Morels, Meat, and Murrieta’s Well 2016 Merlot #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me in conjunction with a virtual wine tasting event hosted by  Snooth for Murrieta's Well Winery. Wine samples were provided for this post and this page may contain affiliate links.
Last summer I participated in a virtual tasting with wines from Murrieta's Well*. You can read about that here. So, when my contact at Snooth asked if I wanted to participate this round, I was quick to reply 'yes'.

This week, I'll log in and chat with wine enthusiasts around the country about a set of four wines from Murrieta's. Can't wait! So far, I've paired the 2018 Dry OrangeMuscat with Sweet Potato Risotto and the 2018 Dry Rosé with Petrale Sole Ceviche.

In My Glass
Next on my list to try was the 2016 Merlot from Murrieta's Well. Retailing at $46, this wine was a powerhouse that deserves that price point, in my opinion.

A blend of 95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine has an opulent mouthfeel. Intensely aromatic, we got notes of chocolate, ripe stone fruit, with hints of coffee and vanilla. 
On My Plate
As I've always loved the combination of earthy mushrooms with Merlot - remember the Crisped Mushrooms On Warmed Le Welsche and Wine, Butter, & Herb-Roasted Mushrooms that I shared for my 2015 #MerlotMe post - so I decided to use the organic morel mushrooms that I brought back from Denmark for this pairing. 
Ingredients serves 4

1/2 C dried morels (use whatever dried mushrooms you have) 1 C boiling water 2 T butter, divided 1 T olive oil 1 organic onion, peeled and sliced 1 organic green bell pepper, cored and sliced 1 pound ground beef (prefer organic, grass-fed) 1/2 C beef stock 1 t ground cumin 1/2 t ground paprika 1/2 t ground coriander freshly ground salt freshly ground pepper for serving: steamed rice, fresh cilantro

Place dried morels in a heat-safe bowl. Pour boiling water over them and use a saucer or something to completely submerge them. Let them reconstitute for at least 15 to 20 minutes. Drain the morels, reserving the soaking liquid.

In a large skillet, melt 1 T butter in olive oil. Add in onions and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until they are slightly softened. Add in peppers and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more.

Crumble in ground beef, mix in cumin, paprika, and coriander; cook until completely browned. Pour in beef stock and mushroom cooking water (at least 1/2 C). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until the liquid is reduced to a thick sauce.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix fresh cilantro into cooked rice.

Melt 1 T butter in a small skillet and add the morels to the pan. Let them brown on one side for 3 to 4 minutes. Flip them over and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve, place a scoop of cilantro rice on an individual serving plate or bowl. Spoon the meat on the side. Top with a few morels. Serve immediately.

Looking forward to hearing what the panelist and the other bloggers paired with this wine. Stay tuned.
Find the Sponsors Murrietta's Well on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram Snooth on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram
*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. #Stir-fry ##ad #WinePairing #Onions #GroundBeef
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