ask dr. vinny

Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs. You can also follow me on Twitter: @AskDrVinny.


Dear Dr. Vinny,

Can I sauté mushrooms with a Merlot?

—Deb, Pennsylvania

Dear Deb,

Absolutely. I’d first brown the mushrooms in butter (or butter and olive oil), with salt and pepper and some fresh chopped thyme. Use the Merlot (or other red wine) to deglaze the pan, and simmer for a few minutes. I might squirt a bit of lemon juice at the end to brighten up the flavors, and if I’m feeling fancy, put some fresh parsley leaves on top.

Depending on the mushrooms, they might take on a purple hue from the wine, but that just makes them more fun to eat, in my opinion!

—Dr. Vinny


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