Have you ever dined on a particular appetizer, entree or dessert and you later dreamed about it? A few months ago I kept having recurring dreams of a Thai entree with curried butternut squash and coconut milk. This week my foodie dreams have been of bacon wrapped dates stuffed with chevre cheese. Mmm...what is it about bacon? I could wrap bacon around an unopened Hershey Bar, paper and all, and it would still taste delicious to me.
Saturday we dined at the only Four-Star French restaurant east of the Washington State, Patit Creek in Dayton, Wa. Of course, if you have ever dined there it is a must to order a plate or two of Bruce and Heather’s wonderful appetizers. We couldn’t seem to locate our favorite smoked salmon cheese cake with Heather’s handmade crackers on the menu and we all agreed that escargot didn’t sound too appetizing especially after annihilating those slimy little gastropods in our gardens. All of a sudden the skies parted, angels sang and a fanfare of trumpets blared - - and there it was --- BACON! Crispy little pieces of smoky, salty goodness wrapped around sweet dates stuffed with chevre cheese.
Now that our appetizer was decided, we needed to have just the right wine to pair with it. Two of the dining partners do not drink a lot of white wine and agreed that a white might not hold up to all of the dominant flavors of this appetizer. Merlot might not enhance the smoky sweet appetizer, while Cabernet Sauvignon could over-power it, but we all agreed that Sangiovese, a Tuscan red legacy, would be the perfect match. We chose Walla Walla’s Morrison Lane Estate Sangiovese - 2003. A nose of floral with flavors of strawberry, dried cherries and leather. There was just enough crispiness and acidity, with a faintness of oak, that it was an excellent pairing for our noshes of bacon, dates and cheese.
From crispy to salty to smoky to fleshy and sweet to tart and creamy. Do I dare say there were six degrees of flavor and textures to this bacon appetizer (if only a waiter by the name of Kevin had worked there - groan)?