From chilled cucumber soup with salt-roasted shrimp to Carolina pulled pork, here are terrific dishes to pair with California wine.
Food & Wine
1 of 10LUCY SCHAEFFER
Gerard Craft grew up in Washington, DC, eating lots of Maryland blue crab. Here, he creates a very simple and delicious starter by tossing sweet crabmeat with fresh mint and lime juice, then spooning it over mashed avocado on toast. You can make the toasts or buy store-bought ones to save time.
Roast Brined Chicken with Raisin and Pine Nut Agrodolce
"Brining isn't imperative," says Michael Chiarello, "but it adds juiciness." Before roasting, he rubs the brined birds with a spice mix and brushes them with butter; the flavors are even better at room temperature, making this a stellar picnic dish.
Artichokes are notorious for making wine taste bitter. To prevent that, Michael Chiarello slow-roasts artichoke hearts in extra-virgin olive oil to bring out their sweetness, then serves them with prosciutto, an ingredient that matches particularly well with wine.
White beans substitute for the usual potatoes in this chowder, made with sweet butternut squash, briny littleneck clams and smoky bacon. Rancho Gordo cellini beans give the soup a buttery richness, but Great Northern beans are terrific as well.
Jim Burke's cucumber soup with lime, garlic and ginger is light, refreshing and restorative; his kitchen staff jokes that it's like a mini spa treatment. For extra substance, Burke adds salt-roasted shrimp, avocado and a hit of spicy chile oil.
Pairing: 2008 Bonny Doon Vineyard Ca' del Solo Muscat