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California Style Gazpacho and Rose By Lenny

Few dishes can evoke sun and summertime like fresh Gazpacho can. It is a dish that traces its roots to Andalusia in southern Iberian Peninsula. The proto gazpacho was most likely of Roman origin and was made using stale bread, garlic, olive oil, salt, and vinegar. The bright red Gazpacho that most people know wouldn’t come around until long after Columbus returned with those deadly nightshades from the “new world.” It wouldn’t be until the 19th century, the red gazpacho became popular when tomatoes were added to mix.
I like to make mine partly pureed with a nice garnish of cucumbers, fresh tomatoes and avocado. Top with sour cream and some fresh cilantro and you have a lovely summer soup for your next patio party. I like to serve it out of a pitcher with some crushed ice blended in. Serve with some fresh sliced bread and if you like some Manchego Cheese and Jamon de Serano and you have a lovely light lunch.
The perfect pairing for the fresh taste of Gazpacho is Rose! A Spanish Garnacha rose, beautiful Provence Rose or how about a nice California Rose?
Smoke Tree Rose California 2016 $19.99
Fresh, finessed and elegant, Smoke Tree Rosé offers aromas of white cherry, white peach and yellow nectarine. The palate is vibrant with flavors of crabapple, quince and crisp nectarine. The finish is dry and refreshing.
Made by longtime Domaine Chandon Winemaker Joel Burt this wine is a base of Grenache, like many Spanish and French Rose, and makes this wine very food friendly.

California Style Gazpacho
________________________________________

***** Base
2 each Tomatoes Concasse, peeled and seeded
½ ea red onion, finely diced
1 each jalapeño chili pepper, minced
1 ea Lime, Juice
½ cup Cilantro, chopped
½ tsp Cumin
¼ cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp Oregano
1 tsp Basil
1 tablespoon Smoked Paprika
1 slice bread
1 cup ice

64 oz Tomato Juice
4 each Tomatoes, diced
1 each Pasilla Pepper, finely diced
1 each cucumber seeded and diced
1 each Avocado diced
1 bunch green onions
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup sour cream, for garnish

1. Combine ingredients for base in blender and puree until well combined
2. In large container combine base with tomato juice and remaining ingredients
3. Garnish with sour cream and fresh cilantro

Tennessee Mule’s and Bourbon Glazed Tri Tip

Here are two of my favorite things – whiskey and Barbecue!

Below I give you my Bourbon Glazed Tri Tip Recipe – you can prepare it either  on a BBQ or just as easily in the oven. Now you could serve a big Zin or WA Syrah with this but I like to make pitchers of Whiskey Gingers AKA Tennessee Mules.

Tennessee Mule

3 parts Ginger Ale

1 part Jack Daniels No 7

Squeeze of lime juice plus more slices for garnish

Plenty of ice

Refreshing and a great pairing for my Tri Tip recipe

Maple Bourbon Glazed Tri Tip Steak
________________________________________

2-3 lb. Beef Tri-tip

Marinade:
1 tsp. course ground black pepper
1 tsp. chopped garlic
¼ tsp. ground thyme
¼ cup bourbon
1/4 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Glaze:
¼ cup Bourbon
2 Tablespoons Grain Mustard
2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
1 Tablespoons Cider Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Siracha

Roasting:
Olive oil
Sea salt
Black pepper

1. Day 1: Trim Beef of any excess silver or fat. Combine ingredients for marinade. Place Tri Tip in a Ziploc bag with marinade at let rest overnight in refrigerator.
2. The next day remove tri tip from marinade and let come to room temperature.
3. Preheat oven to 250 degrees
4. Combine ingredients for glaze and set aside
5. Rub Roast with oil and season liberally with salt and pepper.
6. Prepare a roasting pan with a wire rack.
7. Heat a large cast iron pan on stove top. Sear each side of tri tip to brown 3-4 min each side.
8. Place roast on wire rack and place in oven.
9. Roast for about half an hour and brush roast with glaze.
10. After 20 minutes turn roast and brush with glaze again, repeating every 10 – 15 minutes until center of roast reaches 130 degrees.
11. Remove from oven and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing.

 

Weekend Wine Pairing – Cuban Style Pulled Pork and Scarpetta Barbera

It’s Barbecue time! Now if you are like me, you’ll grill just about anything – salmon, steaks, burgers, pizza. I even know a guy who likes grill marks on his pancakes. There is one thing that just belongs on the grill, smoker or bbq and that is pork. Whether you are grilling up pork chops on a Wednesday or doing a whole pig roast (like we are doing Saturday) one wine I think works just as well with pulled pork sandwiches or Ribs is Barbera.
Barbera comes from the north of Italy, near the German border. High up in the foothills of the Alps they eat a lot of pork, sausages and Prosciutto. Barbera is generally lower in alcohol and distinguished by soft tannin, a bright sweet tart cherry character and certain roundness. These qualities make Barbera an easy wine to pair with many different dishes from Thanksgiving turkey to Pizza to Cuban style pulled pork sandwiches.
One of our favorites is the Barbera from Scarpetta. Scarpetta is owned by a Sommelier and a Chef so these wines are naturally made to go with food.
Scarpetta 2014 Barbera del Monferrato DOC $14.99
Made in collaboration with Fabrizio Iuli in Monferrato, Piemonte this Barbera is medium bodied with low tannins but bright acidity, giving it wonderful balance. Monferrato is the birthplace for Barbera, and historically unlike the rest of Piedmonte, its top cuvees are frequently Barbera. Hence, for good reason, Barbera from Monferrato is celebrated for its balance of fruit, terroir and acidity. The high acidity and low tannins let this wine work with everything from a pizza or homemade pasta to a piece of beef or pork.
Here is a version you can make at home no matter what the weather.

 

Cuban Roast Pork Sandwich

 

Rolls – hoagie, ciabatta, slider buns

Butter for rolls

Cilantro Garlic mayo (Recipe Follows)

Roast pork (see below)

Mustard

Coleslaw (recipe follows)

2 onions

 

*****Roast Pork

2 cups orange juice

2 tablespoons garlic, minced

1 tsp oregano, minced

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 oz. rum

3 lb. pork shoulder

 

*****Cilantro Garlic mayo

2 cloves garlic

1/4 cup cilantro

1 cup mayonnaise

1 Lemon, juice

Salt and pepper as needed

 

*****Coleslaw

1 cup mayonnaise

1½ tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

¾ teaspoon celery seeds

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ medium green cabbage, very thinly sliced (about 4 cups)

½ medium red cabbage, very thinly sliced (about 4 cups)

2 medium carrots, peeled; julienned or grated

 

  1. In Ziploc bag large enough for pork combine orange juice pork, orange juice, garlic and spices and let marinated overnight.
  2. In a large roasting pan place pork and marinade cover and roast for 3 – 4 hours until meat falls apart. Remove from oven. With two forks shred pork,
  3. To make mayonnaise: in bowl of food processor combine cilantro, garlic, lemon juice and mayo season if necessary.
  4. In a large cast iron pan melt butter and add onions. Season with salt and pepper. Cook stirring occasionally until soft and caramelized about 15 minutes. Set aside.
  5. For coleslaw: whisk mayonnaise, vinegar, honey, celery seeds, salt, and pepper in a large bowl to combine. Add green and red cabbage and carrots to dressing and toss to coat. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
  6. To assemble sandwich: brush hoagies with butter and toast or grill.
  7. Spread hoagies with cilantro Mayo then pork, mustard, onions and pickles. Top with coleslaw.

 

 

 

Scarpetta Wine Pig Roast Event, Saturday, June 3rd!

Many of you have been asking about the La Caja China roaster, stacked with an assortment of Friulian delights, on our entry way carpet. We’ve brought in a pig roasting box emblazoned with Scarpetta Wines  and we can’t wait to share the excitement with you!

Scarpetta Wines was started by Bobby Stuckey and Lachlan Patterson. Bobby is a Master Sommelier and James Beard Award Winner. Lachlan is an award winning chef. Together, they own Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder, Co. which was nominated this year for Outstanding Restaurant in America. Accolades aside, these guys know what they are doing and they’re doing it right. They bring the countryside of Friuli to every glass and plate they present.

With an obsession with Friuli, Bobby and Lachlan have been blazing their way through the states. And, we have some of their Scarpetta Wines in our store to celebrate!

Join as we serve Porchetta Panini along with Scarpetta Wines at our Scarpetta Pig Roast event on Saturday, June 3rd, 2-PM. We hope to see you there!

Grazie!

Weekend Wine Pairing ~ Martini Party!

Almost everyone loves a cocktail party! I love them because they are relatively easy and surprisingly inexpensive ways of having people over. Cocktail Parties give people an excuse to dress up. There is a simple touch of glamour to people chit-chatting over cocktails and caviar. Some good shopping, a little bit of preparation, plenty of ice, and you have a party!

Less is more.

Pick one or two cocktails to feature. Just tell everyone you invite, “We are having a Martini party this Saturday! Would you like to come?” Yes, you want to have back-ups, say some beer, some chilled Champagne and wine, even a bottle or two of other basics (Bourbon, Vodka). But, letting people know what they are getting into sets their expectations and anticipation.

Let’s say you want to throw a Martini Party. First, plan on tending bar for the evening, so have your food already plated and ready to go. For the food, I like to set platters and trays around the party to create an inviting atmosphere. Many classic hors d’oeuvre are perfect pairings for Martini’s – Caviar, Smoked Salmon and Lox, Crab Cakes, Deviled Eggs, Shrimp Cocktail, even Oysters on the half shell.  Also, have back up snacks: nuts, chips, crackers, cheese, in case more people show up or they show up hungry.

First things first.

A Martini is a cocktail made with gin and vermouth, and garnished with an olive or a lemon twist. Classic is a ratio 2:1 gin to vermouth, International Bartenders Association dictates a ratio of 6:1 (which could end up being quite a party), but I like to use better vermouth and get the ratio closer to 1:1. I also recommend using smaller martini glasses 3 – 4 ounce to help restrain consumption a little.

Lenny’s Martini (serves 4)

8 oz. The Botanist Gin

6 oz. Dolin Dry Vermouth

Squeeze lemon wedge

4 shakes orange bitters

8 olives on picks

Lemon twist for rim

Prepare chilled martini glass running lemon twist around edge of rim. Discard. Combine ingredients in shaker with ice. Stir until all ingredients thoroughly. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with cocktail olives.

The Botanist Islay Dry Gin $42.99

(Taste Botanist Gin Saturday April 22, 2pm – 5 pm)

The Botanist Gin is truly one of kind. Made by one of my favorite scotch producers Bruichladdich, it is the Gin produced on Islay. While most gins are made using a column or continuous still, Botanist is made in an old Lomond pot whiskey still, nicknamed Ugly Betty. That means that the base distillate is made with same care and attention as a fine scotch. Second, while all gins have Juniper along with a usual cohort of six or seven botanicals, Botanist contains 31, of which 22 are native to the Southern Hebridean Island itself. It should be noted that most of the native botanicals sound like they came straight out of a Harry Potter novel; rest assured the final product is delicate and not surprisingly floral.

A great Gin and good quality Vermouth some good olives and plenty of ice …

The botanical quality of a Martini lends itself very well to seafood of all sorts. How about an update to classic Shrimp Cocktail? My Kick Butt Shrimp Cocktail will change the way you think about the cocktail sauce.

Kick Butt Shrimp Cocktail  Ingredients + Recipe

Washington Exploration Series with Regina Daigneault

Washington Exploration Series with Regina Daigneault featuring wines from:

WT Vintners | Lauren Ashton | Otis Kenyon | Andrew Rich | VITAL 

March 8, 6-7:30PM, in the Sky Lounge

We welcome Regina (Reggie) Daigneault – for a tasting exploration series of the Pacific Northwest, beginning with Washington, in celebration of Washington Wine Month. Reggie has been a wine educator for the past 15 years, bringing together a respected following of wine lovers, foodies, and enthusiasts alike.

We begin our Washington Exploration Series by exploring the viticulture regions within Washington State. We will look at why the vineyards, climate, and soils differ from each other. We will explore the cooler climate wines from Columbia Gorge along the Columbia River, and taste the differences of the Walla Walla, Columbia, and Yakima Valleys. Guests will feel the soils and rocks of these regions, while noticing how geology can define the flavors of the grapes.

 

$15 tasting fee, which can be used towards your purchase

small eats will be provided

Space is limited, RSVP by calling 206.682.7374

 

Join us for the full exploration series:

California Series 4/19 6 – 7:30PM in the Sky Lounge

Oregon Series 5/10 6 – 7:30PM in the Sky Lounge

Weekend Wine Pairing – Spinach and Pesto Gnocchi w/ Love & Squalor Sauvignon Blanc

Love & Squalor Sauvignon Blanc is aromatic with hints of passion fruit and guava zesty with lime, gooseberry and green apple but this wine isn’t just about fruit it is a perfect balance of acid and fruit this wine has minerality and a slight savory note. Green herb notes on the palate with a nice clean finish.

The grapes come from two vineyards: Redford-Wetle in the Eola-Amity hills and Aurora Colony Vineyard in Aurora. If there is one last master of white winemaking for Matt to get tutored by it would be Myron Redford of Redford-Wetle Vineyard, founder of Amity Vineyards and white wine evangelist.

This wine is versatile and could pair with many different dishes – shellfish, vegetable dishes, pastas, salads of all kinds. Sauvignon Blanc is one of the few wines that is perfectly suited to foil many tricky ingredients that are notoriously hard to pair like – artichokes, asparagus, green herbs, goat cheese.

Always a favorite the Love & Squalor Sauvignon Blanc really struts it stuff when paired to a dish like Spinach Gnocchi:

Spinach Gnocchi with Pesto

1 pound Roasted potatoes
½ cup Ricotta
4 ounces Spinach, cooked and chopped
¼ teaspoon Nutmeg
2 each Egg Yolks
1 cup Flour or more as needed
1 tsp Salt
Pinch White Pepper
Pesto Sauce
Pecorino Romano for grating

Printable recipe w/ instructions

Weekend Wine Pairing – Lenny’s Quick Cassoulet and Château Maris Le Carignan de Maris 2013

Today, I present a recipe by special request. I was recently asked if there was a way of making cassoulet that didn’t involve all the time and work. So, here I give you a simplified version of the classic French Cassoulet.
Cassoulet is a rich, slow-cooked casserole originating in the south of France, made with duck confit, sausage, and beans. Served with good crusty bread and a good bottle of hearty wine Cassoulet is just about the finest warden against the cold dark night.

If you are looking for a wine to pair with Casoulet you could go with a Cahors or Madiran, but many hearty country wines pair nicely. Take the Chateau Maris Carignan, the wine hails from Languedoc in the heart of the Minervois, in the Cru of La Livinière. This winery is quickly garnering worldwide acclaim for their outstanding line up of reasonably priced wines. Most recently Wine & Spirits Magazine announced that Chateau Maris as one of the top100 wineries in the world for 2016

Chateau Maris Le Carignan de Maris 2013 $14.99
“A great example of the variety, the 2013 Minervois Carignan de Maris offers classic plum and purple-like fruit, spring flowers, crushed rock and hints of charcoal to go with medium to full-bodied richness, beautiful purity and surprisingly polished tannin, which isn’t easy to do with 100% Carignan. Aged 10-12 months in concrete tank, drink this beauty over the coming 4-5 years” Jeb Dunnuck
91 points Wine Advocate 

chateau-maris-carignan-de-maris-2013
This wine is a real beauty and perfect for cooler weather fare like lamb stew or cassoulet.
Chateau Maris is run by Robert Eden, who is the driving force behind the push toward biodynamic and sustainable farming in the region. Robert’s approach to winemaking is based on the fundamental premise that wine is “grown”, not “made”. The winery is certified Demeter biodynamic and Ecocert organic. The winery has zero carbon footprint, producing more energy than it consumes. He’s gone as far as building his new winery out of massive hemp “bricks”. Their work in the Languedoc is leading the wine world in sustainability. Their hemp brick winery is cooled naturally, without refrigerant and absorbs CO2 from the fermentation process. Water is recycled and solar panels provide power. Lightweight bottles and recycled paper are standard.

15826440_10154168571300205_2884950221527906238_n

Lenny’s Quick Cassoulet

4 ounces bacon, diced

1 cups chopped onion (3/4 lb))

1/2 cup celery, diced

1/2 cup carrot, peeled diced

1 lb Sausage links, cooked and sliced

1 tsp finely chopped garlic

1 tsp thyme

1each bay leaf

1/4 tsp black pepper

1 (14-oz) can stewed tomatoes, chopped with juice

2 each confit duck legs*

1 14 ounce can white beans

2 cups beef broth

1 Tbl tomato paste

2 Tbl olive oil

1 cups coarse fresh bread crumbs

1/4 cup Parsley, chopped

salt and pepper

Printable Recipe and Instructions

Introduction to Wine by Arnie Millan

Esquin is delighted to offer wine classes, perfectly designed to bring out the wine expert in everyone! These classes make a great gift, too.

Sommelier Arnie Millan presents the Introduction to Wine Class series beginning Sunday January 15th, 2016 until March 5th. The program of six classes is scheduled every Sunday from 1:30 until 4:00 p.m. at Esquin Wine & Spirits at 2700 4th Avenue South in SODO.

Free parking is available in Esquin’s lot on the South end of our building.

The Seattle Times has named Arnie  “The Finest Wine Mind in Seattle.”

The classes include thorough tastings of 8 wines during each class and will be offered for $39 per class or $225 for the entire 6 class series.

Click here to purchase the series of 6 classes  

Topics covered will be:

January 15th – Grapes, Viticulture and Winemaking

We will learn a glossary of important wine terms, discuss the major international grape varieties as well as the basics of viticulture and winemaking

Click here to purchase this class

January 22nd – A Tour of Spain

Spain’s wine history is the oldest in Europe and its wine regions reveal a wealth of indigenous grapes far beyond the famous Tempranillo. Explore Spain’s dynamic and exciting wine scene.
Click here to purchase this class

January 29th – A Survey of Italy

Italy is one of the world’s greatest wine regions with an unbelievable treasure trove of terrific indigenous grape varieties. We will cover all 19 wine regions and taste 8 delicious wines made from native grapes.
Click here to purchase this class.

February 19h – A Tour of France

France is the touchstone for fine wine, the benchmark by which quality wine is judged. We will de-mystify and explain all their major regions including Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Alsace and the Rhône Valley.

Click here to purchase this class. 

February 26th – New World Wines (U.S., Australia, Canada, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, New Zealand)

If Europe is called the “old world” then this class covers everything else including the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, India, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and China. Whew!
Click here to purchase this class.

March 5th – Wine/Food pairing, Germany/Austria

Germany and Austria make some of the planet’s finest wines but few are aware of this. This class will definitely change your perception of these wines. The second half of the class focuses on food and wine pairing with a handout detailing Arnie’s Rules of Food and Wine Pairing.

Click here to purchase this class.

Advance registration is necessary. Gift certificates available.

Weekend Wine Pairing – ROCO Gravel Road Pinot Noir and Turkey Paupiette

In 1987 Rollin Soles launched Argyle Winery and quickly became Oregon’s leading sparkling wine producer and was named “OREGON’S PREMIER WINERY” by Wine Spectator in 2000. Rollin’s wines have been named among the Top 100 Wines of the World by Wine Spectator thirteen times, a distinction matched by no other Oregon winemaker. And in 2013, he was named one of the “20 Most Admired Winemakers in North America” by Vineyard & Winery Management magazine.
In 2001 he left Argyle to focus on his own vineyard Wits End and winery ROCO. He still makes Sparkling wine as well as award winning Pinot Noir as matter of fact his very first ROCO vintage was poured at the White House. ROCO wines are classic Rollin; focused, fruit driven, deftly balanced and expressive. Rollins wines are consistently solid performers, and that is saying something when you are working with one of the most fickle grapes.

rocowine

ROCO Winery Gravel Road Pinot Noir 2013 $24.99 

Deep garnet in color, the spice driven nose includes aromas of red cherry, cinnamon, vanilla, and a hint of sweet tobacco leaf. Full flavored with a sweet, juicy, and deep center, surrounded by ripe red raspberry, a touch of gravel, bergamot, and strawberry compote. Nice firm structure. Finish is pure fruit with briar-earth elements. A compact, complex and complete Pinot Noir.

This time of year it seems as soon as I finish my Thanksgiving leftovers I get a hankering for Turkey again. I like to pick up an extra Turkey after Thanksgiving when they are on sale. I will take the hind quarters and make confit with them, a la Duck and separate the breast into smaller sections and use them for cutlets.
A favorite is Turkey Paupiette with Madeira served up with potatoes. A paupiette is a thin flattened piece of meat or fish that has had a filling spread on top and is then rolled up and secured with a wooden toothpick or a string. For these I make a stuffing of bread crumbs, hazelnut and apple finished with a little Madeira and demi-glaze this makes for a perfect winter supper. This dish paired with a nice Oregon Pinot like the ROCO Gravel Road and you have a dinner that will impress your guests without damaging your pocketbook.

turkey

Turkey Paupiette

2 lb Turkey Breast
1 Cup Chicken Broth
***** Stuffing
1 Cup Bread Crumbs
½ Cup Diced Apple
¾ Cup Ground Hazelnut
½ Cup Grated Parmesan
1 Whole Egg
Pinch Nutmeg
1 Tsp Fresh thyme
Salt and pepper
***** Sauce
½ lb Mushroom
1 ea Shallot, finely diced
4 Tblsp Butter
1 Cup Madeira
1 Cup Demi glaze

Printable Recipe and Instructions 

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