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Autumn Pinot Noir Pairing: Where the Wild(ly Delicious) Things Are


Autumn Pinot Noir Pairing: Where the Wild(ly Delicious) Things Are
Single-Vineyard Pinot Wine Pairing

As our cravings shift with the weather, we find ourselves pairing creamy risottos and pastas with the taste of wild, foraged forest-y things. This pomegranate-glazed duck breast with creamy wild mushroom polenta ticks off all the fall flavor check boxes, and it’s gorgeous with the rich, autumnal flavors of one of our favorite Russian River Pinot Noirs: the 2017 EnRoute Marty’s Vineyard Pinot Noir. No wonder it's one of our favorite Autumn Pinot Noir pairings to date!

Russian River Pinot Noir Food Pairing

Pomegranate Glazed Duck Breasts with Creamy Mushroom Polenta

Wine Pairing: EnRoute Marty’s Vineyard Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley

Serves Two


2 duck breasts

Salt and pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses, for garnish (available in grocery stores)


3 cups whole milk

3 cups water

1 cup polenta

¼ to ½ cup Parmesan cheese, to taste


1 ½ tablespoons olive oil

1 pound mixed wild mushrooms, cleaned

Salt and pepper, to taste


For the Duck: Pre-heat an oven to 325 degrees and season the duck breasts with salt and pepper.

The key to cooking a good duck breast is medium heat, which allows the skin to be crispy and the meat to stay a nice pink. Start with an oven safe sauté pan on medium heat. Add the olive oil, place the seasoned duck breast skin side down in the pan and move it around slightly for five seconds to keep the skin from sticking. Turn the heat down to medium-low and allow the fat to render. When the skin becomes a deep caramel color, flip the breast over and place in a 325-degree oven for eight minutes. Remove and allow the duck to rest for three minutes before slicing.

For the Polenta: In a large 2 1/2-inch deep sauté pan, bring milk and water to a simmer. Slowly add in the polenta, whisking about every five minutes for 40 minutes or until done. Remove from heat. Whisk in the Parmesan cheese and season to taste.

For the Mushrooms: Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add olive oil and heat to simmer. Add in the cleaned wild mushrooms and sauté until they are tender. Season with salt and pepper.


To assemble, scoop a generous serving of polenta in the center of each plate, fan sliced duck breast on top or to the side and then spoon mushrooms so that they cascade on and around all. Pour two generous glasses of EnRoute Marty’s Vineyard Pinot Noir and enjoy how the gorgeous plum, raspberry, and herbes de Provence notes both compliment and contrast with the savory duck breast, the bright pomegranate glaze, the wild mushrooms and creamy polenta.

Want to more Russian River Valley Pinot Noirs to warm and brighten your crisp, sun-dappled autumn afternoons and cozy nights in?

Our single-vineyard Pinot Noirs showcase the pedigree and standout expressions of specifically chosen sites. We craft very small quantities of these luscious Russian River Valley wines, and they are each beautifully evocative of the place in which they were grown. Our full single-vineyard Pinot Noir collection can be found here.

Or, check out the newest release of our flagship Russian River Pinot, EnRoute “Les Pommiers,” here. “Les Pommiers” draws on the best of the Russian River Valley as a whole. It’s the wine that launched EnRoute, and it’s captivatingly delicious. Wine Spectator agrees.

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