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Wine Wednesday|Pairing Penfolds Rawson’s Retreat Shiraz-Cabernet with Hanger Steak


Not really, but the magic of technology is allowing me to pretend, so I’m indulging.

Today we have a very nicely priced Australian wine paired with one of our favorite-things-of-all-time-to-eat – hanger steak!

If you’ve never had a hanger steak and you are a red meat lover, please try one.  This is an odd cut of beef – not particularly tender, but extremely flavorful and also called a “butcher’s steak” (presumably because the butcher liked to keep this beauty to herself).  Oddly enough, it’s not all that expensive, even though there is only one per steer – it was about $9 for a whole steak from our fancy-pants butcher in the Farmer’s Market on Fairfax.

It’s quite delicious and we don’t find it to be all that tough, although we are also used to buying pretty cheap cuts of beef, so maybe our palette is adjusted.  Regardless, I love and recommend the preparation that Anthony Bourdain gives this wonder-o-cow in his excellent book Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook.  It’s very simple, comes together quickly, doesn’t require the bone marrow (although it’s delicious so if you can get it, do try it) and we find it to be both tender (at least enough for us) and extremely tasty.*

If you’ve been reading the Wine Wednesday posts with any regularity up until now, you’ll probably have caught on that if I’m going on about the food, the wine was…maybe at least not our favorite part of dinner.  This is true with this particular bottle.  It wasn’t bad, and for the price (around 6 bucks), it’s very respectable.  My husband thought it was too thick in the middle (that’s not exactly what he said, but something along those lines).  I thought it was a bit better than that, but nothing extraordinary.  One thing I did notice – much to my surprise and pleasure – was that I thought I could taste a bit of tobacco!  Not exactly what I want to be tasting in my wine, necessarily, but my palette is so not helpful when it comes to recognizing delicate flavors and I was psyched** to taste something that I could discern as hints of anything.

All in all – not going to be buying this one again, although if folks at work ask about well-priced Australian wines, I will likely steer (no pun intended) them this way.  That is, if they just flat out refuse to buy the box.

Until next week!


Box Wine Rating Recap:

Penfolds Rawson’s Retreat Shiraz-Cabernet

Rating: ★★½☆☆ 

Paired with Hanger Steaks (page 127 in The Les Halles Cookbook by Anthony Bourdain)

Rating: ★★½☆☆ 

*Sorry no photo of the hanger steak – it was late, I had to put the thing back in the oven, and honestly, we just wanted to eat it.  Next time!
**Because I am either a surfer or a frat boy, depending on which day you catch me.

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