Leafing through Ryn and Cordie’s new book I realised how untypical it was. You get the impression most wine books - even ones about food and wine matching - are written for middle-aged men. The few for women tend to be of the fluffy Chicklit variety with cartoons indicating that wine isn’t really a subject they need overly bother their pretty heads with.
I suppose it was inevitable that it took a couple of feisty Australians to put a new perspective on it. Ryn and Cordie, a couple of bright women who run their own marketing business have approached it from the perspective of two busy professionals so it’s short on theory and long on recipes with a few basic rules and tips thrown in. Plenty of inspiration, not too much reading.
The recipes are simple and related to the time of day - though R & C are made of sterner stuff than I am if they can face a glass of bubbly with their muesli in the morning. But I like the sound - and look - of baked eggs with Spanish-style beans and chorizo (paired with Tempranillo), char-grilled scamorza with heritage tomatoes (Barbera) and potato and lemon frittata (Hunter Valley Semillon). As you’d expect from an Aussie book there are plenty of Asian-inspired dishes like beef with ginger and lemongrass (Verdelho) and pork gyoza with mint, coriander and chilli dipping sauce (“a super crisp beer”) but also some nice home-made bruschetti, pizzas and pies.
The only downside to the book is that all the wines are Australian but fair enough given that it is self-published (good for them) and that their primary market is obviously going to be their home one. There’s also the odd match that I’m not sure I buy into (like Coonawarra Cab with cauliflower soup) but they’re more than made up for by inspired pairings such as rosewater pannacotta with Turkish delight, pistachio biscotti and pink muscat.
If you already know a fair bit about food and wine matching you may not feel there’s quite enough in-depth info about the subject for you but if you’re a newbie - or giving it to one - it's a perfect introduction to the subject.
For a sample of the recipes and pairings in the book check out Ryn & Cordie’s website. You can also buy it direct from the site for A$29.95