Sweet-Savory Scallops and Camembert
BY BILL ST. JOHN
A spoonful of sugar makes more than the medicine go down; it makes everything taste better. But sweetness can be a bugaboo to tasty wine pairings. When a dish is sweet — as here with the peach chutney or the milk of the cheese — but the wine is dry, in the way most wines are, then it's the wine that will taste like medicine. The best partners to sweetness in a food are a bit of sweetness in the wine or a marked fruitiness (as is the case with all three wines this week) wrapped tightly with acidity. Because this seafood preparation is delicious to the palate on the one hand but perilous to wine on the other, be sure to avoid very dry wines, white or red, that are low in acidity.
• 4-6 U10/12 sea scallops, about 1/3 pound a person, room temperature
• Salt and pepper
• 1 package Il Grilliatore Italian Roasted Red Peppers
• 1 5.25-ounce Le Conquérant Petit Camembert, ripe
For the chutney:
• 2-3 Ela Family Farms peaches, skinned, pitted, and roughly chopped
• 1/3 cup brown or turbinado sugar
• 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon mixture of cider and rice wine vinegars, to taste
• 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
• 1/3 cup golden raisins
• Pinch red pepper flakes
• 1 large shallot, peeled and minced
• Salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
Here's what you do:
Makes 2 servings
Make a chutney: Mix all the chutney ingredients in a small saucepan and heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes, slightly covered, stirring. Set aside to cool. Salt and pepper the scallops and grill them (on the outdoor grill or on the stovetop in a heated, oiled grill pan) for 4 minutes on one side, covered. Remove cover and grill for an additional 2–3 minutes on the other side until just opaque and cooked through. Serve with the roasted peppers. Serve the camembert with the chutney, both at room temperature.
And the wines…
SO QUAFFABLE. What a steal for a lovely, minerally, luscious little Albariño.
Fleur Petite Sirah
WINE...IN A BAG? Fresh, round and elegant with very ripe tannins. There's just a hint of eucalyptus. And get a free wine bottle-shaped burlap sack with every bottle!
Cantine Faliesi Bianco
THIS IS BEST SHARED. Very versatile with notes of pear and white peach and a little lemony citrus.
All available at Marczyk Fine Wines and Fairfax Wine & Spirits.