never cook with a wine wouldn't drink

Chef Matt Feuer

Chef Matt Feuer sharpened his chops in the restaurants of New York and Las Vegas, acquiring new skills and adding to his culinary knowledge as he progressed in his career. After moving to California, he moved into the food service industry, taking a job as a chef for a large commercial food service company. He has helped launch kitchen programs at several fortune 500 companies, where his focus has been on providing top quality food with commercial ingredients...something that can be a huge challenge in the world of corporate bottom lines and budgets.

Chef Matt prides himself as an expert at just that: great food at a great price (day, after day, after day) for the clients he is in charge of serving. One of the most exciting things about the ACADÉMIE Feedback Project is seeing how different chefs cook with wine, and specifically how they see ways our wines might fit into their individual cooking "universe".

Here's what Chef Matt had to say:

Blend #1:
"Very tasty and not as astringent as other pinots I've had. I get oaky and spicy notes, but not a whole lot of bright fruit. This would make a perfect bolognese sauce, nice pasta with tomatoes, olives, capers, fresh basil. I think the woody and oaky notes would come through nicely in this. The fruit might pop out in a reduction - I'd have to toy around with it and see."

Blend #2:
"I see some of the tree fruit coming through here. Grassy notes come through too. The acidity is very bright and it could possibly overpower lighter seafood like whitefish or shrimp - but I'd have to toy around with it to see. I could see this with pork - actually, I could come up with five recipes that would work great with this wine in a week. Off the top of my head, I'm thinking a citrus marinated pork tenderloin would be great. Very straight forward wine and I like it - I can drink this!"

Blend #3:
"I get the peppery notes out of this. It would be nice in a pork dish, or maybe a braised pot roast. Maybe even adding some dried cherries into a sauce - a cherry demi. If you did add a bit of fruit into the sauce, I could see maybe even a filet mignon, or Swedish meatballs (with maybe a lingonberry sauce)."

Blend #4:
"Different mouthfeel than your blend #2, a bit more viscous. I get the pear and peach notes coming through in the aroma. Very nice. I'm sure the sweetness would come through nicely in a reduction. Very summer-like flavors. Stone fruity, grilled chicken marinated in wine and peach salsa. Not sure if I would do lamb with it, but I can see the fish and gamebird. I think the fruit complexity would be really nice with these types of dishes."

About the ACADÉMIE Feedback Project:
ACADÉMIE wine blends are a work in progress. We are constantly improving, refining and tweaking our profiles. There is nothing we love more than feedback on how to improve our product. Because we source wines directly from other wineries, we are able to introduce wines with qualities that will highlight and emphasize certain flavors in your cooking. The result is a blend that helps you achieve flavor perfection.

An important part of this process is to solicit feedback. Everyone in the world of flavors has an opinion about what works and what doesn't. We believe it's important to get as many different perspectives as we can.

This article is one of a series of articles showcasing the opinions and feedback from people involved in creating great flavors.