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Syrah and Pistachio Encrusted Beef Tenderloin

Wednesday, April 28th, 2021

In a world where bigger is better, Syrah is the ideal choice. Syrah is a dry, full-bodied red wine. It’s a darker red than Cabernet Sauvignon and contains high amounts of healthy antioxidants. It pairs nicely with a large range of meats and tastes best slightly chilled.

THE ORIGINS OF SYRAH

The discovery of the Syrah grapes origins came from extensive research conducted at UC Davis. Syrah grapes are an offspring of two ancient varietals. It was created when Dureza, a dark-skinned berry was crossed with Mondeuse Blanche, a white skinned grape. This is thought to have first occurred on the west bank of the Rhone in France. The pairing is interesting as neither grape ever gained mass popularity before they were crossed. Dureza and Mondeuse Blanche remain obscure and are seldom seen today.

Today, Syrah is the red wine grape that rules the Northern Rhone Valley of France. More Syrah is planted in France than in any other country. Syrah is the most planted grape of Australia, where they call it Shiraz. Syrah is popular all over the world and is ranked as the world’s 6th most planted grape. It can be found in Spain, Argentina, South Africa, Italy, Chile, and the United States—California, Washington, and New Mexico.

WHAT DOES SYRAH TASTE LIKE?

Syrah is typically dry, bold, and full-bodied with brisk acidity. Stylistically, it can be round and fruity, or dense and tannic. It has a range of flavors, from smoke, bacon, herbs, red and black fruits, white and black pepper, to floral violet notes. When aged in oak, Syrah takes on flavors of vanilla and baking spice.

HOW TO SERVE SYRAH

Because of higher alcohol levels in Syrah/Shiraz (13–15.5%), wines should always have a slight chill, or the alcohol will taste hot and the flavors dull. Served too cold, however, and the aromas and flavors are muted. The ideal temperature range to serve Syrah/Shiraz is 60–65°F, which can be achieved with 15 minutes in the refrigerator. If you don’t finish a bottle of Syrah, replace the cork, and stick it back in the fridge. The flavors will stay fresh for two to four days. Beyond that, the wine will start to oxidize.

HOW TO PAIR SYRAH WITH FOOD

Darker meats and exotic spices bring out the fruit notes of Syrah. Try it with Lamb Shawarma, Gyros, Asian 5-spice pork, and even Indian tandoori meats. These wines go well with beef, lamb, game, duck, mushrooms, stews, veal, and pastas with meat ragù and even burgers and BBQ ribs.

RECIPE FOR PAIRING SYRAH

PISTACHIO & PARMESAN HERB ENCRUSTED BEEF TENDERLOIN

A hearty main dish with delicate flavors that make this beef tenderloin sing “Let’s Eat.” The earthy flavor of the pistachios mixed with Garlic & Herb Olive Oil make a delicious crust while keeping the tenderloin juicy.

Serves 8

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs Beef Tenderloin
  • 2 Tbsp Mustard
  • 1/2 Cup Heart of the Desert Pistachios kernels
  • 1/2 Cup Panko Breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 Cup fresh Parsley, minced
  • 2 Tbsp Olivelle Parmesan Asiago Dipper (call to order or buy in-store)
  • 1/2 Cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 tsp Olivelle Roasted Garlic Sea Salt (call to order or buy in-store)
  • 4 Tbsp Olivelle Garlic & Herb Olive Oil

Directions:

  1. Remove the tenderloin from the refrigerator, rub with the mustard, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to rest at room temperature for at least 1- 2 hours (to acclimate).
  2. Meanwhile in a food processor, pulse the pistachios into small bits. Add the panko, parsley, Parmesan Asiago Dipper, parmesan cheese, Roasted Garlic Sea Salt, and olive oil to create a rough chopped paste.
  3. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  4. Remove the tenderloin from the plastic wrap and place in an oven safe dish. Roast for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and pack the pistachio herb mixture atop the tenderloin.
  6. Return the meat to the oven and cook another 20-25 minutes, until the internal temperature reaches 125°F (for medium-rare).
  7. Allow the meat to rest, tented with foil, for 15 minutes before cutting into ½ inch thick slices. Enjoy!

Add some garlic, horseradish mashed potatoes and a nice green salad with your favorite dressing; pair with Heart of the Desert Syrah for a meal every carnivore will LOVE!

Heart of the Desert is a working pistachio ranch and vineyard with four retail establishments in New Mexico. They are best known for their farm fresh pistachios and Award-Winning New Mexico wines. Each store offers wine and pistachio tastings. They offer worldwide shipping and produce attractive gourmet baskets that make great corporate and family gifts. The main store, on the ranch in Alamogordo, offers farm tours that showcases how pistachios are grown and processed as well as a stunning Tuscany themed patio that overlooks the groves and is available for weddings, private parties or enjoying a relaxing glass of wine.