The Perfect Virtual Tasting and Cooking Class At Your Fingertips
When the invitation to virtually join Chef Brian Streeter of Cakebread Cellars for an online cooling class hit my inbox in August I jumped on it!
The wine and food pairing was held over Zoom in the Dancing Bear Ranch kitchen from their Napa Valley wine estate. Our virtual culinary pack included two bottles of wine (shipped to us) as well as the recipes in advance. I decided to make a date with my mom for a little much needed girl time and cleared my schedule!
Keep Calm and Eat Kimchi…
kim·chi – /ˈkimCHē/ noun ~ spicy pickled cabbage, the national dish of Korea.
In the age of Google finding new recipes isn’t difficult so I really appreciated the two recipes Chef Brian had chosen to share and pair with the wine. As a fermented food lover I was stoked about the chance to make Kimchi Pancake with Soy Dipping Sauce and Kimchi Fried Rice with Bacon. The kimchi was subtle in both recipes, however, added a new dimension to these two traditional recipes, with the added benefit of contributing healthy bacteria to support intestinal health!
Don’t Go Bacon My Heart
Life is hard, and without question bacon helps! Bacon is one of those guilty life pleasures. Naturally, cooking the meat in a pool of its’ own grease isn’t the healthiest protein choice. There is also the reputation that pigs are dirty animals, but we know when they have the space to roam and clean themselves, they are actually one of the cleanest farm animals! Needless to say, the addition of bacon to the fried rice recipe elevated a very common meal in my life, taking it to new highs.
Kimchi and Wine – an Unlikely Food & Wine Pairing
If you would have asked me prior to the class what wine I’d pair with kimchi, I’d probably have been strongly opposed to the idea of selecting any wine. But alas, being proved wrong is part of the fun when it comes to cooking! Both recipes were fairly simple and preparing my vegetables in advance allowed for full engagement during the class.
The acidity and the green tropical notes of the Cakebread Sauvignon Blanc really stood up well to the spice and tanginess of the kimchi pancakes, making it a great first course pairing. Sauvignon Blanc is a natural pairing for lighter dishes like salad, vegetables, seafood, or on its’ own as an aperitif. The chef really nailed this pairing and I cannot wait to make them again!
Now let’s talk about the bacon kimchi fried rice, perfectly paired with the Two Creeks Vineyard Anderson Valley Pinot Noir! I always find fried rice to be satisfying and found the addition of kimchi and bacon as an exciting change. There is an earthiness and slightly delicious funk to kimchi, so naturally a cool-climate Pinot Noir with similar characteristics is going to compliment this well.
Unlike with the pancakes where the kimchi became a bit subdued from the batter and soy-based dipping sauce, in this dish the small chunks were pungent and complimented by the savory bacon pieces. The Pinot’s acidity and bright fruit was able to cut through the richness of bacon and overall heavier texture of dish. The combination of flavors in this dish were absolutely perfect!
Are You Ready to Cook with Cakebread?
With the current COVID restriction of indoor cooking classes and wine tastings, Cakebread is offering additional opportunities for you to cook with them.
- Bienvenue: French Favorites on Saturday, October 24, 2020
- Holiday Cooking Series happening Friday, November 6, 2020
through Saturday, December 19, 2020
This really is the ultimate couples cooking class, be it a romantic partner or something to do with mom! But hey, if you don’t have someone to join you find some companionship online with other food and wine lovers.
~ Courtney DeGraff, Anderson Valley Winegrowers