Handheld, flavorful and easy to prepare, empanadas are reliable crowd-pleasers. Wine Spectator recommends pairing with a fresh, medium-bodied red wine.
Recipes Matching: Merlot
When’s the last time you whipped up a tagine? If the answer is “never,” don’t panic. The full-flavored Moroccan stew isn't difficult to cook in this straightforward recipe by Avec chef Perry Hendrix. Plus, see Wine Spectator's recommended pairings!
Chef Emeril Lagasse celebrates the New Orleans tradition of the Reveillon meal after Christmas Eve mass with over-the-top dishes and plenty of wine at Grand Award-winning Emeril's. For a main course, chef David Slater shares a recipe for a classic French braise of meats, including pork belly, bacon and andouille sausage. Sommelier Ray Gumpert pairs it with a young red Bordeaux.
At his Oregon restaurant The Painted Lady, chef Allen Routt aims to elevate traditional American standbys with modern technique. His recipe for pistachio-crusted filet mignon, shared with Wine Spectator, employs a nontraditional slow-roasting technique. For a red wine, he and Jessica Bagley-Routt put a twist on the classic pairing with Bordeaux varieties, choosing a Merlot-Petit Verdot-Malbec blend made by an Oregon winery sourcing grapes from Washington.
Brainstorming for a macaroni-and-cheese night? Wine Spectator has some tips. If you want a red wine instead of white, try adding sautéed mushrooms, which add depth and a nice earthy touch to this cozy comfort food. Pair this recipe with a low-tannin red such as Pinot Noir.
Eric Kleinman, chef and partner at New York' 'inoteca, shares his recipe with Wine Spectator for a homey fregola pasta tossed with kale, dried fruits and pine nuts—perfect for making ahead and serving at room temperature, family-style. The recipe is perfect for the Jewish holidays or any fall entertaining and can be paired with a wide range of red and white wines.
Eric Kleinman, chef and partner at New York' 'inoteca, shares his recipe with Wine Spectator for whole roasted chicken, brined with herbs and spices and stuffed with citrus fruits and red onion. It's perfect for Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, the Jewish High Holidays, but is good for any occasion and pairs well with a wide range of red and white wines.
Need a new recipe for Passover or any spring entertaining? Try this lamb in a rich sauce made with Merlot, shared by San Francisco-based kosher caterer Rebecca Joseph of 12 Tribes Kosher Foods. She takes classic ingredient combinations and does something fresh with them. Here, it's lamb, spinach, garlic, rosemary, oregano and lemon zest. Red wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah also pair well.
Moses Wendel, chef and owner of Pardes kosher restuarant in Brooklyn, N.Y., shared a recipe with Wine Spectator for his take on tzimmes, which is a traditional side dish served on the Jewish holidays. He transforms what is typically made with carrots and sweet potatoes into a main dish by first braising brisket in red wine, honey and vinegar, then adding sweet potatoes and dates to the braising liquid, with a bit of jalapeño pepper, orange juice and grated horseradish for contrast.
Wine Spectator asked chefs Clark Frasier and Mark Gaier of Arrows restaurant in Ogunquit, Maine, for a foolproof-yet-impressive idea for spring holiday entertaining. They obliged with a roasted duck recipe, served with a pear chutney, from their book, Maine Classics.
For Passover, Jessica Applestone, co-author of The Butcher's Guide to Well-Raised Meat, shares a recipe for sweet-and-sour brisket, accompanied by sweet potatoes and plantains. Serve with matzo, a bitter greens salad, some parve coconut cookies and a kosher wine recently rated by Wine Spectator.