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Kicking Off Tomato Season with an Oregon White

Erath Pinot Blanc Willamette Valley 2009
MaryAnn Worobiec
Posted: August 30, 2010

I saw an interview with Julia Child, filmed shortly before she passed away, where she was asked what dish she would choose to be named after her. Julia described a perfectly ripe tomato on a piece of white bread slathered with mayonnaise, dubbing it the Julia Child Sandwich. She suggested eating it with a knife and fork.

I’ve since developed my own version of the Julia Child. Mine is open-faced and starts with a slice of lightly toasted sourdough bread, with just a thin seal of mayo and thick slices of tomatoes from my garden. I top it with some crunchy sea salt and a couple of cranks from the peppermill. I don’t eat mine with a knife and fork—in fact, I’m usually so excited, I take my first few bites standing up at the kitchen counter.

The extremely cool summer in Napa has delayed my garden-to-table dinners, but I finally got to eat my first Julia Child, and enjoyed it with a simple cucumber salad (also from the garden), dressed with just some salt, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice. To celebrate, I poured myself a glass of Erath's Pinot Blanc Willamette Valley 2009 ($14). The wine’s soft acidity was lovely—it really let the tomato stand out (and not interfere with the cucumber’s lemon juice topping). The citrus flavors were well-focused, and there was a slight toasty edge that I really enjoyed, especially on the finish. I rated it 86 points, non-blind.

As Julia would say, “Bon appétit!” members: Get our quick list of Top Values among Oregon whites.

Member comments   2 comment(s)

Tim Sinniger — Bend, Oregon —  August 30, 2010 9:13pm ET

Sounds great! If you have not tried the Bethel Heights Pinot Blanc it's worth searching out. They just moved into the 2009 vintage and I think it would accompany your sandwich well.

Love Julia!!!

Bon Appetit

Russell Quong — Sunnyvale, CA, USA —  September 1, 2010 11:06pm ET

What a smashing idea....I'll have to discover my version of the Julia Child, staring from yours, now that the N Calif tomato crop has finally ripened. And it sounds like I'll have to experiment to find the right white to go along with it.

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