The art of Food and Wine Pairing elevates ingredients and flavors that complement each other. There is something to be said for the perfect pairing, aromas and flavors that do a little dance, effortless and uncomplicated. When you discover flavors that balance or promote the best characteristics of both food and the wine you’re enjoying it can heighten your overall experience. Black Stallion Estate Winery is best known for its Cabernet Sauvignon,a robust red with black fruit flavors, toasted oak aromas, firm tannin structure. We’ve found this to be the best pairing for grilled meats and foods with savory characteristics.
Since it originated centuries ago in the French region of Bordeaux, Cabernet Sauvignon has often been associated with red meats, especially a good cut of steak. The rich, dark red, bold flavors of the wine are certainly at home alongside a perfectly cooked Porterhouse steak. Steak and wine pairing have become such a standard for Cabernets throughout time, and for good reason. A Cabernet Sauvignon, especially when made carefully and artfully as we do at Black Stallion Estate Winery, is usually robust. They can stand up to the savory flavors of roast beef or unctuous prime rib. A red wine retains a higher level of tannins, the result of aging on their grape skins, and as we bite and sip these tannins bind with the fat in rich meats, coating your palate. The end result is a noticeably softened Cabernet Sauvignon and a harmonious balance of texture and flavor. If you are familiar with any of our Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon wines, you may have already had the pleasure of pairing a glass with a steak. Even better, you know you can have it cooked the way you like — even rare — and find it perfectly paired. A hamburger, especially one topped with cheese, bacon and mushrooms, connects with a Cabernet on many levels. You can enjoy our Cabernet Sauvignon with any toothsome steak, including rib eye, T-bone or sirloin. When seasoned with black cracked pepper, the flavor profile of these peppery notes complement a subtle, natural pepperiness of a Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. The Transcendent Cabernet Sauvignon pairs beautifully with classic steak au poivre made with grilled flank steak and topped with a creamy sauce of peppercorns. Of course, there are other meats with robust, yet luscious flavors. You could pair a Cabernet with a good cut of venison or a leaner Buffalo steak. Grilled lamb chops marinated with garlic and fresh herbs are delicious with a red wine, especially our Limited Release Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon. When pairing cheeses, firm textured cow’s milk cheeses seem to stand up to the robust flavor of the best red wines. Sharp cheddar, Comté or a swiss gruyere are excellent choices for snacking, adding to a meal, or using in a sauce. As for vegetables, mushrooms are Cabernet Sauvignon’s biggest fan. Their meatier character matches well when substituted for meat as Portobello mushrooms often are. Try them marinated in rich balsamic vinegar, herbs and olive oil and grilled quickly on high heat to retain their texture. Caramelizing or charring vegetables can bring out their most prominent flavors and concentrate their sugars. This process also creates an excellent contrast with a Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Roasting on high heat in the oven is another way to create a caramelized exterior and tender-crisp interior, roasted root vegetables would be a nice accompaniment, alongside protein of choice.
For instance, our Limited Release Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is noted for dark, ripe, jammy fruit flavors with savory notes. An educated food and wine pairing would take this into account, leaning into the black fruit flavors if making a sauce or creating an herb crusted, seasoned brisket that complements the savory notes of this Napa Cabernet. Before you set the menu, you could bring together several favorite dishes and several of your favorite wines. Keep the food dishes (and their aromas) away from your wines until you have conducted your wine tasting. First, you’ll want to allow the wine to aerate. As you sample each one, be sure to write down the aromas you smell and the flavors you detect in the wine. Also note how robust the wine is. Some Cabernets have stronger tannins than others. Then you’ll want to try each wine with each dish. You may need water or a neutral cracker or baguette to cleanse your palate between pours. Start by trying a small bite of your dish, followed by a sip of wine and discover for yourself which of your favorite flavors really pop with a Black Stallion Cabernet Sauvignon. If you don’t cook or don’t want to cook, you can still accomplish much just by sampling the wines with different flavors. You’ll want to start with the basics: sweet, salty, sour, bitter and umami. Then see how common spices complement the wine and vice versa.
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