Had some friends over for dinner the other night and there were new tastes all around the table, from cheese to salad to wine.
For pre-dinner, my friend was kind enough to bring non-cow milk cheese to make the lactose intolerant person happy. One of them was a Honey Goat Gouda from Trader Joe’s. I normally can’t stand goat cheese but love gouda. This was totally on the good side. I highly recommend it! The other was a manchego from TJ’s that I’ve had before that is equally as delicious! Great way to kick off the night.
We had three wines throughout the evening, kicking off with a Virginia white. The first was Rappahannock Cellar’s Viognier. It was a nice local grape, pairing nicely with the appetizers.
For dinner I made a recipe I had been wanting to try for awhile — Citrus-Avocado Salad. It was AMAZING! For the tamari almonds it calls for, a friend gave me the great idea of making them vs. buying them to save money. All you need to do is toss the almonds in some soy sauce, a couple dashes of Worcestershire Sauce and a pinch of sugar. You bake them at 250 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Done! For the blood oranges, sometimes they are tough to find. I came across red oranges at one grocery store. Otherwise I was going to use grapefruit or just regular oranges.
With this salad I served some pan seared (vs grilled because I live in an apartment and can’t have a BBQ) chicken breasts and quinoa.
The wines we enjoyed with this included two reds. One from Virgina — First Colony Cab from a winery in Monticello — very nice. Again, I’m finding Cabs I like — something is happening to me. The second red is one I discovered/was introduced to a few years back — Eleven. It’s from Washington and the specific varietal was the 2008 La Ronde.
Recap: Great dinner. Rave reviews around the table. Now I just keep thinking about what the next meal will bring. Cheers.