Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tuesday Tasting: Fernland Sauvignon Blanc + Lobster Mac 'N Cheese Recipe

Sauvignon Blanc
We are back with our Tuesday Tastings at A Bit of Wine. Today we are featuring Fernlands Sauvignon Blanc. For this tasting, we’ve included the recipe for our pairing dish – Lobster Mac 'N Cheese. 

This is a great wine and food pairing for a quiet evening at home or entertaining friends. This Sauv Blanc paired with the bold cheeses in the mac 'n cheese dish is a perfect balance and complement of flavors.

First, the wine – Fernlands Sauvignon Blanc, 2011

Fernlands comes from the Malborough region of New Zealand. This is the region, in my opinion, that you think of when it comes to Sauvignon Blancs…similar to the way you think of Mendoza, Argentina for quality Malbecs. Anyway, this bottle came in a Bordeaux style screw top bottle which seems to have done it justice.

We served this wine slightly chilled to bring out hints of grapefruit, peach, and an assortment of tropical fruits. On first taste, the tropical fruits are light and sweet without being too sweet. It gives you the sense of being on a tropical island. The acidity from the grapefruit is a nice balance on the palette leaving your mouth begging for another sip.

Now, the Menu – Lobster Mac 'N Cheese

This is not just any lobster mac 'n cheese recipe. This dish combines three pungent cheeses with the delicate juiciness of lobster. It’s a fairly easy dish to make, and pays off handsomely with the number of servings from this one recipe. It serves 6-8 people.

  • 5 small lobster tails (poach, remove, chop)
  • 2 boxes of penne pasta (boil to al dente)
  • 1 quart light cream 
  • 1 lb of Parmesan cheese – diced
  • 1 lb of Fontina cheese – diced
  • 1 lb of Provolone cheese – diced
  • White pepper (to taste)

Cheese Sauce: Put half of the cream in a pot over medium heat – don’t burn! Add some of the cheeses and allow them to melt. As the sauce thickens, continue adding cheese and cream. Use the entire amount of cream, but save a few chunks of the cheeses for later.

Place the drained pasta into a greased baking dish. Mix in lobster. Add the cheese sauce. Put the unmelted chunks of cheese on top. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until the top cheese is melted.

*For an added crunch – top with bread crumbs before baking.

Why the Pairing Works

So, the 4-1-1 on why this paired so well comes down to the cheeses. Because of the salty, nutty and creamy taste profile of these cheeses and the rich sweetness of the lobster, this allowed the tropical and intense grapefruit flavors of the wine to create an harmonious blend of flavors. The acidity and crispness on the palate allowed the wine to clear the heavy creaminess of the mac ‘n cheese off the palette. A dryer crisper wine like the Fernlands Sauvignon Blanc perfectly cuts the creaminess of the dish leaving your palette ready to experience more.

Tell us your favorite food and wine pairing experience.



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