The World is waking up to German Pinot Noir!

I’ve been wondering how long it would take for this to happen.  German Pinots offer some of the most affordable and pleasurable discoveries any Pinot lover could wish for.  So it was no surprise to see this headline in today’s issue of “The Drinks Business” publication out of the UK.

According to chef Martin Lam, interviewed for this article, it has helped tremendously that German producers are switching their labeling from the traditional German word “Spätburgunder” (SPATE bur gunder) to the more internationally recognized “Pinot Noir” (same grape, different name).  But a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

I particularly liked Lam’s quote “…the top drops from Baden should be treated with the same respect as a top Burgundy“.  And while this quote dips its toe into hyperbole, the truth is that the grape’s German name is a direct nod to the vines that gave birth to their vineyards, and the style is similar in its lightness.

German States with major Cities - worldatlasbook.com
German States with major Cities.  Baden is Southwest, just above Switzerland.  Image from worldatlasbook.com

The Baden area (Southwest Germany, see map) is East and a bit North of Burgundy, and this area is home to some of Germany’s best Pinots.  I encourage you to ask for these from your favorite wine merchant, and to keep a watchful eye for some of them to appear in the Pinot section my own curated inventory at DaveTheWineMerchant.

Read the full article here – Lam: World is waking up to German Pinot.

Cheers!

www.DaveTheWineMerchant.com 

P.S. For a regular source of new Pinot Noir discoveries, please consider my Pinot-Only wine club – click here for more info!

Love-Rubbed Breast of Duck

This recipe features “Love Rub” – another way to incorporate our Valentine’s Day theme into your wine and food experience.  But don’t pigeon hole this recipe and make it just once a year, it is delicious and memorable any time of the year.

“Love Rub” originally came from Jim Reichardt, founder and proprietor of Sonoma County Poultry, home of the Liberty Ducks (800-953-8257, and yes, they ship nation-wide). Though one may find humor in that name for ducks who are hardly at liberty to die a natural death, the death they encounter is more humane than most natural causes. Jim founded the company in response to local Chefs, who needed a larger and more flavorful duck on their customer’s plates. The Liberty Duck is descended from the famed Pekin Duck developed in Denmark, and is better suited to today’s slower, less stressful rearing techniques (to wit, Jim uses no growth hormones or antibiotics.)

To make this rub, simply blend everything together until well combined. Pairs beautifully with aged cabernet or pinot noir.

“Love Rub” INGREDIENTS
¼ Cup brown Sugar 1 tsp Cumin
2 Tbsp Paprika (sweet, not hot) 1 tsp Ground white pepper
2 Tbsp Kosher salt ½ tsp Ground black pepper
1 Tbsp dried Thyme ½ tsp Coriander
1 Tbsp chili powder ¼ tsp Ground nutmeg
2 tsp Dried oregano Small pinch cayenne pepper
1 tsp Chinese 5-spice blend ¼ tsp Cinnamon

Ingredients (Serves Four)
* 4 breasts, Liberty Duck
* ¼+ Cup Love Rub
* That’s all!

Procedure
Trim the duck breasts of excess fat – no more than ¼ to ½ inch around the entire breasts – but not too much, as you want the rendering fat to add flavor during cooking. Place breasts in a large, sealable plastic storage bag, pour in the love rub, and integrate well. Refrigerate overnight.

When ready to prepare dinner, remove from the bag and pat dry with paper towels. Place fat-side-down on the grill using indirect heat – slow cooking is the key to perfectly cooked duck breast. After 8-10 minutes, turn fat-side up and cook until medium rare. Do not overcook. Breast meat is lean “white” meat, and prone to drying out if over-cooked.

To serve, slice at an angle and sprinkle lightly with more Love Rub.

Cheers!
Dave the Wine Merchant