Pasta with Baby Red Lentils and Ginger, I figured I'd just grab a red blend. After opening it, I realized Cabernet Sauvignon was the first grape listed in the 2010 R Collection Lot No. 7 Field Blend from Raymond (California). Definitely not something I'd choose intentionally for an Asian-accented vegetarian pasta dish! But I'm often making due with what's on hand in both the food and wine department on Friday, in advance of restocking the next day.
Yet strangely enough, this pairing worked. First, I should mention that I veered from the pasta recipe slightly, tossing in some extra cumin-sage butter I had on hand. I came across it in the fridge, and figure it couldn't hurt to add. However, for some reason the cumin didn't really mesh well with the other flavors in the dish, giving it a bit of a funky taste when I first made it a few nights ago.
OK, back to the wine. This blend also has Merlot, Syrah, Petite Sirah and Zinfandel. Nice and fruit-forward. Had this been a more oaky Cab based wine, it definitely would have clashed with the pasta. But this had a softness to the mouthfeel that helped it work with the dish. I suspect it was the Merlot and/or the Petite Sirah adding this element. There was a touch of cinnamon in the taste of the wine...maybe that was picking up the cumin? I might not know the reasons why, but somehow this pairing really worked!
Have you had any serendipitous good pairings lately?