I've been in Paris for the last few days so this week's pairing had to be from here. There are so many possibilities but as I haven't written about a meat match for a while I'm going to pick the braised beef cheek and vegetables we had with a quirky wine called KM31 from the Roussillon.
Beef cheek or joue de boeuf as it's called here seems to be one of the most fashionable main courses in Paris at the moment, judging by the menus we've been reading but I doubt if anywhere does it as well as Le Baratin, a natural wine bistro in the 20th just off the rue de Belleville. (You can see my review here). Normally if it's cooked until it's falling apart - as it should be - it's quite soft but this had the most amazing rich crust - presumably by popping it in a hot oven again before serving it. There was also a subtle touch of vinegar in the dish and some fresh tasting seasonal vegetables which added a welcome lightness to the dish
The wine was a warm, generous blend of Grenache and Carignan blend from the 2009 vintage from a mad Roussillon winery called Domaine YoYo. A natural wine but not a weird one, in case you're worried. Just perfect with the rich, beefy flavour of the meat and also pretty good with the joue de veau that I ordered. They like their cheeks in Paris ;-)