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Off comes cloak: Wine, yolks OK

Eggs & WineI am not suggesting you replace orange juice with cabernet for your morning eggsand-bacon pairing but eggs can be a surprisingly good match with wine. Since my father-in-law began his new adventure – the ever growing and grand backyard chicken mansion – we’ve been blessed with an abundance of wonderful, fresh, organic eggs, thus the immediacy of this topic.

Eggs are not as difficult to pair with wine as some experts would have us believe. They are a fundamental ingredient in many cuisines around the world. It’s the conventional wisdom of the past that they didn’t match – the runny yolks supposedly destroyed the texture and flavors of wine. Just like with all wine and food pairings, keep in mind the weight and other ingredients being added to the dish.

The scrambled egg can be much more than just fluffy. If you are having simple scrambled eggs with no added flavors, a sparkling wine or unoaked chardonnay is a safe bet. A favorite of mine is adding smoked salmon, which makes a Blanc de Blanc Champagne or sparkling wine ideal.

THE VALUE

  • 2011 Wishing Tree Unoaked Chardonnay, Australia (about $13 retail)

THE SPLURGE

  • 2010 Gruet Brut Reserve Blanc de Blanc, New Mexico (about $26 retail)

For a heartier dish, such aseggs Benedict complete with hollandaise sauce, a fuller bodied chardonnay is a good match.

THE VALUE

  • 2011 Cupcake Chardonnay, California (about $12 retail)

THE SPLURGE

  • 2011 B.R. Cohn Chardonnay Los Carneros, California (about $28 retail)

Omelets and quiches with ham or bacon have the flavor and weight to compete with a light-bodied red wine such as pinot noir or rose.

THE VALUE

  • 2010 Concannon Pinot Noir, California (about $12 retail)

THE SPLURGE

  • 2010 Villa Maria Private Bin Pinot Noir, New Zealand (about $22 retail)