For many, if the grill isn’t going, then something isn’t right with summer. We see your meat and raise you a garden-full of farm-to-table freshness that pairs perfectly with a curated selection of phenomenal California wines.
Check out these inspired vegetarian dishes that are filling and flavorful, as well as our recommended wines.
Mourvedre and Stuffed Mushroom Caps
We’ll challenge any carnivore with this delectable summery salad served atop every vegetarian’s best fungi friend: the portabella cap. Top a perfectly grilled portabella with a hearty salad of white beans, grilled zucchini, tomatoes, peppers and onions, this flavorful dish rich with earthy flavors, and you’ve got yourself a vegetarian heaven.
Portabellas are one of the meatier vegetarian options out there. The natural flavors of this salad can support a sturdy wine that packs a tannin-y punch. Give the Cab a rest and try a 2011 Semler Mourvedre, which offers wine lovers a rich, dry experience with a more vegetal bite.
Sauvignon Blanc and Zucchini Pad Thai
Crunchy, fresh zucchini squash is a slightly buttery and incredibly versatile veggie to have in your arsenal. With the advent of the spiralizer, you can whip up some zucchini noodles in no time to pair with a light peanut sauce. Skipping the carbs gives this dish a lightness noodles just can’t, which makes it a perfect pairing with a honeyed and mild summer white, like Sauvignon Blanc. Inspiralized has a flexible vegetarian pad thai recipe that will have you spiralizing your heart out.
Serve this with a 2016 Saddlerock Sauvignon Blanc. You’ll enjoy the fruity, tangy balance to a hearty, savory noodle dish full of classic Thai flavor alongside the delightfully crunchy texture of the peanuts and noodles.
Merlot and a Summer Cheese Board
Some of the best dishes in life don’t require meat or heat. We’ve raved about cheese boards before, but summer time is the perfect chance to mix it up with some new herbed and crusted cheeses like a pistachio crusted goat cheese or an herbed ricotta. Serve with a sampling of toasted cashews and sugared almonds, and get bold with lemon, orange and peach preserves. An assortment of light breads and even apple slices can be a great vehicle for these simple flavors.
Play into the fruity accents with a merlot that bursts with berry and cocoa, like our 2014 Semler Merlot. It’s a beautifully complex wine that will make an enchanting addition to a relaxed, yet sophisticated evening.