Good wine and delicious food go together like love and marriage -- but only if you pair them correctly. No one understands that better than gourmands Elizabeth and Stephane Colling. Here, Elizabeth shares the couple's wedding menu and explains their wine-and-food pairings.
Pumpkin and Squash Soup with Fried Sage and Brown-Butter Crouton
2004 Chardonnay, Hanzell, Sonoma Valley
"Stephane and I were both born in 1974, and the only bottle of 1974 wine we have ever had together -- to celebrate my 33rd birthday -- was a Hanzell pinot noir. Jean Arnold Sessions, the president of Hanzell, has been a good friend of Stephane's for years. We chose it to complement this dish because the sage and richness of the pumpkin and brown butter are enhanced by the richness of the chardonnay, but it finishes clean because of the wine's minerality."
Seared Sablefish with Tomato Butter and Parsley-Caper Gremolata on Caramelized Fennel
2004 Riesling Grand Cru Schlossberg, Domaine Paul Blanck, Alsace
"The wine is complex, with hints of citrus, fennel, and herbs. The richness of the fish, the earthiness of the vegetables, and the herbs in the gremolata complement the wine while cutting the intensity with its acidity. Philippe Blanck, the owner, has been friends with Stephane for more than 20 years and flew in from France for the wedding."
Grass-Fed Beef Tenderloin with Wild Mushrooms, Potato Puree, and Roasted Carrots
1998 Moraga, Bel Air
"This wine -- from an amazing estate hidden in the hills of Bel Air, California, my hometown -- is comparable to any first-growth Bordeaux. It is a beautiful blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and a little bit of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The beef married well with the deep flavors from the wine of black currant and tobacco. Tom Jones, the owner, is close with Stephane, as is Andrew Bell, the distributor of the wine. Andrew is the one who introduced Stephane and me!"
Three Local Cheeses with Mache Salad and Homemade Jams
2005 Mas de Daumas Gassac, Vin De Pays De L'Herault, France
"This wine -- made by our close friends Samuel and Muffy Guibert, another French-American couple -- is a blend of many different grapes, which makes it perfect to pair with a plate of many different cheeses and their accompaniments. The tannins that are present in the wine help to complement the variety of cheeses as well."