Noshing on multi-course meals when out on the town is ever-so a la mode, but taking the concept to your dinner table often seems like a total chore. Enter: Barton & Guestier Wines and Chef Brianne from the Nella Cucina Cooking School. Barton & Guestier’s French wines are superb everyday sippers – they’re affordably fancy and pair perfectly with most any dish you can imagine.
Nella’s Chef Brianne had a blast whipping up these recipes to pair with different B&G varietals. All you have to do is hit up the LCBO, pop by your favourite market, then pop a cork and get to cooking…
Pro-Tip: Chef Brianne recommends prepping as much as you can in advance, even simple chopping, so cooking becomes a much easier (and more enjoyable) task!
The Salad Course: Beet, Fennel and Apple Salad with Honey-Mustard Dressing
The Pairing: Barton & Guestier’s Partager La Gardie Merlot
3 beets (roasted, cooled, peeled and sliced)
1 fennel, trimmed and sliced
1 apple, sliced (use an apple that does not oxidize too fast, such as Lady Alice, or toss lightly in lemon)
2 cups of arugula
ó cup toasted walnuts
1 tbsp shallots, finely chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2½ tsp fresh lemon juice
½ tsp cider vinegar (you can substitute it for white wine vinegar or champagne vinegar)
Salt, to taste
For the dressing: Combine all ingredients except the oil and whisk together until well-combined. Slowly drizzle in oil while whisking very fast to combine and create an emulsion.
For the salad: In a large bowl, place fennel, apple, arugula, and fresh walnuts. Add the dressing and toss to combine. Adjust salt and pepper, to taste. Top with beets and crumble goat’s cheese overtop if desired.
The Main Course: Steak with Red Wine Jus, Glazed Beans, Truffled Fingerlings
The Pairing: Barton & Guestier’s Partager La Gardie Cabernet Sauvignon
1 pound wax (yellow) or green beans, trimmed
1 tbsp honey
4 tsp finely grated fresh lemon zest
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp butter
Cook beans in a 4-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 4 to 6 minutes. Drain in a colander, then immediately toss with honey, lemon zest, butter, and salt in a large bowl.
Pro Tip: If not serving right away, under-cook beans slightly and place them in an ice bath, then heat remaining ingredients in a pan when ready to serve and heat through beans!
Truffle Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
1 pound fingerling potatoes
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 sprigs rosemary, finely chopped
2 springs thyme, finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and cracked black pepper, to taste
Truffle oil, to finish
Preheat oven to 425F. Slice fingerlings in half lengthwise. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well, then arrange on a baking tray in a single layer. Bake for about 20 minutes or until fork tender, turning them halfway through cooking. Toss the hot potatoes with truffle oil, check seasoning, and serve.
¼ cup shallots, minced
½ cup red wine
½ cup beef stock
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp rosemary, chopped (optional)
Salt and pepper, to taste
Olive oil, for coating the pan
In a sautee pan over medium-high heat, add enough olive oil to coat a thin layer. Add the shallots and cook until translucent. Add the red wine and the stock and reduce by half. (See note below.) Add the butter and chopped rosemary and whisk in to combine. Remove from heat.
Pro Tip: If you would like a smoother sauce, you can strain the shallots out after reducing and before adding butter and rosemary.
Cook your favourite steak cut (rib-eye, NY striploin, tenderloin) to your desired doneness, your desired way. Us ‘Scenesters’ like to use the organic NY Striploin from Beretta Farms, and sear it over a hot cast iron pan on both sides for a couple minutes before finishing it off in a high-temp oven to medium-rare. It gets smoky, but it works!
The Sweet Ending: Dark Chocolate Brownies with Sour Cherry Compote
The Pairing: Barton & Guestier’s Les Charmes de Magnol
Dark Chocolate Brownies
1/3 cup butter, cut into pieces
6 oz dark chocolate
2 eggs, at room temperature
ó cups brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup + 1 tbsp all purpose flour
ó tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9”x13” pan and line with parchment paper. Melt chocolate over a double boiler with butter. Whip eggs with sugars till thick and frothy by hand. Stir into melted chocolate. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Then gently stir into the chocolate mixture. Pour into pan, then bake for 18 to 20 minutes (check doneness with a toothpick). Cool to room temperature before removing from pan and serving with the sour cherry compote.
Sour Cherry Compote
3 cups frozen sour cherries (a little less than 1 pound)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp Les Charmes de Magnol
Put cherries, sugar, and wine into a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until cherries have burst and mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Enjoy!