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Purple Sweet Potato Soup with Roasted Lobster + Bonny Doon Vin Gris de Cigare for #winePW

The second Saturday of the month is one of my favorite days. Do you know why? Because it's our #winePW - Wine Pairing Weekend - reveal. I love it. How can you not adore bloggers who love food and love wine. It's a fantastic event from which I always make a wine shopping list. And this Sarah of Curious Cuisiniere is hosting this month. Here's her invitation.

This month the Wine Pairing Weekend crew has come up with some unexpected wine pairings for your Thanksgiving table. We have everything from side dishes that bring out the flavors of fall-themed wines to post-Thanksgiving leftover pairing ideas that will keep you in the thankful spirit.

In My Glass

For these events, I try to pick a somewhat local-to-me vintner...and something I haven't highlighted before. I tried to locate another Halter Ranch because I just adored my pick last month (remember the Côtes de Paso paired with pumpkin lasagna?!?), but I couldn't get it in time. I will, however, be pouring some of Halter's dessert wine offerings at my actual Thanksgiving dinner.

For #winePW this month, I went with Bonny Doon Vineyard's Vin Gris de Cigare. Funny story, I was checking out at my local Whole Foods and the cashier gushed, "Cool! They have a UFO on the label." What?! "Look, a UFO...oh, and a little alien head on the top. You didn't notice?" No. "You didn't pick it for the label?" No, I actually picked it for the wine. The UFO and alien head are bonuses, I guess.

This summer I had the chance to meet - and interview - Randall Grahm for a piece I'm writing for Edible Monterey Bay. Because the piece has yet to run, I won't say too much about him...or the article. But just imagine the kind of person who self-identifies as "Winemaker, Terroirist, Vinarchist, and Defender of Misunderstood and Underappreciated Doon-trodden Cépages of the Earth." Yes, he is all that and a bag of chips!

Vin Gris de Cigare has a gorgeous pink and orange hue, sort of the shade of poached quince. In fact, the floral notes with citrus hints actually remind me quite a bit of quince. This wine is medium-bodied, not summer crisp, but not cloyingly weighty either. It was the perfect match for my Purple Sweet Potato Soup with Roasted Lobster.

In My Bowl

A note: though I used the uniquely colored purple sweet potato, the resulting soup was more of a deep red. Not purple at all. Bummer. But it was delicious.


  • 3 (quantity) 1/2-pound lobster tails, roasted [see below]
  • 1 T peeled fresh ginger, grated finely
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2 large leeks, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • 2 T butter
  • splash of olive oil
  • 6 to 8 purple sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 8 to 10 C organic chicken stock
  • 1 T honey
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • juice and zest from 2 organic lemons, separated
  • 1/2 C fresh parsley, chopped + some for garnish

For the lobster tails: You can do this the day before, if you like; I prefer to do mine day of serving. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Using kitchen shears, cut each lobster tail down the back, stopping at the last segment before the tail piece.

Bend back the tail until you hear a loud crack. Slip a knife between the meat and the bottom membrane, freeing tail meat from the shell. Pull the meat up and over the shell, closing the shell shut beneath it. The tail meat, then, piggybacks on top of the shell. 

Coat the lobster meat with a generous coating of oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake for 1-2 minutes per ounce of weight, if fresh. It might take longer if the tail is frozen. Once your tails are cooked, pull out the tail meat and slice into bite-sized pieces.

For the soup: Melt butter in a splash of olive oil in a large souppot. Add ginger, fennel, leeks, and celery; sauté until leeks begin to soften and turn translucent, approximately 5 minutes. Add sweet potatoes and sauté for a few minutes. Pour in the stock and bring mixture to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until everything is very tender, about 35 to 40 minutes. Stir in the honey and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

Working in batches, puree soup in a blender or food processor. Return soup to pot. Thin with more broth, if needed. Stir in the lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in parsley.

To serve: remove lobster meat from shells and slice into thick medallions. Ladle soup into bowls. Arrange lobster medallions on top of the soup. Garnish with fresh parsley and lemon zest.

Wine Pairing Weekend #6 
Here's what all of the bloggers have created for the November Wine Pairing Weekend!

Creative Thanksgiving-Inspired Dishes and Wine Pairings

Don't Forget Leftovers! 

Join the #winePW conversation: 
Follow the #winePW conversation on Twitter throughout the weekend and beyond. If you're getting this early enough, you can join us for a live Twitter chat on our theme "Creative Thanksgiving-Inspired Dishes + Wine Pairings" on Saturday, November 8th, from 11 a.m. to noon Eastern Time.

And that's a Wrap...
...on our November #winePW event. My Purple Sweet Potato Soup with Roasted Lobster + Bonny Doon Vin Gris de Cigare pairing was amazing! I'll pin this recipe and other posts on my #winePW pinterest board. David, the event creator, also has a Wine Pairing Weekend pinterest board

And, be sure to mark your calendars for December's Wine Pairing Weekend, hosted by Jeff of foodwineclick. Just in time for Holiday parties, we'll be sharing sparkling wine and hors d'oeuvre pairings. Join in the #WinePW 7 conversation on Saturday Dec. 13!

If you can't find Bonny Doon Vin Gris de Cigare, look for a Grenache Rosé. And if you try this pairing - or just the wine - I would love to hear what you think. Comment below, find Culinary Adventures with Camilla on facebook, or tweet to me at @Culinary_Cam.


  1. The soup looks delicious, and the Bonny Doon Vin Gris rose is a great choice to pair. What fun you must have had interviewing Randall, can't wait to read about it!

    1. Thanks! Yes, I'll be sure to share when it's published.

  2. Everything looks so delectable. The wine pairing sounds perfect - can't wait to read your interview, will you be able to post a link to it when it is published - we don't get Edible in Palm Springs.

    1. Sure thing. I post all of my Edible pieces on my other blog:

  3. YUM! Looks and sounds great. Sorry I missed this month. Cheers!

  4. Your soup looks amazing! I really need to get my hands on some lobster tails to try it out!

  5. G'day Your soup looks amazing and wish I could come through the screen and try!
    Cheers! Joanne

  6. I love soups and this sounds delicious, especially with the lobster!

  7. Your soup sounds delicious and I thought it interesting that two of you (so far) have chosen "orange" wines this month.

  8. Okay, this one I will be needing to make. I love your use of fennel - one of my favorite flavors. I also think you have quince on the brain - ha ha. I may be substituting a seafood I can get fresh in Oregon - like shrimp or mussels but this one is going on my "must try" list.

  9. OMG! Your dish sounds and looks amazing! As I mentioned previously I'm a big fan of BDV Vin Gris de Cigare. It's on my perennial Rosé list, and I can definitely see it working well with this dish!

  10. Love the presentation. I don't usually cook lobster, but would love to try this recipe. Curious about the wine. too. Thank you.

  11. Realized I hadn't had a chance to check out your post yet! Sounds great...I'm a big Bonny Doon fan and have enjoyed connected with Randall on Twitter. Please let me know when your article runs!


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