As the saying goes, “Everyone is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day!” Year after year, many gather in celebration of the feast day of Ireland’s patron saint, St. Patrick. About 13 million pints of Guinness, the iconic beer of the holiday, are consumed worldwide on St. Patrick’s Day, and there becomes no shortage of signs offering green beer. Revamp the celebration this year by honoring the holiday with these great wine pairings with traditional Irish dishes that go far beyond where a pint can take you!
The Dish: Irish seafood chowder
The Wine: 2013 Chenin Blanc, Urbano Cellars
Contrary to widespread belief, the typical dish of corned beef and cabbage isn’t eaten in Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day. Instead, tradition insists that lamb or seafood is much more appropriate. Prepare a delicious Irish seafood chowder to pair with a 2013 Chenin Blanc from Urbano Cellars for a meal that is just as delicious as it is traditional.
This wine shows aromas of melon, pear, crisp fuji apples, and hints of pineapple and jasmine. It is crisp, clean and fruity on the palate with a medium body, mineral overtones and bright acidity along with flavors of pears, melon, pineapple and hints of lemon. Wonderful summer-time wine just by itself or serve with salt-cured meats such as prosciutto, soft rich slightly robust cheeses such as camembert or goat cheeses, simple fish dishes or a bowl of steamed mussels.
Try Irish Chef Donal Skehan’s recipe for seafood chowder. Recipe serves 6.
The Dish: Leg of lamb
The Wine: Zinfandel, Urbano Cellars
Pair a simple roast leg of lamb with garlic and rosemary with Zinfandel from Urbano Cellars. The intensity of the old vine flavors shine through in this zesty Zinfandel. Eucalyptus and chocolate-covered raspberry along with some minerality and hints of dried marjoram and thyme come through on the nose. On the palate chocolate mint, raspberries and blackberries combine with the herbs and a touch of cinnamon and cloves. A lingering medium-bodied mouth feel and good acid balances the slightly higher alcohol.
For a great leg of lamb, try Irish Chef Donal Skehan’s recipe, serving 6-8.
The Dish: Lamb stew
The Wine: 2010 Syrah, Carica Wines
Take the chill off early spring with the warmth of lamb braised with a bit of bright, fruit-forward Syrah. Even before the vernal equinox, you can invite your friends to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with this lamb stew, some crusty bread (or Irish soda bread) to soak up the juices and a glass of Carica Syrah.
With black raspberry and roasted coffee aromas, the 2010 Syrah is a full-bodied and elegant wine with cherry, plum, mint and cracked pepper flavors. No one will miss the green beer.
Carica Wines has a wonderful recipe for lamb stew that can be found below.
The Dish: Irish cream bundt cake
The Wine: 2012 White Riesling, Chouinard Vineyard and Winery
No holiday would be complete without dessert! The 2012 White Riesling is a sweet wine with crisp acidity and a touch of Chouinard’s Orange Muscat. Save room for dessert and time work on creating the perfect cake to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with this recipe.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day from all of us at East Bay Vintners Alliance!