the nose.
Wine: Red Italian Blend, 2017
Pairing: Milk Chocolate Covered Almonds
- The wine and the almonds provide a caramel component, creating a nice dessert or after dinner gourmet chocolate. Milk chocolate pairs better with this wine. A dark or an Intense dark may overpower the hint of smoke in the wine.
Wine: Tempranillo, 2017
Pairing: Dark Chocolate and Marshmallow
- This pairing reminds me of a campfire smore or a roasted/toasted marshmallow. The deep smoke notes of the wine create not only a pleasurable taste on the palate but an experience of camping or sitting around a campfire enjoying a smore. Should we add a graham cracker? No, it will just take away. These textures mesh well together and provide an experience or reminiscent memory.
Thank you, once again, to English Newsom for having me out and allowing me to lead my first wine pairing class. I enjoyed meeting everyone that came out and look forward to seeing you again and meeting new faces. For those of you who didn’t get to make it out, I hope you try out these pairings, you will love them. This was a fun experience and as mentioned in my last post; it’s all trial and error. Just jump right in and enjoy yourself.
XOXO, Smiling Danny
PS: All of these appetizers I created with items purchased from my local grocer. But if you want to know the exact brands I used, they are listed below:
United Supermarkets, Boar’s Head Prosciutto and Harvarti Cheese, Kraft Marshmallows and Hershey dark chocolate chips