Posted on January 27th, 2009
Okay, so I’ve done this before, but it’s definitely time to have another look at matching wines with some selected posts from the foodie blogs nominated for the Blog Awards coming up next month.
This, Part 1, looks at the first 13 blogs nominated.
1. Ruth’s Kitchen Experiments
Ruth has posted about a recipe for Flourless chocolate brownies – with strawberry.
Now, here’s the thing with chocolate (nevermind the ice cream and chocolate sauce that goes with it) – it coats the gums and tongue making it difficult to cosy up to a wine – you may as well be drinking water. So, it’s time to pair it up with some Port – which is big enough to cope with chocolate. There are some killer deals on Port after De Christmas so get into your local wine shop and get in there.
2. Well Done Fillet
An irreverent look at the dining experience from the perspective of the nice people who have to put up with our nonsense when we go out and “dine”.
For this match, it’s not with a food, but with the humour. You’ll need something fun, spritzy that will soothe the belly aches you’ll have from reading any of Manuel’s posts. I’d go for bubbles, feck it, let’s go with pink ones. Try the Cava Oriol Rossell Brut Rosé from Enowine, €18.
3. Italian Foodies
The monkfish stew over at Italian Foodies look scrumptious. You wouldn’t be wrong opting for a white, but a light to medium-bodied red would go well with all the flavours from the stew. But let’s stick with a white. There are some, but not many good Italian whites available here. Lors mentioned the gorgeous Amalfi coast so let’s go for a white from Campania.
There are two options which come to mind, a Falanghina or a Greco di Tufo. Thankfully, Enowine stock both with Villa Matilde’s Falanghina (€14) and Greco di Tufo (€19).
4. Fork n’Cork
Fork n’ Cork’s Ernie Whalley doesn’t need any advice on wine pairings. He’s been writing about wine for years for Food & Wine and the Indo but let’s pick out something he may not have had before just for laughs. This may not go with his meal in Bentley’s, though as I’ve carefully selected the Amurensis Walk, grown in Kinsale, made in Mallow. Available from The Corkscrew and Curious Wines.
CheapEats.ie is rising towards the top of the Irish food blog scene. With their Grilled Trout, Sweet Potato Mash, Rocket and Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade recipe, I’d pair it up with a wine with a bit of body, but I think I’d stick with a white as red can sometimes clash with fish oils to give a horrible metallic taste.
I’m opting for a Riesling from Alsace which can hopefully stand up to the sweet potato and tapenade. Alsace is relatively underestimated and undervalued. Sheridan’s in Dublin have a good selection. Look up the producer, Paul Ginglinger.
iFoods.tv needs no introduction. Niall, Sean and the extended team are doing great work in what is soon to become lookandtaste.com. With that in mind, I’m going to pair with one of their newer videos, the Superbowl perfect steak. Niall is going for beer, but if Niall has any classy mates with more refined tastes, I’d suggest the Pascual Toso Malbec 2006 from Argentina. It retails for between €10 and €12, about the same as your 6-pack of beer.
Lovely fruit and soft velvet. For those of you who care for such things, it scored 91 points and 1st place n the “Top 100 Best Buys of 2007″ from Wine Enthusiast magazine. Available in Fresh, Sweeney’s in Glasnevin (and quite a few other places, I’d imagine).
7. Food Culture, West Cork
If you’re interested in the provence of food, this blog is a fantastic read. Ivan McCutheon, in his own words, “producing food is part of the life blood for rural areas like ours and that farmers, producers, shoppers, chefs and grocers can play an invaluable role in maintaining communities and the natural environment.”
I’m going to go back to a post from June 2008 to pair a wine with. “Eat Sherkin“. Sherkin, an island in West Cork, “is the pearl in West Cork’s crown of culinary beauty. This nugget of rock has a gastronomy all its own. Atlantic waters off the island are famous for finest oysters, mussels, periwinkles, shrimps, crabs, and an array of fresh fish”.
For glorious fruit of the ocean, it has to be a Chardonnay, Jim but not as we know it. Chablis is my pick.
Julian from Bubble Brothers has some pearls in his Chablis selection, and this Oudin Chablis looks mighty fine.
8. Food & Drink Ireland
What to suggest for this teetotalling blogger from Belfast? Okay, so John’s off the drink for another four of months while he finishes his thesis. So with all the money he’s going to win from his friends, I’m going to suggest he push the boat out and pick up a lovely red Burgundy by a great producer, Edmond Cornu.
I’ll leave the budget up to John, but there are some great red Burgundies at a range of pricepoints from Mitchell and Son.
9. Bubble Brothers
Rather than propose a wine match with, well, a wine, I’ll highlight one of my favourite wines available from Bubble Brothers. I’m going to go for the Cuvée Tradition from Chateau Jouclary. At €13 it’s a fantastic find (see my video tasting from October 2008).
10. English Mum
For English Mum’s comforting winter warmer recipe for Beef stew with parsley dumplings, I’m going to go for a rich sunkissed Californian. The Clos du Val Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California goes for a whopping €27 in O’Briens, but it’s really gorgeous and one for a weekend dinner in with English Mum’s hubby.
11. Ice Cream Ireland
Not sure if you can pick an ideal wine to go with ice cream, so why not one that will go in icecream. Looks like Kieran has already thought of that with his Dom Perignon Champagne Sorbet. But what about this niggly recession? Napoleon had a very balanced view on this. “In victory you deserve champagne, in defeat you need it”. So, there you go.
As Kieran Murphy, director of Murphy’s Ice Cream says, “it’s one of those things that you will never forget”.
12. The Good Mood Food Blog
The Good Mood Food Blog is adorned with fantastic food photography. The blog’s author, Donal Skehan, has also a book coming out this year, Good Mood Food.
For Donal’s Simple Antipasto Salad, I’m going to go for an Italian white from Pieve de’ Pitti but one that’s not yet available in Ireland. The Tribiana picked up a medal in the Decanter World Wine Awards and with Colly Murray working behind the scenes it won’t be long before it’s on the shelves of Ireland’s best wine shops. It’s made from the Trebbiano grape and is strong enough to cope with the spicey rocket, acidic balsamic vinegar and briney olives.
13. The Daily Spud
Runny Camembert. Lovely gooey, stinky cheesy goodness and great with a wine with a bit of acidity, but not too much.
I’d go for Cabernet Franc from the Loire, white or red Sancerre (Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir respectively). Gorgeous.