Friday, May 17, 2019

Lemon-Caper Halibut + Gérard Bertrand 2018 Cigalus Blanc #Winophiles #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me in conjunction with the May #Winophiles event.
Wine samples were provided for this post and this page may contain affiliate links.

This month, L.M., of L.M. Archer, is hosting the French Winophiles as we explore and pair Gérard Bertrand Wines. Read her invitation here. Several of us were fortunate enough to have our posts sponsored by Gérard Bertrand. I, for one, had already sourced, tasted, and paired my wine.


Then I received a suprise bottle from Gérard Bertrand* and changed direction. But you can read my initial post at Boeuf aux Agrumes + Gérard Bertrand 2014 Kosmos. If you are reading this early enough, join the conversation on Twitter: Saturday, May 18th at 8am Pacific time. Be sure to include #Winophiles in your tweet so we can all see you; or simply search for the hashtag later and read the conversation.

The #Winophiles' Explorations

In My Glass

At Cigalus, in the South of France, Gérard Bertrand manages the vineyard according to the biodynamic system that has at the heart of it a system of growing that enhances the expression of the terroir with minimal intervention from the grower and winemaker. In fact, at the heart of the biodynamic system is the energy of the soil. All the work in the vineyard - from ploughing and pruning - and in the cellar is done in strict adherence to a calendar that revolves around the sun and the moon.

Throughout 2019, we have been exploring boidynamic wines in several of the wine groups. It's been quite eye-opening. You can read my previous posts. For those events, I shared: Dinner in Testosterone Land: Braised Short Ribs + 2016 Nuova Cappelletta Barbera del Monferrato and Learning about Biodynamic Wines + M.Chapoutier Wines with Some Cross-Cultural Pairings. I'll be honest, I appreciate learning about biodynamic practices and I truly respect wineries that are following those practices - whether they get the certifications or not - but the designation is not a guarantee of a "good" wine, in my mind.

The Cigalus vineyard has a semi-arid Mediterranean climate; with its mild winters and hot summers, all the grape varieties enjoy an early ripening. And the dryness of the climate is countered by bordering Aussou, a stream that runs alongside the property.


The Gérard Bertrand 2018 Cigalus Blanc is a blend of Chardonnay, Viognier, and Sauvignon Blanc grapes. To the eye it has as clear, light straw color. The nose is intensely citrus with notes of lime, grapefruit, and mandarin. But, after you give it a good swirl, softer tones of summer stone fruits and honey. Jake noted bioche, however, that may be because he misses bread!

On the palate, the Cigalus Blanc is surprisingly full-bodied, given its light color, supple and silky. And, despite its citrus aromas, I thought the flavor leaned more vanilla and tropical fruit. Still, its weight made it a great pour with my citrus-heavy fish dinner.

On My Plate

I had picked up some halibut at the market and wanted a quick, easy dinner. So, I opted to pan-fry the fish and make an easy pan-sauce with butter, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and caper. Then, because Jake and I are trying to cut back on bread and carbs, in general, I put the fish on a bed of zucchini noodles.

 Lemon-Caper Halibut 

Ingredients 
  • 1 to 2 halibut fillets
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 2 T butter
  • noodles or zoodles (zucchini noodles!) for serving
Caper Sauce
  • 2 T butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 T capers
  • 1 T cornstarch mixed with 1 T water
  • 2 T white wine
  • juice of 1/2 lemon, (about 1 T)
  • 1 C chicken broth


Procedure
Caper Sauce
In a skillet, over medium heat, melt butter with garlic. Cook till the garlic softens. Add wine, lemon juice, and capers. Cook off the alcohol for a couple of minutes. Whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Pour in the broth and whisk it until it begins to thicken. Pour into a bowl and set aside.

Fish
In the same pan, over medium heat, melt butter in olive oil. Add halibut fillets. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes on each side.

To serve, toss cooked noodles with olive oil and half of the caper sauce. Place into individual bowls, top with halibut. Then divide the remaining sauce between the servings. 


As a simple side dish, I served avocados drizzled with olive oil and lemon juice. It was a tasty, simple dinner...and it went really well with the Gérard Bertrand 2018 Cigalus Blanc.

Until next time...the French Winophiles will be focusing on French wine and French cheese with Martin of ENOFYLZ Wine Blog leading the charge. Cheers!

*Disclosure: I received sample wines for recipe development, pairing, and generating social media traction. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the organizer and sponsors of this event.

11 comments:

  1. Ah...it is time for zucchini noodles! As things warm up (we got chilly again here), these are go to ideas for dinner! This wine sounds delicious. I will need to get a bottle!

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  2. Although I haven't participated in all the different group biodynamic theme events, I've read almost all of them as it's of great interest. The bottom line- is the wine good. Bertrand has proven Cigalus Blanc is a nice wine, he's definitely got biodynamic agriculture down! On the pairing end of things, you've got a winner here. Another one to add to my list of "Cam's recipes to make" ;-D

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  3. The halibut and the zoodles are so healthy, yet won't be deprived of the taste as the caper butter sauce adds good fat. Totally see how this fish goes well with the citrus Cigalus. Great pairing!

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  4. Ok, the halibut sounds wonderful over those zoodles but I am pushing those out of the way and grabbing the avocados....Now I have a hankering...I wonder if I can get Frank to run to the grocers LOL>

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  5. I love the simplicity of this meal, especially the avocados with lemon. Just the way I would eat them too. I'm trying to cut back on carbs as well, but not having much luck lol. Nice pairing of a biodynamic wine with such beautiful fillets of halibut!

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  6. Your recipe looks great, mine suggested halibut too, but it's really expensive in Mpls (like $40/lb). I'm impressed with your willingness to limit the bread, we find that a tough one!

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  7. I just has halibut this weekend, fortunately it is about half the price Jeff sees in Mpls! your preparation sounds tasty and making for a good pairing

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  8. Looks like a delicious combo and I think the simple avocado dish would add a lot. I keep going back and forth on trying to limit my carbs as well!

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  9. This is my kind of dinner! Also adding it to my file of future fish dinners. Perfect pairing with the Cigalus Blanc!

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  10. This looks amazing. And I'd love to finish off this delicious meal with you lemon lavender cake! Wow. Saving both recipes.

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  11. Superb and simple, clean recipe to go with this wine. You're a productive cook!

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