Organic wine & food matching: Domaine Tempier Bandol & smoked pulled pork

Randy Caparoso is an award winning wine professional and journalist, living in Denver, Colorado. For a free subscription to Randy's Organic Wine Match of the Day, visit the Denver Wine Examiner.

Collette wrote of France’s Jurançon: when I was a young girl, I was introduced to a passionate Prince, domineering and two-timing like all great seducers…

My lifelong affair has been with Domaine Tempier’s Bandol rouge, which began in the early 1980s, when I was first introduced to the French imports of Kermit Lynch. In the beginning, I did not understand the compulsion: it was a red wine that always seem to have a spirit – whether it was in the mysterious, earthy, scrubby, leathery notes that often seem to engulf the aromas of berry liqueurs in the nose, or the slightly sparkly, lively, lilting quality in the texture of the wine itself, almost belying a meatiness of tannin and dried grape skin flavor.

Whatever the case, it was like my first love, which happened to be a girl from a Hawaiian plantation – a black maned mestiza, first sighted bouncing up onto the back of a truck, work gloves belted at the waist, jeans snug around the thighs and tucked into dusty leather, steel tip work boots, and (like me) 15 years old going on whatevah. I was tongue tied and discombobulated for weeks; and even long after, incapable of understanding exactly why ordinary conversation seemed as strenuous as swimming in mud.

But conversation with the maddening mestiza did continue for some time, thank you; but with Bandol, the conversation has been going for much longer. It is, after all is said and done, a wine that never seems light nor heavy, lean nor fat, zesty but never sharp, delicious with a stew of meat, and delicious with a stew of fish. In short, the perfect lifelong companion.

Many years later, reading the chapter devoted to Domaine Tempier in Kermit Lynch’s classic book, Adventures on the Wine Route, I came to understand why this wine, of all wines, retains its eternal, dusty leathered youth: particularly the fact that it comes from a magnificent vineyard in Provence’s Le Plan de Castellet, close enough to the Mediterranean where the air is pungent with the smell of the ocean mixed with scrubby herbs of the chalky hillsides. How François Peyraud plowed and hoed the field by hand rather resort to herbicides, and fought mildew by spraying the vines (mostly Mourvèdre, with some grapes of the Grenache) only with natural sulfur from the soil of a nearby region so that the terroir could remain pristine and protected from artificial intrusion.

And how Jean-Marie Peyraud, following his father Lucien’s lead, aged the Bandol strictly in large, well used casks (rather than new, small oak barrels) so that the wine tasted of grapes and earth rather than freshly hewn trees, and bottled with absolutely no sulfites so that years after, when drinking Domaine Tempier Bandol, you would still feel like you were drinking directly from the cask, when the wine still tastes like it is just squeezed from the grapes.

Indeed, Domaine Tempier’s Bandol is a wine that really doesn’t age. That is to say, it will retain its deep color and fragrance – in fact, deepen in color and fragrance – even as the years fly by. I kid you not, as this very fact was driven home to me one night (oh, about eleven years ago) when Kermit himself served me a muscular 20 year old Vieux Télégraphe Châteauneuf-du-Pape, followed by a regally scented 20 year old Chave Hermitage, followed by a 20 year old Domaine Tempier… all double-blind (the identities of the wines hidden from me in decanters), and densest, darkest, most fragrant wine of the three was still, after all that time, the Bandol!

But I wasn’t surprised, because I’d already been entangled with Bandol for some time. Now are you getting interested?

Okay, then you must first find yourself a bottle of the 2006 Domaine Tempier Bandol Classique (about $40); which, although is an entry level Bandol (Tempier produces several single vineyard Bandols with even more pent-up energy and power), has all the Bandolishness you need: a nose of sweet berries (sometimes I think cassis, other times framboise) floating over the glass with wispy, invisible clouds of earth (freshly composted humus… perfume to a gardener) and gunflint mixed with a subtle ocean salinity; and on the palate, juicy, rich, medium to full flavors, tugging at the senses like that old, familiar, perfectly agreeable pain (ah, that girl from the fields).

Island Style Smoked Pulled Pork

When Kermit and I tasted that 20 year old Bandol, he and his wife Gail Skoff served up squab and a casserole of scalloped potatoes layered with truffles. Of course, the match was perfect in every way, but not exactly your normal Friday night meal. In lieu of that, I prescribe slow smoked birds, like duck or Cornish game hen. But from many years of experience, I also know that Bandol’s salt and flint nuanced berry qualities are absolutely delicious with Island style smoked pulled pork (what we call kalua pig), which differs from Southern style pulled pork in that it’s not mixed in or served with a vinegary, sweet-spicy barbecue sauce (Bandol doesn’t have the pointedly sweet, berry jam flavors like, say, California Zinfandel to handle American barbecue sauces).

No, for Bandol all you need is a fork tender, steamy pile of smoked pork dolled up with nothing more than rock salt. The ancient Hawaiians traditionally dug a 6 x 4 x 3 foot h*** in the ground to make their kalua – the whole pig cooked over blazing hot rocks, covered with banana leaves and burlap, and then buried in the ground to steam a good 24 hours. I’m not suggesting you find your fatted pig, dig up the backyard or drive down to Louisiana for your banana leaves. After many years of living off-island, I’ve devised my own total “lazy man’s” way of cooking Hawaiian style pulled pork, requiring nothing more than time:

5-8 lb. pork butt
¼ cup sea salt (Hawaiian if you can find it; kosher in a pinch)
2 oz. liquid smoke (or ½ bottle of Wright’s Liquid Hickory Smoke)

Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Score pork and place in a big enough Dutch oven. Combine salt and liquid smoke and rub all over pork. Pour water half-way up side of pork; cover with heavy duty aluminum foil and roast in oven, at least 1 hour per pound. The entire house will smell like a smoker, but that’s okay… just open a window and pop a well chilled bottle of Bandol rosé (some say, the finest dry pink wine in the world). Remove pork from water, place in large bowl and shred with tongs or strong forks. Mix in additional rock salt to taste. Serve with steamed white rice, collard greens or spinach, fresh sliced tomatoes, the Bandol rouge, and you’re in business!

Views: 10

Comment

You need to be a member of FohBoh to add comments!

Join FohBoh

Advertisments

 

DEPARTMENTS

Social Wine Club for Craft Wineries

Smartbrief

Casual chains aim to take menus up a few notches

Casual-dining chains including Tony Roma's, Olive Garden, Carrabba's Italian Grill and Smokey Bones are getting creative with -More

Sikkimese Turmeric and Ginger Idaho® Potatoes
Enjoy a taste of the Himalayas with these flavorful cubed Idaho® Potatoes seasoned with garlic, ginger, turmeric, coriander and chile flakes. For this and more great recipes, visit foodservice.idahopotato.com/recipes.

Crumbs debuts the Crumbnut

Cupcake chain Crumbs Bake Shop is offering the Crumbnut, a croissant-doughnut combo product, in BJ's Wholesale Clubs in addit -More

Restaurant sales rebounded in March, report says

Restaurants saw same-store sales growth of 0.7% in March, the first increase since last November, as warmer weather melted wi -More

JOBS & CAREERS

Posting a job or finding a job starts here at FohBoh. Call us about special $25 posting packages to syndicate across all major jobs boards.

National News

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc. Announces CFO Departure in May

The company has commenced a search for Mr. Hope’s successor, reviewing both internal and external candidates. Mr. Hope will assist in the transition of duties to an interim CFO and will remain a consultant to the company through the summer.

Fuddruckers Reenters New York State With Restaurant In Middletown

introduces its first company-operated New York State site today at 340 Route 211 East in Middletown, which is located in the Hudson Valley approximately 60 miles from Manhattan.

Giardino Gourmet Salads Announces Nine Consecutive Quarters Of Positive Comparable Sales

Giardino Gourmet Salads announced that it has experienced nine consecutive quarters of positive comparable sales after posting an eight percent increase throughout the first quarter of 2014.

Organic Claims Declining on US Restaurant Menus

According to Mintel Menu Insights, while 'organic' is still the leading ethical claim on restaurant menus, its usage declined 28% between Q4 2010-13.

The Habit Burger Grill Opens Fourth Utah Location In May

The Habit Burger Grill is opening its fourth Utah location on May 1st in Sandy, Utah. The California-based restaurant known for its popular Charburgers opened its first Utah location in Sugarhouse in 2013, and has since expanded to include three more locations.

CROWD FUNDING

If you are looking for capital to start or grow your restaurant, create the next 501c3, develop and launch the next app for the restaurant industry,or want to help your peers in some meaningful way, we want to know about it.

TED TALKS VIDEO

TED: Jennifer Senior: For parents, happiness is a very high bar - Jennifer Senior (2014)

The parenting section of the bookstore is overwhelming—it's "a giant, candy-colored monument to our collective panic," as writer Jennifer Senior puts it. Why is parenthood filled with so much anxiety? Because the goal of modern, middle-class parents—to raise happy children—is so elusive. In this honest talk, she offers some kinder and more achievable aims.

TED: David Brooks: Should you live for your résumé ... or your eulogy? - David Brooks (2014)

Within each of us are two selves, suggests David Brooks in this meditative short talk: the self who craves success, who builds a résumé, and the self who seeks connection, community, love -- the values that make for a great eulogy. (Joseph Soloveitchik has called these selves "Adam I" and "Adam II.") Brooks asks: Can we balance these two selves?

TED: David Sengeh: The sore problem of prosthetic limbs - David Sengeh (2014)

What drove David Sengeh to create a more comfortable prosthetic limb? He grew up in Sierra Leone, and too many of the people he loves are missing limbs after the brutal civil war there. When he noticed that people who had prosthetics weren’t actually wearing them, the TED Fellow set out to discover why — and to solve the problem with his team from the MIT Media Lab.

TED: Louie Schwartzberg: Hidden miracles of the natural world - Louie Schwartzberg (2014)

We live in a world of unseeable beauty, so subtle and delicate that it is imperceptible to the human eye. To bring this invisible world to light, filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg bends the boundaries of time and space with high-speed cameras, time lapses and microscopes. At TED2014, he shares highlights from his latest project, a 3D film titled "Mysteries of the Unseen World," which slows down, speeds up, and magnifies the astonishing wonders of nature.

© 2014   Created by FohBoh.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service