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Old 10-10-2004, 11:36 AM   #1
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What wine would you use if you owned your own resturant

If you were making a mussel dish that included leeks, garlic, thyme, white wine, and butter, what white wine would you use? Personally, I've never drank white wine before so I don't have a clue. I figure if I were to go to a resturant and order this the chef wouldn't come out and ask me what white wine I liked to drink but instead use what he wanted. So if you owned your own resturant what type of white wine would you use if you were making this dish?
Also, what else would you serve with this besides some crusty bread to dip in the broth?


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Old 10-10-2004, 12:24 PM   #2
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St. Francis Chardonnay, Sonoma 2001
Price: $11
Rating 90
It offers melon and vanilla on the aroma plus a gentle oakiness, which are confirmed on the extremely smooth palate. It is quite a buttery wine, with some citrus characteristics and has a fruity finish. A crowd pleaser and an award winner.

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Old 10-10-2004, 10:47 PM   #3
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yes, bang, i'd have to concurrrr. flacid yet not overwhelming....

only kidding. wow bang, who knew you had such a delicate palette?
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Old 10-11-2004, 12:47 AM   #4
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Actually, I would have to disagree with that suggestion. This calls for a wine with some acid and no residual sugar like the St. Francis. Try a good crisp sauvignon blanc from New Zealand or Washington St. or a pinot gris from Oregon. From France look for Muscadet or Sancerre (another sauvignon blanc) and from Italy (which, are of course my favorites) some specific suggestions:

Pieropan Soave
Bollini Pinot Grigio Reserve
Bruno Giacosa Arneis
Zeni Pinot Bianco
Villa Russiz Sauvignon (blanc)
Barolo and Barbaresco Tours
The VinoCibo Report/Raccolta
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Old 10-11-2004, 03:37 AM   #5
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I also totally disagree about the Chardonnay.
I'd much rather use a Chablis - an Argentinian one (Famiglia Bianchi comes to mind), shouldn't break the bank and yet provide the right slightly acidic note.
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Old 10-11-2004, 08:12 AM   #6
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If you're asking what the restaurants use in dishes - you may want to recall your question! Most restaurants buy generic wine in gallon jugs to use in the kitchen. Only the very, very high end restaurants, in my experience, use a 'labelled' wine for cooking. The cost would just be too prohibitive.
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Old 10-11-2004, 01:17 PM   #7
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Keep inexpensive bottles of dry white and red wine in your kitchen for cooking purposes. It doesn't matter about the quality, because the alcohol content cooks out, leaving the flavor of the wine in the recipe. For a white wine, a Chablis or Chardonnay is great. For a red wine, a Burgundy works great for red sauces and a Cabernet for lamb and stews.

If you prefer to not use wine or alcohol in cooking, substitute a broth or another liquid ingredient from the recipe. In most cases, the recipe will taste just as good without the wine, so don't skip a recipe that includes wine if you normally don't use it.
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Old 10-11-2004, 01:56 PM   #8
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I go along with marmalady - unless you're in a really high end restaurant where your spending $100 for a meal - you're going to get generic wine in the food prep.

Depending on what you're cooking - you need a dry and a sweet white and red. I just have generic white and red - works for 99% of the dishes I make. If I need a sweeter wine ... I'll get a bottle - but I don't go crazy over vintage or brand - I look for a "type" of wine on the 50% off shelf.

Now, I don't know where Bangbang was going ... since wine is 12% alcohol by law - and how much burns off depends on how the dish is prepared, and how long it cooks, and the alcohol really isn't a flavoring component - the quality of the wine DOES make a difference. But, I bet if you use $50/bottle Burgundy vs $6 I doubt you would taste that much difference in the final product. You're obviously not going to taste all the subtle little nuances of the wine when used in cooking as when you drink it.

Wine is used for one of 3 reasons - as a tenderizing agent, as a flavor component, or as a solvent to release the flavors from other components in the dish that are alcohol soluable. I know some people really freak out about using wine in a dish but never give a 2nd thought to using vanilla extract ... which is basically vanilla beans soaked in 80-proof bourbon.
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Old 10-11-2004, 02:00 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Michael in FtW
basically vanilla beans soaked in 80-proof bourbon.
As Johnny Carson used to say, I did not know that.
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Old 10-11-2004, 02:02 PM   #10
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Man, Michael in FtW really hit the nail on the head. You took almost all the words right out of my mouth!

For me, I enjoy wine, but I do not have the advanced wine palate that others do. I cannot tell the difference between an expensive bottle and an inexpensive bottle. I can tell you if I enjoy this glass of wine over another, but I have never been able to taste any of the individual characteristics such as chocolaty overtones or hints of pear etc. so for cooking I keep a box of wine handy. They are pretty inexpensive and because they are vacuum packed, you can store then in your pantry even after you open them. They will stay good forever. These are great if you only need a little for cooking. Use what you need and leave the box in the pantry. Next time you need another 1/4 of a cup or whatever it is right there waiting for you :)

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