For a warming winter meal we tried Beef with Barley and Mushrooms from the Slow Cook Book. This is braising steak slow cooked with bouquet garni, beef stock, carrots, celery, mushrooms and pearl barley. We served this with mashed potatoes and crusty bread.
Earthy flavours and we thought the earthiness of a Pinot Noir would fit the bill, so we tried a bottle of Brancott Estate Marlborough Pinot Noir 2011, a medium-bodied New Zealand red from Costco. Nothing wrong with this wine, but it clashed horribly and was quickly set aside.
Next up was a bottle of Chateau Rouquette sur Mer, La Clape 2011, a medium-bodied Lanquedoc red blend from the Wine Society.
This was smooth, rich with red fruits and slightly peppery. This was also a good wine but it proved no more than an adequate match with the meal.
All in all a disappointing food and wine pairing experience and frankly we found the flavours of the dish somewhat muted. We will not be doing this one again.