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Posts Tagged ‘Design*Sponge’

This week’s recipe is Thin Spaghetti with Basil Pesto and Tomato Salad from Meg Mateo Ilasco. View the recipe at Design*Sponge.

About Meg: Meg is a writer, illustrator, and the designer behind Mateo Ilasco, a stationery and home product company.

Her work often expresses a penchant for old-fashioned methods, humble materials, manual design, and physical craft. Meg is also known for her hit entrepreneurial book, Craft, Inc. and for Modern Economy, an indie design sample sale she hosts twice a year. If you’re in the Portland, OR area this weekend Meg will be holding Modern Economy: Portland this Saturday, July 19th from 10:30 am to 3pm at the Ace Hotel.

You can also get a sneak peak into Meg’s Bay Area Home.

Suggested Wine Pairing: Newton Unfiltered Chardonnay

This would certainly make almost anyone’s list of top 10 California Chardonnays. Newton’s Chardonnay is unfiltered and fermented with wild yeast, native to Newton’s Carneros vineyards — still fairly small production and really a well made wine.

Stunning golden straw in color. More impressive (and complex) in the mouth than on the nose, soft citrus with some green apple, pear and a hint of jicama and almond, notes of mineral and wet stone — some exotic fruit, amazing balance with a pure and long finish.

A great food wine that would enhance any meal — or be totally memorable on its own. I like this wine pairing with the pasta, pesto and tomato given that it has very good acidity to cut through the flavors of the pesto and the minerality works well with the tomato and pesto components of the dish.

This certainly sits in my top 3 Chardonnays of all time and is a must. Highly recommended. BottleBuys.com was selling this for about $36 a bottle and I have seen it priced as high as $64 a bottle, so shop around for the best price.

A dry Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley or a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand would be great alternatives (and better values) — as both offer good acidity and minerality.

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This week’s in the kitchen with on design*sponge featured our wonderful friend Kristina (from Three Layer Cake), her recipe for Roman-Style artichokes and her beautiful photography.

I selected the Mas de Bressades Rosé 2007 to pair with the artichokes. Mas des Bressades is considered by many as one of the top estates in Costières de Nîmes, located 35 miles southwest of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, on the western side of the Rhône.

All of their wines are worth seeking out because they are consistently well made and very good values. Their rosé is a blend of 50% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 20% Cinsault and is vinified completely in tank. Some people might equate pink wine with sweet, but it is a dry rosé. Raspberry and strawberries come through on the nose. On the palate, it is loaded with lychee and raspberry as well as rose water, wet stone and a hint of white pepper.

Rosé wines are usually great food wines and pair well with most foods. In my opinion, rosés work especially well with dishes that have salty or spicy components or garlic components. I tend to think of artichokes as usually being bit salty or at least tasting best when they are well salted — and the recipe calls for some Italian parsley, basil and garlic.

In my experience, artichokes make wines taste sweeter. So the first tip is to pick something dry. Artichokes are also said to be a challenging pairing. I often consider a rosé with a difficult pairing as it they are considered to be great food wines and pair well with a variety of food (except steaks and heavy, red meat based dishes).

In regards to wine pairings, I read an article that suggested while it is important to compliment, accentuate, and play off the flavors and characteristics of the food — it is also critical to keep in mind that there is a critical third component as well — the people drinking the wine.

A good sommelier or wine merchant, should always ask what types/styles of wine you enjoy as their first question. I would be a bit reluctant to follow their advice if they don’t ask you what wines or types of wines you enjoy. Their first job is to get a sense of your palate. Once they have done that, and only then, can they begin to consider the food and suggestions for a wine pairing.

For example, Sauternes and Foie Gras is one of those classic pairings; however, some people do not like or simply will not eat Foie Gras. People generally understand that and will probably think about their guests and whether or not they would eat Foie Gras before deciding to serve it. But when pairing a wine, people usually are more focused on the food, rather than their audience. Some people don’t like Sauternes, and maybe something like a Chenin Blanc, that usually has just a bit of sweetness might be a better pairing in some situations.

In a forum such as this that isn’t possible, but is something to consider when you selecting wine and suggested pairings, they are only one possibility — your palate and that of your guests need to be taken into account as well. All of this being said, I think it is also always a good idea to try new things and expand your palate — and let your sommelier or wine merchant now that you are open to suggestions that fall outside of your usual preferences — and also to encourage your friends and guests to try new things as well. After all, some of the best memories are often the most unique as well.

Rosé, Rosé, Rosé

I have been a big fan of rosés for quite a while. Summer is a great time to stock up on rosé. In addition to the Mas de Bressades, I will always recommend the Chateau D’Esclans Whispering Angel, Bonny Doon’s Vin Gris, Robert Kacher Selections always has some great rosés (and great values) in his portfolio. Kacher imports more good French rosé than just about anyone, highlights include:
– Mas de Bressades
– Mas Carlot
– Domaine des Corbillieres
– Domaine de Gournier
– Mas de Guiot
– Domaine de la Petite Cassagne

I also just got a few bottles of Bernard Baudry’s Chinon Rosé that I am very excited about. Bernard Baudry is one of the newer stars of the Chinon scene — he makes outstanding Cabernet Franc and offer tremendous value, like many wines from the Loire.

About the wine pairings with Design*Sponge

I will be providing wine pairings for some of the recipes edited by Kristina on Design*Sponge. The In-the-Kitchen-With column appears every Friday at noon, and features the recipes of design*sponge readers’ favorite designers. Design*Sponge is a daily website dedicated to home and product design run by Brooklyn-based writer, Grace Bonney. Launched in August of 2004, Design*Sponge features store and product reviews, sale and contest announcements, new designer profiles, trend forecasting and store/studio tours.

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This week, Design*Sponge features recipes for avocado goat cheese spread and spicy penne pasta from Amenity Home.

About Amenity Home: After becoming friends at art school in San Francisco, Californian Nicole Chiala went on to work in publishing in London and Minnesota-native Kristina de Corpo to the advertising world of New York. Only when they both ended up in Los Angeles–a place where the wild and refined collide–did they see the way to combine their passions. Working from real cuttings taken from their gardens and walks in LA,

they craft elegant, untamed designs to be silk screened onto luxuriously pure organic fabrics. The two founded Amenity Home in 2004 to ‘bring the solace of nature home’.

View the article and recipes at Design*Sponge.

The suggested wine pairing is the Ridge Santa Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay 2005.

These dishes could be served with a full body white wine or a light-medium body red. Given the arrival of summer, I have opted for a full-bodied white. A white wine was probably a much better option for the avocado spread and work with the pasta dish.

I also wanted to feature the Ridge Chardonnay as the 2006 was recently released — and a reminder to order it now before it is no longer available. The 2005 was the #2 wine of the year on last year’s top 100 list from Wine Spectator. You can order online at the Ridge online store.

The Ridge Chardonnay is fermented in-barrel, resulting in great richness with honey and butter flavors. These components will stand up to the tomatoes, cheese and herbs in the pasta. The wine also has very nice acidity and minerality which will compliment the avocado and goat cheese.

You could also select a light to medium body red, like a Pinot Noir — with lots of bright fruit and acidity. Of course, these are just some ideas — always trust your own palate.

Read my original review of the 2005 Ridge Chardonnay.

About the weekly wine pairings with Design*Sponge
I will be providing the weekly wine pairing for the recipes edited by Kristina on Design*Sponge. The In-the-Kitchen-With column appears every Friday at noon, and features the recipes of design*sponge readers’ favorite designers. Design*Sponge is a daily website dedicated to home and product design run by Brooklyn-based writer, Grace Bonney. Launched in August of 2004, Design*Sponge features store and product reviews, sale and contest announcements, new designer profiles, trend forecasting and store/studio tours.

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This week’s edition of In the Kitchen features Abigail Percy and her recipe for Panna Cotta.

Abigail is a jewelry designer from Glasgow, Scotland. Had I known she was from the great city of Glasgow before I submitted the wine pairing, I might have suggested an appropriate spirit instead. Perhaps a wee dram of Auchentoshan Three Wood, produced just outside of Glasgow.

The Scotch notes of caramel, orange and spice would be a nice accent to the flavors of the Panna Cotta (especially if you added a little ground cardamon in it). Sounds like something they might serve to end a great meal at Stravaigin or the Ubiquitous Chip.

Instead, I paired Bonny Doon’s Framboise and suggested perhaps serving the panna cotta with fresh berries to make the connection between the dessert and fortified wine.

It is worth noting, that on my first trip to the UChip, one of their featured wines was from Bonny Doon — and I immediately knew it was a special place.

As I mentioned last week, I will be providing the weekly wine pairing for the recipes edited by Kristina on Design*Sponge. The In-the-Kitchen-With column appears every Friday at noon, and features the recipes of design*sponge readers’ favorite designers. Design*Sponge is a daily website dedicated to home and product design run by Brooklyn-based writer, Grace Bonney. Launched in August of 2004, Design*Sponge features store and product reviews, sale and contest announcements, new designer profiles, trend forecasting and store/studio tours.

View the article and recipe at Design*Sponge.

View Abigail’s Blog. Her jewelry is available on her online store.

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I will also be providing the weekly wine pairing for the recipes edited by Kristina on Design*Sponge. The In-the-Kitchen-With column appears every Friday at noon, and features the recipes of design*sponge readers’ favorite designers. Design*Sponge is a daily website dedicated to home and product design run by Brooklyn-based writer, Grace Bonney. Launched in August of 2004, Design*Sponge features store and product reviews, sale and contest announcements, new designer profiles, trend forecasting and store/studio tours.

This week’s recipe is provided Matt Armendariz. Matt is is an art director, graphic designer and photographer who spent the past 17 years in the specialty food business before recently branching out into food photography. Please be sure to visit mattarmendariz.com to view his work. His work is beautiful and I couldn’t be more grateful to Kristina and Grace for including my pairings with recipes from people like Matt.

Matt’s recipe is Sauteed Beet Greens with Sun Dried Tomatoes & Pancetta. The suggested wine pairing is the Gulfi Carjacanti, 2004.

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