Thursday, April 3, 2014

March 2014  Cheese, cheese & more cheese talk

We kicked off the 8th Annual Artisan Cheese Festival with our sold out "Foodie Seminar" featuring
'Mac & Cheese' by Laura Werlin.

Four recipes from the book were tasted one at a time with a line up of Paul Mathew wines.
We enjoy the discussion more than anything, as every time new pairings, surprising pairings and group conclusions never seize to amuse.

We started with a big winner from page 42, Truffle, cream and mushroom

#2. South of the border, page 127 - a surprising winner for me.

#3. Sonoma mac & cheese, page 33, which is loaded with our fabulous local cheeses.

#4. Cheddar, bacon and roast tomatoes page 16.

The results are usually divided but a group consensus verses my personal choice. So I give you both.

The line up of wines were Rose' of Pinot 2013, 2011 Chardonnay, 2012 Valdiguie and RRV Pinot 2011. We added a Cab Franc taste with the final recipe for fun.

Truffle, cream and mushroom was the over all winning recipe and the group decided that the dish went with ALL the wines, excluding cab franc which we did not taste. The rich combination of truffle and locally sourced mushrooms would be expected for Pinot Noir. The Rose' and chardonnay tied first place for me although much of the group liked the Valdiguie best. Agree to agree that there was not a bad pairing.

South of the border was the real thrill for me. A green tomatillo influenced dish that I loved with our Chardonnay and Rose'. A perfect summer dish which I don't usually associate with mac and cheese.
And then the die hard Valdiguie fans would not budge on this favorite pairing.

Sonoma mac and cheese influenced by Pt. Reyes Toma and Cowgirl Creamery Mt. Tam is so rich and wonderful. A true mac and cheese lovers recipe. Valdiguie was the #1 pick for wine pairing and then there was me solidly sold on Chardonnay. This is amazing because I am truly not a Chardonnay grape fan but I am a fan of perfect pairings.

Cheddar, bacon and roast tomatoes changed things up. The addition of meat brought on the Cab Franc taste which tied 50/50 with the Pinot. Group consensus, no seperaters on this.

All in all, another fun filled night of food and wine banter.

And then Friday, Saturday & Sunday Artisan Cheese Festival fun...