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my wife loves cooking.... which is great because i like to eat .... sometimes she will go to my (our?)cellar and just pick anything for a red wine and proceed to go back to the kitchen to saute' with it...
I cringe when she picks out a fantastic wine to just chuck into a copper fry pan ...i know that there must be a chef amongst us (isn't Board-O a chef..?)...anyways .... when a recipe calls for a merlot or some other wine to make a reduction of some sort, or what not, do u choose a less expensive wine?
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quote:
when a recipe calls for a merlot or some other wine to make a reduction of some sort, or what not, do u choose a less expensive wine?


I only stay away from heavy or overly tannic wines and generally use the wine I'm going to drink - unless it's a real heavy hitter. A good $20 merlot or blended wine works well. Don't use a cheap wine or something that has been sitting in the fridge for a week. Wine turns to vinegar and you don't want that in your food. You'll get the best aroma and flavor with a reduction if it is a fresh wine.
quote:
I use port, something like Graham's Six Grapes is fine. It gets richer and sweeter when it's reduced. I think it's just delicious, and a little goes a long way.

With salmon, I've reduced chardonnay, added a touch of maple syrup, and it's fantastic.


Sounds like you have a sweet tooth there Indy Bob. I wouldn't use port for most of the things I cook - but I guess it's what you cook. Smile
Last couple batches of short ribs, I've used Pepperwood Grove Syrah. Not overly tannic or oaky, the recipe calls for the wine to be reduced to around 2 cups so can't afford to have tannins or oak concentrated. $8 a bottle to boot.

One thing I've been doing over the past year or so is that when I open a bottle for cooking purposes and have leftovers, I'll pour the wine into measuring cups and freeze it. Then I'll put it in a ziplock labeled with wine/varietal and quantity. No waste, and if I need a cup of red wine for cooking down the road I don't have to open another bottle. I've got 3 or 4 baggies in the freeze now with varying quantities.

PH
quote:
Originally posted by Hunter:
quote:
I use port, something like Graham's Six Grapes is fine. It gets richer and sweeter when it's reduced. I think it's just delicious, and a little goes a long way.

With salmon, I've reduced chardonnay, added a touch of maple syrup, and it's fantastic.


Sounds like you have a sweet tooth there Indy Bob. I wouldn't use port for most of the things I cook - but I guess it's what you cook. Smile


Ha, I know what you're saying. I do have a bit of a sweet tooth, but with the port reduction, I like just a little drizzle, not so much you think "sweet," but just enough to give an extra dimension, like the use of salt.
quote:
Originally posted by Nigel Groundwater:
Many recipes specify but obviously the question means some don't.
We usually use a version of the red [not oaky] that we might drink with that course.
So say a Bordeaux with a lamb dish or a Burgundy with pigeon or partridge.
Just an inexpensive, drinkable, fruity, red.


Pigeon?

What wine do you use with squirrel and rat? Eek
quote:
Originally posted by grossie:
quote:
Originally posted by Nigel Groundwater:
Many recipes specify but obviously the question means some don't.
We usually use a version of the red [not oaky] that we might drink with that course.
So say a Bordeaux with a lamb dish or a Burgundy with pigeon or partridge.
Just an inexpensive, drinkable, fruity, red.


Pigeon?

What wine do you use with squirrel and rat? Eek


Try this at one of my favourite restaurants - Les Crayeres, Reims - and you won't enjoy squirrels or rats nearly as much:

PRESSE DE PIGEON, légumes et ravioli de foie gras en pot au feu, anis étoilé, baguette toastée

Yum
Mmmmmmm.... quail.....Mmmmmm ,.... i used to shoot thest little creatures and eat 'em when i was a teenager (my dad showed me how to pluck and bake them) ..not much there for meat but tasty little morsels, they are....Il Giardino's restaurant in Vancouver, on occasion, has this on their menu...
My wife says ..."i wouldn't use any red wine in any of my recipes that i would not also drink readily ..." ....which makes sense ...
Depends on the dish. Much of the time the wine is such a minor addition, or is so overwhelmed by other ingredients, that it would silly to open a bottle that otherwise would make it to the table, or to measure out part of the $50 bottle I'm going to serve with the dish.

Any realistic difference between an 80-point wine and a 100-pointer is simply lost in most recipes. Besides, how good can any wine be after being boiled down and simmered, maybe for hours, with onions, garlic, meat, and herbs? And better reds often have too much oak or tannin to be successful in most recipes.

So, I keep several 187ml screw cap bottles of (barely) drinkable red and white wine in the pantry for recipes that call for 3/4 cup or less of wine. It works well, and I defy anyone to tell the difference.

That said, I wouldn't use such plonk in something like a Boeuf Bourgogne that calls for a significant amount of wine -- but I wouldn't dig out my best PNs for it, either.

I do like the suggestion of freezing wine for use in recipes, but I'm unfamiliar with the concept of "leftover" wine -- what is that?
quote:
Originally posted by wine+art:
quote:
Originally posted by Nigel Groundwater:


Try this at one of my favourite restaurants - Les Crayeres, Reims - and you won't enjoy squirrels or rats nearly as much:

PRESSE DE PIGEON, légumes et ravioli de foie gras en pot au feu, anis étoilé, baguette toastée

Yum


I'm at Les Crayeres very soon. Thanks for the recommendation. Cool

Well if it's next Friday we can wave at each other.
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Originally posted by wine+art:
Nigel,

If it were next Friday, I would buy you a bottle of Champagne.

We leave on Friday, but do not hit Champagne until the following week.

Enjoy!

We are looking forward to renewing what had been very regular summer and autumn stays over the past 13 years which gently petered out when Gerard & Elyane Boyer retired unexpectedly, followed a couple of years later at the end of 2004 by his excellent Chef de Cuisine Thierry Voisin.

Thierry had IMO successfully assumed the top role but despite his continuation of a very successful formula it seemed that the usual demotion from Michelin 3* to 2* which follows the departure of a longstanding 3* principal chef caused a fall-off in reservations and the eventual loss of the incredible buzz the place had. As far as we were concerned the rooms, food and service had been as good as ever.

Thierry left for the Imperial in Tokyo and Didier Elena, a Ducasse protege, took over and a lot of things we liked and were used to changed.
You probably know all this but our last visit was in Spring 2005 so this will be a trip down memory lane for us with all its attendant possibilities for disappointment as well as renewed enjoyments. However I see that its international ratings have remained high.

I hope you have a great time in Champagne and at Les Crayeres in particular and look forward to a post when you return.
quote:
Depends on the dish. Much of the time the wine is such a minor addition, or is so overwhelmed by other ingredients, that it would silly to open a bottle that otherwise would make it to the table, or to measure out part of the $50 bottle I'm going to serve with the dish.

Any realistic difference between an 80-point wine and a 100-pointer is simply lost in most recipes. Besides, how good can any wine be after being boiled down and simmered, maybe for hours, with onions, garlic, meat, and herbs? And better reds often have too much oak or tannin to be successful in most recipes.

So, I keep several 187ml screw cap bottles of (barely) drinkable red and white wine in the pantry for recipes that call for 3/4 cup or less of wine. It works well, and I defy anyone to tell the difference.

That said, I wouldn't use such plonk in something like a Boeuf Bourgogne that calls for a significant amount of wine -- but I wouldn't dig out my best PNs for it, either.

I do like the suggestion of freezing wine for use in recipes, but I'm unfamiliar with the concept of "leftover" wine -- what is that?

Doug Collins
Hermosa Beach, California


Good post. Couple of things:

1) "Depends on the dish"...agreed, although since I always open at least 2 or 3 bottles it wouldn't be uncommon to serve the remaining bottle I've used in the recipe to my guests. In my opinion, it compliments the meal.

2) Are better quality wines lost in the recipe? Since I agonize over the ingredients in high end dishes, I can't say I've used an 80pt wine to know for sure. I'll use a nice north or southern Rhone, Bordeaux, Borolo, BdM etc. and serve the rest before I open a new bottle. In any case, I've never had an oak or tannin issue in the final product.

In my opinion an 80pt wine IS plonk. My range, depending on the dish, would be in the 86-94pt range. Rereading the post, I'll have to agree that using less than 3/4 cup of wine would seriously impact a dish, but I still wouldn't use an 80 pointer.

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