Every bottle has a story

I am not a wine expert, but with each bottle I try and share with friends, I learn more. Wine is an exceptional social drink; it is the marijuana of alcoholic beverages because it must be shared. I seek to share with you my thoughts and experiences as I drink the wine in my closet, as well as my enthusiasm for the finds that come my way and the excellent values that I find. I'd love to hear your thoughts and experiences too, so please share!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Ain’t got no bone

My friend Curt gave me a call a couple weeks ago to say that he purchased a boneless leg of lamb and he was sure I could do something with it. Stuffing it sounded like a good idea. So I used the rest of the week to think about how to stuff this bit of meat. I found a very simple recipe, although it did require a bit of work.

I took the lamb, spread it out on a cutting board, and trimmed all the excess fat and gristle from it. I then scored it with some half-inch cuts so that the meat would lay flat. I covered it with a plastic bag and then beat on it with a rubber mallet until it was more or less even in thickness. After seasoning it with a bit of salt and pepper, I took fresh spinach and layered the leaves over the lamb. This was then followed with a layer of goat cheese.

I rolled up the meat with the spinach and cheese, tied it, then seared the meat on all sides in a cast iron pan. The lamb was then oven roasted in that pan at 400 degrees until it was rare. I prepared some herb pan-roasted potatoes, but they were overcooked, sadly, and were disappointing. I also prepared a butternut squash and seasoned it with a bit of nutmeg.

The next time I try this recipe, I have some other things in mind. I found a recipe that would have you roll the meat after it is tied in some flour with fennel and thyme. I might add some pine nuts as well to the stuffing.

Anyway, I served the lamb with a Southern Rhone gem, a 2007 Gigondas from Domain Brusset, the Tradition le Grand Montmirail. It’s a deliciously powerful wine that paired stunningly with the lamb (but not like that Brunello, I must admit). This is a relatively inexpensive Gigondas – I picked it up for $21. Delicious blueberry and blackberry with just the right mineral quality.

Overall a very good meal; I just wished I hadn’t screwed up the potatoes.

I rate this wine with a 9 using my scale at the left.

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