free run juice

wine with oysters, wine on oysters

photo 1 (1)A lot of discussion is devoted to the best food and wine pairings. Who knew that some of the best are just when you put wine right on the food?

Recently I went to a dinner where they put some Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand right on oysters. When it comes to oysters, I’m usually partial to a Champagne wine pairing. I put a tiny dab of vinegar on the oyster, eat it, and wash it down with Champers – the bubbles and minerality are perfection with the creamy, briny oyster. But this Nobilo “mignonette” and wine pairing was great.

Sauvignon Blancs from New Zealand are intensely fragrant and packed with flavors of grapefruit and passion fruit. Most people describe the smell as gooseberry, but since most Americans have never smelled, tasted or even heard of a gooseberry, I describe it as a mix of tropical fruit, cantaloupe, and asparagus. NZ also makes some nice Pinot Noirs, and both the Sauv Blancs and Pinots can be great values: the Nobilo entry-level Sauv Blanc runs about $14 and the Icon line which is a little more elegant is about $22.

Anyway, here’s the mignonette recipe:

12 shucked oysters
1/2 cup finely diced shallots
1 tsp cracked black pepper
1 1/4  cup Champagne vinegar
1/2 cup Nobilo 2012 Regional Sauvignon Blanc

They had another whole version you make with gelatin, encasing the oyster in a square of gelatin for a one-stop no-mess shop, but I’ll leave that to the real chefs (in this case, it was Matt Lambert at the Musket Room in Soho). This regular mignonette seems really easy to do and was delicious! Also, I love Nobilo’s motto:

photo 2 (2)


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