Friday, September 18, 2015

From Languedoc-Roussillon: Anchoïade + Gerard Bertrand Tautavel '08 #winophiles

Welcome to the September event for The French Winophiles, a wine-swilling, food-loving group coordinated by Christy of Confessions of a Culinary Diva. We start with the Regions first and then move to the Appellations. The proposed schedule, based somewhat on the seasons is as follows:

  • June 20 - Loire Valley (click for my post: here)
  • July 18 - Provence or Corsica (click for my post: here)
  • August 15 - Southwest (click for my post: here)
  • September 19 - Languedoc-Roussillon
  • October 17 - Cote due Rhone
  • November 21 - Bordeaux
  • December 19 - Champagne
  • January 16 - Burgundy
  • February 20 - Alsace

To Languedoc-Roussillon...
Languedoc is a former province of France, encompassing the modern-day regions of Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées in the south of France. In researching the wines, I learned about Tautavel.  The village of Tautavel lies between the Pyrenees and the Mediterranean, in the region of Roussillon; it is considered one of the cradles of humanity. Homo Erectus Tautavelensis, who lived nearly half a million years ago, was discovered in Caune de l'Arago, a cave in the commune.


What the French Winophiles Are Sipping...

In My Glass...
The Tautavel is approachable with subtle aromas of black cherry and plum. In the glass it's a brilliant red with some flashes of cocoa. This wine was nicely structured with good balance and a lengthy finish.

A funny note: this wine is a blend of grenache, syrah, and carignan. When I stopped at Whole Foods on my way home, I found this...

Naturally, I bought them...and served them with the wine!

On My Plate...
For my pairing, I decided on a unique salad from Languedoc called anchoïade, a tomato and anchovy salad that is a celebration of land and sea. I couldn't find the salt-packed anchovies that are traditionally in this salad. So, I used some sustainably fished anchovies packed in water. If I ever get my hands on the salt-packed ones, I'll definitely make this again.

Anchoïade (Tomato and Anchovy Salad)

  • 8 anchovy fillets
  • 1 to 2 large heirloom tomatoes, sliced into thin wedges
  • a selection of olives
  • 2 large eggs, hard-boiled, shelled and halved (I used duck eggs)
  • ¼ C extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 T white wine vinegar
  • 1 t Dijon mustard
  • ¼ C capers
  • freshly ground salt to taste
  • freshly ground pepper to taste

Arrange the tomatoes on a platter. Drape the anchovy fillets over the tomatoes and sprinkle with capers. Add the eggs and olive to the platter.

Make the vinaigrette by whisking together the olive oil, vinegar, and mustard. Drizzle the dressing over the tomatoes and anchovies. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.


  1. What a find on those wine grapes at Whole Foods! I'm also interested in where you got the anchovies packed in water, I think they are actually better than the salt packed ones (you have to rinse them thoroughly). I'm just finishing up another wine from Gerard Bertrand, his Syrah/Mourvedre. It's another winner!

  2. I will have to pass on the salad Cam...I have tried and tried to love anchovies but can't seem to get a taste for them. Your salad certainly looks lovely and the grapes were a great find!!

  3. Lovely light summer salad with a great wine pairing.

  4. Lovely light summer salad with a great wine pairing.

  5. What a delightful summer meal! Light, refreshing and great for nights when you don't feel like a lot of fuss. For some reason when I saw the photo of the Carignane on twitter I thought it was tea. Maybe time for glasses!