Tuesday, May 17, 2011

#187 - Chicken, Potatoes & White Barbecue Sauce With '08 Confluence

Yesterday, I bemoaned the fact that a good meal with a good wine became less so because of the pairing, hurting a bit more with the $70 price tag that came with it.

Last night's meal stands diametrically opposed to that - a good meal with an okay wine became so much more because of the pairing, and came with the added benefit of costing a grand total of about $32.

I can get behind that.

White barbecue sauce will be used again but the rest of the recipe was pretty standard, a wine that most likely won't be bought again but had some nice moments by itself, but together, as a combination, it was a flavor I'll remember for awhile.

Food makes wine better and vice versa.  Last night's meal was a great example of that.

Food:  Chicken, pesto potatoes and arugula with white barbecue sauce

A F&W recipe, Big Bob Gibson's Chicken.  A grilling recipe adapted to a 500º oven under a brick.  Great chicken (simple salt, pepper, olive oil), moist chicken, chicken where the skin stayed on the meat and crisped up beautifully.  Pesto potatoes made from leftover mystery pesto in the freezer and apple cider vinegar.  Delicious.  The hit of apple cider vinegar made them taste fresh, outdoorsy and played right into the BBQ-ness of the meal.

But the star of the night was the white barbecue sauce.  Modified from the recipe, it was mayo, white vinegar, horseradish, lemon zest and Aleppo pepper.  Easy, quick and will be used this summer about five times more.  Bright and light with a spicy kick that gives it an slight edge and a citrus acid that ingratiates itself to other food so wonderfully.  The chicken, the arugula, everything.  It's like a handy man that can do everything quick, right and without any trouble.  Here's an example of a F&W recipe offering something of utility instead simply being photogenic.

Beautiful stuff and something to add to the catalogue of elements that are easy to make but taste fancy and delicious.

Wine:  2008 McKinley Springs Confluence ($18 - FWB)

56% Chenin Blanc, 44% Viognier

Straight-forward, showing mostly lemon curd, lemon custard, lemon meringue and something like lavender-lemon creamy tart.  Good acid but lower than expected, in the background.  Delicate touch of sugar as well, certainly there helping things out but overall, the wine came off light on its feet but hefty enough to play well with the food.

Liked it, probably wouldn't buy it again at the price point but if we were stuck at a restaurant with a boring wine list, wanted some food that would play into this wine and it was reasonable, I think we'd be happy campers.

Pairing:  93  Kinda loved it

Just enough acid, just enough sugar and tons of lemon-type dessert goodness in the wine slid right into the white barbecue sauce slathered over all the food in the most spectacular way.

It was basic with little deeper, more mysterious levels but sometimes having food and wine you don't have to think about is most welcome and very much needed, especially when it's this good.

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