I hadn’t actually intended for this to be a “true pairing,” at least, not on the scale of the pairings I usually post. This one is short and sweet.
I’m a firm believer that food and wine pairings don’t need to be these hugely well thought-out, extravagant and time-consuming affairs. If I’m going to be completely honest, the time it takes to cook the meal for my regular pairings, photograph it (usually taking around 50 photos), upload the photos, Photoshop the best few ones, optimize them for the web, write the article and post it, all-in-all we’re probably looking around 4 hours for each article. I’m starting to think this is maybe a little “overkill.”
Sometimes, all you need to do it take a look at the food you have in your kitchen, and the wine you have in your “cellar,” (or in my case “closet”) and pair appropriately from there. That is exactly what we have right here.
The Washington Hills Riesling is a 85% Riesling, 8% Chardonnay, 6% Gewurztraminer, and 1% Semillon blend. In case you were wondering: the wine can be listed as a pure Riesling since it adheres to Washington State’s wine laws by containing 85% of the grape.
If you’ve always believed Rieslings to be sweet, it may be worth you while spending some time getting to know the wines of Washington State a little better. I’ve never once found them to be the “sugar-water-in-a-bottle” wines that people have become used to, which dominate grocery store shelves, and are mainly German in origin (although bearing little-resemblance to what Germany is really capable of).
What I like about the Washington Hills Riesling is that it’s a grocery store price, but with complexity and elegance. Even the Mrs., who normally isn’t a Riesling drinker, was actually a big fan of the Washington Hills….and if it can get past her…well…that’s as good a guarantee of quality as any! :)
The small amount of spice in the salsa was brought alive by the Riesling and Gewurz combination, but not too alive (if you catch my drift), since the alcohol in the wine is only 11.5%. For that reason, feel free to experiment and bump-up the heat in this dish, by maybe throwing in some jalapenos. The wine can handle it!
Any noticeable amount of sweetness in this wine can be attributed to the tropical fruit, with melon, pineapple and banana taking the lead. Pear, lychee, apricot, green grape skin (it really covers most bases, as far as the fruit goes) and moderate minerality. No oak (as is common with most wines in this style), so as to preserve the vibrancy of the fruit. Crisp and refreshing is the name of the game! I’ll probably come back to this wine for a full review.
“Recipe” for Grilled Chicken and Stuffed Avocados
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
– Chicken breasts
– 2 teaspoons Italian herb mix
– 3 x Avocados
– 4 tablespoons of olive oil
– Kosher salt and black pepper
– Low fat sour cream
– Lime juice
– Fresh parsley (for garnish)
1. Throw chicken breasts in a bowl with two tablespoons of the olive oil, the Italian herb mix, kosher salt, black pepper, mix and coat the chicken. Grill until ready on each side, about 10-12 minutes.
2. Cut avocados in half, carefully scoop out the center pip with a spoon, brush the open-side with olive oil and lime juice, and place flat-side down on the grill. Grill until soft and they start to brown.
3. Remove avocados from the grill and place a small amount of the sour cream and salsa in each avocado and sprinkle with fresh parsley.
4. Serve chicken topped with remaining salsa.