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House of Mandela: 2 Wines, 5 Chefs, 10 Delicious Pairings

by  V. Sheree Williams on February 23, 2016

The Mandelas

As the world celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8, we also had a celebration of our own. This year, we teamed up with House of Mandela and five very talented female chefs from around the country to celebrate women’s contributions and creativity in both the wine and culinary industries.  Founded by Nelson Mandela’s daughter Makaziwe and granddaughter Tukwini, House of Mandela was launched more than five years ago and is now available in the U.S. as well as in Brazil, Canada, Japan, Germany, Luxenbourg, Taiwan, China and Turks and Caicos Islands.

Together with chefs Michele Wilson, Elle Scott, Rhonda Russell, Tracey Augustine and Hardette Harris, we put together a menu of 10 delicious pairings that are perfect to enjoy any day of the week or for any occasion.  Each chef was given a bottle of House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay and House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon and what happened next will have your taste buds singing in harmony.  Each chef's pairing below is just a snippet of how versatile these wines are with a variety of dishes and ingredients we all love to eat. 

Chef Michele Wilson, Gussie’s Southern Table and Bar (California)

Michele-WilsonRecipe: Red Wine Pomegranate Skirt Steak with Gruyere Cheese Grits
Pairing: Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

The House of Mandela Cabernet Sauvignon is a wonderful pairing for with this dish. It lends itself very well in the cooking process and the flavor is further carried out if it is served with the dish.  The chocolate and dark berry notes work so well with beef that it's a natural pairing for any beef dish.  The flavor profile of the berries and chocolate go naturally with not only the beef but the aged gruyere cheese in the grits.  The smooth finish of the wine helps to create a smooth and velvety finish to the sauce reduction. Get the recipe here.

Recipe: Thai Basil Chicken
Pairing: House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay

This dish has quite a bit of spice to it. The crispness and buttery like texture of this chardonnay allow the palate to comfortably enjoy the spice without overwhelming the palate.  The creamy oak texture of the wine feeds off the fish and oyster sauces in the dish where as the citrus notes truly bring out the flavor of the fresh Thai basil. Get the recipe here.

 

Chef Elle Scott, SheChef, LLC (New York)

Elle ScottRecipe: Spicy Tomato Shrimp and Polenta Cakes
Pairing:
House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

I choose to pair this recipe with the cabernet sauvignon. I wanted to pair the delicious berry, tobacco and chocolate notes with something a tad spicy. I’m a pushover for an authentic mole; the kind that our Mexican brothers and sisters made for us during family meals back in my restaurant days.  This pairing is very reminiscent of that comfort dish. The acid and from the tomatoes followed by the smooth finish of this cabernet makes for an unforgettable meal. Get the recipe here.

Recipe: Herbed Ricotta and Gruyere Soufflé
Pairing: House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay

This recipe is great paired with the House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay. Immediately, these citrusy, spicy notes of creamy oak texture reminded me that there’s nothing I love more than an abundant fruit and cheese board! Ricotta and gruyere are both light on the palette but bold in taste. Paired with this wine and its surprising notes of apple, this is an obvious match made in heaven. Get the recipe here.

 

Chef Rhonda Russell, Taste by Rhonda (Texas)

Rhonda RussellRecipe: Beef Stew With Roasted Winter Vegetables
Pairing:
House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

The House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon complements my Beef Stew with Roasted Winter Vegetables recipe by bringing out the dark berries and fruit aromas in the wine. The beef intensifies the fruit bursts on the palate. The finish is so smooth with the nutty roasted flavor of the vegetable that brings out the hints of tobacco and chocolate in the wine.  It gives your whole entire mouth a well balanced smoky sweet chocolate ending. Get the recipe here.

Recipe: Cornish Hen Stuffed With Seafood Stuffing with Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Pairing: House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay

The House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay complements my Cornish Hen Stuffed with Seafood Stuffing recipe by bringing out the citrus from the wine and also highlighting the seafood in the stuffing. Because the apples are so noticeable on the palate, you get a burst of sweetness from the hen.  The creamy texture of the oak brings in all the flavors of the dish and balances the entire meal to give you a wonderful full mouth feel. Get the recipe here.

 

Chef Tracey Augustine, Cashmere Bites (California)

Tracey AugustineRecipe: Red Velvet Brownies
Pairing:
House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

The House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvigion is astoundingly lush with berries and when I tasted this wine, my palate was transported into a field of ripe blackberries. This wine has a depth and is a classic accompaniment to chocolate. Red velvet cake is a classic Southern dessert and can be very sweet.  Here is a less sweet variation of it turned into a brownie that pairs well with this lovely wine. Get the recipe here.

Recipe: Fried Green Tomatoes
Pairing: House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay

Fried green tomatoes get an unexpected twist with an Indian spiced tomato chutney to accompany this appetizer. The tartness from the unripe, green tomatoes and the apple cider vinegar complement the apple and bright citrus on the palate of this chardonnay as well as a little sweetness from the raisins. Get the recipe here.


Chef Hardette Harris, Your Chef Concierge (Louisiana)

Hardette HarrisRecipe: Spiced Rubbed Chateaubriand
Pairing:
House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

The cab goes well with this roast because of the hints of smokiness and chocolate. It also complements the marriage of the various spices in the rub, leaving you with a very nice finish.  Get the recipe here.

Recipe:  Pan Seared Halibut in Honey Mustard Cream Sauce
Pairing: House of Mandela Thembu Collection 2014 Chardonnay

This was a wonderful crisp white wine. It pairs well with halibut especially when it's fresh and cooked to perfection. The sauce is flavorful but not overpowering and the crisp citrus notes will complement it nicely.  Although it has a light crisp citrus flavor, it has a very nice full bodied finish. It will also go well with any buttery sauce that would accompany a fish or chicken dish. Get the recipe here.

 To view the full House of Mandela wine list, visit www.houseofmandela.com.   To order your bottles of wine to pair with these recipes or make your own, you can find distribution information at http://www.houseofmandela.com/wine-distributer-africa-map.  You an also order selection at www.winesearcher.com.

Read more about the House of Mandela in Cuisine Noir's article, "Capturing the Essense of  History, Heritage Culture with House of Mandela Wines."

 

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