Wine Dinners at Dukes

Some of my favorite things, rain drops on roses and whiskers on kittens, full wine glasses and 5 courses of yummy. Bright copper kettle and warm woolen mittens, slow roasted prime rib and sustainable goodness. Pan seared scallops with skewered prawn broiled, Dungeness crab legs with warm chipolote aioli, these are a few of my favorite things. When I burn my finger, over cook my Coho, when I’m feeling stress, I simply remember my favorite things and have a glass of wine. And then I don’t feel so bad.

One of the amazing things I get to do at Dukes is our event dinners (they really make me happy). This week I got together with John Bigelow the J in J&M cellars. We poured and drank five of his exceptional local wines, they have a place in Woodinville that is amazing and every one should see.  When planning the wine dinner John and I got together and paired the food with wines. We tried his Rose and before you discount Rose you need to try his, very tasty. Usually in John’s words winery take a bad red, mix it with a crappy white, add sugar and call it Rose. His is completely different, very good. I asked him what it would pair with, he said “you’ll laugh but popcorn”. He was right quite tasty, so 1st course was all natural truffle oil popcorn with market fresh imported Parmesan Reggiano and Rose. 2nd course was his Souvenoin Blanc with a trio of seafood, Seared Weathervane Scallops, Wild Mexican White Prawns marinated and broiled with burre blanc and balsamic reduction and fresh Washington Dungeness with a chipolote Aioli, the cool thing about this course was how each of the three seafood’s totally changed how the wine tasted. The 3rd course was Alaskan Coho salmon wrapped in some San Daniele Prosciutto from DeLaurenti at Pike Place (I sampled many to find the perfect one), served on top a bed of Campanini Risotto with fresh Puyallup veggies and paired with an exceptional red blend. The 4th course was slow roasted painted Hills Prime Rib, I made a Grand Jue from house made demi and some fresh horseradish sauce to go with organic fingerling smashed potatoes and J&M Cab. We finished the night with Caubert Chocolate covered strawberry’s on a bed of herb crème anglaise.

The best part of the night was the guests. Duke’s is so lucky to have such amazing foodie fans, really great company.

Maybe a cold beer and a little Woodford to finish off the night……

“Wild” Bill Ranniger, Executive Chef, Duke’s Chowder House


August 7, 2012