Tuesday, June 28, 2011

flipflop wine's Pinot Grigio Comes to Dinner - Review & #Recipe

Shouldn't your food deserve to celebrate with wine, too?

I can probably  count on one hand the number of times my DH and I have been out for a nice dinner without our children. The last thing I want to do is try to keep little fingers off my glass of wine in a restaurant. And I shudder to think about having my wine spilled all over the table or worse still, me!

So, with the help of flipflop wines, I brought the romantic into our home. Not only did we enjoy sipping a glass with dinner, but the Pinot Grigio was the base of our little romantic dinner for two at home.

Not only were my taste buds happy, but at $7 a bottle, my frugal side was equally excited. Don't worry if wine is not your expertise, each bottle lists a description, serving temperature and food pairings. Such a relief for a foodie who is still unsure of wine lingo!

I was delighted to receive 3 selections of flipflop wines to review. I was sent their Pinot Grigio, Riesling and Pinot Noir. All labeled with bright and cheery flip flops, I felt ready to hang out on the porch swing with my glass in hand.

I am looking forward to trying all three of these wines, but today I will be focusing on the Pinot Grigio.

At flipflop wines: "Our goal is to craft expressive, well-balanced wines that evoke just what the grapes inside intended, without being over-wrought or over-explained, and that can be enjoyed at any occasion."
Besides being a great wine, there is a philanthropic side to flipflop wines. They partnered with Soles for Souls to distribute a pair of shoes to someone in need for every bottle of flipflop wine purchased. (Up to 100,000 pairs for the first 100,000 bottles sold, where promotion is legal.)

flipflop wines inspired me to create a chicken pasta dish I would flip for in any restaurant. It is loaded with all my favorites and the flavors are married together by the light and zesty citrus infused nature of the Pinot Grigio.

You Will Need:
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
penne pasta
1 shallot, sliced thin
6 mushrooms, sliced thin
1 c. flipflop Pinot Grigio
1/2 c. sun dried tomatoes
1 package of frozen chopped spinach - thawed
1/2 c. artichoke hearts
1/3 c. cream
1/2 c. chicken stock
a dash of Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. corn starch, dissolved in water
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
salt & pepper to taste

Mmmm... Yes, rummaged the freezer and pantry to put in all my favorites. Feel free to omit anything you don't like, or don't have on hand. This recipe is simple, but a sure crowd-pleaser!

First salt water to boil for your penne. The pasta can cook while the chicken is cooking.

Brown the chicken on both sides. If you have thick chicken breasts, pounding them flat will cut down your cooking time. When they are browned, but not cooked through, add the shallots, mushrooms and wine.

Let this simmer till the chicken is fully cooked. Your thermometer should read 180 degrees. Take chicken out and set aside, covered in foil.

To the pan with the wine add the chicken stock, dissolved corn starch and whisk so there are no lumps. Slowly add the cream, whisking continuously so it incorporates smoothly. Add the Worcestershire Sauce and vegetables. Bring it up to a boil and then let it simmer for 5 minutes. The sauce will have thickened up. At this point you can add more corn starch if needed. Salt and pepper to taste and add Parmesan cheese.

Plate your pasta with a chicken breast  and a generous helping of the sauce. I just love the bright reds and greens in this dish!

I could still taste the Pinot Gris in the pasta dish, but the sun dried tomatoes, wine and other goodies melded in flavor to make a lovely rich cream sauce. In contrast, my glass of wine was cool and refreshing between bites and the perfect compliment.

My husband could distinctly taste the pear and I enjoyed the citrus notes.

Best of all, we were able to sit back and enjoy a lovely meal together.

All in all, I am not a wine connoisseur, but I do love cooking. flipflop wines took the guesswork out of choosing a dry, or sweet wine or what to serve it with. They have 7 wines in all you can have delivered right to your door. I can't wait to try more of them... oh, the cooking I will do! Actually next up will be my review of the Pinot Noir and I am thinking a Sangria is in order!

What do you think?

Find out more about flipflop wines on their  Facebook page, @flipflopwines on Twitter and follow along with them on their blog.

You can purchase your own bottle of flipflop wine online, or look for the flip flop label near you!

*Disclaimer - I was sent a sample to review. All opinions expressed are my own and no other compensation was received. Please drink responsibly and only do so if you are of legal drinking age.
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