Wine Advocate Weekend Pairings: Brunch Edition

Food lovers, rejoice: we’ve got a series here at Wine Journal happening every Friday, where we bring forth a sample menu replete with recipes from chefs around the world provided by our friends at the MICHELIN Guide, all to be paired with wines by Wine Advocate reviewers. 

Weekends are for brunching, and there’s no better way to spend a lazy Saturday or Sunday with a heaping pile of bacon, eggs and hash browns and washing it all down with a breakfast cocktail.
Photo courtesy of Tanya Holland/Brown Sugar Kitchen.

At Tanya Holland’s Brown Sugar Kitchen in Oakland, her personal favorite is the smoked pork hash. Only available on weekends, Holland likes this dish because it is a great way to make use of some of the restaurant's excess. Breakfast potatoes and baby back ribs—from the restaurant's wood-smoked barbecue—are prepared fresh daily, but don't hold up to being sold as-is on subsequent days. So instead of contributing to food waste, Holland pulls the smoked rib meat off the bones and combines it and the breakfast potatoes with some vegetables and herbs to make a delicious breakfast hash with a new lease on life.
Photo courtesy of Tanya Holland/Brown Sugar Kitchen.

Holland also likes to dish up spoonbread, a Southern staple with a consistency similar to a soufflé or pudding. For her recipe, she incorporates sautéed mushrooms, fresh thyme and Cheddar cheese. The finished product achieves a light consistency from the whipped egg whites that are folded into the cornmeal batter before baking.
Photo courtesy of The Promontory.

For the sweet tooth, whip up this dulce del leche French toast from the team behind The Promontory in Chicago. Executive chef Bernard Bennet says the house-made dulce de leche is truly the star of this particular dish, utilizing the traditional method of simmering milk and sugar for a long time to get the luxurious caramel sauce. This dish also includes roasted bananas, Mexican chocolate, toasted pecans and whipped cream to make this a brunch recipe you won't soon forget.

“Brunches are meant to be festive, and what's more festive than bubbles? Purple bubbles, that's what,” says Wine Advocate managing editor, Joe Czerwinski. “Sparkling Shiraz from Australia is my favorite brunch pour, boasting enough sweet berry fruit to pair with syrupy treats, but also rich and savory enough to partner eggs, hash, or whatever you might throw at it. We haven't formally reviewed any in the past couple of years, but here are a few producers enjoyed in the recent past, with capsule summaries to help you with your choice.

Paringa Sparkling Shiraz: On the sweet side, with loads of fruit. Under $20, perfect for a crowd. Imported by Quintessential Wines.

The Chook NV Sparkling Shiraz: A bit more serious/savory, but still fruit-driven. $20. Imported by Epicurean Wines.

Fox Creek NV Vixen Sparkling Red Wine: It's usually around 75% Shiraz. A bit more than the first two, but worth the modest upgrade for the increased complexity. Around $25. No known importer.

Best's Great Western Sparkling Shiraz: Drier and more serious stuff, with two years on the lees and the dosage provided by a bit of old fortified Muscat. $35. Imported by Little Peacock Imports, LLC.

View more Wine Advocate Weekend Pairings here

Hero image courtesy of Tanya Holland/Brown Sugar Kitchen.

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