By Laina Carter of McGrail Vineyards
One of the things I’ve learned about myself in adulthood is I enjoy trying all kinds of food, but I think my favorite kind of food is Asian food. Thai, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Chinese, Korean, Burmese, Japanese, Filipino, Taiwanese, even Asian-fusion–I do not discriminate. Having a boyfriend who lives in San Francisco, I find myself eating top-notch Asian food quite regularly. Nearly all my DoorDash and Caviar history consists of orders from incredible Asian restaurants. My last two meals out before the shelter-in-place was put into effect were dim sum on Clement and ramen in Japantown. With the shelter-in-place and a boyfriend who works in healthcare, my visits to my favorite SF restaurants have come to a complete halt, which is a serious bummer. I miss San Francisco’s food almost just as much as I miss my boyfriend (sorry, Andrew!). That’s not to say Livermore doesn’t have some amazing Asian restaurants, but there are certainly more options and greater variety in the city.
It doesn’t matter the dish’s origin, if the flavors are sweet, tangy, spicy, salty, umami, or if the dish is served hot or cold, one thing that is consistently true about good, authentic Asian food is the ingredients used are always fresh; I think this is one of the reasons I love it so much. Considering the current conditions of grocery stores, given the SIP, it’s not always easy to find fresh ingredients, especially ones that are uncommon in American cuisine. Luckily for me, I live in California, where we do usually have way more fresh produce available than most other states and it’s generally not super difficult to find obscure ingredients at the local supermarket. Using a variety of fresh, frozen, and shelf-stable ingredients, I’ve somewhat filled my craving for Asian-inspired grub, but it seems I’ll forever be pining for my favorite Monterey Boulevard shrimp and veggie sizzling rice soup and dumplings.
When it comes to Sauvignon Blanc, ours is unique, but in some ways, it’s also kind of traditional. I say it’s unique, because unlike most single-varietal Sauvignon Blancs, 10% of this wine is barrel-fermented in experienced oak, while the other 90%, like most other wines of this varietal, is fermented in stainless steel. The experienced, neutral oak that this wine touches gives the wine a sort of round mouthfeel and creaminess you might not expect from most Sauvignon Blancs. Still, this wine from our Lucky 8 Vineyard is made from the Musqué clone of Sauvignon Blanc and has those really classic Sauvy B flavors of citrus, melon, gooseberry, white peach, and tropical fruit. It’s pretty tasty alone, but is also excellent paired with food, especially spicy dishes! The creaminess and roundness in the mouthfeel help to tone down the hotness, but at the same time, the gorgeous acid in the back matches that of the spicy food, and the combination of the two is just flawless.
I hope you enjoy these yummy, Asian-inspired pairings with our Peyton Paige Sauvignon Blanc!
Fluffy Cilantro Lime Rice
Makes about 5 servings.
- 1 ½ cups dry, uncooked white long-grain basmati rice
- 1 ½ tbsp. olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 ½ cups water
- 1 tsp. pink himalayan sea salt
- ¼ cup fresh lime juice
- Zest of one lime
- 1 cup cilantro, packed, stems removed, chopped finely
- In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium. Add the rice and garlic. Stir occasionally, until the rice is lightly browned.
- Add the water, sea salt, ½ of lime juice, and lime zest. Bring to a boil. Cover and allow simmer on low for 15-20 minutes, being careful not to open the lid.
- Remove from heat and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
- Use a fork to fluff. Add cilantro and remaining lime juice. Stir well.
- Enjoy with cashew sesame chicken skewers, spicy garlic sesame green beans and edamame, and our 2019 Peyton Paige Sauvignon Blanc.
Cashew Sesame Chicken Skewers
Makes about 5 servings
- 16 oz. raw organic boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
- 1 tsp. sesame chili oil
- 1 ½ tbsp. sesame oil
- 1 ½ tbsp. yuzu ponzu sauce (regular ponzu works fine too)
- 1 ½ tbsp. reduced sodium soy sauce
- ½ tsp. red pepper flakes
- 1 tbsp. fresh lime juice
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 heaping tbsp. granulated sugar
- One small red onion
- One orange bell pepper
- Pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
- ¼ cup toasted cashews, chopped into small pieces
- Chop the chicken breast into 1.5” cubes. Put into a plastic Ziploc bag and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine garlic, ginger, sesame chili oil, sesame oil, yuzu ponzu sauce, soy sauce, red pepper flakes, lime juice, lemon juice, and granulated sugar. Stir until most sugar is dissolved. Dump sauce into plastic ziploc bag with chicken, making sure sauce is covering most of the chicken pieces. Allow chicken to sit in sauce for 1 to 8 hours in the refrigerator.
- Heat grill on medium. Soak skewers in cold water for at least 20 minutes prior to using them to keep them from burning or catching fire.
- Chop red onion and bell pepper into 1.5” pieces. Using 10” or 12” bamboo skewers, stick onion, bell pepper, and chicken pieces through skewers, alternating between each piece.
- Liberally season skewers with pepper and toasted sesame seeds. Grill skewers for about 6 minutes on each side or until cooked through.
- Once cooked and plated, sprinkle skewers with chopped cashews.
- Enjoy with the cilantro lime rice, spicy garlic sesame green beans and edamame, and of course, a glass of our 2019 Peyton Paige Sauvignon Blanc!
Spicy Garlic Sesame Green Beans and Edamame
Makes about 5 servings.
- ½ tsp. sesame chili oil (use ¼ tsp. to make less spicy)
- 1 tbsp. sesame oil
- One small shallot, thinly sliced
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
- 5 oz. edamame, shelled
- 12 oz. cleaned and trimmed green beans, steamed
- 2 tsp. seasoned rice vinegar
- 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
- 2 tbsp. yuzu ponzu sauce (regular ponzu sauce works just fine, I just wanted more citrus flavor)
- 2 tbsp. reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
- In a large frying pan, heat sesame chili oil and sesame oil on medium heat. Add sliced shallot and minced garlic. Sautée until lightly browned.
- Add minced ginger, shelled edamame, steamed green beans, rice vinegar, red pepper flakes, ponzu sauce, and soy sauce. Stirring occasionally, sautée until sauces have cooked down somewhat and edamame are cooked through.
- Add sesame seeds and stir.
- Enjoy with the cilantro lime rice, cashew sesame chicken skewers, and a glass of our delicious 2019 Peyton Paige Sauvignon Blanc!
I hope I’ve inspired you to take make some of these delicious pairings at home! Please let us know if you do make any of these plates and if you have any feedback. We’d love to hear from you!
Cheers and enjoy!