It’s often said that if Paris is France’s head, and Champagne her soul, then Burgundy is her stomach. With such an array of fine foods and wines to savor, you may feel a little overwhelmed, perhaps wondering where to begin. Luckily, there are some excellent recipes to get to know from the region, many of which are contained within Ellie’s cookbook and often made at the Domaine de Cromey. Whether it’s meat, seafood, vegetarian or sweet dishes that make your mouth water, there is inspiration to be found on its pages for almost any appetite.
Take just one category – the fish and seafood dishes – for example, because even in land-locked Burgundy you may get a craving for the sea from time to time. As well as French dishes, there are flavors from Italy and Asia too, all expertly matched with wines made by the producers that Elden Selections have known for years.
You could begin with a lighter dish like Scallops with Nori and Ginger-Soy Beurre Blanc. At first you may wonder what on earth to drink with such intense and exotic ingredients, but the suggested wines fit the bill perfectly; the Pierre Brigandat Champagne Brut Tradition offers its own array of colorful flavors and aromas, with ripe peach and yellow plum on the palate along with persistent floral notes, like an infusion of jasmine. The Domaine Borgeot Crémant de Bourgogne would also make an excellent match, as would a Chablis or Vézelay.
Another exquisite light dish comes in the form of Squid and Zucchini Gratin – quick to assemble and straightforward to cook. For this you’ll want a wine such as Capitain-Gagnerot Saint Romain ‘Au Bas de Poillange’. The freshness in the minerality of Saint Romain white makes it a perfect aperitif wine. But it also lends itself to seafood and especially oysters.
Smoked trout croissants are here too; any good Chardonnay will go well, or there is the option of ordering a mixed case like this one so you can try pairing a variety of wines.
For a really rich summer dish to eat al fresco, there’s the Roasted Turbot, with Warm Seasonal Salad and Split Capers. At the Domaine de Cromey they have served this dish with a Domaine du Château de Vergisson Pouilly-Fuissé ‘Sur la Roche’ because Pouilly-Fuissé has a characteristic hint of minerality which makes it work with some noble ingredients like turbot as well as crustaceans (king prawns, lobster, crayfish). You could also try the Jean Claude Rateau Hautes Côtes de Beaune Blanc.
And there are dishes from beyond the Burgundy borders such as the Fish and Shellfish Marmite (a Marmite is a French casserole dish in this case, rather than the salty spread in a jar! and in the Normandy port of Dieppe, for example, there is a popular fish stew which is known as a Marmite Dieppoise). To complement this dish, the Jean Dauvissat Pere et Fils Chablis 1er Cru ‘Montmains’ can’t be beaten as it goes well with a host of traditional dishes traditional dishes like andouillettes (tripe sausages) and of course, the Burgundian specialty par excellence, escargots (snails). You could also try Elise Villiers Vezelay ‘La Chevaliere’ with it too.
Finally, what about oily fish? Take the recipe for Smoked Mackerel Rillettes. The white wines of Auxey-Duresses are the natural choice – the Agnes Paquet Auxey-Duresses Blanc ‘Patience No 10’, for instance. Juicy and lively, its fruit retains fullness through a long finish and for this reason it goes well not only with mackerel but with shrimp, or fish in spicy sauces. Another strong contender would be a good Bourgogne Blanc, like Domaine Borgeot Bourgogne Blanc ‘Clos de la Carbonade’. It’s among the most adaptable and food-friendly wines in the world.
Elden Selection’s Burgundy Wine Club also offers members the chance to find out more about the wines of Burgundy, sending four shipments per year. Members also receive invitations to member-only virtual events in the US; 2 specially selected wine glasses; tasting notes; and the chance to win a stay at the Burgundy manor house Domaine de Cromey.