Thursday, October 6, 2011

full of myself

I’m alone in my kitchen as I write this. I am alone in my kitchen with a bottle of wine. I’m alone with a bottle of wine and I’m having a celebratory moment, because this is how I usually celebrate: with wine and food.

This month, Natalie MacLean included me in her article for Ottawa Magazine. I’m grateful and honoured to be mentioned, and also to be sharing print space with the talented Shari Goodman of Whisk. In tribute, I thought I’d make one of Shari’s recipes and use Natalie’s wine matcher to pair a wine with that dish.

I chose one of Shari's Whisk Wednesday recipes because it spoke to me of cool autumn days and vegetable abundance at the market: Aubergines Bayildi. It's delish and easy to make.

I must confess, I don't use Natalie's matcher very often. I'm usually pouring through textbooks and class notes when I research food and wine pairings, but if you aren't as obsessive as I am, the matcher is very comprehensive and much quicker than digging through the library. A few suggestions are offered for cheesy eggplant. I went with Tempranillo because that's what I could find at the wee LCBO I frequent near work.

I've had this before; it's a nice example of a Tempranillo from the Rioja region of Spain. There's an earthy, dried herb quality to the aroma with lots of dark fruit and a little leather. It tastes mainly of the deep berry fruit with nice structure (acid and tannin); there's a gentle mouth-coating feel from the tannins that gets released with ample acid. A pretty good food wine: the earthy quality went well with the eggplant and cheese; the acid was juicy and stood up to the tomatoes; the soft texture of the meal countered the tannic presence in the wine. How's that for a lot of food and wine pairing info? And it isn't too expensive at $14.95.

The charming and talented David Shea took that photo of me. Thank you Dave for the soft lighting.

Okay, I'm going to get over myself now and back to the real business of doing dishes.


  1. very nice Holly! You might drop that Dave guy, he may be holding you back.

  2. Yay Holly. She said I was charming Joe.

  3. I love that you made this recipe and picked a wine to celebrate. :) Congrats!!