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Wine Wednesday|Pairing Sebastopol Hills Pinot Noir with Pizza

Wine + pizza = excellence!

We’ve been making pizza together since we’ve lived together.  I’ve waxed a little poetically about that before, but goofiness be damned, after 7 years homemade pizza is something that really means “home” to me.  Maybe it’s because it’s so simple, maybe (very likely) it’s because my husband almost always makes it or maybe it’s because it’s something we learned to make together, I pretty much can’t get enough of the stuff.

My husband just had a birthday and his mom sent him a wonderful cookbook:

I’ll admit that pizza on the grill has stumped us these many years.  Each of us has made it successfully once (and each was delicious).  But mostly, our grilled pizza has wound up being at least somewhat of a mess, so we were both excited to get a book that promised to help us master this puzzle.  It’s still winter here (which in LA, doesn’t mean “cold” so much as “dark”) and when he suggested we do something from the book, I was a little surprised – who wants to be outside in the “cold-for-LA” dark cooking pizza on the grill?  About mid-way, reason kicked in and we ditched the idea of doing the pizza outside and opted for the oven.  It was spectacular.

My husband chose a sausage and shitake mushroom combo from the book, which was glorious.  We use Trader Joe’s tomato sauce which he amps up with balsamic vinegar and some secret spices, but a simple homemade tomato sauce would be amazing here as well.  The combination was a knockout.  The book has a couple of different recipes for dough and the one we made was both a nice change from the dough we usually make and also has the promising quality of being a little drier and stiffer, which I think will hold up to the grill once the days get a little longer and we try it out there.

Wait – isn’t this a Wine Wednesday post?  What’s up with all this pizza blah blah blah?

Well, the book also has another fantastic feature – beverage pairings!  This recipe came with a suggestion for an Oregon Pinot Noir.  We don’t carry such stuff at work, so I settled on the Sebastopol Hills Pinot from the Sonoma Coast and am I glad I did!  This bottle is a bit pricier than we usually fly ($9.99 at Trader Joe’s), but it’s well worth the spend.  Smooth without being flat, body without being syrupy or cloy (is that a word?), a bit of sweetness, extremely balanced with a bit of pepper (the husband noted that, I’m still too palette-dead to be picking up spices in wine).  It was a fine wine that I would take with pride to any dinner party.*

Overall, dinner was a hit.  The pizza was fabulous and the wine was wonderful.  Like great old friends, they stand on their own and they are even more fun together!

Until next week!


Box Wine Rating Recap:

Sebastopol Pinot Noir

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Paired with Mushroom Pizza (page 27 in Pizza On The Grill by Elizabeth Karmel and Bob Blumer)

Rating: ★★★★½ 

*Once we get our house done, it will make a very fine hostess gift if you’re over – how’s that for a subtle hint?

One Comment

  1. Rod says:

    Found your site looking for info on the Sebastopol Hiils Pinot.

    Have you tried the ZaGrille for pizza on the Barby? Works great!

    One place:

    Rod in Sacto

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