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Tuesday
Jun212011

Pair That White Burgundy with Chips – A Recommendation from Jameson Fink

Today we have something special for you. I have recruited a certifiable wine expert to recommend a pairing with my new favorite type of wine – White Burgundy. I first encountered this wine at Rouge Tomate on the Upper East Side, and was smitten. But it seemed like such a fancy-pants wine. And let's face it, folks, most days my pants are decidedly unfancy.

I wanted it to be approachable, every-day. So I approached one, Mr. Jameson Fink who is the Social Media Director and European Buyer for Esquin Wine Merchants. While his Twitter profile says he would rather be drinking Champagne and eating popcorn, I somehow convinced him to talk White Burgandy and potato chips.

Here is his knowledgable advice:

I'll admit that the majority of my wine dollars go towards cheap and cheerful whites, or what I like to call porch-pounders. I guzzle an ocean of zesty, bracing, dry whites with enamel-chipping acidity. (That last part maybe doesn't sound so pleasant, but I'm exaggerating for effect. Slightly.) But every now and then I like to pry open the coffers of Jameson, Inc. and have a wine with a little more richness and distinction. And nothing is fancier than Burgundy, exquisite French Chardonnay from hallowed grounds. If you turn up your nose at Chardonnay – and I've certainly drank enough examples from all over the world that make me extremely sympathetic to that position – I highly recommend finding a bottle from the world-wide HQ for the finest expression of the grape.

Burgundy is admittedly a wine region whose navigation is fraught with uncertainly and trepidation. And even if you work your way through the confusion, finally getting a grip on the geography and classification, you can still encounter disappointment. My best advice is to build a relationship with the employees at your neighborhood wine shop. I guarantee you that if you walk in and declare "Help me find good Burgundy"!" you just might make their day.

But  if you are shy (or stubborn) I'm going to give you a tip on how to get something memorable at a reasonable price: look for Bourgogne Blanc. What this means is that you're getting a Chardonnay from Burgundy made from grapes within anywhere in that demarcated region. You need to acquire some knowledge of good producers and, when you do, you'll find out that a lot of times they put some damn fine grapes from prestigious real estate into their basic Chardonnay. One of my favorites is Remoissenet. It's an extremely elegant, pleasurable Chardonnay with a judicious amount of oak for richness and plenty of acidity on the finish for refreshment. Impeccably balanced, which for me is the hallmark of truly fine wine. (Indeed.)

So you'd think if I'm going to multiply the amount of dough I normally spend on a white wine, I'm going to have something luxurious to eat as an accompaniment, no? Lobster? Crab? A rich risotto? A rich risotto with lobster and crab? Naaah. I'm picking up a bag of potato chips. Yup. Just the classic: potatoes, oil, and salt. No gilding the lily here. Something about starchy potatoes, with a bit of salt and fat, is so lovely with richer Chardonnay. (Or Chardonnay in sparkling form. Like a Blanc de Blancs Champagne.)  And after a hard day at work, isn't it nice to come home and know that all you need for dinner is a corkscrew? 

The man himself, Jameson Fink.

Thank you, Jameson! If you'd like to get more expert wine advice, including what Jameson is pairing with his vino, please check out the blog he writes for Esquin Wine Merchants here.

And all this fabulous photography is courtesy of Jackie Baisa. You can check out her website here.

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Reader Comments (5)

Thank you so much for letting me guest on the blog. Truly, truly thrilled. Was hoping I'd get some arrows pointing at me with text. And a =) on the glass! Also I can't thank Jackie enough for taking such great photos.

June 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJameson

What a relief !
I've been into wine since childhood (Ssssshhhhhhh, don't tell the cops) and "in" wine for a couple of decades and nothing makes me want to reach for barf bag more than snobby commentary on what is at its core a beverage of pleasure.
Jameson figured it out!
At Remoissenet we bust our tails to make the finest Bourgogne Blanc we are capable of for people to do exactly what Jameson did: pop the cork, kick back, and enjoy.... Potato chips hanging around? All the better!
Thank you Jameson for not having spent hours of your time (and hours of ours describing it) preparing some goofy dish to go with our wine.... By the way, you'll find it works well with peanuts too...
Great site John and Elena!
All my thanks,

Pierre Rovani
Remoissenet
Beaune, Burgundy, France

June 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPierre Rovani

Great post! I love the term "porch-pounders" you should trademark it!!!

June 21, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBarnaby Dorfman

Here's my Mom's review:

"It actually made me want to try White Burgundy. I have never had a Chardonnay that made me feel that way. But then I have never had one with a potato chip kicker. I got a charge out of seeing my hard labor with the deck furniture immortalized!"

June 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJameson

Burgundy vs Bourgogne demystified. THANK GOD for Jameson Fink!

June 27, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteramy pennington

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