The last wine dinner of the year at Randy’s Steakhouse was Charles Krug.
Randy’s Hors D’Oeuvres
The Sauvignon Blanc had a grassy smell, but a big grape taste. Yet it was sharp and acidic. While it finishes sweet, it lingers on the tongue. The cucumber, olives and radishes sweeten the wine and bring out more of the grass flavor. It was “interesting” with the ham – as it brought out the acid.
My dining companion said “granny smith” on the taste and gave it a Sunday rating – depending on who was coming to family dinner (and the price point).
On the other hand, while I really liked it with the potato and sour cream – I didn’t care for this Sauvignon Blanc. So I put it on Monday. So while the hors d’oeurves were very much ladies who lunch style (minus the potato), this would not be good for the Junior League Lunch – even if you want to impress. Though, if you want to make sure that Jenny Sue does not drink too much, it might be a good idea.
While this looks more like a southern corn bisque – it’s really a southwestern style lobster bisque. The soup had a bit too much spice – but the Chardonnay cooled it off.
My notes say this Chardonnay is “aged on the lees.” If you want to know what that means – check out this explanation from Wine Folly.
It’s a typical California Chardonnay. Buttery to start with an apple scent with a light lemon hint. A tinge of spice to it – that both cooled the spice of the soup and really hit the kick at the back of the throat. I liked it and put it at a Wednesday – but it would have to paired with something a bit less Southwestern in flavor. I’d suggest a nice boring lobster bisque and caesar salad. Maybe finish off the ladies luncheon with lemon pound cake and fresh strawberries.
Sausage Stuffed Mushroom
Upon first smell the deep fruit scent is really evident – much like most California Pinot Noirs. However, it is sweet on initial taste but finishes with a spicy (and dry) flavor.
I was tossed up on the flavor – woody berry or ginger beer or astringent walnut? My notes also say it was aged in French oak – but that doesn’t really help me narrow down the taste.
My dining companion said plum and loamy dirt.
We both agreed that the sausage brought out the berry and makes it sweet.
It went well with the prime rib in the next course. How did it rate? See Final Thoughts.
Prime Rib with Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Steamed Asparagus Almondine
This wine was aged 14 months in French Oak.
It’s sweet with dark stone fruit and very sugary. I wouldn’t say it was “bold” – I’d call it confident. Don’t be put off by the nearly black color as its a perfect everyday wine.
It made the prime rib sweeter – but I loved it with the horseradish sauce. While it paired with the potatoes, it didn’t go with the asparagus. It needs something blander like green beans.
We debated the day of the week fort this wine – first Wednesday, then Thursday, finally Sunday (as it would work well with Momma Deb’s Bolognese or Cousin John’s lasagna).
But you may have noticed earlier in the write-up I called it an everyday wine. Did I mention it was amazing with the horseradish? (Think Horsey Sauce on a Beef and Cheddar.)
Crème Brule with Raspberry Sauce & The Salty Irishman Coffee Cocktail
Overall it was a good wine dinner to end the year. What was most surprising was the Pinot Noir. We had time between courses to sit and sip it and enjoy – which meant much discussion on what we would classify it as… and the answer was Sunday Brunch. That’s right – we decided this was the perfect breakfast wine. It goes great with sausage, so it would be amazing with a quiche. Thinking about a true English breakfast (eggs, sausage, roasted tomatoes, mushrooms, toast and beans) and the wine would pair with all of them. Even if it was an Irish breakfast (English but with potatoes instead of beans) and it would pair well.
Which means it is the perfect wine for the Southern tradition of Bloodies-after-Church. Garden & Gun explains it as – A bloodies invite was your fly-by meet-and-greet prior to wherever you were headed for the big sit-down. Ergo: Bloodies-after-church is a stand-up midday cocktail party. There will be edibles, but the presumption is that everybody has someplace else to go. (link) Basically it was “brunch” in the old south before brunch was a thing. Which means I have finally found the perfect red wine to serve at my Bloodies-after-Church for those that don’t want a Bloody Mary.