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Wine of the week: Petit Mars

I bought a bottle of the Mas du Soleilla Petit Mars to take home last weekend and cooked a few recipes to try out some pairings and see how versatile it was. The Answer: very [caption id="attachment_1391" align="aligncenter" width="168"]A picture of the petit mars bottle and glass Just one (rather large) glass of Petit Mars[/caption] On it's own the Petit Mars was fruity and balanced and drinkable, but the right food pairing really bought it alive. My first thought for pairing was some red meat slow cooked in order to bring out its sweetness, but in the end I decided to counteract the fruit with some woody (aka been in the fridge too long) mushrooms and herbs and cheese and keep the meat relatively neutral. [caption id="attachment_1393" align="aligncenter" width="300"]Roughly diced mushrooms and spring onions Roughly diced mushrooms and spring onions[/caption] I roughly diced mushrooms and some spring onions and gently fried them off in butter, then added a very generous serving of mixed herbs and pepper. No salt though. Once cooked, I turned off the heat, and added some grated cheddar (hence the no salt added) and made a paste. I took some turkey breasts and slit them down the middle and placed a small spoonful of the paste into the middle. [caption id="attachment_1394" align="aligncenter" width="300"]A picture of mushroom paste in turkey breast Ready to roll[/caption] Then I wrapped them up in a slice of unsmoked bacon in order to keep everything in place and placed on a baking tray in a hot oven for 30 minutes or so, until the bacon was golden at the edges. I served this with cous cous salad and carrot, citrus and garlic salad and a rather large glass of the wine. [caption id="attachment_1392" align="aligncenter" width="300"]A picture of the food all together Dinner is served[/caption] This was a relatively good match, in terms of the woody flavours and herbs, but really it was a tiny bit too light for the Petit Mars and I still had some left. The next day, I also still had mushrooms left over and was out most of the day so wouldn't have time to cook in the evening. Instead I got up really early and covered some beef hearts in flour and fried them off with a glass of the wine and some stock to make an amazing looking gravy and then put the remaining mushrooms, a couple of carrots and some old potatoes into a slow cooker with some garlic and onions. Turned it on and left it for 8 hours. It really was the best gravy I have ever made, and proves the point that using quality ingredients even for sauces really does make a difference to the taste. The final glass I enjoyed with the stew and boy was that a good match. Sumptuous, rich sauce and fruity rich wine. Delicious. Two meals, a discovery of amazing gravy and all for £13.99 a bottle. The Petit Mars is a definite wine of the week. Drink, cook, enjoy.  

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