If you’ve been following these food and wine pairings, you’ll know that I ideally like to keep the recipes as quick and simple as possible. This pairing epitomizes that concept.
The wine for this pairing is the Masseria Pietrosa Salice Salentino; yet another European wine which doesn’t do itself any favors with its name or label, so I’ll help explain:
Salice Salentino is actually the town in the Southern Apulia region of Italy (the “heel of the boot”).
A ‘Masseria’ is a farm in the Apulia region, and ‘Pietrosa’ refers to the stony soil found in the area.
The wine is a blend of Negroamaro and Malvasia Nera, grapes that are so obscure that you are more than forgiven if you’ve never heard of them! These are the main grapes found in the Salice Salentino district.
Negroamaro is native to Southern Italy, and is thought to take it’s name from “amaro” being the Italian word for bitter, and “negro” being the Latin word for black.
Malvasia Nera is part of the Malvasia family of grapes, and was thought to originate in Greece. The grape is now found exclusively in the Mediterranean. The name Malvasia is believed to come from a fortress named Monemvasia in Venice.
I’d already tasted the wine, so I had a fair understanding of what I was dealing with. This particular bottle is a few vintages behind (2007), but had held up quite well.
The fruit tends to lead toward dried raisins, dried plums, and bitter cherry. Funky and certainly “Old World” in style, the non-fruit component of this wine shows bitter chocolate, earth and dried herbs. The extra age gave it almost an Amarone-like quality….at less than half the price ($16.99 retail).
It’s hard to make “steak in a bag” look appetizing, and I don’t think I’ve made any major strides towards improving that image here. I’m including the image anyway.
I’ve been getting asked, “…do you really sit that far away from your wife when sat down to dinner?”
The simple answer is yes. We own an 8ft long dining room table, and we find nothing more hilarious than to sit at either end of it, and eat dinner together. I guess we’re easily amused. The only problem comes when it’s time to pass the wine, which since we’re both too lazy to get up, it just ends up being slid across the table. Needless to say there’s been a few accidents! We are kind of stuck in our ways though, and I don’t forecast any change in our actions in the near future!
All-in-all, this pairing wasn’t too much of a stretch, since the ingredients in the dish essentially mirrored the flavor of the wine. I can therefore quite easily rate this as a:
Recipe for Grilled Flank Steak in a Garlic, Balsamic and Red Wine Marinade.
This was kind of my own creation, so feel free to modify as much as you want!
Flank steak (you choose the number of pieces and weight, based on how many people you want to serve).
4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup red wine (use the wine you plan on drinking it with. Ideally full-bodied. I used the Salentino.)
3 large garlic cloves
2 teaspoons thyme leaves
Fresh Cracked Pepper
Truffle Salt (regular salt is fine)
1. In a blender, combine the vinegar, balsamic, garlic and thyme, and puree until smooth.
2. Pour the blended mix into a Zip-loc bag (or other sealable bag, since Zip-loc didn’t pay me to write this article), add the steak, and seal the bag. Place in the refrigerator. I left mine for about three hours which was perfect.
4. Grill over moderately high heat for about 10-15 minutes, depending on the size of the steak and how well-done you like it. Personally, I don’t think flank steak should ever be cooked much past medium-rare, as it ends up being too chewy.
5. Slice steak on a strong bias, and serve with grilled vegetables.