Hand selected from the Rhône valley
Perfumed rose hips and wild raspberries at first sniff with cooked plums dominating the taste and fresh menthol playing second fiddle. Easy to appreciate and even easier to drink.
With its reds focused singularly on Syrah, the Northern Rhône is dramatically different from the Southern Rhône, which specializes in Grenache. The latter feels like southern France, with olive trees and broad sunny skies, whereas the former has cooler weather and steep, craggy hillsides. Crozes-Hermitage is the largest appellation in the Northern Rhône and represents some of the low hills and terraces across the river from the famous hills of Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie.
|Pair With:||French onion soup with gruyere or lamb gyros with mint. Oversized sweaters and old Disney movies.|
THE PERFECT RECIPE: FRENCH ONION SOUP
Melt butter with olive oil in an 8 quart stock pot on medium heat. Add onions and continually stir until tender and translucent. Do not brown the onions.
Add beef broth, sherry (if you got it) and thyme. Season with salt and pepper, and simmer for 30 minutes.
Heat the oven broiler.
Ladle soup into oven safe serving bowls and place one slice of bread on top of each (bread may be broken into pieces if you prefer). Layer each slice of bread with a slice of provolone or gruyere, 1/2 slice diced Swiss and 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese. Place bowls on cookie sheet and broil in the preheated oven until cheese bubbles and browns slightly.
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cups sliced onions
4 (10.5 ounce) cans beef broth
2 tablespoons dry sherry (optional, but tasty)
1 teaspoon dried thyme
salt and pepper to taste
4 slices French bread
4 slices provolone cheese (or gruyere)
2 slices Swiss cheese, diced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (for umami, mami!)
The origins of the vineyard are said to be Roman, the name derived from a hermit who, according to legend, cultivated the vines on the hill in the Middle Ages. By the 17th century, red and white Hermitage was being served in aristocratic circles around Europe, the white often more highly prized than the red, which was used for bolstering quality Bordeaux in the 18th and 19th centuries. Early 20th-century gloom and disinterest allowed the vineyards to lapse but the reputation of the wine was reborn in the late 1970s.