Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wine Review: Ceja Vineyards 2009 Blanc de Noir

This Blanc de Noir sparkling wine is a wonderful salmon hue. The nose has aromas of brioche, apples and berries. The palate has flavors of berries, mostly cherries and a hint of cranberry, orange zest and a bit of cooking spice. This wine is 88% Pinot Noir, and 12% Chardonnay. It has a creamy and full mouth feel, with a bit of structure and acidity. The flavor profile of this wine makes it a great wine to pair with food. I would pair this wine with Purple Haze goat cheese on a thin slice of baguette, orange glazed salmon, Grilled salmon coated with sea salt,black pepper and Herbes de Provence, and chicken breast chunks wrapped in bacon coated in a brown sugar and spice mixture (include a pinch of cayenne pepper), then baked until the bacon is crisp.

 Another pairing would be a salad, made with Herbes de Provence and a pinch of sea salt sprinkled in Panko bread crumbs coated goat cheese rounds; that are put in the freezer to get firm enough to pan fry in extra virgin olive oil until lightly browned. You want the cheese rounds to stay intact, that is why you should allow them to get very firm before frying.  Then put the goat cheese rounds on your favorite salad greens and a light vinaigrette. This would make for a nice pairing.  Check out the Ceja Vineyards video tasting of this wine  Note:  This wine was a sample provided by Ceja Vineyards SRP $40.00 This wine is on sale now for $26.00, so check it out!

Sweet Chicken Bacon Wraps
Serves: 12-15 appetizer servings


1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless, chicken breasts (about 4 breasts)
1 (1 pound) package of sliced bacon
1 cup of firmly packed brown sugar
¼ teaspoon of Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning
1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Cut chicken into 1 inch cubes. Cut each bacon slice into thirds. Dredge chicken into mixture, then wrap each chicken cube with bacon and secure with a wooden tooth pick. Coat a rack and broiler with nonstick kitchen spray. Place chicken on rack in broiler pan. Bake 350 for 30 to 35 minutes or until bacon is crisp. Note: You can also use a baking pan lined with release foil paper if you don't own a rack. With this method you may need to let the chicken wraps drain on paper towels before putting them on your serving platter.
Life is good, so we should celebrate life! What a better way to celebrate life than with a bottle of sparkling wine, and a wonderful gourmet food pairing.

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