Really Busy, Really Thirsty

I’m a girl. I’m a thirsty girl. Lately, I’m a really busy, really thirsty girl.

As much as I love 3-hour long, prix-fixe dinners, and carving out time to cook soups from scratch at home, I often succumb to the shwarma vendors on NYC streets, or $2 pizza slices.

Just because I don’t have time to cook dinner, however, doesn’t mean I don’t have time to uncork a bottle –or three–to go alongside said street food. (Let’s keep our priorities straight after all.)

For this month’s #TGTaste hosted by Thirsty Girl,  I opted out of home-cooked goodness and instead combined semi-fast food with the Columbia Crest Horse Heaven Hills wines graciously donated to me for the event, since I know #TGTaste is an event filled with other very busy, very thirsty ladies.  Perfect pairings for girls on the go, especially if you remember to always carry wine in your purse.

Over 3 days I sampled the following with help from some really loyal, really thirsty friends.


Mmmmm Carbs and Duck Sauce….

Day 1: Getting Down in China Town (Or a Chinese take-out joint in Inwood).

I love testing out various white wines with Asian fare.  Riesling and Albarino are go-to pairings for all things Asian and spicy, but I couldn’t resist testing out the medium-bodied Horse Heaven Hills 2009 Chardonnay with a medley of Chinese at during a Monday night gossip sesh with the ladies.

On the menu was chicken lo-mein, sweet pork fried rice, and my favorite savory pork and chive dumplings. I’d also brought the Horse Heaven Hills 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon as contrast.

Unfortunately, we discovered why more acidic wines rock it with Asian fare, as opposed to Oaked-up Chardonnays.  With the noodles, the juice–which was perfectly sippable solo–was too rich in my mouth, leaving my tastebuds utterly confused by the combination.

With the sweet rice, however, the juice showed more of its apple and vanilla flavors–engaging in the sweet/savory battle we had going on.

Overall, the Cabernet was the best part when paired with a steaming hot dumpling. Spice, chocolate, and dark fruit flavors dominated, and were a yummy contrast to the salty sesame dressing and spicy meat.

Day 2: Pizza Party.

With 1/2 the Cab left in my purse on Tuesday, I figured a pizza slice just had to happen. Encouraged by my pork pleasure from the night before, I opted for a spicy, Italian sausage-covered slice,  which went well with the fruity cab.

Later, my room mate also pointed out the vanilla and clove-scented juice would be perfect with a can of Chef Boyardee. (A true Bachelor Pad Pairing, but not bad if you’re stuck babysitting kids and watching Power Rangers or Wonder Pets.)


Steak+Cheese+Mushrooms–You can’t go wrong.

Day 3: Good employee, Bad employee.

I hate working late, but somehow am always overbooked and often in some office or another well past dinner time. Like last month’s #TGTaste with HandCraft Wines, this Wednesday I was sipping with the office crew while tweeting.

A Philly Cheese Steak piled high with satueed mushrooms, sliced steak, and a heavy dose of grease was a suprisingly FANTASTIC pair alongside the Les Chevaux red blend.  This dark red, Washington State concoction had strong blackberry flavors and a fruity richness that was a great balance to my sub.  The bright fruit and gentle, full finish helped the juice stand up for itself against all that grease and didn’t disappoint anyone on the office tasting panel.

I especially loved the interplay between the rich, earthy mushrooms and the bright juice, which makes me think Les Chevaux would go great alongside a mushroom-laden roast.


Busy, Thirsty Pairings Uncorked:

Laura Loves:Horse Heaven Hills Les Chevaux red blend.  This juice was super-versatile and definitely my favorite of the three.

Experimenting with possible pairings like the ones on Dr. Vino’s blog. (The Douche Burger? Iceberg Wedge Salad anyone?)

Fun Facts: The Horse Heaven Hills AVA has 30% more wind than any appellation in Washington.

Rule of Thumb: Look at the main ingredients and spicy factor of your meal, then use classic rules to help make a great fast-food pair.  For example, light fruity Sauvignon Blancs are great with salmon and fish in general, so open one up with sushi, that bagel with salmon cream cheese, or even McD’s Filet of Fish.

Busy pairings to try:Falafel or a gyro with something bubbly.

Margherita pizza with Montepulciano or a light Pinot Noir.


  • October 15, 2012
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