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Sep 29, 2012 01:55 PM

Help me with a pairing for this beef filet

I'm making pan-seared filet mignon with a mushroom madiera sauce that has a splash of cream in it. What wine should I be serving with it? Thanks!

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  1. OMG Cindy...........I'm gonna be bold here! I am NOT a wine expert by any means, but "I like what I like" I have friends with cellars and cases upon cases. I have friends in Calif who make wine Caves and have had their own wine sell at charity auctions and has been served in the White house.


    I have found what I think is a really decent Merlot to go with Beef that has a slightly sweetish sauce that your Maderia might be. The State Liquors stores sell a Tableleaf Merlot for..............get ready for this!............$6.99 a bottle! It is buttery and smooth with a slightly sweet overtone to it

    Go buy a bottle and try it. My friends used to send me bottles of Pride Merlot that is $75+ a bottle and this is pretty damn good in comparison.

    Yes, I also like the complexities of the Cabernets and Pinot Noir (my 2nd choice for a filet), but I'm finding this Tableleaf to be a real delight.

    3 Replies
    1. re: FriedClamFanatic

      Oh nooooooo!!! You were about an hour+ too late with your reply, FCF. So I went down to my wine cave, AKA my basement closet, and I found a bottle of Chateau Roque Le Mayne 2009 -- a Bordeaux that I don't think I'd had before and I can't even recall when I purchased it. Let's see... the (now empty) bottle says "Castillon Cotes-de-Bordeaux" and a bunch of other stuff. But let me say, this stuff was gooooood! I'm the first to admit I don't have a sophisticated palate where wine is concerned, but I know when I like a wine, and this one was definitely one I'd buy (from Moore Bros.) again.

      That said, I'm intrigued enough by your recommendation for Tableleaf Merlot to go hunt down a botte or two at the State Store. I often get together with my women friends for dinner, and I'd like to try it out with them. Thanks for the tip!

      1. re: CindyJ

        Knowing several of the folks from Moore......they hardly ever steer you wrong..

        1. re: FriedClamFanatic

          They're great over there and I'm often a sucker for their email promotions. It's funny -- whenever I walk in I feel like Norm on "Cheers," -- "where everybody knows your name." Maybe that's a little telling about my fondness for wine, eh?

    2. the filet.........a Few years back I "guest-cooked" for a friend who was turning 55 as her Birthday present. A Meal for 30 ppl. I got a cple of filets and had them butter-flied. Layered a cooked lobster tail surrounded by lightly blanched asparagus in the center and tied it back up before cooking. Served with a Cumberland type sauce. on the side....... Sliced and served buffet style

      As I finally got to sit at the dinner table, I overheard several folks talking about the "fat" layer in the middle of the filet that seemed to add to the flavor. Told them what it was and all I will say is.there were NO leftovers!......rofl

      1 Reply
      1. re: FriedClamFanatic

        Well, the filets we had for dinner tonight were cut from a (choice) tenderloin I bought at Costco. They were "like buttah." I didn't love the Madiera/mushroom sauce, although my husband did. Next time I've got filet on the dinner menu, I'll have to invite you over. You can bring the wine! :-)

        Your filet recipe, BTW, sounds absolutely YUMMY!

      2. This is a traditional and easy pairing. Any red wine will do fine as long as it is a little "bright" or "acidic." I wouldn't go for a soft flabby zinfandel or soft flabby merlot (but if they are zippy they can go great).

        But literally almost every European red wine I can think of will work (save something really thick and syrupy like Amarone). Most California red wines (except again soft zinfandels and merlots) , Malbecs from Argentina. Avoid Australian Shirazs - they tend to get too dark and syrupy.

        8 Replies
        1. re: goldangl95

          Well, as I mentioned to FCF above, the Chateau Roque Le Mayne from Bordeaux that I dug out of my "wine cellar" worked extremely well. But thanks just the same.

            1. re: Chinon00

              Hmmmm... I have a well-aged bottle of Barolo on hand -- it never occurred to me that this might be the time to uncork it.

              1. re: CindyJ

                Might have been bigger than your "buttah" and sauce.Nothing wrong with still having a wonderful bottle to pair

                ?would you have liked your Madeira sauce with a larger hit of pepper ?Historically the Madeira used for sauce was drier than most that are pulled off the shelf today.

                1. re: lcool

                  I'm not sure what you mean by "...a larger hit of pepper." I admit I know little about Madeira. I have a bottle of Sandeman Fine Rich Madeira that's been in my pantry for quite awhile now, and I only use it for cooking when a recipe calls for it.

                  1. re: CindyJ

                    you didn't "love" your mushroom,Madeira sauce
                    Sandeman Fine Rich excellent choice,is rich,lot of mouth feel,add cream,richer yet.
                    Half of us here prefer enriched Port and Madeira sauces with an extra grind or three of white pepper.At a table of ten it will be 5 yeah and 5 nay.

                    1. re: lcool

                      Interesting. I didn't think about adding pepper because I was heavy-handed with the pepper grinder when I seasoned the meat. But maybe the problem with the sauce was that it was underseasoned. I used a nice combination of wild and reconstituted dried mushrooms, and I added some of the mushroom liquid to the sauce. But when it comes to finishing, I do tend to go lightly with the S&P.

                      1. re: CindyJ

                        I also tend to go light with salt in all wine reductions,sauces but not always so with pepper. black,white or green pepper corns.

          1. I would have said Cabernet Sauvignon, the one grape personaly I avoid (I prefer feminine wines).

            In the future consider America's forgotten wine - red Zinfandel. It's wonderful with beef and lamb.

            Before Richard Reid I used to bring back six half bottles in my carry-on luggage.