Category Archives: Wines
The 2007 Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon is finally here! We released the wine on March 1st and sent it to many club members this past week. And although the 2007 Estate Cabernet will only get better with time, I know at least a few of you out there couldn’t wait to crack a bottle open. If you did, please let us know what you think.
How is the 2007 Estate Cabernet?
With the recent release of our two new Estate wines, we caught up with Winemaker Cameron Parry to get his take on each of the wines. Take a look at the videos below for a little insider information on our 2007 Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon and our 2008 Montelena Estate Zinfandel.
Have you tasted these wines yet? Share your thoughts with us. If not, which wine do you hope to get your hands on first?
A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to cook up a big pot of Louisiana Gumbo for a wine-industry get together we hosted a Montelena. And, since then, I’ve had quite a few people ask for the recipe. When people ask for the recipe, however, my gut instinct tells me that I shouldn’t give it out…Louisiana cooking, especially Gumbo, doesn’t have a recipe. You just use what you have around and it comes out different every time. But, for those who didn’t grow up eating gumbo and tailgating at LSU football games, cooking gumbo may not be natural. So, I’ll give the recipe thing a try. But, keep in mind, this is a ruff recipe and improvisation is welcome.
Gumbo pairs very well with Zinfandel–especially our 2007 and 2008 Estate Zinfandel!
Chicken breast and thighs (preferably with bone in)
Good smoked sausage or Cajun andouille
Seasonings (onion, bell pepper, jalapenos, garlic, celery, or whatever you have)
Chicken stock and/or water (bone-in chicken will make its own stock)
Okra (frozen okra works fine)
Filé (if you can find it; if not, that’s ok—Google Gumbo Filé)
Red pepper, black pepper and salt to taste
How to: In a large pan, brown your chicken and sausage in a little oil or butter (brown a few pieces at a time). Season chicken with salt and pepper as you go. After removing chicken and sausage, fry vegetable seasonings until tender. Combine chicken, sausage and seasonings in large pot and cover with chicken stock and/or water and cook over medium heat. Add bay leaves.
In a separate pot, combine equal parts flour and butter. Make the roux by stirring butter and flour mixture over medium heat (stir constantly!) until the roux is the color of a dirty penny.
Add roux to the pot (until color is dark brown) and cook the gumbo until chicken is tender (about 2 hours). Season with salt and pepper to taste and add okra about half way through. (If using bone-in chicken, remove whole piece after they are tender, let cool and remove bones).
Right before serving, add filé (do not boil filé).
Serve over rice with sweet potato or potato salad and garlic bread on the side (Louisianans love to triple starch).
Enjoy with a glass of Montelena Zinfandel!
Me serving gumbo at the industry night.
This is Bill Hanna. He grows some of the chardonnay grapes that go into our wonderful Chard. In fact, no less than 33% of every vintage of our Napa Chardonnay is made up of Bill’s fruit. The Hannas have been part of the Montelena family since 1972. Keep up the good work Bill!
Thomas Jefferson is perhaps best known as our third President, one of our Founding Fathers and author of the Declaration of Independence, but he was also an avid wine collector, wine connoisseur and is widely-recognized as the father of the Virgina wine country (did you know about Virginia wine country?). He also became George Washington’s wine expert, while also serving as Secretary of State, and worked hard to keep the White House stocked with great wine from around the world. If you ever get a chance to visit his Monticello Estate in Virginia, you’ll learn more about the former President’s love of wine and you may be surprised to discover a small vineyard planted on the Estate.
Jefferson truly believed that America was capable of producing the same quality of world-class wine that was coming out of Europe and he was an ardent supporter of the American wine industry. Some 200 years later, wine is now produced in America in all 50 states and we are the fifth most-vine-planted country in the world. We have some of the best wines in the world right in our backyard. As Jefferson once remarked, “Good wine is a necessity of life for me.” We’ll drink to that!
If you are enjoying the day off today in honor of our Presidents, say a little “Thank You” to Mr. Jefferson and toast with a glass of your favorite American wine.
Tell us, what’s in your glass this President’s Day holiday?
For those of you who have ordered the 2007 Montelena Estate Cabernet Sauvignon through the Chateau - get ready. This delicious wine will be sent out to you the week of March 7. Look forward to an email with all the details.
I’m tasting the 2007 Estate Zinfandel right now and thinking about how I’m going to miss this wine. We’ll be releasing the 2008 vintage in March and the 2007 will be locked in the wine library. With all of its bright red fruit, pepper and chocolate notes, the 2007 Zin is one of my favorites. We should all buy a few more bottles before it goes away! http://shop.montelena.com/
SuperBowl weekend brings many things to the forefront of our lives: a great sporting event, fun finger foods, parties with friends and family and, of course, the newest commercials. Normally, we fast-forward through the commercials to get back to our regularly-scheduled programming, but the SuperBowl is different – the commercials are part of the main event! So this year, while enjoying unseasonably warm February weather (80 degrees!?), we sipped some Chateau Montelena Sauvignon Blanc with our spicy chicken wings (an unusual but tasty pairing!) and soaked up the best commercials from the 2011 SuperBowl. Our favorites, in no particular order:
What was your favorite commercial of SuperBowl 2011? And did you discover any unique food/wine pairings? We like those too.
It’s nearing spring, and many people like to enjoy lamb on Easter, or in my case, any day they’re lucky enough to get some. Here is an easy, and delicious lamb recipe that pairs amazingly with our Cabernet Sauvignons.
3 cups pearl onions (I recommend using frozen)
4 stalks celery rough chopped
2 carrots rough chopped
10 cloves of garlic
1 6-8 pound leg of lamb (bone removed)
½ cup flour
½ cup milk
2 cups beef or chicken stock
Mince half of the garlic and rub the inside of the lamb. Then sprinkle the inside with salt, pepper, thyme and oregano. Use according to taste. Roll leg up and tie with twine, (it’s ok if it isn’t completely even). Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Sprinkle more salt & pepper on exterior of the leg. Place remaining garlic with a couple of bay leaves, the celery, carrots & pearl onions into to bottom of a roasting pan. Place the leg onto the veggies, and pour stock into corner of the pan.
Cook at 500 degrees for 15 minutes, and then lower oven to 350 degrees for 90 minutes. Place leg on a cutting board and let rest. Strain off cooking liquid into a sauce pot. Mix milk & flour until smooth. Wisk into simmering cooking liquid, and season to taste. Spoon sauce over each serving.
Enjoy and I recommend serving with potatoes and asparagus.