Challenging Wine Pairing: Beef Stroganoff

By LaGayle ~ April 20th, 2010.

Years ago when I was teaching school in Houston and needed to get an evening meal ready after work, one of my standby meals to prepare was beef stroganoff. My version has evolved over the years to be a quick and easy recipe and seems to get quicker and easier as the years go by.

Beef Stroganoff is a Russian dish that originated in the 19th century but has become popular in many countries with just as many variations in the recipes. I know that I’ve made changes from the first time that I made it to the way that I prepare it today.

This dish served over pasta (I use spiral pasta) includes sour cream and mushrooms which give it a unique flavor. Add a vegetable, a salad, and French bread to the menu and a great meal is ready in a very short amount of time. It can be prepared with cubed beef, strips of beef or lean ground beef.

The wines selected to pair with our Beef Stroganoff meal were a Cotes du Rhone from France and a Washington State Barbera. While we enjoyed both wines, the Cotes du Rhone was the unanimous favorite both with and without food.

I hope that these Challenging Wine Pairings inspire you to try your own challenges at home. Just select one of your favorite meals and step out of your comfort zone to select wines to go with it. We’d love to hear any exciting pairing discoveries you find.

Bon Appétit!

2007 M. Chapoutier Belleruche Cotes du Rhone (Cotes du Rhone, France): 80% Grenache, 20% Syrah. Dark purple. Nose is a bit tight at first, then some earth and potpourri show through. Flavors of earth, toasted wood, dark chocolate, and black fruits. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity, medium to high tannins and a long finish. Well-balanced and very food-friendly.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Fred Meyer (Seattle, Washington), $11.79; Available elsewhere, $9 to $14

2007 Lone Canary Barbera (Wahluke Slope, Washington): Dark, inky purple. Very aromatic with port-like and raisin aromas. Red fruits, almost like thick raspberry jam, comes through on the palate. Medium-bodied and crisp with medium tannins and a long finish.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 1 bang for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Esquin Wine Merchants (Seattle, Washington), $16.99; Available elsewhere, $18

Filed under: American Wine, Barbera, Challenging Wine Pairing, Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Food & Wine, French Wine, Red Wine, Washington State Wine, Wines Under $15, Wines Under $20, Wines Under $25

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