February 26, 2021Food Pairings
Champagne at the Table: Oysters Rocafella
“As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.”
― Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast
Welcome to Champagne at the Table, where we bring you monthly seasonal fair to pair with your fatcork bubbles. Whether you're sipping alongside a spicy curry or snacking on some coveted caviar, there's always a place for Champagne at the Table.
This elegant cuvée is delicate, fresh, and structured at the same time. Juicy notes of Meyer lemon and crisp green apple skin meld with salty sea air, stony minerality, and pungent sweet florals. Mmm. Sometimes it's okay to be extra fancy. We love to pair this bottle with flaky white fish, scrambled eggs topped with caviar, or freshly shucked oysters.
We truly believe in this pairing. Imagine downing a salty, meaty oyster, right from the shell, followed by a cool, fresh sip of sparkling bubbles—A party in your mouth!
Why did we choose oysters & Champagne? Because bubbles and bivalves are a perfect match. There is a reason for this highly celebrated and classic pairing. Not only is this popular opinion, but it’s scientifically proven! Oysters and Champagne have more in common than you think.
The region of Champagne, is one of the coolest wine growing regions in France, which means higher levels of acidity in the juice produced there. The acidity and bubbles of Champagne are a definite contributing factor to this refreshing partnership. Additionally, both oysters and Champagne share similar umami properties that work together in harmony to enhance each other’s flavors. Now that’s teamwork! In Champagne, that umami flavor comes from the lees, dead yeast particles, and for oysters, it comes from the muscle!
Let’s also not forget about the mineral-driven, chalk and limestone soils that seep in via root, to vine, and into your glass. Remnants of marine fossils and soil composition tell the story of what once was—the historical Paris Basin—and can be attributed to the unique flavors of French Champagne. So, if you think about it, the merroir of oysters isn’t all that different from the terroir of Champagne. There's a saying in the wine world—What grows together goes together! We hope you enjoy this fresh, fancy, and fun pairing.
Prep time: 30 minutes
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons water
- 1/2 cup Champagne
- 1/4 cup fresh grapefruit juice
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup Champagne vinegar
- 1 small shallot, minced
- Freshly ground pepper
2 dozen fresh Oysters, shucked on the half shell
- Crushed ice and coarse salt, for serving
1 tablespoon dried egg-white powder **available at health food stores and most supermarkets
- 1 to 2 bunches of Champagne grapes or small seedless red grapes, frozen until solid, halved if large
Step 1 In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water. Cook on high and stir until the sugar dissolves, then let cool.
Step 2 In a small stainless steel bowl, combine the sugar syrup, Champagne and citrus juices. Set the bowl over a larger bowl of ice and keep cold. In another small bowl, combine the vinegar and shallot and season with pepper.
Step 3 Arrange the shucked oysters on a bed of crushed ice and coarse salt. Add the egg-white powder to the Champagne-citrus juice mixture and beat with a handheld mixer or immersion blender until thick and frothy
Step 4 Spoon a little of the vinegar-shallot mixture over the oysters and a little of the Champagne froth on top. Garnish with the frozen Champagne grapes and serve right away.
Recipe via Food & Wine.