The Special Wines Direct Test Kitchen became the scene of a full blown tasting fest- and not just with wine!  In a quest to create the perfect BBQ experience we played around with a lot of different spices and sauces and came up with quite the concoction!

Mosso Wine copyThe Wine: Famiglia Mosso Malbec 2011

Mendoza, Argentina  100% Malbec  Alcohol: 13.7%

Click here to find this Malbec at

This Malbec spent 8 months aging in Oak, it is juicy and complex with aromas of crushed boysenberry, vanilla, and gardenia.  There were only a 650 cases produced making this an extra special treat!

The Food: BBQ Baby Back Ribs & Home Made Fries

Potato Recipe (Serves two hungry wine lovers): About 3 lbs. potatoes slicked in 1/4″ thick All the Spices copywedges (Russet or Yukon Gold, or any mix of your favorite spuds).  An assortment of spices to your taste (as you can see we went all out- but the most important ones are the South Africa Smoke Blend from Trader Joes, Cumin, Black Pepper, and Cayenne).  Heat about 1/3 cup oil in a deep frying pan or wok Fries copyon medium heat, add the potatoes and spices, let cook for about 30 minutes stirring occasionally.  (The key is the long cook time- the potatoes will eventually soften in the middle and crisp slightly on the outside).

Ribs Recipe: About 2 lbs. Baby Back Ribs.  Marinate with your favorite BBQ sauce and throw on the Grill!  Our favorite combination was a mix of 50% Stubbs Spicy BBQ Sauce and 50% Trader Joe’s Bold & Smoky Kansas City Style BBQ Sauce.  Stubbs adds a nice spicy kick and the Trader Joe’s lives up to it’s nBBQ Sauces copyame by being very Bold and creating a smooth and rich consistency.  We’re also firm believers of wood chips in the grill for an extra woodsy, smoky flavor.  Cook till medium-well done (thermometer inserted should read 165-170 degrees).

The Tasting:

Even though our title is pretentious-sounding “Sommelier” we are anything but stuck up!  The standard we judge by isn’t “how developed is your palate,” but rather, “did you like it and have a good time?”  This tasting certainly lived up to those expectations!  We had so much fun experimenting with spices and sauces and cooking up some good grub to go with some great wine!  We found Mosso Malbec to have some nice earthy aromas, anThe Whole Meal copyd perfectly balanced with a medium body.  The spices in the fries played nicely with the wine.  Since it’s more of a medium bodied Red, pork went quite well, and the BBQ sauce had a strong kick, but was mellowed out by the silky smooth texture of the wine.

These two Sommeliers had a great time and gave Two Thumbs Up to the Mosso Malbec paired with BBQ Ribs and Fries!

We wish you the best in your own tasting adventures!

~Cheers – Your Sommeliers Chelsea & Michael