Saturday, July 31, 2010

'07, Napa Valley, Avalon Cabernet

Today's appetizers included three different cheeses, salame and water crackers.  While we snacked, the charcoal grille was heating up and getting ready for the portabella mushroom caps and boneless ribeyes.  Earlier, I put a light coat of EVOO on the ribeyes and then added a little cracked, fresh, black pepper and ground sea salt.  We put that aside and let it sit for about 3 or 4 hours at room temp.  While that was resting, I prep'd the mushroom caps by brushing a light coat of EVOO on both sides and sprinkling a little cracked black pepper and sea salt each side.  Afterwards, I put 8 oz of fresh spinach in a skillet with about 2 TBSP of EVOO, 1 TBSP of Balsamic Vinegar, 1 TBSP of fresh Goat Cheese and 1 TSP of Garlic Powder.  I reduced that down in the skillet and set it aside.  All the while, we had some new potatoes cooking in the oven (diced w/ greek seasonings) for about 45 mins @ 350 degrees.  The charcoal grille was at 450 degrees and I put the ribeyes on for about 6 to 7 mins on each side (over direct heat) and placed the portabella mushroom caps with the spinach & goat cheese mixture on the "indirect" heat side of the grille.  After the ribeyes and mushrooms were done, we grilled a few pieces of French Bread (coated w/ EVOO, cracked black pepper & dried rosemary) for about 3 or 4 minutes.

Today's wine selection was an '07, Napa Valley, Avalon Cabernet.  It's actually a blend of Cabernet, Merlot, Cabernet Franc & Petite Syrah.  I opened it 24 hours before cooking and let it stand in a decanter.  It had dark fruit (blackberry, black cherry) on the nose, a little toasty oak and vanilla on the mid-palate (aged in American Oak) and a nice finish.  It was very nice after sitting in the decanter for 24+ hours @ 55 degrees.  This wine is $15 USD or less and it's very nice.  The tannin in the wine paired very well with the ribeye and its marbling as well as the mushroom cap with spinach & goat cheese reduction.  A fine meal indeed.  Cheers to all...

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