Cook + Cork explores basic food and wine relationships, introduces the idea of the Mind Mouth, and lays out an essential Wine Wardrobe with food-friendly recipes to get you started on your way to cooking with pairing in mind. Sommelier Chris Horn gives his honest opinion and instruction on how to navigate the daunting world of wine stores and restaurant wine lists and gives you the template for what bottles to have on hand at all times. Each essential bottle is matched with a recipe written with helpful insider tips from the point of view of a former culinary instructor and twenty-year restaurant veteran, Chef Harry “Coach” Mills.
Foodies and armchair oenophiles are sure to appreciate sommelier Horn and chef Mills’s collaborative treatise on the intersection of food and wine and how to create perfect pairings at home. Instead of offering up an alphabetical listing or a varietal tour of wine, the authors start broadly and end specifically, with chapters focused on a wine’s qualities (light-bodied whites, sweet whites, tannic reds, etc.) and how those qualities can complement or amplify flavors in a handful of dishes. The book pivots on the concept of “mind mouth”—a term the authors use to explain how tastes are perceived. Examples take on the form of assignments that wonderfully illustrate the authors’ points: a full-bodied white such as viognier can be served with pan-roasted halibut; a tannic red such as cabernet, petite sirah, or carménère can be paired with braised beef short ribs with gorgonzola polenta; and sparkling wine can simply and satisfyingly be served with, yes, potato chips. Sage advice on navigating big-box stores, deciphering labels, picking the right wines without spending a fortune (why break the bank on a top-shelf pinot noir when a lower-priced beaujolais is equally satisfying?), and saving wine for special people instead of special occasions further connects readers with the authors. Light, inclusive, and illuminating, this volume is sure to inspire a trip to the local wine shop as well as the market. (BookLife)