An Alsace Gewürztraminer is Very Good with Pollo alla Cacciatora

We cooked the Supercook version of Pollo alla Cacciatora (Hunter’s Chicken).  This is a less intensely-flavoured version than Jamie Oliver’s. (See here for wine pairings with that recipe).

Chicken pieces are casseroled with garlic, spring onions, mushrooms, white wine, chicken stock, tomatoes and bay leaf.  The dish is garnished with fresh parsley and we accompanied it with croquette potatoes.2014-12-03 17.29.57

Gewürztraminer is considered by some to be a very good match with Chicken Chasseur, which is the French equivalent to this dish, so we opened a bottle of Gisselbrecht Gewürztraminer 2012, an Alsace white from Costco.

The wine was deep gold in the glass and the flavours were rich, fruity with notes of lychees, nectarines, apricots and a creamy sweetness. A very good match with the chicken.

An Unoaked Australian Chardonnay is Very Good with a Chicken Fricassée

We tried Old-Fashioned Chicken Fricassée from Best Ever Chicken Recipes. A fricassée is a classic dish where poultry is first seared in fat, then braised.  This recipe includes white wine, chicken stock, bouquet garni, mushrooms, lemon juice, onions and is finished with a little cream. We served it with duchess potatoes and asparagus.    .

Creamy chicken dishes scream for a Chardonnay and we opened a bottle of Steve’s Block Unoaked Chardonnay 2011, an Australian white from the Sunday Times Wine Club.

The flavours were of tropical fruits and the wine was creamy, yet clean and fresh with citrus andIMG_0568 apples.  This lovely intensely flavoured wine was a very good match with the meal.

An Excellent Chilean Chardonnay is Brilliant with Champagne Chicken

IMG_0553We have cooked Supercook’s Champagne Chicken before and it is delicious.  Supercook say it is a dish for that extra special occasion and is chicken pieces casseroled with onions, brandy, chicken stock, Champagne, thyme, mace, bay leaf, mushrooms and double cream.  They describe it as rich, yet subtle, light yet filling.  If preferred, a dry white wine can be used instead of champagne and that’s what we used.

They suggest serving it with rice and salade de tomates, but on this occasion we enjoyed it with croquette potatoes and asparagus.

This dish deserves a decent wine pairing and we chose a bottle of the Society’s Exhibition Limari Chardonnay 2010, a Chilean white from the Wine Society.

The wine was fresh, with a smooth creaminess and a slightly tangy finish.  We tasted tropical fruits and possibly gooseberries.  This was an excellent wine and a brilliant match with the food.


A Rich Corbières is Very Good with Coq au Vin

We cooked Supercook’s Coq au Vin (Chicken Cooked in Red Wine), the world-famous traditional French casserole. The chicken is casseroled with bacon, Cognac, red wine, chicken stock, tomato puree, garlic, bouquet garni, mushrooms and onions.  We served this with mashed potatoes and green beans.

Last time we cooked this recipe we used chorizo instead of the bacon prescribed and the chorizo dominated the flavours. We much prefer the original.

This deserves a decent red wine to accompany it and we opened a bottle of Domaine Baillat Rouge – Corbières 2010, a southern French red from the Wine SocietyIMG_0354.JPG (2).  This rich and full wine is a blend of Syrah, Carignan and Grenache and we found it to be spicy, peppery, with red and black fruits, although the latter predominated. It had a smooth finish and was a very good match with the meal.

A Sauvignon Rather Than a Chardonnay with a Simple Chicken Fricassee

We tried Chicken Fricassee from the Slow Cook Book.  This is a simple version with home made chicken stock, white wine, mushrooms and rosemary.  Previous versions have contained cream and we have enjoyed these with a Chardonnay (see 9 April 2011).

We opened a bottle of The Society’s White Burgundy 2010 from The Wine Society.  This was delightful on its own with lemony and slight buttery flavours, but this particular Fricassee did nothing for it.  We set the wine aside for drinking later.

We found a bottle of Pech de Calade Sauvignon Blanc 2010 that we had received as a gift.   This Southern French white is a Laithwaites wine.  Very crisp and quite a contrast to the Burgundy and at first we were not sure whether this would work, but the lemon citrus, kiwi fruit tones and rounded finish complemented the meal well.

A Californian White Blend is Alright with Mexican Chicken

We were due to finish off the Mexican Chicken from the previous evening (see 17th March) and we didn’t have a suitable wine, apart from some decent off-dry Australian Rieslings, that we did not want to risk with this dish.  We found a bottle of Blossom Hill Vineyard Collection in a 2 for £10 offer in Waitrose that looked like it might be OK.  This is a non-vintage white blend from California described on the bottle as “Aromatic and Delicate” and categorised by Waitrose as medium dry.

We tasted tropical fruits with a vanilla sweetness and found the wine very pleasant and easy-drinking.  The same comments made yesterday on the matching challenges with the meal applied to this pairing.  Overall though it was an acceptable match, but not quite as good as the Riesling tried previously.

An Aussie Shiraz/Cabernet Much Preferred to a Beaujolais Cru with Coq au Vin

We enjoyed an old favourite tonight – the Supercook Coq au Vin recipe.  However, Teresa did not have any smoked bacon, so she modified the recipe with some chorizo.  Whilst it was still very tasty, the chorizo tended to dominate somewhat.  Kathryn McWhirter and Charles Metcalfe in the Sainsbury’s Pocket Food and Wine Guide suggest a Beaujolais Cru or an Australian Shiraz/Cabernet go particularly well with Coq au Vin.  We decided to open a bottle of each and compare.

We last drank Terre des Lys Fleurie 2009 from Costco on 23rd November 2011 with Roast Beef.  This time we found its raspberry flavours pleasant with the Chicken, but not very exciting.

The second bottle we tried was ARH Family Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, a Sunday Times Wine Club red from Australia.  We found it smooth with black fruits, with a vanilla sweetness and spicy finish that went well with the chorizo in the stew.  A very good match.