Central Bistro's Andrea Volpi Offers Tips on Cooking with Wine

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CB: What type of wine do you use for the drunk bread and where can you find it? AV: The wine we use for our Drunk Bread is Chablis, but you can use any dry white wine you have on hand. (Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc are good choices.)   CB: What are the top three tips for cooking with wine?   AV: When making a sauce with wine, make sure that all the alcohol is cooked out. You want the flavors of the wine in the dish, not the alcohol content. (The drunk bread is an exception. It's not a sauce and wouldn't be "drunk bread" without the alcohol!)

Always use a wine that you would drink yourself. If you wouldn't drink it normally, it's not worth cooking with. Of course, don't use an excellent bottle of wine you would rather drink, but if you have a glass of Chardonnay left over after dinner, cork it and use it in Alfredo sauce the next day! 

Also, unlike hard liquor, make sure you don't let the wine flame. This will give the sauce a bitter metallic taste. All the flames you see on TV are for show!

CB: How to decide what wine to pair with something made with wine? AV: One looks for a complimentary flavor profile and similar characteristics. If you use a wine for cooking, it is perfectly acceptable to drink the same bottle with the meal!

CB: Can you suggest a few wines that pair nicely with the drunk bread? AV: Burgans Albarino or Domaine Roux Pere et Fils Macon Villages...or really anything that makes you happy!   Here are two wine-based recipes from Volpi:

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Kate Crowley
Contact: Kate Crowley