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The Dish @ Dashe

Fish Tales and Monkey Business from the Team at Dashe Cellars

 Mike Dashe Co-founder & Director of Winemaking

 Anne Dashe Co-founder

 Rene Calderon Winemaker

 Stephanie Flasher DTC & Wine Club Manager

 Monica Chappell Project Manager

  Jiliane Patriarca Tasting Room Teammate

Monica Chappell
 
November 4, 2021 | Monica Chappell

Elevate Thanksgiving This Year

Let's Talk Thanksgiving! 

Wine adds a perfect festive touch to holiday meals, but selecting what to drink on Thanksgiving can be daunting. So how do you choose the right wine for the big dinner? Here's an easy answer: No single wine will work perfectly with your meal so serve a few. Matching wine with roast turkey is pretty easy, but the side dishes are another story. These dishes usually range from sweet to savory. Think about what is usually served in addition to the turkey; the meal might include sweet potatoes, tart cranberries, buttery carrots, earthy mushroom stuffing, and more. These dishes all have different tastes that make selecting one wine difficult. So, what to do? Try at least two, preferably a red and a white.

Dashe Single-Vineyard Dry Riesling McFadden Farm

-Riesling has a perfect balance of fruit and acidity that will complement sweeter Thanksgiving foods.

Click Here for 2019 Dry Riesling, McFadden Farm

Dashe Les Enfants Terribles Grenache

- Grenache is my first choice for a red wine on Thanksgiving. With most Grenache, fruit is the dominant flavor with just enough acid and tannin to give the wine a nice balance.

Click Here for 2017 Grenache, Clarksburg 'Les Enfants Terribles'

Dashe Zinfandel Reserve, Dry Creek Valley

- Being a Zin-centric Winery, how could we not recommend Zinfandel. Thanksgiving being the All-American holiday, why not go with the All-American grape. Zin can be made into wines of varying style, but for this meal, I would suggest going with a fruitier style of Zinfandel. Stay away from the high-alcohol versions. Our Reserve, Dry Creek Valley would be my top choice. 

Click Here for 2017 Zinfandel Reserve, Dry Creek Valley

Late-Harvest Zinfandel, Lily Hill Vineyard

-Elevate your dessert game with our Single-Vineyard Late-Harvest Zinfandel. This wine is moderately sweet, with great brambly raspberry, blackberry, and vanilla notes with its sweetness softening the tannins. 

Click Here for 2017 Late Harvest Zinfandel, Lily Hill Vineyard


THANKSGIVING TURKEY

INGREDIENTS:
• 1 (12-14 pound) fresh whole turkey
• 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
• 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
• 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves
• 1 tablespoon lemon zest
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 3 carrots, peeled
• 3 stalks celery
• 1 sweet onion, cut into wedges
• 1/2 cup Dashe Single-Vineyard Riesling  
• 1 1/2 cups turkey or chicken stock

DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Remove giblets from the turkey cavity. Dry turkey thoroughly with paper towels. Season turkey cavity with salt and pepper, to taste.
3. In a small bowl, combine butter, lemon juice, thyme, rosemary, lemon zest and garlic; season with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper, or more, to taste.
4. Using your fingers, carefully loosen the skin from the breast meat, spreading half of the butter mixture under the skin. Secure skin over the butter with wooden picks.
5. Place carrots, celery and onion in a shallow roasting pan. Place turkey, breast side up, on top of the vegetables; tie drumsticks together with kitchen twine, tucking the wingtips under.
6. Spread remaining half of the butter mixture over the turkey; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add the Dashe Single-Vineyard Riesling and chicken stock to the roasting pan.
7. Place into oven and roast for 30 minutes.
8. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F. Continue roasting until the turkey is completely cooked through, reaching an internal temperature of 165 degrees F in the thickest part of the thigh, about 2 hours to 2 hours and 30 minutes more; baste every 30 minutes with pan drippings. When turkey begins to brown, cover lightly with aluminum foil.
9. Let stand 20 minutes before carving; reserve pan dripping for gravy.

 

 

SAVE ROOM FOR DESSERT

You could end Thanksgiving with apple pie and coffee. You could also go to bed early on Thursday night; But, HELLO, it’s Thanksgiving. This is no time for underachievement. With Thanksgiving’s top pie, I suggest you take the humble apple pie to a whole new level. In fact, I’ve watched it happen many times. The right wine can elevate the flavor of a dish; 1 + 1 = 3, so to speak, with my kind of wine math.

Rule of thumb for pairing wine with dessert - The wine should be at least as sweet as the dessert, with enough acidity for balance. Our single-vineyard late-harvest is made from grapes left on the vine past normal picking times to build sugar levels and develop tastes like dried cherries and chocolate. Try the single-vineyard late-harvest Zinfandel with Thanksgiving Apple Pie, Cheesecake with raspberries or jam, fruit tarts, or carrot cake; late-harvest Zin is always yummy with chocolate too. 

There you have it, a few wine options to help you enjoy your Thanksgiving with a bang, not a whisper.

The Complete Feast

From Start to Finish, the Perfect Hostess Gift!

2019 Single-Vineyard Dry Riesling, McFadden Farm
2017 Zinfandel Reserve, Dry Creek Valley
2017 Single-Vineyard Late Harvest Zinfandel, Lily Hill Vineyard

Click Here for more on The Complete Feast


Time Posted: Nov 4, 2021 at 12:44 PM Permalink to Elevate Thanksgiving This Year Permalink Comments for Elevate Thanksgiving This Year Comments (1)
Monica Chappell
 
October 1, 2021 | Monica Chappell

RECIPE ALERT! Dashe Heart Arrow Cabernet Sauvignon paired with Chicken Marsala

Single-Vineyard Heart Arrow Cabernet Pairing

A Chicken Marsala Recipe from the Master

Home cooks like me have used Marcella Hazan’s classic cookbooks for years (my copies are splattered and worn.)  In my opinion, there is no one more passionate and inspiring about cooking authentic Italian food. Marcella Hazan, the godmother of Italian cooking in America, is the author of The Classic Italian Cookbook, More Classic Italian Cooking, Marcella's Italian kitchen, and Essentials of Italian Cooking. I have them all in my kitchen library. 

For this recipe, there are two special ingredients creating magic: the dried porcini mushrooms, and the Marsala wine. The dried porcini is an aromatic essence of porcini mushrooms. The difference between fresh and dried porcini can be compared to the difference between a bouquet of fresh flowers and the aromas in a bottle of perfume. As for the Marsala, it is a fortified wine from the town of Marsala in western Sicily. For cooking purposes, look for the word secco, which means dry, although it is still slightly sweet.

We have chosen this Chicken Marsala recipe as an unusual pairing to go with our single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. Typically, chicken recipes are too light to pair well with Cabernet, but in this case the earthy porcini mushrooms and the complex flavors of the Marsala meld perfectly with the richness of the single-vineyard Heart Arrow Cabernet Sauvignon.

 
This Recipe Feeds 4 People 


 

INGREDIENTS
• 1 ounce imported dried porcini mushrooms 
• A 3½-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
• Flour for coating the chicken, about ½ cup
• 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
• 1 tablespoon butter
• Salt & Black pepper ground fresh
• 3 tablespoons chopped onion
• ⅓ cup dry Marsala wine 

NOTE: You could also use bonless skinless chicken breasts pounded into paillards instead of the chicken pieces. 

METHOD
1. Soak the mushrooms in 2 cups warm water for at least 30 minutes. Lift out the mushrooms by hand, squeezing as much water as possible from them, letting it flow back into the container where they soaked. Pat dry with paper towels and chop them very fine. The water in which the mushrooms soaked is richly infused with porcini flavor. Filter the water through a strainer lined with cheese cloth, collecting it in a bowl or a pouring cup. Set aside.

2. Pat the chicken as dry as you can with paper towels. Spread the flour on a plate and turn the chicken in it.

3. Choose a skillet or sauté pan that can accommodate all the chicken pieces in a single layer without overlapping, put in the oil and butter, and turn on the heat to medium high. When the butter foam begins to subside, slip in the chicken. When all the pieces have become well browned on one side, add salt, black pepper, and the chopped onion, and turn the pieces over.

4. When the chicken has become browned all over and the onion has become colored a rich gold, add the Marsala wine. Let it bubble briskly for just a few seconds, add the chopped porcini mushrooms, turn the ingredients over with a wooden spoon, then cover the pan and turn the heat down to medium low.

5. Cook the chicken at a slow but regular simmer, replenishing the cooking juices when they begin to dry out with 2 or 3 tablespoons of the filtered water from the mushroom soak. Turn the chicken pieces over every once in a while and continue cooking until they feel very tender when prodded with a fork and the meat looks as though it would easily fall off the bone, about 50 minutes to 1 hour. The cooking juices should have condensed into a small amount of creamy sauce. If there is too much fat floating free, tip the pan and spoon it off. Transfer the entire contents of the pan to a warm platter and serve at once.

 
 
Single-Vineyard Heart Arrow Cabernet Pairing
WINE PAIRING:
The Marsala intensifies and develops a deep, concentrated flavor as it reduces. This sauce captures this quality along with the earthy flavors of the porcini mushrooms. The result is an intense, full-flavored dish that marries well to the ripe fruit of the single-vineyard Cabernet. This pairing is a good example of finding parallel intensity both in the dish and the wine. 

 

Single-Vineyard Heart Arrow Cabernet Sauvignon Tasting Notes:
Color: Purple Black
Aromas: Black cherry, blackberry, cassis, graphite, violets, black pepper, minerals
Taste: Almost Bordeaux-like in structure, with good acidity, velvety mid palate, and a spectrum of complex fruit flavors. Entry of blackberry, cassis, black cherry, violets, and then broader flavors of pencil lead, forest floor, black cherry. Finish of blackberry, black cherry, mineral, and black pepper. 
 
Click Here for the 2018 Single-Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Heart Arrow Ranch

This recipe was taken from Marcella Hazan’s cookbook Marcella Cucina published in 1997. 
 

Monica Chappell
 
March 11, 2021 | Monica Chappell

Happy Birthday Riesling!

We have more than a casual interest in Riesling, since we make a single vineyard wine from a wonderful old-vine Riesling vineyard in Potter Valley. 

In case you didn’t know, March 13th has been officially designated as Riesling’s Birthday; Happy 586th Birthday, Riesling, you don’t look a day older than 400. The reason for that date is that the earliest recording of Riesling dates to March 13, 1435 in Germany, when the first Riesling single-vineyard wines were officially recorded.

For me, Riesling is the wine world's best-kept secret. Few great grapes are so affordable, grown worldwide and liked by so many. Its hallmarks are floral aromas, spice, citrus, and stone fruit flavors, and my favorite component, high natural acidity. For this reason, Riesling is a wine that can age incredibly well. It’s got it all!

What to Love about Riesling

First of all, it's incredibly versatile: It can be lightweight and super-delicate, range from dry to sweet, and can be made in both still and sparkling styles. So, basically, there is a Riesling out there for every palate. Riesling produces one of the most popular white wines in the world and is beloved by everyday wine drinkers and sommeliers alike. Not an easy feat!   

Food-Pairing Affinity

Riesling has become a darling of sommeliers because of its incredible versatility for pairing with food. It’s clean, fresh, mineral expression is fantastic with vegetable dishes or seafood, and the sweeter styles are famous for pairing with spicy food because sweetness helps balance out spice. Finally, rich, luscious styles are excellent with cheese, my favorite food group.

Unique expression of Terroir 

Perhaps most appealing of all, is the fact that Riesling is an expressive single vineyard wine depending on where the grapes are grown. There can be a different dimension to each bottle not to mention you can keep in your cellar for years, and it will only get more interesting.

Dashe McFadden Farm Riesling

Click Here for 2019 Dry Riesling, McFadden Farm

Our 2019 Dashe Riesling is organically-grown and cultivated high in the mountains of Potter Valley on the east border of Mendocino county. Since we love dry Riesling, and especially single-vineyard wines, we made this wine bone dry with a beautiful characteristic fruit and mineral aroma, a firm structure, lush mid-palate, and a dry long fruity finish. With its lovely aromatics and mouthfeel, good acid/fruit balance, and complex minerality, this single-vineyard wine is ideal to drink right now and can also be saved for aging in the cellar. This vintage has powerful aromas, a mouth-filling velvety structure, and a depth of flavor that makes it one of the most age-worthy Rieslings we’ve ever produced.

Celebrating Riesling’s birthday is easy; just crack open a bottle and enjoy. Why not join the fun and share your Riesling experiences on social media using the hashtag #RieslingBirthday.

I love serving this Frittata with Riesling. Riesling knows how to play nice with vegetable dishes so it’s my go-to wine when veggies are the star of the dish.

Vegetable Frittata Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil 
  • 1 1/2 cups blanched Broccoli Rabe
  • 4 ounces Pancetta
  • 8 ounces Arugula
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chopped Italian Parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups Italian Fontina cheese grated
  • 8 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese 

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Heat the oil in a large oven proof sauté pan. Add the Broccoli Rabe and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the Pancetta and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the Arugula and cook for another minutes until it is wilted. Off the heat, stir in the parsley and sprinkle the Fontina evenly on top.
Beat the eggs, half-and-half, pinch of salt, and pinch of pepper together with a fork. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the filling. Sprinkle the frittata with the Parmesan cheese and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until puffed and lightly browned on top. Cool for 5 minutes, serve hot or warm with, you guessed it, a glass of Dashe Riesling. No Birthday candle required.

Time Posted: Mar 11, 2021 at 4:28 PM Permalink to Happy Birthday Riesling! Permalink Comments for Happy Birthday Riesling! Comments (2)
Stephanie Flasher
 
February 18, 2021 | Stephanie Flasher

RECIPE ALERT! Comet paired with Pancetta Pot Pie

The perfect Zinfandel food pairing

The women in my family have a common addiction... we can sit around a kitchen table and flip through cookbooks for hours on end. Can you imagine how this was transformed for us when food blogging became popular? Over the years, I've discovered new favorite bloggers and explored new cuisines and pairings, specifically Zinfandel food pairing once I started working with Mike and Anne. But no matter how wide my internet roaming goes, I always come back to my favorite blog Smitten Kitchen. I've been making this pot pie recipe for years, and it's an amazing recipe. When paired with our 2018 'The Comet' though, it takes on an entirely new life. Please, before the spring comes, make this recipe & pop the cork on a bottle of Comet... You'll forget that spring training and summer sailing are still months away.

2018 'The Comet' Sonoma County

This wine is made of Petite Sirah and  Zinfandel, blended with 130-year-old vine Carignane. The blend makes for a very complex, balanced, dark wine with a long, long finish. It’s a quintessential steak-house wine, made to go with food. It will last in the cellar for years!

Color:  Reddish-purple
Aromas:  Chocolate, black cherry, blackberry, followed by elements of toffee, vanilla, black pepper, and coffee
Taste:  Extremely smooth and velvety entry, wine, with good acid balance, and silky tannins. The entry is of bright fruit—black cherry, blackberry, and pomegranate—and then a lush texture filled with fruit, cocoa powder, clove, and a spicy finish.  The wine has a velvety mouthfeel and long finish.

Zinfandel food pairing: Asian 5 Spice Short Ribs, Grilled Venison with Berry Reduction, anything with Mole Poblano Sauce.

Click Here to buy the 2018 'The Comet' Sonoma County

Pancetta, White Bean, and Chard Pot Pies

By Deb Perelman, from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook - Zinfandel food pairing by Stephanie Flasher

The pancetta, while adding a lovely, smoky base, can be omitted to make this vegetarian. In fact, I went back and forth many, many times about removing it so that this could stay in the vegetarian section, but in the end, decided it easier I leave the choice to you. For a vegetarian version, simply skip the pancetta and cook your vegetables in 2 tablespoons olive oil instead of 1. You can replace the swiss chard with any green you have around, from a hearty spinach to kale, adjusting the cooking time accordingly to make sure it wilts a bit before going into the oven to finish cooking.

As you can see from the photos, I really don’t own soup crocks. I have debated the value of purchasing some many times of the years, but you must trust me when I say I don’t have room for a single extra dish I don’t already own in my life right now. Instead, I just use two-cup bowls we already have that are ovenproof. (When buying a dish set, I always look to see if they are ovenproof, as you never know when this will come in handy.) If you don’t have ovenproof soup bowls, you can always make a large version of this in a casserole dish with one big pastry .

Weekday night tip: Make a double batch of the stew and lids. Keep them separate and for two to three nights, you can ladle what you’d like into bowls, roll out lids and bake them to order.

Serves 4

Ingredients

Lid

  • 2 cups (250 grams) all- purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 13 tablespoons (185 grams or 1 stick plus 5 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, diced
  • 6 tablespoons (90 grams) sour cream or whole Greek yogurt (i.e., a strained
  • yogurt)
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) ice water
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash

Filling

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
  • 4 ounces (115 grams or 3/4 to 1 cup) 1/4-inch-diced pancetta
  • 1 large or 2 small onions, finely chopped
  • 1 large carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 large stalk celery, finely chopped
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Thinly sliced Swiss chard leaves from an 8- to 10-ounce (225- to 285-gram)
  • bundle (4 cups); if leaves are very wide, you can halve them lengthwise
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons (50 grams) butter
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons (25 grams) all- purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 cups (765 ml) sodium- free or low- sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 cups white beans, cooked and drained, or from one and a third 15.5- ounce
  • (440-gram) cans

Directions

Make lids:

In a large, wide bowl (preferably one that you can get your hands into), combine the fl our and salt. Add the butter and, using a pastry blender or your fingertips, cut them up and into the flour mixture until it resembles little pebbles. Keep breaking up the bits of butter until the texture is like uncooked couscous. In a small dish, whisk together the sour cream, vinegar, and water, and combine it with the butter-flour mixture. Using a flexible spatula, stir the wet and the dry together until a craggy dough forms. If needed, get your hands into the bowl to knead it a few times into one big ball. Pat it into a flattish ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and chill it in the fridge for 1 hour or up to 2 days.

Make filling:

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium- high heat in a large, wide saucepan, and then add the pancetta. Brown the pancetta, turning it frequently, so that it colors and crisps on all sides; this takes about 10 minutes. Remove it with a slotted spoon, and drain it on paper towels before transferring to a medium bowl. Leave the heat on and the renderings in the pan. Add an additional tablespoon of olive oil if needed and heat it until it is shimmering. Add onions, carrot, celery, red pepper flakes, and a few pinches of salt, and cook over medium heat until the vegetables are softened and begin to take on color, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook for 1 minute more. Add the greens and cook until wilted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Season with the additional salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Transfer all of the cooked vegetables to the bowl with the pancetta, and set aside.

Make sauce:

Wipe out the large saucepan; don’t worry if any bits remain stuck to the bottom. Then melt the butter in the saucepan over medium- low heat. Add the flour, and stir with a whisk until combined. Continue cooking for 2 minutes, stirring the whole time, until it begins to take on a little color. Whisk in the broth, one ladleful at a time, mixing completely between additions. Once you’ve added one- third of the broth, you can begin to add the rest more quickly, two to three ladlefuls at a time; at this point you can scrape up any bits that were stuck to the bottom — they’ll add great flavor.

Note from Stephanie: to make this an even more perfect Zinfandel food pairing, sometimes I'll substitute a little broth for a splash of The Comet!

Once all of the broth is added, stirring the whole time, bring the mixture to a boil and reduce it to a simmer. Cook the sauce until it is thickened and gravylike, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir the white beans and reserved vegetables into the sauce.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Assemble and cook pot pies:

Divide the filling between four ovenproof 2-cup bowls. (You’ll have about 1 1/2 cups filling in each.) Set the bowls on a baking pan. Divide the dough into four pieces, and roll it out into rounds that will cover your bowls with an overhang, or about 1 inch wider in diameter than your bowls. Whisk the egg wash and brush it lightly around the top rim of your bowls (to keep the lid glued on; nobody likes losing their lid!) and drape the pastry over each, pressing gently to adhere it. Brush the lids with egg wash, then cut decorative vents (smaller than mine, please, as they led to lots of draping) in each to help steam escape. Bake until crust is lightly bronzed and filling is bubbling, about 30 to 35 minutes.

Do ahead:

The dough, wrapped twice in plastic wrap and slipped into a freezer bag, will keep for up to 2 days in the fridge, and for a couple months in the freezer. The filling can be made up to a day in advance and stored in a covered container in the fridge.

Click Here to go to the original recipe posting on www.smittenkitchen.com

Enjoy!

If you haven't already, open up that bottle of 2018 'The Comet' and enjoy an absolutely stellar Zinfandel food pairing! I know what I'm going to be making tonight.

Monica Chappell
 
February 12, 2021 | Monica Chappell

Say Cheese! The Right One Makes a Difference

Perhaps one of my favorite things to pair with wine is the ever-changing cheese plate. Wine and cheese are friends from way back. Both are the product of fermentation and both can express terroir, or the taste of the place they come from. In the case of cheese, the taste of terroir emerges from the different milk-giving animals; which can range from cows, goats, sheep and even water buffalos which just happens to make my favorite cheese of all time – Mozzarella di Bufala. 

This primer can serve as a perfect introduction to the basics and can offer many ways for you to expand your knowledge and understanding of artisan wine and cheese, delve into the art of pairing the two and help you discover a delicious new dimension to your wine-drinking pleasure. So Let’s Go! 

Wine & Cheese Pairing Tips:

The first rule of thumb is that white wines usually pair more easily with artisan cheese than red wines do – sorry red wine lovers. White wine’s acidity cuts through cheese’s butterfat beautifully. The creamy and nutty flavors in cheese can also bring a white wine to life by contrast. Along those lines, some consider Sparkling wine the overall cheese-friendliest wine. Among red wines, the most successful to pair with cheese are the lighter bottlings. Terroir-inspired combinations, artisan wine and cheese coming from the same region, can also be a great pairing strategy. 

Pairings that Please:

  • White or bloomy rind cheeses such as Camembert and Brie are the trickiest to match; safe bets include one of Dashe’s soft, fruity reds from the Les Enfants Terribles Series. My pairing shortlist would include either the Bio-Dynamically grown Heart Arrow Ranch Zinfandel or the 2017 Clarksburg Grenache that was recently featured in Wine & Food Magazine. 

Click Here for 2017 Zinfandel, Heart Arrow Ranch

Click Here for 2017 Grenache, Heringer Vineyard

  • Hard cheeses such as Cheddar, Parmesan, and Manchego go with the widest range of wines; safe bets are medium to full-bodied reds without too much tannin. Insert an age-worthy artisan Zinfandel here – one of Dashe’s Single Vineyard Zinfandel would be just the ticket. For me, I’d unapologetically sink my teeth into the Florence Vineyard Zinfandel along with a hunk of Parmigiano- Reggiano. 

Click Here for 2017 Zinfandel, Florence Vineyard

  • Blue cheeses can be troublesome partners for any wine apart from the classic partnerships of port and Stilton. The salty with sweet principle prevails so why not try Dashe Late-Harvest Zinfandel from the Lily Hill Vineyard, Dry Creek Valley in Sonoma with your favorite blue veined cheese. My favorite blue is Point Reyes Original Blue also from Sonoma County – things that grow together go together. 

Click Here for 2017 Late Harvest Zinfandel, Lily Hill Vineyard

  • Strong, pungent cheese offers no safe bets. Sweet or fortified wines are likely to pair well or try an aromatic white such as the classic combination of Munster from Alsace and Riesling. Dashe Dry Riesling from McFadden Farm has a depth of flavor that makes it one of the most age-worthy Rieslings our artisan winery has ever produced, and it’s structured enough to stand up to strong cheeses. 

Click Here for 2019 Dry Riesling, McFadden Farm

  • For Goat milk cheeses, Sparkling wine is a good match especially with young soft artisan cheeses; the more acid in the cheese the more acid the wine should have. Along with crisp acidity, sparkling wine possesses wonderful bubbles to cleanse the palate. The 2016 marked the 20th Anniversary of Dashe Cellars and to commemorate we released Dashe 2016 Méthode Champenoise Sparkling wine. 

Click Here for 2016 Sparkling Wine, Methode Champenoise

  • Sheep milk cheese can handle a robust red made from Mourvedre, Carignane or Zinfandel. Hard to decide which direction to go in? Why not have it all with Dashe Ancient Vines Sonoma blend. Another option would be to go with one of two Dashe Single Vineyard Petite Sirah; Louvau or Todd Brothers Ranch, which is a wine club exclusive.  

Click Here for 2017 'Ancient Vines', Sonoma County

Click Here for 2018 Petite Sirah, Louvau Vineyard

Click Here for 2018 Petite Sirah, Todd Brothers Ranch

Strategies for Harmony:

Cheese and wine is a classic pairing - like peanut butter and jelly or cookies and milk. Both are natural artisan products, created using a standard process but with a myriad of results. When planning a cheese platter, try upping the ante with roasted nuts, walnut bread and a selection of dried fruits to create a more wine-friendly match. When serving a selection of artisan cheeses, try to choose three or four which all pair well with a particular style of wine. Highly oaked and super-tannic wines can be difficult to pair with cheese so try avoiding these options.

Just say cheese please!

 

Monica Chappell
 
November 16, 2020 | Monica Chappell

Opening Wine this Thanksgiving? Listen to this advice from a pro...

It’s that time of year when we dive headfirst into all things Thanksgiving – bring it on! Last year I hosted 25 people at our Thanksgiving table. This isn’t the year for relatives to travel, so with everyone celebrating the holidays with smaller groups and mostly immediate family this year, there will be smaller portions which means less leftovers! One thing that will not change is the effort put into the meal. 

In my humble opinion, the ultimate Thanksgiving meal is about so much more than just the turkey and sides. If ever there were a wine lover's holiday, Thanksgiving would be it. And one of the pleasures of my Thanksgiving is that every family member has a role in the big meal. My role is a peach. I'm the wine gal. It's a fine job for a number of reasons with my favorite being the many tastings I conduct leading up to the final wine choice. It's a tough job, but someone has to do it. I usually receive family advice along the way; don't bring anything wildly expensive and don't bring anything too weird. To fit the bill, the wine needs to be a crowd-pleaser and match the weight of the menu. No problem. This year, with a cellar full of artisan wines from Dashe, I think I've got it covered.

I’ve got a few tips that I’ve learned over the years regarding planning the wine for this delicious yet tricky wine-pairing meal.

How Do You Choose the Right Wine?

Here's an easy answer: No single wine will work perfectly with your entire meal so serve a few. Regardless of which wine you choose the style to look for is medium-bodied, fruity, and without a lot of oak which might overpower the food.

How Much Wine Should You Buy?

A bottle is about five glasses, so I go with a bottle for every two people. If you are serving wine before dinner, add a glass more per person to the equation.

Which is it, Red or White?

Either! Hands down my most favorite part of Thanksgiving is the stuffing. No questions asked. Using the stuffing as a wine guide: if you serve a basic bread-and-celery version, try a white such as Dashe Les Enfants Terribles “Concrete Cuvée” Chenin Blanc or a dry Riesling such as Dashe McFadden Farm Potter Valley Riesling. Add hearty mushrooms or sausage to that basic stuffing recipe then one of Dashe’s signature reds such as the bio-dynamically grown Heart Arrow Ranch Zinfandel would be the choice. But the best rule is to let guests drink what they like; be it red or white so plan to have both on hand.

Click Here for our 2019 Chenin Blanc, Concrete Cuvée

Click Here for our 2019 Dry Riesling, McFadden Farm

Click Here for our 2017 Zinfandel, Heart Arrow Ranch

With all that is going on in the world, Thanksgiving is a good time for us to count our blessings. Whether you are cooking at home for your family or taking advantage of the amazing take-out options available, I hope this special meal provides some comfort during these challenging times.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Family Stuffing Recipe

By Monica Chappell

As I said earlier, stuffing and I are BFF’s. It is hands down my favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal and as a result, I’m sharing my family’s super-savory recipe so look no further. Trust me, this stuffing with lots of gravy drizzled on top, Heaven! So, without further ado here it is.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 cup celery chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter plus 2 tablespoons cubed
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine – something you would drink!
  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage meat removed from casing
  • 1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/2 pound day old Ciabatta bread cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a medium sauté pan add the onion, celery, 1 tablespoon oil and butter cook over a medium low heat for 10 minutes to soften. Add the wine and season with salt and pepper, simmer for about 5 minutes. Take off the heat and allow the mixture to cool.
  3. In a large sauté pan over medium high heat, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and Italian sausage meat and break up with a wooden spoon and cook until browned and cooked through, approximately 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. In a medium bowl toss together the celery and onion mixture, the chopped parsley, sausage, the Ciabatta bread and red pepper flakes. Combine all the ingredients.
  5. Whisk the eggs and add to the chicken stock, and 3/4 cup of the Parmesan. Gently place into an 8 1/2 by 8 1/2- inch glass Pyrex baking dish and top with the remaining Parmesan. Dot with butter. Place in middle rack and bake until top is golden brown, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Stephanie Flasher
 
November 3, 2020 | Stephanie Flasher

RECIPE ALERT! Food & Wine Magazine Thanksgiving Selection

Food & Wine Magazine Recommended Pairing

How excited was I to open up one of my favorite foodie magazines and find a beautiful recipe for a Thanksgiving feast, all the sides and fixin's included? Even better, the author, Rodney Scott, selected Dashe Grenache as the perfect pairing to go with the turkey! I've always known that our 'les enfants terribles' wines are the perfect food pairing wine, but here is a professional recipe writer weighing in.

A New Kind of Thanksgiving

I don't know about you, but this year I'm not going to have the usual family get-together. There's no traveling to Idaho to see my parents and brother, no dinner with my husband's family, no uncles razzing me about the year that I hosted Thanksgiving and insisted that everyone where pilgrims hats for the pictures. It's going to be different.

So my new husband and I aren't going to make my mom's patented turkey stuffing, there will be no grandma's pecan pie at the dessert table, and those mashed potatoes that I love so much will be nowhere in sight. Instead, we'll be making our own Thanksgiving with our social bubble, with new recipes to go along with this new form of holiday. And you better believe that this turkey will be right there front and center next to a bottle of Dashe Cellars 'les enfants terrible' Grenache!

2017 'les enfants terribles' Grenache

A beautiful wine that offers bright, lively fruit with a great structure and balance. This Grenache is made in almost a Grand Cru Beaujolais style that offers a velvety texture with aromas of wild strawberry and flavors of strawberries and raspberries and a finish of minerals and peppery spice.

Color:  Pale Red
Aromas:  Wild strawberry, pomegranate, spice, minerals
Taste:  Beautiful velvety texture. Entry of intense strawberry, raspberry, and pomegranate fruit. Beautiful floral elements of lavender and violets, long, sweet finish of red fruit, minerals and peppery spice.

Click Here to buy the 2017 'les enfants terribles' Grenache

Spatchcocked Smoked Turkey

By Rodney Scott Food & Wine Issue November 2020

Sweet, tangy, and succulent thanks to Rodney Scott’s smoky dry rub and spicy mopping sauce, this turkey is easy to tackle on a kamado-style cooker. While Scott swears by the thermal qualities of a ceramic grill, this turkey also can be cooked in a kettle grill or smoker (or even the oven!) at 225°F.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 3/4 cups white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
  • 1 (12- to 14-pound) whole Butterball turkey, thawed if frozen, giblets removed​
Directions

Make the dry rub

Step 1

Stir together all dry rub ingredients in a bowl; set aside.

Make the vinegar-cayenne mopping sauce

Step 2
Whisk together all vinegar-cayenne mopping sauce ingredients in a large bowl; set aside.

Smoke the turkey

Step 3
Pat turkey dry with paper towels, and place turkey, breast side up, on a large cutting board. Using a chef’s knife, carefully cut turkey breast in half lengthwise, cutting straight through breastbone. Open up turkey, and press to flatten; pat inside dry with paper towels. Sprinkling from about 12 inches above work surface, coat turkey on all sides with dry rub; do not rub in seasoning. Place turkey, skin side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Let stand at room temperature while grill preheats, up to 2 hours.

Step 4
Prepare a charcoal fire in a grill or smoker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Place oak wood chunks on coals, and fit grill with an aluminum foil–lined diffuser, such as convEGGtor. Maintain internal temperature at 225°F for 15 to 20 minutes. Smoke turkey, skin side up, covered with lid, until meat around ends of drumsticks pulls back and reveals the turkey’s “socks” and a thermometer inserted in thickest part of breast registers 145°F, about 2 hours.

Step 5
Generously mop 1 1/2 cups mopping sauce on skin side of turkey. Using long tongs and reaching as far under the bird as possible, carefully flip turkey skin side down. (Underside of turkey should be dark mahogany brown and evenly speckled with charred bits.) Generously mop with remaining 21/2 cups sauce. When sauce begins to pool in cavity, insert tip of tongs into exposed breast meat and gently twist to allow sauce to soak into meat. Continue to mop until all of sauce is absorbed. Close grill, and smoke until skin side is lightly charred and a thermometer inserted in thickest part of breast registers 155°F, 30 to 45 minutes. Transfer turkey to a large cutting board; carve immediately, or let rest up to 2 hours.

Make Ahead

Dry rub and mopping sauce can be made up to 1 week ahead and stored in airtight containers.

Suggested Pairing

Berry-scented Grenache:2017 Dashe 'les enfants terribles'*

 

Click Here to go to original recipe posting on www.foodandwine.com.

*pairing listed in print version, but not online

Time Posted: Nov 3, 2020 at 3:00 PM Permalink to RECIPE ALERT! Food & Wine Magazine Thanksgiving Selection Permalink Comments for RECIPE ALERT! Food & Wine Magazine Thanksgiving Selection Comments (1)
Rene Calderon
 
October 12, 2020 | Rene Calderon

Are Wines Spicy?

I for one, love spicy foods. I enjoy the lengthiness of taste that chiles, pepper corns or wasabi give to the foods they flavor. Everything seems elevated; vegetables taste sweeter, the umami in meats become almost an aroma itself, herbs are elevated to a perfume like state, and pizza – well, it tastes more pizza-ish . 

Tasting wines is a big part of Winemaking, but it can only be productive if one possesses a large catalog of experiences to be able to compare, evaluate or replicate. Food becomes then a perfect medium to integrate new flavors, tastes, and aromas to our personal comparative catalog.

For example, All spice was not commonly use in any of my local cuisine growing up, it took a long time for me to even get exposed to it. The first time I ate authentic Chinese cuisine it was awesome. So much flavor, aromas, a new magnified taste - MSG, we should talk about this some other time, it deserves its own blog – and oH, goodness! as spicy as you would like. When required to learn the actual the essence of All spice, I did it by tasting simple fried rice with beef heavily season with the spicy. It is a hard one to remember because of all the elements its compiles, but once you get it imprinted in your mind its very elements give it away. Redundant! I know, but learning aromas is by its very nature redundant.

You can disagree on the perfect level of spiciness food should be at. But to paraphrased Yuval Noah Harari, people were willing to travel around the word on boat to put a little spice on their foods for centuries; so there is no denial spiciness is an important point to begin a conversation on taste.

Are wines spicy?

Well, the way I like to experience it:
  • Excessive transpiration
  • Excruciating burning of the lips  
  • Swelling of the tongue
  • Light tearing
  • Running nose
Perhaps wines are not spicy like that! Instead we get in the flavors of:
  • Black Pepper
  • Anise    
  • All spice              
  • Clove    
  • Cinnamon

To mention the most common ones.

Thereafter, one’s preference in foods can be significantly alter when deciding what wines we like, and more to my experience, what direction of winemaking a grape should follow.

It will be to no surprise to wine geeks reading this; I have bias to prefer varietals such as Petite Sirah, Syrah, and obviously red wines for the Rhône valley region in France. In General, these wines tend to be spice rich, a mouthful of texture, and long aromatic finish. Just like a spoonful of Mapo Tofu. 

Click Here for the Mapo Tofu recipe!

If Curious about the spiciness of wine, try our any our Petite Sirahs or our Evangelho Vineyards, Carignane.  Leave a comment and tell me if you can find the spiciness at them. I will post my personal notes later to compare them.

Click Here for info on our 2017 Petite Sirah, Todd Brothers Ranch

Click Here for info on our 2017 Petite Sirah, Louvau Vineyard

Click Here for info on our 2017 Cairgnane, Evangelho Vineyard

Do you like spicy foods? Leave us a comment below of some of your favorite spicy pairings. 
Time Posted: Oct 12, 2020 at 12:02 PM Permalink to Are Wines Spicy? Permalink
Stephanie Flasher
 
October 11, 2020 | Stephanie Flasher

RECIPE ALERT! Mapo Tofu paired with 2017 Petite Sirah, Louvau Vineyard

When Rene and I sit (at different tables, 10 feet apart) down for lunch, there is a notable difference in what we've brought. Me, being a quintessential CA girl, often has some combination of avocado, squash, and quinoa. Rene, on the other hand, always has the most interesting combinations of cultures and flavors on his plate. From seafood-filled sashimi plates to Oaxacan tacos, and everything in between... it's an inspiration to me. So when Rene started talking about his inspiration for his upcoming blog, "Are Wines Spicy" he got my inner foodie thinking about mixing things up in my kitchen at home.

Click Here to read Rene's blog, "Are Wines Spicy"

Like clockwork, the very next morning in my newsfeed was the NY Times recipe for Mapo Tofu!! It took a little creativity in sourcing the ingredients, but it's so very much worth the effort. Try it out this weekend and don't forget the wine!

Click Here to buy the 2017 Petite Sirah, Louvau Vineyard.

Mapo Tofu

By Andrea Nguyen

You can order mapo tofu from many Chinese restaurants, but it’s also quite doable at home. You can find the pivotal fermented chile and broad (fava) bean sauce or paste called doubanjiang (sometimes rendered as “toban djan”) at a Chinese market. Look for a doubanjiang from Pixian, in Sichuan, and bear in mind that oilier versions have extra heat but may lack an earthy depth. Sichuan peppercorns add mala — tingly zing — and fermented black beans, called douchi, lend this dish a kick of umami. Ground beef is traditional, but many cooks choose pork; you can also try lamb, turkey thigh or a plant-based meat alternatives. Add chile flakes for extra fire, and balance mapo’s intensity with rice and steamed or stir-fried broccoli.

YIELD 4 servings (about 4 cups)
TIME 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 16 ounces medium or medium-firm tofu (if unavailable, go with firm)
  • 1 rounded teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 6 ounces ground beef or pork (preferably 80 or 85 percent lean), roughly chopped to loosen
  • 2 ½ to 3 tablespoons doubanjiang (fermented chile bean sauce or paste)
  • 1 tablespoon douchi (fermented black beans, optional)
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
  • ½ teaspoon red-pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons regular soy sauce
  • 1 rounded teaspoon granulated sugar, plus more if needed
  •  Fine sea salt
  • 2 large scallions, trimmed and cut on a sharp bias into thin, 2-inch-long pieces
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in 3 tablespoons water
  • Cooked white rice, for serving

PREPARATION

  1. Prepare the tofu: Cut the tofu into 3/4-inch cubes and put into a bowl. Bring a kettle of water to a rolling boil. Turn off the heat and when the boiling subsides, pour hot water over the tofu to cover. Set aside for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large (14-inch) wok or (12-inch) skillet over medium heat, toast the peppercorns for 2 to 3 minutes, until super fragrant and slightly darkened. (A wisp of smoke is normal.) Let cool briefly, then pound with a mortar and pestle, or pulse in a spice grinder.
  3. Set a strainer over a measuring cup, then add the tofu to drain; reserve 1 1/2 cups of the soaking water, discarding the rest. Set the tofu and reserved soaking water near the stove with the peppercorns and other prepped ingredients for swift cooking.
  4. Reheat the wok or skillet over high. When hot — you can flick water in and it should sizzle and evaporate within seconds — swirl in the oil to evenly coat, then add the meat. Stir and mash into cooked and crumbly pieces, 1 to 2 minutes.
  5. Add 2 1/2 tablespoons doubanjiang, the douchi (if using), ginger and red-pepper flakes (if using). Cook about 2 minutes longer, stirring constantly, until things are vivid reddish brown. Add the soy sauce and sugar, stir to combine, then add the tofu. Gently stir or shake the pan to combine the ingredients without breaking up the tofu much.
  6. Add the reserved 1 1/2 cups soaking water, bring to a vigorous simmer, and cook for about 3 minutes, agitating the pan occasionally, to let the tofu absorb the flavors of the sauce.
  7. Slightly lower the heat and taste the sauce. If needed, add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of doubanjiang for heat, a pinch of salt for savoriness, or a sprinkle of sugar to tame heat.
  8. Add the scallions and stir to combine. Stir in the cornstarch slurry, then stir in enough to the mapo tofu to thicken to a soupy rather than a gravy-like finish. Sprinkle in the ground peppercorns, give the mixture one last stir to incorporate, then transfer to a shallow bowl. Serve immediately with lots of hot rice.

Click Here to go to the original recipe posting on cooking.nytimes.com.

Stephanie Flasher
 
July 6, 2020 | Stephanie Flasher

RECIPE ALERT! Pozole Verde paired with 2017 Grenache

We have quite the collection of gourmands here at Dashe Cellars. Monica, with her Italian heritage, can throw a pasta feed for 60 at the drop of a hat. Mike will spend the day making the perfect Bolognese for his homemade lasagna (don't tell my mom, but it's the absolutely best that I've ever tasted). And if you haven't tasted Anne's baking then you haven't lived, seriously I'm always impressed when we have a team lunch and Anne shows up first-thing in the morning with an amazing dessert fresh from the oven. 

Food-Pairing Reds

So, when we decided to host a lunch for Anne for her birthday, I knew that I had to not only find a recipe that would impress, but I needed to find the perfect wine to match. Lucky for me, our 'les enfants terribles' wines are the perfect wines for pairing with lighter-bodied dishes like this Chicken Pozole that I found on Food & Wine's website. These wines tend to be lighter and more ethereal in style than our more structured single-vineyard wines. This is because of a style of fermentation known as Carbonic Maceration in which the grapes are fermented intact rather than being pressed when they come in from the vineyard. We age them for a short amount of time in large 120- or 900-gallon oak casks which keep the fruit fresh and without too much oak influence. 

2017 'les enfants terribles' Grenache

A beautiful wine that offers bright, lively fruit with a great structure and balance. This Grenache is made in almost a Grand Cru Beaujolais style that offers a velvety texture with aromas of wild strawberry and flavors of strawberries and raspberries and a finish of minerals and peppery spice.

Color:  Pale Red
Aromas:  Wild strawberry, pomegranate, spice, minerals
Taste:  Beautiful velvety texture. Entry of intense strawberry, raspberry, and pomegranate fruit. Beautiful floral elements of lavender and violets, long, sweet finish of red fruit, minerals and peppery spice.

Click Here to buy the 2017 Grenache

Mexican Chicken Verde

By Anya Von Bremzen Food & Wine Issue May 2008

Makes 6-8 servings

There are many variations on pozole, a traditional hominy-based Mexican stew closely associated with the Pacific-coast state of Guerrero. Anya von Bremzen's version, a green pozole, derives much of its flavor from tangy ingredients like tomatillos, cilantro and green chiles.

Ingredients

  • 7 cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 chicken breast halves on the bone, with skin
  • 1 pound tomatillos, husked and halved
  • 1 small onion, quartered
  • 2 poblano chiles—cored, seeded and quartered
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded and quartered
  • 4 large garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon oregano leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Three 15-ounce cans of hominy, drained
  • Finely shredded iceberg lettuce, sliced radishes, chopped onion, diced avocado, sour cream, tortilla chips and lime wedges, for serving

How to Make It

Step 1    
In a large, enameled cast-iron casserole, bring the chicken stock and water to a boil. Add the chicken breasts, skin side down, cover and simmer over very low heat until they're tender and cooked through, about 25 minutes. Transfer the chicken breasts to a plate and shred the meat; discard the bones and skin. Skim any fat from the cooking liquid and reserve.

Step 2    
In a blender, combine the halved tomatillos with the quartered onion, poblanos and jalapeños, smashed garlic, chopped cilantro and oregano. Pulse until coarsely chopped, scraping down the side. With the machine on, add 1 cup of the cooking liquid and puree until smooth. Season the tomatillo puree with salt and pepper.

Step 3    
In a large deep skillet, heat the vegetable oil until shimmering. Add the tomatillo puree and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the sauce turns a deep green, about 12 minutes.

Step 4    
Pour the green sauce into the cooking liquid in the casserole. Add the hominy and bring to a simmer over moderate heat. Add the shredded chicken to the stew, season with salt and pepper and cook just until heated through. Serve the pozole in deep bowls, passing the lettuce, radishes, onion, avocado, sour cream, tortilla chips and lime wedges at the table.

Click Here to go to original recipe posting on www.foodandwine.com.

Time Posted: Jul 6, 2020 at 1:58 PM Permalink to RECIPE ALERT! Pozole Verde paired with 2017 Grenache Permalink Comments for RECIPE ALERT! Pozole Verde paired with 2017 Grenache Comments (2)
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