Match of the week
Tamworth belly ribs and 2006 Qupé Roussanne
Sometimes the best matches are the unexpected ones. I was (shameless plug alert) helping the team at my son’s restaurant Hawksmoor select wines for a dinner to celebrate their 10th anniversary which will feature some of the classic dishes they’ve had on the menu since the early days.
One was Tamworth Belly Ribs which I remembered as a rich, sticky, American style pork rib. I was almost sure a lush red like grenache would be the ideal match but it turned out the dish had evolved into a lighter, more Asian style of dish and that the ribs were now accompanied by a punchy slaw.
It suggested a white rather than a red so Hawksmoor’s wine buyer Becca pulled out a range of options including this 2006 Roussanne from Qupé's Bien Nacido Hillside Estate*, a Californian producer who has also been on the winelist since the early days. It was absolutely stunning, partly because of the age of the wine but also its intensity and concentration (it’s a none-too-timid 14.5%).
For those of you in the restaurant business it goes to show you need to keep an eye on the wine pairings you recommend for signature dishes. Chef may have changed them while you weren't looking!
* and from the website it doesn't look as if they are actually making it any more
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