Our Dinner Party – three courses, four wines!

So we were having two of our best friends over for a Saturday night meal, its classic dinner party territory, so I got thinking about a manageable but fancy three course menu. I felt it was a great excuse to do something that we wouldn’t usually have but I had to balance that with not wanting to spend too much time in the kitchen. I decided that I would do a no cook starter, a fancy main and a make ahead dessert. This meant that I could keep it relaxed whilst still feeling special. 

What I didn’t know is that our friends knew what we were having and went to a very beautiful wine shop and bought three bottles of wine, one to match each course. It was so thoughtful and generous of them. So we had extra fun tasting the wine with the food. So in the end I went with…

Classic Antipasti to start – tasty, easy and definitely socialable.

The wine pairing for this was Txukiolina, a traditional wine from north Spain, dry, herbaceous, nettle, fresh with acidity. This was a really fun wine, slightly sparkling and easy to drink. It matched beautifully – crisp and light. One of our friends said it tasted like a flat prosecco, which sounds a bit weird, but it was and it worked so well with the salted cured meats and the slightly blue cheese. 

For the main I wanted something deep and rich, I decided on a Rich Confit Duck Ravioli with Morel Mushroom sauce with a pan fried Duck Breast and Parmesan Crisp (see recipe in the next blog). 

To drink with this we had two bottles of wine to try, first we had a Primitivo, this was a red with fresh plum flavours and black cherry. This was my favourite of the night, it was medium bodied and complimented the rich duck and creamy sauce fantastically. 

The second was Cahors, this was 100% Malbec, Cahors is a region just outside Bordeaux. This was a rich, dark cherry which was inky in its character. I liked this wine a lot and its depth was intriguing, it certainly matched well with the dish but the fruity notes of the Primitivo won it for me. 
The dessert was a fresh Lemon and Raspberry Meringue Roulade. I made this with lemon curd, limoncello and lots of softly whipped double cream (I will do a recipe blog for this). The fresh raspberries cut through the richness of the cream and the sweet, yet sharp, lemon made your cheeks laugh, as I say!

The wine match I guessed would be difficult here, but the Muscadet was perfect, it wasn’t a dessert wine (thankfully) it had lemon and lime notes and was fresh on the finish so not heavy or sweet as was a wonderful end to our food and wine night.  I would definitely do this again. 

Thanks for reading x

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