Decadent, expensive and luxurious food products attract the attention of foodies and wine-geeks without much effort. The focus today, however, is on a far less ostentatious or exclusive ingredient; today we’re going to look at 5 incredible recipes featuring beets, that create pure magic when served alongside Pinot Noir.
Beets are one of those most-versatile ingredients that can be prepared to become anything from a light raw salad, to an unctuous and sweet side-dish; from pickled or ceviche style preparations, right through to dessert, where I’ve seen them used to produce to most incredible colour in crème brulée.
Allow me to introduce you to one of my favourite wines – and one of our most popular top-seller products, Chanson “Reserve du Bastion” Pinot Noir. This Pinot Noir, produced by the historic house Domaine Chanson, is a delicious and affordable introduction to the magic, terroir and food-friendly qualities of red Burgundy.
Burgundy is not a region generally looked upon as a source for stunning wine bargains. It is a wine region with a reputation and history that typically ensure pricing commensurate with the relative pedigree of the grapes used to produce a given wine.
Chanson “Reserve du Bastion” Pinot Noir is a rare exception to this rule. 100% of the grapes used to produce this wine are grown in the Cote d’Or – the best, most famous vineyards in Burgundy, where wines often fetch 3 to 5 times the price of this humble “provincial” bottling.
The house style at Chanson emphasizes serious structure, freshness, elegance, minerality and cellaring potential. Now to be clear, Chanson hasn’t reinvented the wheel by putting these qualities front and centre – rather, they’ve redoubled their efforts to protect the classic virtues that have always been a part of this history steeped wine region.
While some of Chanson’s neighbours have been looking for ways to make their wines more “New World-ish” (i.e. to spin out Pinot Noir from Burgundy that taste more like Shiraz from Australia – or Merlot from California) Chanson has embraced the classics virtues – and I for one am glad they have.
In a world overwhelmed by an increasingly homogeneous line-up of generic and uninteresting wines, Burgundy has always been an outsider; the quiet and intellectual cousin who stands apart from the rest of the crowd at wine family gatherings.
Burgundy is a wine that takes more than a sentence or two to explain and rewards those patient enough to give it some time in the cellar. These factors have meant that it never really fit comfortably into a world of 10-second news-bites and an increasing demand for instant gratification.
There are few red wines made anywhere that are quite as versatile with food as this one. It’s a fabulous match for all matter of white meat, like roast chicken or pork, a lovely option next to salmon, pizza or your favourite pasta topped with a bright fresh tomato sauce.
But for today anyways, we’re going to forget about this versatility, and take an in-depth look at one of the great flavour combinations I’ve ever experienced, matching this awesome wine up with delicious dishes featuring incredible fresh beets.
When paired with Pinot Noir, I favour recipes that allow some of the beet’s natural sweetness come through, but that present acidity or bitterness in sufficient measure, as a sort of countervailing balance in the dish. Indeed, the benchmark acidity, freshness and cherry-pit astringency found in this delicious red from Domaine Chanson are part of what I believe make it such a natural pairing with dishes showcasing the humble beet.
Here we go – 5 stunning dishes showcasing beautiful fresh beets – and perfect pairings with Chanson “Reserve du Bastion” Pinot Noir: