What to do with Lots of Mediocre Bordeaux?
I had a party recently and ended up with a bunch of not-so-great cheap bottles of Bordeaux from guests. Anyone have any ideas what I could do with these (besides regifting, of course). Any stewy/braisey ideas appreciated. Thanks!
You probably know that if you don't like the tase of a wine, you probably will not like in cooking. But, I wonder if you couldn't concoct a savory marinade, or a sauce for chicken or beef...using lots of garlic and various herbs....Here's a thread from this past February that might help, although the wine is not a Bordeaux but a Cote de Rhone:
I'm gonna agree on the marinade issue here, but add the recommendation of a real tough and gamey meat as the marinee coupled with lots of smokey heat.
Something like a leg of lamb, marinated overnight with lots of wine, onion, garlic, and rosemary will come out phenomenal once cooked over a wood fire without carrying too much of the wine's flavor, but benefiting much from the marinade all the same.
Plus, glugging a liter of wine over a delicious piece of meat has a certain, mixed, primal yet civilized charm.
I would cook with it if it is not "off". Assuming it is still good, use it in braising, something you do in the crockpot or cook forever on the stove. I think you have it; stew, pot roast, etc. Just don't use it to deglace a skillet and pour over a steak, use it in something you cook and cook.
Assuming that you find the wines unintersting but not distasteful, you can use them in any number of dishes. Classics like boeuf bourguignon and coq au vin are a good place to start, and fall is the perfect time to make them.
If the wine is unpleasant--as opposed to just boring--then using it for a marinade is definitely an option. And if you have a little mother of vinegar around, even the cheapest Bordeaux will probably make a better vinegar than most of the stuff you can buy at the store.
Bordeaux, like Cabernet Sauvignon, is often NOT a good choice for cooking because of the tannins. These don't reduce well at all. Can you tell whether your bottles are Merlot based, or Cab. Sauv based? The Merlot-bsed ones will fare better, but I think I'd save the bottles and bring them out for your next party.
Surely these wines aren't too awful to be enjoyed to an ordinary degree with an ordinary day's dinner - "table wine," so to speak.