Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

serving Sauternes


Jesse
 Share

Recommended Posts

Do you serve Sauternes chilled? Any other tips for serving and enjoying Sauternes besides with Roquefort and fois gras?

Usually at around 45°F (7°C), slightly warmer than average fridge temperature.

When thinking about food pairings, bear in mind that, depending on the producer and vintage, Sauternes can range from hot and syrupy to tangy and not very sweet.

Some people enjoy Sauternes as an aperitif. I don't, as I find it cuts rather than stimulates the appetite.

The dryer wines make an acceptable pairing with melon and prosciutto and can accompany simple white fish and shellfish dishes. Jerimiah Tower famously pairs old Yquem with aged prime rib roasts of beef cooked rare. And, of course, you can serve Sauternes alongside any dish cooked in the wine; two I've enjoyed are a duck stew in Sauterenes and a dish of sweetbreads sliced, dredged, browned and braised in Sauternes and cream with green and black olives and grapes.

For desserts, you're best off with something simple and not too sweet. Apple desserts often fill the bill: tarte Tatin, baked apples stuffed with nuts and golden raisins, "exploded" vanilla apples. Or try a white peach/nectarine cobbler or pie. Vanilla-scented crème brûlée is classic. Top wines in top vintages are usually best enjoyed on their own or maybe with a simple buttery cookie like a langue de chat.

Edited by carswell (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The classic pairing with Sauternes is with fois gras d'oie en gelée. Whipping out a Sauternes any time foie gras shows up is a big mistake, IMO. I much prefer any Grand Cru Alsatian wine with foie. Sauternes pairs well with white fruits - pears and apples. It is a disaster with chocolate - be forewarned! I also like it with Roquefort. As far as Jeremiah Tower's disgusting combination - it just shows: what do chefs know about wine? :raz:

Mark

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To be abit on the wild side I would pick Roastbeef.

As row as possible and if you look for a perfect match - prepare a vinaigrette with Fishoulin olive oil and Vinaigre de Champagne add in some ripe grapes [ apx 10 % ], grape confiture and Amardine [ layers of processed dried apricot].

Andre Suidan

I was taught to finish what I order.

Life taught me to order what I enjoy.

The art of living taught me to take my time and enjoy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

At least once a summer I splurge on a decent sautern and serve it as dessert with fresh farmer's market peaches and the best farmhouse cheddar I can find. Whether this combinations is kosher as far as the more experience wine/food matchmakers on this site, I don't know, but to me it says summer. And the first peaches are just coming in, here in DC...

Chilled, yes, but closer to cellar temperature than fridge temperature.

A question of my own along these same lines: more than once I have regretfully stuck a corked, unfinished bottle of young sautern into the fridge, assuming that it will be shot by the time I get around to finishing it off in a day or so, only to find that it tastes as good or even better the second day. Anyone else notice this or have a plausible explanation?

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think Sauterenes should be served very well chilled. You could try it with any dish that calls for a sweet sauce. Duck with Oranges or Peaches, Chicken glazed with honey, Calves Liver with pan deglazed with sweet wine or Creme de Cassis or orange and Dubonnet etc. as well as the usual desserts and cheeses.

It is a brilliant aperitif but it does kill the palate for any dry white to come afterwards

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jeremiah Tower's beef dish also features "massaging" the roast with Vodka, a step many chefs feel is rather useless.

One critic described this dish, which he used to serve at Stars in San Francisco, as "simply showing off but not really accomplishing much."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I once had sauterne with a chicken that I'd browned and then braised with a couple of cups of sauterne, stock, onion, thyme etc. Kind of an uptown coq au vin. I didn't like it enough to justify the expense> My wife loved it but she may only be looking for an excuse to drink sauterne with the main course.

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jeremiah Tower's beef dish also features "massaging" the roast with Vodka, a step many chefs feel is rather useless.

One critic described this dish, which he used to serve at Stars in San Francisco, as "simply showing off but not really accomplishing much."

I mentioned the pairing to encourage Jesse to think outside the box. As for its intrinsic worth, I'll reserve judgement until I can speak from personal experience. My mind's palate tells me the match would work. Also, the following testimonial carries considerable weight for me:

"Jerimiah Tower's brilliant pairing of the entrecôte of beef with the Château d'Yquem resulted in a combination that married in an indescribably wonderful manner."

- Alice Waters, Chez Panisse Menu Cookbook

By the way, Jesse, the menu for that all-Sauternes dinner was:

- Sauternes-braised Virginia ham with prunes stuffed with green olives

- Quenelles of salmon with crayfish butter

- Entrecôte of beef with potatoes cooked in duck fat and butter with mushrooms

- Green applies filled with berries and served with crème fraîche

- Deep-dish fruit pie

- Almond cream

- Caramelized walnuts and coffee

Busboy, the chicken stew you describe sounds very similar to the duck stew we made. We served it with sautéed local Golden Delicious apples.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Busboy, the chicken stew you describe sounds very similar to the duck stew we made. We served it with sautéed local Golden Delicious apples.

Now that you mention it, ours had apples, too. Came from a delightful book (as much for the vignettes as the recipes) called "When French Women Cook" by Madeleine Kammen, which I mention because it deserves a plug.

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Didn't Richard Olney do an entire book on sauternes? Perhaps you'd find other ideas in that....

Oh, I forgot to add: I go by a rule of thumb about pairing food with sauternes (as if I have it often!) to never serve it with anything sweeter than the sauternes. Lindsey Shire has a very nice recipe for olive oil and sauternes cake in a couple of the Chez Panisse books. This was my birthday cake for a few years running...with peaches.

Edited by Aquitaine (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Serve ROOM TEMPERATURE, or only slightly chilled. Any more and you will lose the top fragrance notes.

Best with blue cheese - aged stilton, for example, as a desert. OK I'll allow peaches or a perfect apple, but the fruit, unless tart, will dim the wine a bit. Celery would be better. Oatmeal biscuits or dark rye crackers.

Edited by jackal10 (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Taking this discussion in a slightly different direction, I suggest that Quebec ice cider can be used like a sauterne. It goes very well with foie gras.

Like sauternes, there are many varieties. Of the three I have sampled so far, I prefer the Pinnacle 2001 to the Bilodeau (Isle d'Orleans) and the Pedneault (isle aux Coudres). The Pinnacle is a very full sweet and almost syrupy ice cider, with an intense apple flavor. I think it probably should be served colder than a sauterne would.

I found the other two ice ciders, too dry and astringent.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Serve ROOM TEMPERATURE, or only slightly chilled. Any more and you will lose the top fragrance notes.

I really can't go with that. In my experience Sauternes is always served really cold, never at room temperature. Itshould be served colder than most dry whites and champagnes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Serve ROOM TEMPERATURE, or only slightly chilled. Any more and you will lose the top fragrance notes.

I really can't go with that. In my experience Sauternes is always served really cold, never at room temperature. Itshould be served colder than most dry whites and champagnes.

I agree - Most of the time, I go 45-50 depending on how old the Sauternes/Dessert wine may be.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For the money you have to spend on a good Sauternes/Barsac, you can drink it as cold as you want. But I have to agree, the older or more subtle the wine, the warmer it should be drunk. At my restaurant, we serve 1975 Yquem at cellar temperature, chilled if requested. It simply shows better that way. Cheap-ass Sauternes *need* to be chilled heavily because they don't taste very good otherwise.

As for the food pairings I've read here, green olives??? with Ham? Ok, I guess I'll have to try that before I diss it completely. My rule of thumb is that, with dessert, the wine has to be markedly sweeter than the dessert or it doesn't work well. With savory foods, Sauternes' characteristic acidity (in high-quality wines that is) helps tremendously with rich foods like foie gras or, god forbid, calf's liver.

Never heard of Canadian ice cider, but I guess it makes some sense, given that their greatest wines, arguably, are their ice wines from Riesling from the Niagara region. So why not apples, too? Unless that was a typo.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...