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Holiday Wine Buying Guide: Viader

Celebrate the season with California’s best wines and food pairings.

With wines as breathtaking as the panoramic views from the winery, VIADER is a leading Napa Valley estate founded in 1986 by Delia Viader on the steep, rocky slopes of Howell Mountain. VIADER (pronounced vee-ah-“dare”) is recognized around the world for consistent, high quality, and very limited production red wines that demonstrate elegance, complexity and long-aging potential.

Having been born in Argentina yet raised in Europe, wine was always an integral part of Delia’s life. Inspired by the wines of Chateau Cheval Blanc in St. Emilion, Bordeaux, it was her dream to create a distinctive and balanced wine featuring Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc from a mountain site in the Napa Valley.

Always daring to be different, Delia brought the European style of winemaking and vineyard cultivation to the California hillside by planting the vines in rows going up and down the mountain. With optimal sun exposure, and unique soil that allows for natural drainage, the vines struggle to survive in the rocky terroir and produce fruit of exceptional quality. Delia’s innovative farming methods have made her one of Napa Valley’s early pioneer women winemakers.

The European influence can be found in Delia’s signature wine, 2007 VIADER Proprietary Red Blend. Described as “cashmere for the tongue” by Master of Wine, Andrea Robinson, the 2007 VIADER Proprietary Red Blend captures an ideal balance between Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc from our estate on Howell Mountain. The sweet supple Cabernet Franc contributes to the early approachability, elegant structure, and overwhelming bouquet of violet-like aromatics, while the hillside-grown Cabernet Sauvignon adds complexity and character as well as providing the backbone structure for long aging potential.

In 2003, her son Alan joined the winemaking team and together they introduced the DARE by Viader line that focuses on single varieties created in a more fruit-forward style. Their 2009 DARE by Viader Cabernet Franc demonstrates an elegant silky texture, with ripe red raspberry and cherry flavors to complement the suave tannins. The 2009 DARE by Viader Cabernet Franc wine shows a plush entry that leads to a well-defined mid-palate and a long, more textured finish. An excellent food wine, and also inviting to enjoy on its own.

Both bold reds from VIADER pair exceptionally well with your usual holiday fare, such as the Mustard Glazed Brisket presented by Chef Christopher Kostow at Meadowood.

Salud!

Springtime Latkes 
with Rhubarb and 
Crème Fraiche
Serves 12 
(two latkes per person)

1 lb Yukon potatoes, diced and rinsed
1 egg
1 oz. bunch fava leaf
2 whole spring onions, sliced
2 tbsp potato starch
Salt to taste
Extra virgin olive oil for frying

Combine the potatoes, fava leaves, spring onion and egg in a food processor. With the machine running, add the potato starch. Transfer to a mixing bowl and season with salt. Heat approximately ¼ inch of oil in a non stick pan. Drop spoonfuls of the batter into the pan, quickly forming small circles with the back of the spoon. Do not cook more than four latkes per pan. Brown well on both sides and remove onto a paper towel-lined plate. Serve with crème fraiche and rhubarb compote (recipe follows)

Rhubarb Compote 
for Latkes
For 24 latkes

4 cups rhubarb, peeled and diced
2 cup sugar
1 tbsp water
Combine all ingredients in a small pot. Cook over medium heat until the rhubarb begins to break down. Transfer to bowl and allow to chill. If needed, adjust tartness with additional sugar.

Brussels Sprout Kraut
Serves 12

2 lbs Brussels sprouts, shaved thin
2 cups salt
1 cup Champagne vinegar
10 juniper berries

Toss the shaved Brussels sprouts with the 
salt and allow to sit overnight. Heat the juniper berries and vinegar together and also allow 
to sit overnight. Rinse the Brussels sprouts 
very well and dry them on a paper towel. Transfer the Brussels sprouts to a bowl and dress them with the infused vinegar. Serve with the glazed brisket.