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February Hosted at Home with Woodhouse Chocolates

01.18.22

February Hosted at Home with Woodhouse Chocolates

With February 14 officially less than a month away, we couldn’t resist seducing your palates with one of our favorite Valentine’s Day wine pairings: chocolate and Cabernet. Which is why we teamed up with Woodhouse chocolatier John Anderson and Post & Beam Winemaker Michael Accurso for this month’s Hosted at Home happy hour.

During this monthly virtual tasting (which kicks off at 5:30 pm, Pacific, on February 11), John and Michael will be sharing how they enjoy this romantic wine pairing. To get you started, however, they’ve passed along three tried and true wine and chocolate tasting tips.

Wine and Chocolate Pairing Do’s

  1. Do try darker, semi-sweet and non-sweet chocolates with richer, more full-bodied Cabernets. Dark chocolate around 60 to 70% is a nice sweet spot (pun intended, and achieved) for bold red wine pairings. Not too bitter, not to sugary. Just right.
  2. Do feel free to add Pinot Noir and even Chardonnay to your wine and chocolate party menu. Pairing milk chocolate or even dark chocolate caramels with a silky Russian River Pinot Noir like EnRoute’s “Les Pommiers” is a great place to start. And white chocolate and Napa Valley Chardonnay? Yes, please!
  3. Do experiment, have fun and, ultimately, trust your palate. If you love almond milk chocolate with your Kenefick Ranch Cabernet, then fill your glass and stock up on Woodhouse Chocolate’s rocky road bark. Filled chocolates your thing? Go ahead and try those elephant peanut butter cups with your Post & Beam Napa Cabernet. Rules are awesome. So is breaking them.

Of course, chocolate and Cabernet do not a meal make. If you’re planning to join our February Hosted at Home Happy Hour and are looking for a more substantial Cabernet pairing, our own Senior Events Manager Barbra Christo created this slow-roasted pork shoulder recipe, below. Note: it's extra fragrant and succulent when paired with our Nickel & Nickel Kenefick Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon, Calistoga, Napa Valley.

Slow-Roasted Pork Shoulder with Radish Crème Fraiche and Parsley-Lemon Dressing

Wine Pairing: Nickel & Nickel Kenefick Cabernet Sauvignon, Calistoga, Napa Valley

Serves 2-4

Ingredients

For the Pork

3lbs well marbled pork should or butt (bone-in optional), cut into three equal pieces lengthwise

Coarse salt

15 peppercorns

2 bay leaves

3 tablespoons olive oil

One cup low-sodium chicken broth (or cold water)

For the Radish Crème Fraîche

1 container crème fraîche or sour cream

1 2-inch piece of fresh Horseradish, or 1 to 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish

Cracked black pepper, to taste

For the Lemon Dressing

Parsley

1 medium or large lemon

1 tablespoon olive oil

Coarse salt, taste

Method

For the Pork: “Salt cure” your meat by thoroughly rub pork shoulder with coarse salt, about one tablespoon per pound. Place on a wire-racked sheet pan and refrigerate for at least one hour and up to 24.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a deep roasting pan or ideally an enameled cast iron pot, add a layer of olive oil to coat the bottom of the pot, about three tablespoons. Place pork in the pot and add one cup low-sodium broth or water, it should come up to ¾ of the height of the meat. Also include peppercorns and bay leaves. Cover pan tightly with foil or lid and cook two and a half to three hours. Meat should be tender and start to fall apart when pinched with tongs. Uncover pan and increase oven temperature to 425 degrees. Roast until meat pieces are browned on top, an additional 25 to 30 minutes.

For the Radish Crème Fraîche: Combine all ingredients and refrigerate for an hour.

For the Parsley and the Lemon Dressing:

Remove large parsley leaves from stems. Note: You can save the stems for stock or another salad. They are excellent minced.

Zest your lemon, then halve and juice one-half of the lemon. In a small bowl, combine juice and zest with tablespoon olive oil. Sprinkle with course salt.

Presentation

With a heaping tablespoon of radish crème fraiche, create a halo around the center of each plate. Rather than slicing your pork shoulder, hand pull the meat into medium-sized pieces. Place one to two pieces in the center of each plate. Spoon or drizzle with pan drippings. Top your pork with parsley, then lightly drizzle with lemon dressing. Uncork a bottle of Nickel & Nickel Kenefick Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon and savor the elegant dark berry and plum layers, the whispers of cedar and vanilla and the supple tannins of this pure expression of Napa Valley Cabernet. Salut!

We hope to see you during our February Hosted at Home event. Not yet a Hosted at Home subscriber? Discover this one-of-a-kind monthly wine subscription and learn how to join in on the fun!

Post & Beam Cabernet Pairing

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