Food/Wine Matches Made in Heaven: The Mustard Surprise

A long-awaited gathering of our wine club took place this month with a fun theme – food/wine matches made in heaven.  Ok, technically that wasn’t the theme, but when it worked, it was a good description.  We were all assigned food pairings to bring and the wine was taken care of by the couple hosting the party.  Because my husband was out of town and I don’t cook, I begged for ingredients that required little to no assembly.  So, I came bearing foie gras pate, a baguette and black truffle butter.

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The format was to pair two wines with variations of one food.  Our first pairing was an Old World Chablis (08 Isabelle et Denis Pommier Chablis) and a traditional oaked chardonnay (09 Neyers Carneros) with  smoked and fresh mozzarella.  Hands down the smoked mozzarella went best with the Neyers and we all couldn’t come to an agreement about the Chablis pairing due to the citrus/mineral notes.

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Our next pairing was my favorite – fabulous yellowtail and tuna sushi along with blinis and caviar matched with  Iron Horse Sparkling and 10 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand.  I liked them both, but was surprised how versatile the sauvignon blanc was with the sushi. 

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The next pairing was a surprise to us all.  We tried sausage (veggie and Italian) paired with Dijon mustard and then just crackers with mustard coupled with 08 Domaine Zind Humbrecht Pinot Blanc and the 07 Chianti Castilla.  Who would have thought that my second favorite pairing would be Dijon mustard and crackers? 

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We followed with black bean burgers with a sour cream/lime sauce with onion rings paired with 10 Les Plautiers Du Haut Brion White Bordeaux and the same Chianti.  The onion ring paired well with the white, not the red.  The black bean burgers, which were fantastic on their own, were even heartier with the chianti.

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We then matched a guacamole and tenderloin with chimicurri sauce with a 05 Samuels Gorge Syrah and the 05 Abel Rioja.  I personally liked the tenderloin and rioja pairing better, but it was interesting to see what flavors the guacamole brought out in both wines.

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Next, we paired a simple grilled piece of baguette with black truffle butter with a 05 Chauvernet Chopin Nuis St Georges fer Cru Burgundy.  This was a classic example of the symphony in your mouth that happens with the right food and wine pairing.  Divine.

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Our last pairing was a foie gras with a 05 Chateau La Tour Blanche Donation Osiris.  Bliss on a cracker and another example of a food/wine match that had to be made in heaven.