Friday, March 25, 2016

Easter Brunch Menu

I love to celebrate each season with a new menu and pairing options. Spring is awesome because it is time to say good-bye to winter and hello to nicer weather. I also love the fresh spring ingredients and the cherry blossoms that fill DC. I typically do dinner, but this year, I thought brunch would be fun.  My menu and pairing ideas are below, but I'll past the recipes and photos after I make everything this weekend.  Enjoy!  If you need them in advance, shoot me an email and I'll send them:  capitalcooking [@]
I’m always a fan of a signature cocktail so this year we're making Mimosas with Sofia Blanc de Blancs and a touch of fresh orange juice. 

I thought it would be cool to feature some brunchy beers.  Boulevard and Ommegang are two of my favorite breweries!  Boulevard Ginger-Lemon Radler is a zesty, refreshing take on the tradition of mixing beer with soda or lemonade to create a light, thirst-quenching beverage ideal for warm weather.  These qualities make it awesome for brunch.

Rosetta is a moderate 5.6% ABV and its tart/sweet flavor pairs perfectly with brunch.  Ommegang Brewmaster Phil Leinhart’s desire to create a soured fruit beer wasn’t a possibility at his brewery in Cooperstown. The climate and current infrastructure don’t permit it. Fortunately for him, Belgian sister-brewery Liefmans not only has the capability to make such a beer, they have been definitive standard-bearers for over three hundred years. Leinhart’s recipe calls for a perfectly balanced blend of old (aged on cherries at least three years) and young Flemish brown ale (or oud bruin) with a lively and fruity kriek, or cherry beer. The result is a complex yet refreshing mahogany-brown brew that is an intriguing interplay of tartness and sweetness. Its elegance and depth would make Madame Rosa Merckx proud – Liefmans’ former Brewmaster and the first Belgian woman with that title in whose honor the beer is named.

One of my favorite things about the Francis Ford Coppola Winery is the stories behind the wine. They take pride in their product and each label has meaning. This pride is seen throughout their facility. It has a warm and inviting atmosphere. I’d highly recommend a trip if you’re in the Sonoma area. Not only is their wine top notch, but their restaurant, Rustic, is amazing. 

American Grilled Rack of Lamb

Pitagora: When Francis Ford Coppola’s grandfather, Agostino, was a child growing up in the small town of Bernalda in Southern Italy, he often played among ancient Greek ruins in nearby Metaponto, where thousands of years earlier stood a school run by the legendary Greek scholar Pythagoras — Pitagora in Italian. Known today for his mathematical theorem (a2 + b2 = c2), Pythagoras was more than a mathematician; he was a philosopher who sought new ways of understanding the world through mathematics, astronomy, and music theory.  Growing up in the footprint of this legend, Agostino developed a talent for mathematics and music, and his Pythagorean curiosity about the nature of how things work went on to influence each generation of the Coppola family. With flavors of briary blackberries, juicy plums, and black currants, Pitagora is a robust red blend of Syrah, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Petite Sirah. Selected lots were aged in a combination of French and American oak for 15 months, with the blended wine aged for 12 months.

Deviled Egg Salad

Virginia Dare 2014 Russian River Valley Chardonnay (SRP: $25).  Aged the classic way for 12 months in French oak, this wine delivers both intensity and density, expressing superlative American craftsmanship. A luxurious, creamy texture supports tropical aromas of orange blossom, red grapefruit, Asian pear, and pineapple. Rounding out the profile are underlying flavors of toasty bread balanced with French oak.

Grilled Asparagus

Bacon Quiche

Votre Santé Pinot Noir has aromas of raspberry and boysenberry, with delicate floral notes of acacia and rose petal. Juicy black cherry and plum character, accented with tea leaves, oak and a hint of minerality, round out the palate and carry over the long, complex finish. 

Potato Gratin

Diamond Chardonnay: Our Chardonnay reflects the distinctive personality of Monterey vineyards, which give rise to juicy apple, guava and melon flavors. Whole-cluster pressing and a combination of barrel and stainless steel fermentation ensures that the creamy texture and caramelized sugar finish is balanced by a crisp acidity.

Fresh Fruit Salad

Gia Frizzante: Representing five generations of the family Coppola in the film industry, Gia Coppola is not only an accomplished filmmaker, she’s also a talented photographer, artist and impromptu (and impressive) mixologist. Shy is a word she uses to describe herself, but her accomplishments are far from shy. In 2012, after sitting on the board of directors for the family’s Francis Ford Coppola Presents wine, food and resort business for more than a decade it seems fitting that Gia was inspired to create her own line of wines. Gia worked alongside Francis and the winemaking and design teams to create a wine brand that reflects her personality. The collaboration garnered three distinct wines for Gia by Gia Coppola — Frizzante Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir — crafted to be light, unpretentious and inspiring.

Sprinkles Carrot Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Sofia Blanc de Blancs: When his daughter was a little girl, Francis Coppola made her a promise that he would someday make a sparkling wine and name it after her. Today, this Blanc de Blancs is one of our most popular offerings, a favorite for parties and weddings. Fruity and refreshing, Sofia Blanc de Blancs is a rare blend of Pinot Blanc, Muscat, and Riesling. Mellow flavors of apples and pears are topped by a hint of citrus and honeysuckle. Elegant in character, this wine is lightly textured and vibrant through the finish.

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