Simple Food and Wine Pairings with Crate & Barrel
The world of wine can be a complicated and sometimes intimidating one; add on the element of pairing it with food and things can get even trickier. Lucky for us, enjoying a great glass of wine doesn’t have to be so hard! Some of our favorite pairings are Champagne and French fries or caramel popcorn with a Tawny Port, not anything remotely close to complicated. We definitely think there is a time and a place for a proper dinner party with extravagant courses paired with rare wines. But more often than not, we simply do not have time to put together a bougie dinner party, right?
So we skipped the sit down dinner to make more time to actually enjoy our party and those bottles we’d been dying to open. We partnered with our amazing friends at Crate and Barrel to throw an easy, no-fuss gathering to toast away a weekday evening. We paired some super simple appetizers to some really exciting wines and avoided all of the other fluff to make more time for friend time!
We love ourselves a cheese board! To us, wine parties always start with a proper cheese selection. We love to pour a light bodied rosé or sparkling wine along side the cheese for friends to enjoy as they arrive. One of our favorite inexpensive sparkling wines? A perfect Spanish bubble by Avinyō. You can learn more about it from our past article regarding summer wine and cheese pairings.
Let’s chat quickly about glassware, shall we? You can drink wine from whatever glassware suits your fancy, if your plan is simply to just ‘drink’. But if you truly want to taste, make sure you are using a proper glass. There are many types of wine glasses out there, all tailored to very specific wines, and this can get out of control quickly. For our casual affair, we stuck with the basics: A flute for sparking wine, a white wine glass, and a red wine glass. Perfect size, dainty enough to be beautiful, but durable enough to not break immediately—if you accidentally hit it on the sink when washing after you are a couple glasses deep.
We kept the decor simple and let the food and wine speak for itself. We used beautiful staple pieces to serve our food on, like this cheese board by JK Adams and this gorgeous stoneware serving bowl. We brought in simple florals and placed them in bud vases. Low stress here, so this gathering could easily be put together after work for a perfect weekday escape! Pro tasting tip: Make sure you are not using any scented candles or florals with too big of an aroma (like lilies or sweet peas)! They will get in the way of your tasting experience!
Check out our full menu below. We kept everything bite-sized, perfect for grazing and snacking, and instead of setting the dining room table, we gathered around the kitchen island. Everyone always gathers in the kitchen at parties anyway, right? Also, lazy entertaining tip: it makes set up and clean up super quick!
Artisan cheese platter, Baguette & Accoutrements
served with a Rosé and a Spanish sparkling wine
Candied Nuts, Rosemary Popcorn
served with a Meursault (a Chardonnay from Burgundy region of France)
Endive with whipped goat cheese, honey & blackberry
served with a Sancerre (a Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire region of France)
served with a Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon
Thanks for sipping along with us! Let us know what your go-to casual wine pairing is and what you think of ours. And make sure you tag #secretsupperliving on Instagram so we can follow along!
Candied nuts and Rosemary Popcorn
2 quarts popped popcorn
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
1 cup candied mixed nuts (your choice of nut)
Directions: Mix all of the ingredients together.
Serve with: A medium bodied Chardonnay (think French)
1 Package thick cut kettle style salted potato chips
8 oz thinly sliced salmon lox
4 oz creme fraiche
Fresh dill for garnish
Directions: For each bite, layer potato chip, then salmon, then dollop of creme fraiche, then top with small sprig of fresh dill.
Serve With: A Pinot Noir, we love a Pinot from the Willamette Valley, OR or a French Burgundy