Abbott’s Grill held their Mediterranean Wine Dinner on Wednesday, August 10, introducing exotic courses and teaching the techniques of pairing food and wine. Patrons dined alfresco on the back patio under the moonlight while being served 6 delicious courses, accompanied by 6 amazing wines.
Professional Chef, and owner of Abbott’s Grill, Kevin Reading alongside Chef Ryan Cunnigham, prepared pepper seared beef carpaccio , lobster brandade and pan roasted squab and pork belly among several other dishes. Wine sommelier Mark Steiman paired each course with the perfect complimentary wine.
“We thought the event went outstanding,” commeneted Chef Ryan Cunnigham. “The pairing was spot on and it was really a nice mix of people from the beach and from Milford. The customer feedback was phenomenal; they really enjoyed the interactive dinner. We look forward to doing it again.”
Diners were served Mediterranean Antipasto served with N.V Ca’ Furlan Prosecco, pepper seared beef carpaccio accompanied by Bertani Valente Pinto Grigio, Lobster Brandade with Valminor, Gnocchi Caprese complemented by Villa Puccini Sangiovese , pan roasted squab and pork belly served with Abbott’s Cumolo Nimbus Shiraqz and Panna Cotta alongside of La Ardilla Moscato.
Tips for wine and food pairing from the experts at Abbott’s Grill:
1. Understand why certain pairings work, and take your cues from that advice. For example, most people will pair a big steak with a big Cabernet. This works because the tannins in the Cab cut through the fat in the steak. Another way this works is by using acidic tastes. If you’re serving heavy cheeses or a dish with a creamy sauce, try a more acidic white like Sauvignon Blanc to cut through the creaminess.
2. Figure out what the most dominant flavor is in the dish, and choose your wine pairing based on that. For example, if you’re serving a beef carpaccio with a lemon vinaigrette and asparagus salad (like we did at our Mediterranean Wine Dinner), focus on the brightness and acidity of the lemon vinaigrette, rather than the flavor of the beef. We chose an Italian Pinot Grigio, and the pairing was perfect.
3. Don’t try to fight spicy foods with big heavy wines; instead try a lighter, lower alcohol, bubbly or even slightly sweet wine. Try a sweeter Riesling or even Champagne with spicy Thai dishes.
4. For dessert, if you’re serving something sweet, make sure that the wine is as sweet if not sweeter. A dry wine will taste even drier, if not bitter, when paired with something sweet. Sauternes are great for desserts, as well as Ice Wines and Port.
5. Forget all the old rules about “white with fish, red with red meat.” Wine pairing is all about what you enjoy, so if you like the wine and you think it works, don’t let anyone stop you. Plus, there’s a lot of grey area with fish especially some heavier, meatier fishes like salmon, halibut and tuna work great with lighter reds like Pinot Noir. Plus, remember that it’s also important to think about how it’s being prepared and what other flavors are in the sauces and accompaniments.
Most importantly, have fun and serve what you like!