p2: Crepes Suzette

Somewhat a continuation of my previous post on savory Crepes.

The Sweet

201110-r-crepes-suzetteIn the crepe’s origins, buckwheat ruled, being mixed into a batter consisting purely of itself, water, and rock salt. Cooked on both sides in a thin layer, this created a very crisp, and often very fragile pastry. As time went on, the interests in southern Brittany and other areas of France learning of this dish started changing their tastes, requiring the ‘pastry’ be filled and stuffed. As it was, these buckwheat crepes would fail this task miserable, breaking in half whenever attempting to fold. Thus those cravings-driven cooks of shops and home began to add eggs, milk, and butter, softening its structure and turning the French flatbread into a French pancake, entering the second step in its evolution towards the foldable street food we love today.

As white flour became steadily more available in the 1900’s, crepe’s structure thoroughly began to change, diverging the styles between an extremely soft, all-flour version and the more traditional dark floured one (which I’ve discussed somewhat Here). This former was particularly celebrated with royalty (likely before its price dropped), and in Paris and Southern France, almost exclusively being used for desserts. It is from here that the epitome of cooking with these pancakes developed, Crepes Suzette.

Like many a classic recipe, the story Suzette’s origins abound with different versions. The most advertised, and also debated, story comes about from a certain Chef Henri Charpentier. While cooking a tableside dessert of crepes cooked in orange juice, sugar, and liqueur for the Prince of Wales, a frequent customer. By accident, the sauce caught fire in the pan, burning into a gentle flambé. With no choice other than complete humiliation either way, he served the ‘ruined’ dish, only to be met with even more love from the Prince. When asked its name, Charpentier told him it was to be called “Crepes Princesse” after the Prince, the dish automatically making it name female. Out of mock ferocity, the Prince demanded that the lady at the table, a daughter of his guest named Suzette, be honored instead.

Though interesting, much contesting has been done. Mainly the fact that, at the year this now-famous chef stated it happened, he would have only been around 14. The main issue comes in the fact that, usually, only the Head Waiter would have served tableside, and he’d be way too young for that. Though potential unique circumstances could have made it possible, especially explaining the screw-up, but it’s not likely. Of interest, it’s also rumored that the young lady may not have been a regular ‘friendly acquaintance’ and more, ummm… paid for.

A similar royal story pits a chef named Jean Reboux, who was supposedly asked to make something by a lovestruck Princess Suzette de Carignan for King Louis XV.

One of the more interesting accounts lie with another chef, named simply Monsieur Joseph, in the presence of the actress Suzanne (Suzette being her nicknamed) Reichenburg; or, as yet another account states, a waitress of the dish’s name that served the play. The chef would generously supply crepes for the cast and, to ensure they stayed warm for the performance, lit them in the fiery sauce.

Of final note, and probably the only set thing that could help explain the origin of this elusively researched dish, is a recipe in Oscar Tschirky’s 1896 New York cookbook for “Pancakes, Casino Style,” basically a complete formulation for Crepes Suzette minus the flambé. Following this in 1907, Auguste Escoffier then describes the complete version of Crepes Suzette in his famous Le Guide Culinaire.

Whatever the origins and methods (psychotic as it is to say, there’s so much more things I could type on this idea), Crepes Suzette came out too much acclaim, truly the harbinger not only of Crepe desserts everywhere but leading the charge for the flambéed dish movement. Truly one of the heights of high French sweet cuisine.

Chef’s Overdramatic Self-Centered Lecture Corner

Finding the truly traditionally composition and technique, basing it on the dish during the height of its fame and not on a singular point of creation or more recent version, has proven to be a very challenging feat. In fact, with the many sources and styles I’ve found, I’ve come to the conclusion that there is no such thing as One True Version of this; there are in fact multiple choices and slight variations done while still keeping it, in my opinion, ‘classic.’ I’ve thus had to narrow down which ones I prefer in this instance.

20140824_115746Though I should start with my first quandary in my search; see, the one thing I knew I wanted to do, and was very much a classic technique, was this thing I saw Jacque Pepin talk about in the Crepe episode of him+Julia Child. This is where he took sugar cubes and rubbed them on an orange, using them as the sugar base for the ‘classic style’ crepe, while later he also showed a ‘more modern do-at-home version’ where he made a compound butter. The odd, and really frustrating, thing was that, despite my many searches, I could never find his recipe online that included the zest-infused sugar. Only the compound butter. And no video clips of the episode.

Many other searches, both in classic books and traditional recipes, yielded something surprising; this Compound Butter method, where one mixes sugar, zest, and orange juice (with perhaps other ingredients) together, using to very quickly and easily melt in the pan and/or over the crepes before flambé-ing (Jacque melted it in a broiler), it just kept popping up. It wasn’t just something made up in the last couple decades, but perhaps a link to the classic high restaurant style, likely inspired by finishing savory pan gravies for meat with herb-butters.

So our first choice is to do this, or build our own syrup from scratch in the pan, usually achieved by combining orange juice, zest, your sugar, and butter(either in the beginning or later) and reducing down, perhaps with some of the booze. I prefer the latter method, just because it feels like I can develop more flavors, and there’s this calm, classic feeling of building your sauce one bit at a time that I fell in love with when making French cuisine.

At some point we need the crepes to mix and soak with this sauce. But when we flambé, do we leave them in the pan, or are they transferred to a serving dish, and flambé the booze on the side to pour over? Both are seen and done in front of guests to add flare, the former being developed exclusively in restaurants as they cooked the sauce and crepes on a pan in front of customers. As such the flambé would happen in the same pan, to keep things simple, and transferred to plates from there. The latter is just as often seen in recipes, so it was a tough choice for me; ultimately, since I had no restraints like restaurant table-side service, I thought it’d be fun, plus it gives me more of a chance to light all the booze directly and not risk the crepes potentially muddling the fire up in the beginning.

Though that also leads into one quick decision; most of the recipes that call for this have the liquor heated in a separate, empty pan. Which is fine, but after your crepes are soaked and transferred, there’s all this sticky, delicious sauce left in the bottom and edges of your pan. So I just dump it in the same pan while hot to scrape up as much of the remaining, and even more developed, flavor that I can. Then I make a show of it.

Our final method articulation lies in something that I never would have considered until I started actually looking at recipes: Caramel. Seen with Jacque and certain others, there are a few recipes that sprinkle sugar on top of the sauced crepes at the end before the fire, or before broiling, meant to have them caramelize like a crème brulee. Other recipes, however, have started off their sauce making by, instead of just dissolving sugar in orange juice, cooking the sugar as-is until it just browns, then building the sauce. This flavor of caramel, also a tie in to certain aged tastes in the cognac spirit and liqueur, is thus a newly interesting and required component to the final flavor. I of course have to attempt it in the simple and classic sense of brulee, but I would love to try the other method to really get the richer flavor in some other time.

Speaking of liqueur, that is one last thing I want to talk about before ending my tirade. Though something about Grand Marnier just feels right to me, I have seen plenty of excerpts mentioned using Cointreau, another cognac-based orange liqueur. A such I think any Orange Liqueur, just so long as it used COGNAC as the base, is acceptable; but no Triple Sec or Orangecello or whatnot, my apologies but that just isn’t a true and proper Suzette sauce. Following that, whether or not one also adds a bit of Cognac or other decent-quality Brandy to the mix… up to you. I’ve seen many recipes that just use the liqueur, but I do like the flavor developed by mixing the two. Mainly I would suggest, if you want to try it, mixing them beforehand, tasting to get the exact ratio that you like (mine was very Grand Marnier centered with maybe only 30% Cognac in it) before starting to cook your Suzette.

That way everything is just right to start your perfect Suzette recipe.

Crepes Suzette
80 grams (ish) Sugar Cubes
2 Oranges
Tsp Salt
1 Stick Cold Butter
¼ cup + 2 Tb Grand Marnier
3-4 Tb Cognac
4-5 Large or 6-8 Medium-sized Crepes (recipe follows)

Directions

  1. Taking your Sugar Cubes, one at a time, carefully but thoroughly rub each side over the skin of one of the Oranges until it changes color and grabs its aroma.20140824_114257
  2. Crush cubs into grain, also scraping off any sugar that’s stuck to the orange, and reserve your orange-sugar on the side.20140824_124633
  3. Zest the other Orange, and Juice both citrus fruits.
  4. Combine these with Salt, all but 2 Tb of sugar, 2 Tb of Grand Marnier and 1 Tb Cognac in warm sauce pan.20140824_182041
  5. Heat, on medium, to boil, stirring to dissolve and letting cook 5-15 minutes, as needed, until reduced by about half into a syrup.20140824_183130
  6. Remove from heat, roughly chop cold Butter and toss in, stirring until fully melted and emulsified in.20140824_183653
  7. Take your pre-cooked Crepes and lay in pan, one at a time. Let briefly rest, flipping over to coat both sides in the orange sauce.20140824_183558
  8. Fold into quarters, picking and hanging up to let any excess syrup drip, and transfer to a heat proof casserole, broiler, or other such dish.
  9. Repeat with remaining crepes until they’re all used up or almost all syrup has been absorbed, whichever comes first.20140824_184045
  10. Move pan back to stove to start heating up. While this is happening, sprinkle the remaing 1-2 Tb of Sugar over the folded crepes in a thing and even layer.
  11. Once pan is hot, the thin layer of sauce is bubbling, start the flambé process. Very quickly, dump in your remaining alcohol (if using a Gas stove, off-heat), briefly stirring and swirling to pick up and deglaze the leftovers of sauce.20140824_184138
  12. Light with flame (match, blow torch, gas stove, etc) and pour the ignited liquid over the crepes.20140824_184145
  13. Wait until the fire goes down, the edges have browned and sugar is dissolved (and hopefully somewhat caramelized), and serve.20140824_184156
  14. Transfer hot crepes onto plate, spooning extra sauce remaining in pan over the top.20140824_184515
  15. If desired, serve with fresh or candied fruit, ice cream, or whatever desired. Enjoy

Sweet Crepes
1/3 cup Sugar
1 Tb Buckwheat Flour
1 Tb Melted Butter
1/3 cup Water
Tsp Vanilla
2 Tb Grand Marnier
Tsp Salt
Zest of 1 Orange
2 Eggs
1 ¾ cup AP Flour
2 ¼ cup Low-fat Milk

Directions

  1. In a bowl mix Sugar, Buckwheat, Butter, Water, Vanilla, Grand Marnier, Salt, Orange zest, and Eggs together.20140824_130753
  2. Sift flour and add, alternating, with the Milk, mixing well and until smooth.20140824_131209
  3. Let rest for at least an hour and get your crepe-making equipment and station prepped and ready, brushing surface with an oiled paper towel.20140824_131315
  4. Heating your pan, stone, etc to a medium-high-ish heat, scoop a small ladle of batter just outside the center.20140824_170043
  5. Very quickly, spread/swirl the batter around in a thin layer, getting as even a circle as possible.20140824_150110
  6. Once edges start to brown and curl lightly, or it lifts easily and is evenly browned on the bottom layer, lift and quickly flip to its other side.20140824_150142
  7. Let cook until it browned, remove from pan and stack with other crepes between wax or parchment paper for later. Optionally, one can sprinkle with preferred fruit, sauce, jam, or other filling right after flipping, folding or rolling to serve hot.20140824_150157

My Thoughts

The only things of note for the next time I make this is one: a little too boozy, but in the best ways (it by no means ruined the flavor, I just think a little less would allow the orange sauce to shine further); note that I originally used over ½ cup of alcohol when cooking but as you can see pared it down to 1/3-ish for the recipe. And secondly, I’m a bit saddened the sugar on top didn’t caramelize as intended (I doubted it ever would in ANY person’s recipe/attempt, but thought I’d try), but again was still delicious, added a bit extra something. Maybe next time I’ll actually caramelize some of the sugar in the pan I build the orange sauce in?20140824_184150

Besides those slight adjustments, our suzette was simply heavenly. Depth and richness pervaded from the aged cognac-based spirits, with flavors of orange both fresh and developed, hanging around a syrupy sauce that clung to the fully tender and soaked French pancakes. It made me drool as I ate and I licked the plate clean. Something tells me my family will force me to make it again, not that I’d mind.

20140824_184320Possible Pairings

Truly I can’t think of any better partner than pouring yourself a simple, straight up shot of ice-cold Grand Marnier, or whichever cognac-based orange liqueur you used. No need to make cocktails, or get something rare and unique, just let yourself enjoy the deep flavors that actually pervade what is this complicated liqueur, all while appreciating the same flavors and more in your dessert.

Though one could also use it as an excuse, in the same vein, to have a sipper of Cognac, either the same you used here or, ideally, an even better and longer aged beauty, kept at room temperature or a touch lower (no heating your cognac! Bad dog!). Then again, I’ve found Armagnacs (cognac’s not-so-smooth, very aromatically fire-y cousin) that bring a noted nose of oranges to the party, making it a fun substitute if you can find the right bottle.

If we did want to walk outside those alcohols that were used in the recipe, I will admit there’s a part of me that for whatever reason craves an Australian ‘Sticky,’ their richly fruity and caramel-y fortified dessert wines, especially the ones made from Moscato. The syrupiness and richness and alcy body just feel like they’d be a nummy match.untitled2

p1: Buckwheat Crepes

So, a few years back I got this amazing awesome electric ‘Crepe Griddle’ machine thingy as a Christmas present, and have been needing to use it bad. With this little goal of going through all these French dishes, however, I’ve finally found myself an excuse to have a ‘crepe night’ event with family and cover two of my recipe requirements in one go: both the savory Buckwheat Crepes, as follows, and the dessert of Suzette, of which I should be writing up a report soon.

The Dish

My experience with crepes isn’t exactly few; in fact, I’ve discussed their preparation and use as street food in my other blog Here, and will soon have yet another post on Dessert Crepes for my Suzette. In my original, however, I lament on my depressing inability to truly replicate that which I have discovered on the streets of Paris and other French cities (was lucky enough to travel there for high school once). One of the things I have yet to try, though, is the use of Buckwheat flour; and seeing as it’s a common ingredient in certain European ‘pancakes,’ and a common style seen in this particular country, it might just be what I need.

enhanced-buzz-5708-1385794294-3Crepes themselves supposedly popped up in the NW corner of France, Brittany, originally being called ‘galettes’ (flat cake), the name crepe being developed later after the food spread throughout France as a derivation of ‘crispus,’ Latin for ‘curled,’ alluding to the tendency for their edges to bend up in the pan to signal its readiness to flip. Whether its origins are truly pure French can be debated though, as there are records of various nation’s pancakes being developed after a Dutch ‘tour’ that started them in Austria (and what a long and fluffy pancake history they’ve had), around Germany and into France and back to Austria again (or however it went, I can’t recall exactly but I do know they supposedly stopped in France and influenced their galettes while there). But it was in Brittany that the tools and techniques for French-style crepes were officially refined and mastered before popularity spread to Paris and beyond.

However, it was in the 1100’s that buckwheat was introduced to the Brittany region via Middle Eastern traders, thus the very first crepes made were in fact purely 100%, the use of White Wheat Flour not coming into play until the 1900’s when it became affordable. Combined with milk, butter, and eggs, the flour-based crepes became softer, developing them into that classic texture we now know and love from the folded wonder.

A Word On…

20140826_135054Buckwheat Flour: luckily this isn’t too difficult to find in stores, but you still have to go to a Whole Foods, Co-op, or similar store to get it. As for proportions of use, I have yet to do much in-depth recipe testing with this, or even try any buckwheat batters out besides this one, so I say just pick this or another recipe that looks good and have fun with it. The great thing about crepes is that, spread so thin and browned a bit crispy, they all come out delicious.

As for why it’s used, one of the most important aspects to Crepe Batter Making is that you want little to no actual gluten development. That’s why most recipes just combine everything together at the same time, with the massive amounts of liquid, often in a blender. Also partly why we let it rest for an hour or so, thus any stray carbohydrate strands that were formed may relax in their suspension. But, unlike regular flour, buckwheat is completely gluten-free, thus the risk of any development is lessened even further, giving us a fully soft batter to crisp up on our own. (and, you know, traditional ingredient used in galettes and whatnot, that probably influences it too)

Cooking Equipment: Now here’s where things get interesting; for when it comes down to it, Crepe batter is an extremely easy and simple recipe to put together, with very low margins of error. It’s COOKING the crepes where the issues come into play for people. Ideally what we need is to turn this batter into a very wide, thinly spread pool of batter in as perfectly circular shape as possible. Oh, and did I mention over a really hot surface? So it has to be made into this form very fast; easy access and the right tools are ideal.

Traditionally, this is accomplished on very big, thick heated stone rounds with no edges, the batter ladled and then spread with circular strokes using what seems to be the ‘bladed’ end of a squeegee/window wiper. Most of us don’t have access to this though, and even if we did probably not the years of practice and casual skill to sweep it into perfect circles every time, so we have to find other means. There are specially made ‘classic’ French Crepe Pans (supposedly what they’d use at home), really wide and flat circles with sharply upturned, short rims to allow for making a bigger crepe with easy access to grip the edge. They can be pricey though, and mayhaps have very little use outside of similar items.

I myself actually have this amazing plug in ‘griddle’ purely for crepe and other pancake-like-thing makings (it was a present, so I should be forgiven…). I got the spreader and the elongated spatula for flipping/folding and everything! It even has this cool device, for people who are too crappy at using the spreader (raises hand), where you set it into the rim, pour the batter in and move it around like a clockhand, quickly, and wind up making an absolutely perfect and super-thin crepe. If you’re reading this, and are actually attempting to make crepes, I’m guessing at least half of you probably want to beat me with a rolling pin for my boasts right now, I’m sorry! I will say though that if you CAN get something like this, apparently it was manufactured in Europe, it’s easily the best option for making the best crepes somewhat classically (or by cheating, either way). Plus one can still use it as an awesome flat-top griddle for other stuff (cooked an egg on it just this morning).20140824_170043

BUT, for all other intents and purposes that one might not be able to use something like this, we ultimately have to stick with a basic Saute pan. I’m sure you’ve probably heard or seen the ‘technique’ at least a dozen times by now, but it’s always good to re-study. The main annoyance with these is that, despite how big many look, the curved sides end up taking a lot of potential cooking area from the flat bottom, thus making us unable to make the good, really big crepes. Plus it can make it a bit annoying trying to reach in from there to lift and turn it; I mean it’s almost impossible to get a spatula in, except the rubber ones. BUT when you do get used to the technique of pouring, lifting and twirling the pan to let the batter fall and fill the area out, one ends up with an almost perfect circle every single time, WITHOUT needing any special spreader equipment. Just gotta get it around in time before your amount of ‘free batter’ not coating the bottom sets to much from the heat (and no you don’t want to start it out lower, coat, and then heat up; it needs to be hot the whole time to get it browned and crisp properly).

For those intrigued, there is one other option I’ve seen, involving turning your sauté pan upside down to give yourself a completely flat surface to work on, similar to the stones and griddle. There are some issues, namely that 1: it can only be done over gas burners, and 2: it can be tricky having a pan that will sit right, without rocking, completely flat with no slant, etc. Might be best to avoid unless really confident or desperate.

20140824_174858Fillings: Whatever the heck you want! The particular project I’m following requires nothing other than the crepe being buckwheat based; if one wanted something sort of traditional off the streets, they can stick with Ham and Gruyere, Lemon, Fruit Jams, and other things. For my little party, I decided on ham+brie and slow roasted tomatoes+ricotta, along with the dessert crepe of course.

Buckwheat Crepes
1 cup Buckwheat Flour
1 ¼ cups AP Flour
1tsp Salt
1 Tb Sugar
1 Egg
1 cup Water
1 1/3 cups low fat Milk

Directions

  1. Sift Flours and combine in bowl with other Dry ingredients, welling the center.20140824_123359
  2. Whisk Egg and Wet ingredients in separate container, adding half to the well in the dry.20140824_125354
  3. Whisk until smooth and slowly incorporate the rest of the wet ingredients until a smooth, thin-ish batter is formed.20140824_125516
  4. Let rest for at least an hour and prepare your crepe-cooking-setup.20140824_125912
  5. Briefly brush surface of your griddle or sauté pan with oiled paper towel to ‘season’ and turn to a medium-high heat.
  6. If, ideally, you have some form of flat top griddle, cooking stone, or electric machine equivalent (thank you foreign engineers!), pour a small ladle of batter somewhere between the center and edge of the cooking area.20140824_180217
  7. Take a classic crepe-spreader, what looks like a wooden window wiper, or anything equivalent (spatulas may work well) and sweep through batter with swift, smooth clockwise motions, spreading it in a circular(ish) shape. Make sure to keep the edge of the device hovering just above the griddle.20140824_170129
  8. If using a sauté pan, ladle your batter in the outside circle. As fast as one can, lift, tilt, and swirl to coat as much of the bottom of the pan in a thin batter as possible. If one ends up missing a spot, in either cooking scenario, no worries; simply add a bit more batter to fill in the area.20140824_150130
  9. Once the edges start to curl, or peel up easily with a spatula lift, and the bottom is a nicely even golden brown, carefully lift and flip over to the other side.20140824_150157
  10. Pile your desired filling into either the center or spread over half.20140824_170614
  11. Once heated through and the bottom is browned, which will not be long so move fast, fold as desired. Often this is done either by folding the edges in to make a square or hexagonal package, or folding it in half and once again for a triangular wedge (though thinner fillinged crepes can have this done 3 or more times, and one can always have fun experimenting with rolling).20140824_170842
  12. Transfer to plate or parchment paper, garnish with any desired sauces, extra filling, or other toppings, and serve.

20140824_174935The Verdict

I was a bit surprised by the color of the batter, even with the browning, not that I mind! The pictures certainly didn’t show it off like that though. Sort of makes me want to try out different buckwheat crepe ratios/recipes even more, especially since I still have yet to achieve what I believe to be that ‘perfect texture’ found in the many street side stalls in France. Though to be fair I’m coming to think that part of that is less the batter recipe and more the creperie workers’ ability to evenly spread it out to a slightly thicker layer. Either way, I can’t quite tell that much of a flavor difference between these and other crepes unless tasted side-by-side with minimal filling and a thicker consistency.

And now I feel silly, as I write this, my very last sentence which I’m putting down after all my other text, and after researching some history on crepes, I find that buckwheat-based ones, unlike my assumptions to their softening properties, are actually seen as resulting in CRISPIER versions than all-flour-based crepes. Ooops. Lesson learned for future purposes. And yes, I am too lazy to go back and rewrite some of my other typings on the concept, haha.

That said, god these made some good savory crepes. Especially when warm, melty cheese was involved. Think I can officially say they made a family ‘crepe night’ definitely worth it.

Primary Pairing – French Cider, sparkling (which is common)

20140824_174949Originally I was thinking of using a nicely light, blond ale or lager for this, which would have worked great for certain reasons (which will follow). However, I’ve used light beers relatively frequently in my malt-based primary pairings, so I thought I’d switch to another option that me and Buzzfeed both agree on: Cider.

When considering a dish that has a wide, WIDE range of different fillings, flavors, and elements that one could experience, such as adventures in crepe-making, versatility becomes a very important thing in one’s pairing. Luckily, crepe fillings rarely if ever exceed a certain body or chew to them, so we can keep our options in a somewhat restrained ‘light bodied/textured’ range.

The great thing about French Cider is they often have ‘just a little bit’ of each of their palate aspects: a little bit of bubbly (which can be used a bit like light red wine tannins), a little bit of apple skin tannins, a little bit of sweetness, a little bit of body… you get the idea. And what they don’t have just a little of, namely their rich apple flavor and crisp acidity, are great aspects for standing up and cutting through the bigger flavors one can run across, while being able to not overwhelm lighter dishes. And that’s really the strongest point of both Ciders and Pale Beers: good ones can stand up to the whole range of crepes, while not overpowering the more delicate ones.

20140824_174518My Bottle: Héritage 1900 Cuvée Tradition Dégorgée á la Valee, Cidre bouché au Pays d’Othe

When I saw this guy on a random wine store visit, I just knew I HAD to get it for one of my dishes, and I’m glad it fit so perfectly into our ‘crepe night.’ It was sparkly and bubbly and celebratory, with a very light sweetness to be able to drink with the various light dishes we made that night. It went particularly delicious with our Ham and Brie, especially considering the very light notes of hay and yeast, giving it a light funkiness that tied it into cheese flavors quite well. And the apple flavor was pure and refreshing; it even had that very slight bit of apple skin ‘tannin’ I’ve found present in many good ciders; a key element allowing it to be drunk with any crepe with a bit of chew(like the ham), but doesn’t affect the fully soft options either.

Perfectly balanced for this night’s needs, and with a delicious freshness and just deep enough flavor to be special while connecting to the simple flavors of this French food, my bottle of Héritage Cuvée was a proper highlight of the evening.

images2Secondary Pairing Cremant de Loire

There are some very nice white wines and super-light reds throughout Loire that can be used in a similar way to ciders and pale beers, but the Sparkling wines are just so special in their ability to eat with a wide range of food. Not to mention there seems to be a whole ‘bubbly’ line of thought with my pairing drinks anyway, so why not let it run?