By LaGayle ~ July 18th, 2012.
Being native Texans, the Wine Peeps love BBQ. Real BBQ, that is! There is a distinct difference between real BBQ and just anything cooked on a grill outside. Hamburgers and hot dogs are not BBQ; neither is roast beef with lots of BBQ sauce slathered on top. Real BBQ is smoked by slow-cooking the meat for hours in a pit over indirect heat. And let me tell you, it is so good!
Since moving to Seattle many years ago, it is the rare occasion that we are able to enjoy real BBQ. So once a year on the Fourth of July, I cook a complete Texas BBQ meal. I use mesquite wood and charcoal in the firebox to the side of the grill holding the meat and the smoke goes from the firebox through the grill/smoker section and out through a “chimney” that is located on top of that section at the opposite end from the firebox.
While Shiner Bock beer is always a great choice to enjoy with Texas BBQ, we decided to see what wine would pair well with the BBQ for this month’s challenging wine pairing. Our BBQ meal included beef brisket, pork ribs, and sausage. It was rounded out with potato salad, baked beans, coleslaw, garlic bread, and banana pudding.
To determine which wines to try, once again I referred to my favorite resource, What to Drink with What You Eat by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page. I decided to try a Shiraz and a Zinfandel and selected the 2008 John Duval Entity Shiraz from Australia and the 2009 Sineann Old Vine Zinfandel from Oregon. Both wines were very good; however, the unanimous choice as the best pairing with the Texas BBQ was the Shiraz. The Shiraz had more tannins and held up better with the smoked meats.
We’d love for you to share in the comments what you would have paired with this meal. And, as always, we welcome your suggestions for challenging wine pairings for us to try in the future.
2008 John Duval Entity Shiraz (Barossa Valley, Australia): Deep, dark purple black in color. Very aromatic with leather, spice, and smoke on the nose. Black fruits, leather, and spice come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity and medium to high tannins. Well-balanced with a long, lingering finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: K&L Wine Merchants (California), $31.99; Available elsewhere $30 to $45
2009 Sineann Old Vine Zinfandel (Columbia Valley, Oregon): Dark purple black. Nice nose with blackberry jam and smoky aromas. Very jammy with blackberry and chocolate on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with crisp acidity, medium tannins, and a very long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to buy: Full Pull Wines (Seattle, Washington), $36.99; Available elsewhere $32 to $36
Filed under: American Wine, Australian Wine, Challenging Wine Pairing, Food & Wine, Oregon Wine, Red Wine, Shiraz/Syrah, Wines Over $25, Zinfandel