Bacon and Wine
An interesting challenge: pair two wines to a bacon vinaigrette, an onion and bacon pie, and an Asian seasoned braise of pork belly. I was intimately familiar with the pie: bacon, an obscene amount of onions, Gruyere, and custard. This is the nexus of flavors from the area where Switzerland, Germany and France approach each other (north of Basel, past Colmar, to Strasbourg). I’ve been there and had only one choice--Alsatian Pinot Gris. It paired perfectly. The best option locally was Trimbach’s Pinot Gris 2002 Reserve.Classic citrus and melon flavors clean the palette, but the Alsatian slate and herby notes make this so much more interesting than similar California or Italian options. Red wine drinkers: this is your white (especially with cheese). Trust me. It even stood up well to the vinaigrette, but only because John had the foresight to demand enough mustard and bacon. About $18. So, what do we do with a braised pork belly? I opted to punt, and picked a local sparkler, a Michigan Rose in fact. L. Mawby makes one that they named “M. Lawrence SEX”. About $14. Bacon and sex? Yes, please. The bubbles and acidity helped, but there just wasn’t enough going on otherwise to recommend the pair. But like they say, sex is like pizza—even when it’s bad… I’m eager to move on to reds, cheap and rich. Is it barbecue season yet?