George Mendes updates this classic Iberian combination by adding pickled vegetables. At Aldea, he makes his own pickles a day in advance; the version here calls for giardiniera, the jarred pickled-vegetable mix.
Pairing: Robust Portuguese red: 2007 José Maria da Fonseca Domini.
Khoresht fesenjan is a Persian stew made with pomegranate juice and walnuts. Chef Matthew Dillon serves this version at his Sitka & Spruce restaurant in Seattle's Melrose Market. His rule No. 1 for making this dish: "Use a thoughtfully and responsibly raised whole chicken."
Pairing: Spanish Garnacha: 2009 Bodegas Borsao Monte Oton Garnacha.
"My mother and I go foraging for elderflowers for two days each May," says Trina Hahnemann. They pick enough flowers to make cordial to drink throughout the year and then use in dishes like this pork tenderloin quickly braised with fennel. Anyone not living near a Nordic meadow can substitute St-Germain elderflower cordial for the homemade kind.
Pairing: Smooth, dark southern-French red: 2008 Hecht & Bannier Minervois.