The Amazing Avocado
Reprinted from 50 Plus Linving in WNC Magazine
By Gina Trippi
Avocado is back on the table and on the walls! The all white kitchen is yielding to the resurgence of the celebrated 1960’s color and the avocado itself is showing up with everything from toast to dessert. The color palette is your call but we can help with the avocado, the fruit, palate pairing.
The relatively mild avocado, indigenous to Central America, with its creamy texture started as an aphrodisiac! By 1871, the avocado had found its way to California. Hass and Fuerte are the two most easily accessible varieties. While Hass has more oil content and Fuerte more fiber, the two are similar in taste and interchangeable for recipes and for our purpose of pairing.
Got a great recipe and the wine ready but the avocado is not yet ripe? Put no more than a few avocados in a paper bag with an apple at room temperature. The apple emits ethylene gas, a ripening agent. And to stop the avocado from turning brown, a teaspoon of lemon or lime juice helps the fruit retain its lovely green color.
Most of us think of the avocado as uniquely suited to Mexican dishes but this versatile fruit is holding its own in many other cuisines. You have no doubt encountered western style sushi known as the California Roll. So, now the avocado is surround by cucumbers instead of black beans and salsa! And the avocado is a welcomed addition to any dish with the heat turned up as the natural fat tempers the heat and calms the spices. Avocados are now in ice cream, sweet drinks and vinaigrette.
But for all its virtues, the Avocado has a bad reputation for wine pairing. Natalie MacLean, author of Red, White, and Drunk All Over says: “I put them in a category I call ‘Green Wine Stalkers’ because their natural compounds don’t marry well with many wine styles.”
Look for a white wine with high acidity to cut through the sweetness and fat in the fruit. A New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc such as Kim Crawford or Alois Lageder Pinot Grigio from Alto Adige would be good matches. If you prefer red, avoid tannic wines and opt for Domaine Depueble Beaujolais or California Pinot Noir such as Bodan Roan.
Depending on the heat level of the recipe, the pairing may require a demi-sec Vouvray such as La Vigne Des Sablons or a domestic sparkling like Roederer Brut. And in case of doubt, call for backup! A middle of the road Rosé works with almost anything almost anytime!
Finally, many fear the avocado for its fat content. But rejoice! It is, as they say, the good fat. Avocado is loaded with heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, the kind that doctors say can lower the bad LDL cholesterol and maintain levels of the good HDL cholesterol.
Pick up avocados and let us pair a wine to your recipe @MetroWines.
Painting the walls is up to you!