Tag Archives: Puerto Rican cuisine

Smoked pork and Tempranillo: An evening with friends #WinePW

For us, there is no greater sense of community than sharing food, wine and good laughter with friends.
In our house Barbecue, grilling and smoking are big all year long. We lived in Atlanta for 20 years where we acquired our Big Green Egg. That was the first think we packed on our way to California. We had enjoyed such great moments with friends that we couldn’t leave it behind. And we were right; it does see lots of use.
A few weeks ago we invited few friends from Napa, Sonoma, and Lodi to enjoy Puerto Rican cuisine. Pork is the staple in Puerto Rican cuisine, and there is no pork with the traditional fixings like pigeon pea rice and plantain tostones. We marinated the picnic pork shoulder in garlic, oregano, vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper overnight. Then, it was slow cooked at 250 degrees Fahrenheit for six hours in the Big Green Egg. The pork was the centerpiece of the evening.
We started the evening with fried gouda cheese balls, chicharrones (pork rinds) and few bottles of Sparkling wine. Sparkling wine is the perfect pairing for fried food!  We always like to welcome our friends with  Sparkling wine and saber few bottles to kick in the gathering.
Traditionally, we paired Puerto Rican cuisine with Spanish wines. Cultural and trade ties with Spain gives Puerto Rico excellent access to Spanish products and wines. In our opinion, the best pairing for our pork and pigeon pea rice is Tempranillo.
For our evening gathering main pairing, we selected Teso La Monja 2014 Almirez, Toro DDO, 100% Tinta de Toro. Tinta de Toro is the name used in the region of Toro, central Spain, for Tempranillo. Tempranillo from this area is getting increasing recognition for reaching levels of boldness as of Rioja wines. 2014 Almirez is well-structured, full-bodied and fruit forward wine with well-integrated tannins, and long lasting notes of dark fruit, smokiness, and licorice, perfect to pair with grilled meats.
The benefit of having wino friends is that you always get to enjoy great wines in every gathering. In this occasion, our friends brought Renteria Pinot Noir, Renteria Fourteen Appellations, Merryvale  Pinot Noir, Acquiesce Grenache Rosé, and La Sirena Moscato Azul. To close the evening, we had an almond flan paired with Torres Floralis Moscatel Oro Vino de Licor, produced since 1946. Just the golden broach to close a great night with friends.
Check these other articles that our fellow wine bloggers put together for this month wine pairing theme.