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Dec 17, 2008 12:33 PM

Sauterne Wine for Cooking?

Does anyone know where in San Francisco, Daly City, San Bruno, or there about, that I could find Sautene (no "s") wine?

I used to be able to just buy it at Safeway, right next to the cooking sherry for a few bucks, but now all I can find is a few pricey bottles at Bevmo. I'm looking to use it in cooking, and don't want to spend more than $10 on a bottle.


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  1. I looked up "sauterne" and found that it is one of the "semi-generic" terms used by US winemakers/marketers on what I would call "cheap knock-offs." The wikipedia article describes semi-generic "Sauterne" as "White or pink, dry or sweet, named after Sauternes but deliberately misspelt."

    Anyway, to answer your question, I've seen inexpensive Sauternes at Trader Joe's.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Ruth Lafler

      Shoot, I don't think TJ's carries it anymore, they checked their system for me...

      Thank you though.

      1. re: flansy

        Just look for cheap Semillon or Sauvignon Blanc, wherever you can find it. You can add salt to it once you get it home to preserve it, since "Sauterne" contains 8% of your daily sodium in each serving, and was typically made from Semillon and/or Sauvignon Blanc grown in the central valley, along with a few other cheap white varietals as price and availability dictated.

    2. It is a salted wine. You can do better with 2 Buck Chuck. Drinkable, usually, and salt free. You get to season to taste. Article where at least one 2 Buck Chuck holds its own.

      3 Replies
      1. re: wolfe

        I know my original post made me look cheap , but really what I'm looking for is either Sauterene or a wine that tastes like the Sauterne I've been able to buy for years in the supermarket. It isn't that I don't want to use a nice wine to cook, it's that I don't want to change the flavor of my frog legs after all these years.

        Sadly Concannon isn't making it anymore, and the few that I can find are from Kosher wineries on the East Coast, and I haven't found a place around here, that has them in stock.

        1. re: flansy

          Sorry but the cheap claim belongs to me. I'm touting cooking with 2 Buck Chuck. The problem is you are probably going to have to taste some wine until you find a similar flavor profile to your favorite. I don't think you are going to find it in the pricey Sauternes.

          1. re: flansy

            I like cooking with vermouth. Have you tried that?

        2. The term sauterne means nothing with California wine. It's just a gemeric term for a cheap white wine. Just go for an inexpensive white.

          1. I think I understand your problem. Cooking sauterne has been the secret ingredient
            in my mom's pork cutlet since earliest childhood. And mom's not cheap either and
            can certainly tell good wine from bad. It would taste completely different with something

            I'm not sure what brand she uses but she gets it in NYC so that's not going to be much
            help to you. But maybe try using some japanese mirin rice wine? In addition to all the
            salt, cooking sauterne, as I remember, has a lot of sugar added too. Mirin reminds me
            a lot of it.

              1. re: rcspott

                Ah that would probably work!

                I actually managed to find some (bottled in San Jose none the less) right next to the cooking sherry at Nob Hill Foods, thank you all for the great help!