Crisp air and crackling fireplaces turn food cravings toward warm, cozy dishes that can chase away the chill of fall’s arrival. Comfort foods like soups and stews are staples of the season, but they can be tricky to pair with wine.
Learn which wines go best with your favorite family recipes and find a few new favorites with this handy guide to warm dishes that will carry you through the cool months.
‘Tis the season for soup, and the best versions take full advantage of fresh cool-weather crops. Sonoma-Cutrer consulting chef John Ash has several soup recipes perfectly suited for the season, starting with a creamy Pumpkin Soup with Wild Mushrooms. Showcasing a pair of favorite fall flavors, this soup scores extra points when served in small, individual hollowed-out pumpkins.
Ash’s easy to prepare Winter Squash Soup is another great option if you’re short on time, and you can experiment with different types of squash. Got a fall garden bursting with radicchio? Try this simple Radicchio Soup with Smoked Goat Cheese, which tastes complex thanks to the inspired flavor contrast of smoky cheese and bitter radicchio.
All three soups are ideal pairings for a crisp glass of Russian River Ranches Chardonnay, with its elegant fruit accents and bright acidity.
If you prefer to sip red when temperatures get crisp, Sonoma-Cutrer’s Russian River Valley Pinot Noir is a fine accompaniment to many traditional fall favorites. Chili and cornbread is about as comforting as it gets, perhaps rivaled only by a warm bowl of hearty gumbo.
Both are perfect companions for the pinot, thanks to the wine’s juicy dark fruit notes and silky tannins that complement the rich, complex flavors and meatiness found in both dishes.
Finally, it’s unfathomable to talk about warming cold weather comfort foods without mentioning an all-time favorite: chicken pot pie. This savory, soul-warming dish is elevated to the next level when accompanied by a rich and creamy white like The Cutrer Chardonnay.
Whatever dishes you warm up to this season, there’s a perfect bottle of Sonoma-Cutrer wine just waiting to be uncorked.