A Jurassien Match: A Crémant du Jura + Croûte aux Morilles et Comté and a Mini Baked Alaska
This month, the French Winophiles looked at wines from the Jura. I opted not to share this for the event because two of my colleagues shared pairing with the same wine.
For the event, I posted Lamb Sausage-Stuffed Ravioli + Domaine Rolet Arbois Vieilles Vignes Poulsard 2018. I already mentioned that two of my colleagues share this bottle. Robin of Crushed Grape Chronicles shared Crémant du Jura & Rösti; Linda of My Full Wine Glass paired her bottle with a variety of appetizers.
Crémant du Jura Brut Lapiaz
My second Jura wine was the Tissot-Maire Crémant du Jura AOC Brut Lapiaz. The imprint - Tissot-Maire - is the merging of The House of Tissot with Domaine Maire et Fils. The former was founded in 1896 and the latter has been making wine since 1632. By joining forces, Tissot-Maire is now the largest wine-growing estate in the Jura.
This sparkling wine is a blend of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. The grapes were all hand-harvested and aged on the lees for at least a year. 'Brut' refers to the level of sweetness and this lies somewhere in the off-dry range. 'Lapiez' refers to the unique limestone formations found in the Jura.
The wine poured a pale straw color with fine and persistent perlage. On the nose, I noted ample citrus aromas such as bergamot, pommelo, and lemon. There were also layers of apple, pear, and a hint of brioche. On the palate, when sipped alone the wine was surprisingly monotone; but when matched with both a sweet and a savory, it popped.
The Savory: Croûte aux Morilles et Comté
Croûte aux Morilles et Comté is a specialty of the Franche-Comté region. Morels are cooked in cream and Comté cheese, then served on a slice of toasted bread. Since it's a little early in the season, my morels were dried.
Ingredients, serves two
1 ounce dried morels
1/3 cup sliced shiitake mushrooms
1 Tablespoon butter
1 Tablespoon olive oil
4 small slices of good quality bread
1 small shallot, peeled and finely diced
1/4 cup Comté cheese, grated
1/4 cup white wine
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
Submerge the morels in a bowl of hot water and let them steep for 15 minutes. Cut them in half lengthwise and rinse them under cold water to clean them well.
Melt butter in olive oil. Stir in the shallots and cook until softened and translucent.
Stir in the morels, shiitakes, cream, and wine. Let reduce for 2 to 3 minutes. Then add the freshly grated Comté cheese.
Toast the bread until browned and lightly crisped.
Spoon the mushroom sauce over the toasts and serve immediately.
The Sweet: Mini Baked Alaska
The cake at the bottom can be whatever you like. The ice cream, again, can be whatever you like. But the most important thing is the meringue. After all these years, I finally found the perfect meringue that doesn't weep, that holds its dramatic peaks, and it is fittingly referred to in my house as 'the actual good meringue.' For this cake, I used a vanilla sponge cake with a passionfruit sorbet. That sweet-tart sorbet was perfect with the Crémant du Jura.
The Actual Good Meringue
4 egg whites
1 cup organic granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Also needed: saucepan, hand-blender, kitchen torch
Place water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Swirl to dissolve the sugar completely. Keep at a low simmer while you work with the egg whites.
Separate the yolks and the whites, placing the whites in a clean mixing bowl and reserving the yolks for a different purpose. With a hand-blender, beat the whites until they hold soft peaks. Bring the syrup to a rolling boil, then carefully pour the syrup into the whites. Beat to incorporate, then sprinkle in the cream of tartar. Beat until stiff peaks form.
To assemble: Place the cake on your serving dish. Turn molded ice cream out onto cake. Quickly and prettily spread meringue over cake. Make sure to have lots of little peaks because that it what browns. Spread the meringue all the way to dish to seal. Return to freezer until ready to serve.
Traditionally, you brown this in the oven. I usually brown the peaks with my culinary torch.
Well, that's a wrap on my offerings for the Jura #Winophiles event. We'll be back next month looking at women in the French wine industry who are working sustainably in a way that's good for the Earth. Gwendolyn Alley of Wine Predator is hosting. Stay tuned!