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herb marinated goat cheese + grilled bread + wine pairing

More of a set of instructions for assembly rather than a recipe, this is a little something you can throw together ahead of time.  It's power comes from simplicity and using the best quality everything.  No real measurements needed, friends and wine required.

I like to serve this with warm, grilled bread and a bowl of olives.  Be sure to set the cheese out ahead of time to take the chill off and so you get a little melting action when you spread it on the bread.

herb marinated goat cheese + grilled bread + wine pairing

4 oz log of your favorite plain goat cheese

extra virgin olive oil

crushed red pepper flakes

3-4 basil leaves, stacked and cut into ribbons

3 T micro-cilantro or regular, chopped

1 t thyme leaves

sea salt

black pepper

1/2 loaf of round Italian country bread or sourdough, cut into thick slices

Carefully slice a very cold log of goat cheese into 4 pieces and arrange on a slightly rimmed serving plate or very shallow bowl.

Lightly cover the cheese with your best extra-virgin olive oil. I love greek olive oil or any young, vibrant grassy oil for this dish.

Add a pinch (or more) of red pepper flakes, the herbs, sea salt and a few cracks of black pepper.  Cover with plastic wrap and marinate for at least an hour or more if you have the time.

When you are ready to serve, take the cheese out of the fridge and grill your bread slices until they are slightly charred.

And, compliments of my friends at

CoolVines

:

Wine Pairing: The straight forward but, aggressive flavors in this dish would pair quite nicely with a bold, medium-bodied traditional red exuding the same qualities – texture also being important.  A red with firm, yet silky tannins would work wonderfully with the distinct flavor of the goat cheese and pull together the creaminess in the mouth.  Look for something with concentrated and balanced flavors of dark fruit (plums, blackberries) or smokiness as pleasant challenge to the charred bread.

Here’s what we Suggest: 

http://www.coolvines.com/wines/413500846003/Jean-Louis-Chave-Mon-Coeur-2010

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http://www.coolvines.com/wines/browse/29a4384-05aef12-60d2548