Will you help me pair wines w/ my dinner party menu?
Hi, all. I could use some advice about wines for my dinner party tomorrow.
Here's what's on the board:
a good dry sausage (think molinari)
a blue cheese and a wonderful goat cheese with a peppery ash rind
Pork loin roast with a very light herb/mustard cream sauce - not gloppy
Fennel custards (thank you, Mario)
Parmesan roasted potatoes
Garlicky mustard greens w/ cremini mushrooms
individual lemon custards with a family style plate of dark chocolate dipped figs
a family member who knows wine suggested a cooler climate syrah for dinner from northern rhone or sonoma coast (and suggested that a crozes hermitage and st joseph as good values). For dessert, he suggested either a loire sweet wine - bonnezeaux or another chenin blanc -- or a moscato d'asti from italy would work. What are your thoughts? I like bubbles, so the moscato appeals to me, but I'd like some other voices to make my choice.
I will probably break out some champagne or prosecco for the hors.
Thanks for your input -- much appreciated.
The cooler climate Syrah is a fine suggestion. However, it would not be my first choice. My first thoughts were for medium-bodied New World Pinot, Cru Beaujolais, Barbera, and Nebbiolo. The more I think about it, the more I would tend toward a good Langhe Nebbiolo (or a Barolo if it is in your price range). But a medium-bodied Pinot (from Oregon, or Northern CA, not one of the ones from Santa Lucia or another monstrosity Pinot-as-Syrah), a good Cru Beaujolais, and a Barbera are still high on my list. As I said, cooler climate Syrah is a fine suggestion, it just wouldn't be my first choice.
Also, I tend to have a strong preference for St. Joseph over Croez-Hermitage, and for a little more money, a strong preference for Cornas, generally, over St. Joseph. *ACTUALLY* If you are going to go Rhone, I think I might prefer a Southern Rhone withthis meal to a Northern Rhone. A good Gigondas (or Chateauneuf du Pape) would be a pretty good pairing -- the Southern Rhone would compliment the (Dijon?) mustard and herbs (du-Povence?) better than the Northern Rhone would, imo.
Sweet Loire all the way with tose lemon custards. Now, you reliaze the flavors in dark chocolate dipped figs are so different from those in the lemon custards that you are not going to get a great match for both, right? If I were pairing to the figs I migt go with a Tokaji. If I were trying to get the sweet spot for both I would break out a Kracher Scheurebe, but those are very expensive.
I could see a Syrah going with the dinner dish along with a fuller body Pinot Noir from Oregon or from the Cote de Nuits in Burgundy. Another option, although perhaps not as common as a Syrah or Full-bodied Pinot, would be a red from either the Douro or Dão region in Portugal.
I would think about a Ruby Port which could go well with the Chocolate Figs and complement the lemon custard. Another Port option could be a LBV or something like Sandemans Founders Reserve which is easy to locate.
Perhaps a dry white such as White Bordeaux blend (Sav Blanc and Semillon) and a light to medium body red such as a Sangiovese, Merlot, or even something from the Loire Valley like a Chinon or Samur.
Enjoy the meal!