When you love wine, you naturally love food too. After all, food brings out the best in wine, and vice versa. There’s just one catch – they need to match each other. That’s when the magic happens. There’s an extra zing added to each sip and bite. And you just want to keep the surreal experience going as long as possible.
Wine tastings are occasions where similar magic happens. Being right where the wine was made adds a special touch to a special drink. But, with COVID-19 taking a big toll on the travel industry, wine tastings have gone virtual. So, does this experience still come close to the original?
Well, some might argue that it’s better than the real thing! You don’t need to travel. You don’t need to spend money on accommodation. You don’t have to take time off work either. You get to taste the same wine, with the same sides, and the same experts leading the session. You also get to interact with a fun bunch of oenophiles at the end of the session. So give virtual tastings a shot – it’s a brilliant substitute for the real thing!
The Instant Pot is also trending right now, due to its unmatched benefits. The device halves cook times, retains more nutrients and gives you food that’s juicier as well as more flavorful. So here are 4 amazing wine and food pairings to party with.
Instant Pot Chicken Leg Quarters
Corrie Cooks’ Chicken leg quarters in the Instant Pot recipe is perhaps the best you’ll ever taste. And, an exceptional dish must be matched by an equally special wine. The 2019 Rose of the Sangiovese varietal, from Pope Valley Winery, Napa, fits the bill, and then some. The vineyard is set in the North-Eastern part of the Vaca Mountains, with warm days and cool evenings. This perfect weather allows the grapes to ripen fully, and develop a complex bouquet of fruity aromas. That, combined with the lively, bright palate and crisp acidity elevates this soft and juicy chicken quarters dish to new levels of satiation. To experience this wine, as well as others from Pope Valley, go for a tasting right from the comfort of your home.
Now, if you’d also like to try another wine with this succulent dish, pair with the McPrice Myers’ 2018 Beautiful Earth Red. Located in beautiful Paso Robles, do check out the classy winery’s tempting virtual tasting offer.
- 4 chicken leg quarters, skinless
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- Pepper and salt, to taste
- Pour the chicken broth into the Instant Pot, and place in a trivet too.
- Rub the pepper, salt, and garlic powder on the chicken leg quarters.
- Put the chicken on the trivet, arranging them in one layer.
- Seal the lid, and cook for 20 minutes under high pressure.
- When done, let the pressure release quickly.
- Take the chicken out, and coat with olive oil.
- Arrange in one layer again, and broil on each side for 5 minutes, using the Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid, oven, Ninja Foodi, or Mealthy Crisplid.
- Serve hot, with a chilled glass of Pope Valley’s 2019 Rose of Sangiovese.
Instant Pot Roasted Duck
Smooth and creamy roasted duck requires a wine that’s can cut through the fat. Tercero Winery’s 2017 Cinsault comes with lots of fresh fruity flavors and low tannins that go irresistibly well with the dish. Tercero is a small winery that makes handcrafted wines in small lots, sourcing grapes from Santa Barbara County. To sample their extremely well cared for wines, don’t miss a Tercero Virtual Tasting.
- 1 (3-4 lb) wild duck
- Black pepper and salt, as per your taste
- 2 tbs butter
- 2 sprigs rosemary, fresh
- 1 lemon, halved
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- Use a fork to prick the duck’s skin all over.
- Rub the pepper and salt on the duck’s body and cavity.
- Push the rosemary and lemon into the duck’s cavity. Tie up the legs together.
- Put the Instant Pot into saute mode, and throw in the butter.
- Saute the duck for a few minutes, till all sides are evenly browned.
- Switch off, and clean the oil and grease from the Instant Pot.
- Pour in the chicken broth, seal the lid, and cook for 25 minutes under high pressure.
- Allow the pressure to release naturally.
- If you’d like the skin crisp, put the duck into the oven/air fryer lid, giving it 5 minutes at 400F.
- Cut the duck into pieces, and serve with a tall glass of Tercero Winery 2017 Cinsault.
Instant Pot Sausage and Potatoes
Spann Vineyards’ C Lake Family Tempranillo 2016 is made from grapes sourced from the Sacramento River Delta region, located to the East of Napa Valley. The wine has lots of flavors, good acidity, and well-rounded tannins. This versatile wine easily pairs with a wide variety of dishes and goes smashingly well with Instant Pot sausage and potatoes. Additionally, Spann Vineyards are known for their food-friendly wines, and you can check them out virtually, here. If you’re not a fan of Tempranillo, another good pairing is the Madrigal 2016 Nuestra Sangre. This wine comes from the cosy Madrigal Family Winery, and you can get a virtual tasting going with them here.
- 2 sausage packets – beef/chicken/turkey
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 6 potatoes, cubed, peeled
- 1 bell pepper
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ¾ cup beef broth
- Pepper and salt, to taste
- 2 green onions, chopped, as garnish
- Put the Instant Pot into saute mode, and add in the oil.
- When hot, put in the onion, sausages, and bell pepper, cooking for 5 minutes.
- Put in the broth, potatoes, garlic, basil, oregano, pepper, and salt.
- Stir well, seal the lid, and cook for 5 minutes under high pressure.
- When done, allow the pressure to release quickly.
- Garnish with green onions, and serve alongside a cool glass of Spann Vineyards C Lake Family Tempranillo 2016.
Instant Pot Apple Crisp
Sweet, juicy, and crunchy, Instant Pot apple crisp is an instant hit with Prime Solum’s 2010 Goldrock Ridge Chardonnay. The butter absolutely gels with the wine, which can be described as buttery smooth anyways! Get this and more at a Solum Wine Tasting session.
- 8 apples, peeled, chopped
- 3 tbs water
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 3 tbs maple syrup
- Few drops of vanilla extract
- 1 cup oats
- 3 tbs flour
- 3 tbs melted butter
- ½ cup water (to steam)
- Take a round dish (ensure it can fit into the Instant Pot), and put in the chopped apples, nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla.
- Combine it well, then add water and maple syrup. Stir again.
- Mix the butter, flour, and oatmeal in another bowl. Pour the mixture on top of the apple mix.
- Pour ½ cup water into the Instant Pot, put in a trivet, and place the round dish on it.
- Cook for 8 minutes under high pressure. Then release the steam quickly.
- Serve soon, with sips of Prime Solum 2010 Goldrock Ridge Chardonnay.
Don’t let the virus cloud your love affair with wine. Pick the right virtual wine tastings, and you’ll feel like you’re being transported to the wine region you’re really missing right now! Even better, get the Priority Wine Pass – your ticket to maximum wine experiences, at minimal costs.