Winter Wine & Food Pairings From Trefethen Vineyards

  • Food
  • on JANUARY 17, 2021
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Winter Wine & Food Pairings From Trefethen Vineyards

By WineCountry Collective January 17, 2021

It’s safe to say that our ovens saw a lot of action in 2020. Hello, sourdough bread making! Now that it’s a new year, we’re feeling ready to get back in our kitchens again to cook some delicious new recipes. Especially if those recipes are inspired by Wine Country.

Luckily for us (and you!), our pals at Trefethen Family Vineyards in Napa Valley are sharing three mouthwatering recipes fit for the season. Having devoted themselves to crafting impeccably balanced estate wines that are natural companions to different cuisines, the Trefethens know a thing or two about wine and food. In fact, Trefethen Family Vineyards has a long history involved in Napa’s culinary scene, having hosted the Napa Valley Cooking Class for 25 years and served as a location for cooking shows. Today, armed with their own talented chef, Chef Chris Kennedy, Trefethen offers a diverse array of culinary experiences for its guests (and a plethora of recipes you can make at home, too).

Whether you’re looking for a healthy meal in order to stick to your resolutions, a comforting dinner to savor this winter, or a show stopping side you can transform into an entrée, Trefethen’s Wine Country-inspired recipes and wine pairings are sure to satisfy all season long. Bon appetit!

Classic & Comforting

Beef Daube Provençal

Pair with: Trefethen Malbec


– 2 tsp Trefethen extra virgin olive oil
– 10 garlic cloves, crushed
– 2 lb boneless chuck roast, trimmed & cut into 2-inch cubes
– 1½ tsp salt, divided
– ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
– 1 cup Trefethen Malbec
– 2 cups carrot, chopped
– 1½ cup onion, chopped
– ½ cup low-sodium beef broth
– 1 Tbsp tomato paste
– 16 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
– 1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
– 1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
– 1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
– dash of ground cloves


1. Preheat oven to 300F. Heat olive oil in a small Dutch oven over low heat. Add garlic to pot and cook for 5 minutes or until garlic is fragrant, stirring occasionally. Remove garlic from pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.

2. Increase heat to medium-high, add beef to pot, and sprinkle with ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp black pepper. Cook for 5 minutes, taking care to brown all sides of the beef. Once cooked, remove beef from pot and set aside.

3. Add Trefethen Malbec to pot, bring it to a boil and scrape pot to loosen browned bits. Add garlic, beef, carrot, onion, broth, tomato paste, diced tomato, chopped herbs, ground cloves, bay leaf, and remaining 1 tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper to pot and bring to a boil.

4. Cover and bake in oven at 300F for 2½ hours or until beef is tender. Discard bay leaf and serve over creamy polenta or with your favorite crusty bread, garnished with additional chopped fresh thyme, if desired. Enjoy!

A Health-Conscious Main

Trefethen Family Vineyards
Photo Courtesy of Trefethen Family Vineyards

Pan-Roasted Chicken Thighs with Lettuce, Green Apple, & Lemon Caper Vinaigrette

Pair with: Trefethen Dry Riesling

Chicken Ingredients

   – 6 boneless chicken thighs, about 2¼ pounds
   – kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
   – 1 Tbsp vegetable oil

Lemon Caper Vinaigrette Ingredients

   – 2 Tbsp capers & juice from jar
   – 1 tsp lemon zest
   – 2 Tbsp lemon juice
   – 6 Tbsp Trefethen extra virgin olive oil

Salad Ingredients

   – 2 heads of butter lettuce, washed & pulled off stem
   – 2 cups green baby kale
   – 2 green apples, large dice
   – ¼ cup sunflower seeds, roasted & salted


1. Preheat oven to 375F. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large cast-iron or heavy nonstick skillet over high heat until hot but not smoking. Nestle chicken in skillet and cook on high heat for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-high and continue to cook for 5 minutes more.

2. Flip the chicken over and place in oven. Roast for another 5-8 minutes, cooking the chicken all the way through. Remove from oven and let rest in the pan.

3. Place the caper juice, zest, olive oil, and lemon juice into a pint-size mason jar. Mince the capers and add to mason jar. Put the lid on and shake vigorously to combine. Set aside.

4. Add all salad ingredients to a large mixing bowl. Toss with desired amount of lemon caper vinaigrette. Adjust seasoning as desired with salt and pepper.

5. Place the salad into your favorite bowl and cut the chicken thighs in half and add to salad. Enjoy with Trefethen Dry Riesling.

A Versatile Side Dish

Trefethen Family Vineyards
Photo Courtesy of Trefethen Family Vineyards

White Corn Polenta

Pair with: Trefethen The Cowgirl and The Pilot Merlot


– 2 cups beef, chicken, or vegetable broth
– 1 cup heavy cream
– 1 cup whole milk
– 1 cup Anson Mills white polenta (yellow polenta may be substituted)
– ½ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated plus extra for serving
– 1 Tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
– ½ Tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped
– 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
– ½ cup mascarpone cheese
– salt and pepper


1. Add the stock, cream, milk, and salt and pepper to a saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.

2. Slowly pour the polenta into the hot liquid, whisking briskly to prevent clumping. Reduce the heat to low and continue whisking for about 10 minutes and cook until the liquid is absorbed.

3. Add the herbs, cheese, and butter to the saucepan, stirring gently until incorporated.

4. Serve polenta warm as a side dish, top with roasted mushrooms as an entrée, or pour onto a lined cookie sheet and allow to cool and firm. You can then cut the cooled polenta into any shape you desire and sear or roast in the oven.

Looking for more kitchen inspo? Check out Trefethen’s pairings and recipes online, or explore our roundup of wine-friendly recipes to make at home. They’re sure to help you master your culinary skills in 2021.