Editor's Note: Everybody celebrates Thanksgiving just a little bit differently, which is why we've been hitting up some of our winemaking friends for some of their Thanksgiving recipes and wine pairings, which we'll be featuring over the next week. This time we reached out to Mimi Dudley Casteel, the second generation at Bethel Heights Vineyard in Oregon's Eola-Amity Hills. Mimi, along with her father Ted Casteel, tends the vines that have made this winery's offerings among some of the best over the past 30+ years. Her gougères are the perfect Thanksgiving appetizer--easy to make, sophisticated and a mouthwatering match for the 2008 Bethel Heights "Estate" Chardonnay and Pinot Noir (or both).
Entries in Bethel Heights (3)
It's been more than four years since I wrote my first ode to Brussels sprouts, the cute, grassy green little cabbages about the size of a golf ball. And I'm still amazed that despite New York Magazine declaring that "Vegetables are the New Meat," their reputation hasn't improved much more than rosé wine in some circles. (See this summer's post, No Way Rosé.) But Brussels sprouts are deliciously sweet with nutty overtones when they're cooked properly. And you can do almost anything you want to them--though I often default to a quick sauté and dressing them up in the salty goodness of Fra-Mani pancetta--as long as you don't boil them. They're even amenable to a little kick, like in this simple recipe for Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Sriracha and Mint from our friends the White on Rice Couple.
Fall in Oregon is a bit like Russian roulette if you're a winemaker. But the gamble--against cool weather, mold, rot and rain--is more than worth it...if you win. On the day I visited Amy Wesselman of Westrey Wine Company at the vineyard she owns and farms in the Dundee Hills with her husband and partner, David Autrey, it looked like Mother Nature might have the upper hand. I had been trying to outrun the rain on the drive over the Eola-Amity Hills from Bethel Heights, but as I bounced along the dirt road that led the Oracle Vineyard the dark, thick clouds told me we were done for.
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