This weekend, Seattle chefs—including F&W Best New Chefs, like Tilth’s Maria Hines, Lark’s Jon Sundstrom and Sitka and Spruce’s Matt Dillon—will head to Smoke Farm for the second annual Burning Beast. Founded by chef Tamara Murphy of Brasa restaurant, Burning Beast is a huge cookout of (you’ll never guess) whole animals, including birds and fish. (For some great photos of last year’s Burning Beast, click here). The event is open to the lucky holders of the $75 tickets, which are, unfortunately, sold out.
If I lived in Seattle, I’d surely be heading out to the gluttonous feast with a tent and sleeping bag in tow. I’d also bring a few of the best wines I tasted at this year’s F&W’s Classic in Aspen. Many of the wines are admittedly out of my price range and hard to get, but this is a fantasy, after all. A few of my faves:
For the salmon Yes, 2006 is a ripe vintage for white Burgundies, but that fullness works with rich fish. The 2006 Bernard Moreau Chassagne Montrachet Les Grandes Ruchottes ($90; find this wine) has a delicious honeyed quality and a mouthwatering acidity. Plus, the little bit of spicy oak would be great with food cooked over open flame. A less expensive alternative: the long-finishing 2006 Manciat Macon-Charnay Vielles Vignes ($23, find this wine).
For the duck With its lightly floral nose, pretty berry fruit and wonderfully silky texture, the 2006 Flowers Pinot Noir Camp Meeting Ridge ($106; find this wine) from the Sonoma Coast is one of the best California Pinot Noirs I’ve ever tried. A less expensive alternative: the earthy 2007 Mary Elke Pinot Noir ($26; find this wine).