Discovering Culinary Treasures in our Artisan Marketplace- Mt. Tam Cheese

Cheese case- Jack and Keith- smallOne of the joys of coming to V. Sattui is discovering our incredible cheese case in our Artisan Marketplace.  It’s fun to hang out in the marketplace and watch people walk in the door, and just be drawn in, like a magnet, to the dizzying display of aromatic, creamy goodness.

One of the “must haves” in our treasure chest of cheeses from around the world is made right down the road in Petaluma.  Cowgirl Creamery was started by Sue Conley and Peggy Smith in the early 1990’s in the small coastal town of Pt. Reyes normalized_peggysmith_sueconleyStation.

One of their flagship cheeses is the Mt. Tam– an elegant, triple cream, washed rind (or surface ripened) cheese made from organic cow’s milk from neighboring Straus Family Dairy. Named after Mt. Tamalpais, a Northern California landmark, this smooth and creamy cheese has a mellow, earthy flavor- sort of like white mushrooms.

CU- Mt Tam with walnutsWe like pairing this cheese with our Los Carneros Chardonnay which has some buttery notes to compliment the cheese, but also some ripe pear, fig and honeydew flavors and enough acidity that balance with the heaviness of the cheese.  We also like serving this cheese as a dessert, with a nice glass of our Late Harvest Riesling. Pairing it with some spiced roasted walnuts will really set off the creaminess of the cheese.

Next time you’re at the winery, be sure to check out our cheese case!  Our Cheesemonger, Keith Idle, or one of our other cheese experts, Jack,  are happy to answer questions, and give you tastes!

 

Tom’s Best Buy List

‘Tis the season for spending quality time with good friends, family, eating favorite foods, and savoring delicious wine.  We decided to ask Tom Davies, President of V. Sattui Winery, who has been working here for 35 years for guidance on gifting, tasting, or cellaring, V. Sattui wines.  Here are Tom’s recommendations:

tom-in-tux-croppedAs you create your holiday gift lists, don’t forget that wine, and the story that every bottle holds, is a great gift.  At V. Sattui, we make gift-giving easy by shipping to every state (except Utah). We can also personalize your gift with custom gift tags with your own message hanging on the bottle. We encourage you to be sure to include YOU on the gift list too!

Here are some of my V. Sattui recommendations for gifting, tasting, and cellaring:

 

GIFTING:
Madeira– Many of you know the cult following this wine has! Solera-made, wood-aged, and fortified V. Sattui Madeirawith brandy, this dessert wine is sweet and luscious with flavors of almonds, caramel, toffee and orange zest. It is great with holiday desserts, and some of us like to take it outside and enjoy a fine cigar with it!

2012 Preston Cabernet Sauvignon– Just about everyone covets and appreciates a fine Napa Valley Cabernet. The Preston Vineyard is one of our flagship vineyard sources in the Rutherford appellation. It is a powerful, complex cabernet that is silky on the palate, with sweet black fruit flavors that are balanced with full-bodied texture and a long finish.

2011 Prestige Cuvée—Everyone loves a celebration with bubbles! This Prestige Cuvée is our best sparkling wine to date. The late-disgorged sparkling has a classic toasty brut blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

TASTING:
2014 Los Carneros Chardonnay– out of the thousands of wines submitted for the San Francisco Chronicle’s Wine Competition, this wine was awarded the White Wine Sweepstakes winner. This is a crisp, elegant Chardonnay with ripe pear, fig, and honeydew notes that slip right into a finish of white peach.

2013-Entanglement2013 Entanglement -This rich, complex blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre shows pomegranate fruit flavors combined with earthiness and dried herbs. It is a great wine for pairing with a variety of foods, so it is perfect to serve at all of your holiday gatherings.

2014 Carneros Pinot Noir- The sweet smell of a holiday potpourri tickles your nose when you open this estate-grown cool climate Pinot. With anise, clove, and cinnamon on the nose, this wine’s mild body with flavors of peppercorn, and wild, brambly cherry play beautifully with a symphony of holiday favorites like honey-baked ham, scalloped potatoes, and roasted root vegetables.

CELLARING:
2012 Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon– 2012 has been hailed as the “Vintage of the Decade” for Napa Valley Cabernet. It was a year of near-perfect weather conditions for grape growing, and our Mt. Veeder Cabernet reflects this in a rich, powerful Cabernet with broad shoulders and impressive dimension. Selected as “Wine of the Year” and the “Best Cabernet Sauvignon” at the 2015 Monterey International Wine competition, you can’t go wrong with purchasing at least a case of this wine and savoring it for years to come.

2012 Paradiso that great 2012 vintage also gave us an abundant crop of high quality fruit for our proprietary Bordeaux-style blend. This wine is 2012 Paradisomade of 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, and smaller amounts of Petite Verdot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec. Lay this wine for five to eight years, and you will enjoy its elegant texture and polished tannins.

2013 Howell Mountain Zinfandel Grapes for this wine come from Napa County’s highest vineyard which is also biodynamically farmed and certified organic. What’s best about this wine is the impeccable balance it shows off. This is a Zinfandel made in a style that is both restrained and loaded with flavor. It is delicious today, however those with patience will be rewarded. With proper storage it will improve over the next 5-8 years and drink well for at least 4-6 after that.

 

The Best Three V. Sattui Wines to Enjoy with Fresh Crab

Despite a little fog and drizzle, you’ll notice that folks in Northern California have a little extra spring in their step today. The reason? Crab season officially opens today! In the Bay Area and Napa Valley serving up fresh Dungeness crab at the Thanksgiving table, or as a meal in the days before or after Thanksgiving, is a beloved tradition. We invite you to join us in this tradition of enjoying crab and wine, wherever you are!

At V. Sattui we have three wines we love to pair with crab.

2014-napa-valley-chardonnay

V. Sattui Napa Valley Chardonnay
A smooth, balanced Chardonnay that has enough acidity to pair with many foods. If you plan to serve your crab with melted butter, this wine a great match!

V. Sattui Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc2015-napa-valley-sauvignon-blanc
Balanced acidity with subtle grassy, fig, and citrus flavors make this a great pairing with crab when you use a lot of herbs or fruity dipping sauces.

2015-carsi-vineyard-semillonCarsi Vineyard Semillon
Fermented entirely in stainless steel, this wine has a silky texture with upfront minerality and a nutty, figgy character that pairs well with all kinds of seafood dishes. We love it with fresh crab, especially when it’s served as a salad, or seasoned with Asian or Hispanic spices.

If you’ve ever been to our Artisan Deli & Marketplace, then chances are you couldn’t resist our delicious house-made crab cakes. To help you share the Thanksgiving tradition of including crab in your holiday meal, we are offering our recipe for these tasty bites. Serve them as an appetizer, a side dish, or have them for Thanksgiving breakfast, topped with a poached egg.

 

 

crab-cakes-in-deli-case
The Crab Cakes offered in V. Sattui Winery’s Artisan Deli & Marketplace are made fresh daily. Be sure to try them on your next visit!

V. Sattui’s Crab Cakes
Makes 7-8 servings

1 pound fresh crab meat, cracked and cleaned
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 small yellow pepper, diced
½ bunch green onions, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon Mustard
1 cup Panko (Japanese-style bread crumbs)
2 cups regular bread crumbs

Drain crab meat well. Sauté the bell peppers and green onions in butter
until barely tender, about 10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Let cool.

In a bowl add all ingredients except for the regular bread crumbs. Mix well.

Form crab cakes by placing some of the mixture into a ½ cup measuring cup and then forming a solid patty with your hands. Dredge the cakes in the bread crumbs, and deep fry them in oil at 325 degrees. Serve hot with lemon wedges and your favorite V. Sattui wine!