Monday, December 12, 2011

2 Pinots. One Vineyard.

I absolutely adore Oregon wines & there is one vineyard in particular that always sings to me: Ana Vineyard. Kelly & I had our friends Tiffany & Mark & Elizabeth & Steve over for dinner the other night. Since it's the end of the year I thought the theme should be celebratory decadence. It all began with lobster. I kept thinking about these crustaceans. Then I thought risotto. Lobster risotto. This could be really delicious. I got my beautiful live lobsters from Viet Hoa. I texted my friend Chef Kelly & he told me to kill the lobsters first then prepare them. That was the first time I had to do that but it really wasn't that difficult. The difficult part is getting the meat out of the shells. I stripped all the meat out & reserved the shells which I sauteed with garlic, onions, celery thyme & parsley. After I got a bit of color on the shells I added a bottle of chardonnay & half a bottle of pinot grigio & about 2 cups of chicken stock. I let that cook down for quite sometime to concentrate the liquid into a nice rich stock. Meanwhile, I got the risotto going so it could cook slowly & the rice could release its creamy starch.
When our lovely guests arrived we popped open a bottle of J Lasalle Brut Preference Non Vintage. This gorgeous Champagne is 60% pinot meunier which immediately excited me. It's toasty, yeasty, with orange marmalade notes, brioche & it was so sensually textured.
Once we sat down I started everyone off with scallops that I seared off & served with a meyer lemon basil white wine butter sauce. It paired perfectly with Robert Sinskey Abraxas.
Next up was my lovely risotto. I folded in butter poached lobster meat, topped it with claw meat & drizzled a lobster-saffron sauce over it that I made with the reduced lobster stock. So rich, so briny, so delicious. Tiffany & Mark brought a Lachini Family Winery Ana Vineyard Pinot Noir 2006. When I saw that I freaked out. To drink side by side with that I popped open a Patricia Green Cellars 2006 Ana Vineyard Pinot Noir. The Lachini was masculine while the Patricia Green started off a bit more feminine. However, as the bottle opened up the Patty Green become more earthy & hauntingly sensual. Both wines were so beautiful & expressive. Yet again it showcased how much I love this vineyard.


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