A match made for vinophiles

by Mary Tutwiler

The latest synergy in the local food world is the new paring between Café Vermilionville and Philippe's Wine Cellar. Café V has revamped its menu for fall. Think seared venison chop encrusted with black pepper and coffee beans, served with a wild mushroom vol au vent, or braised rabbit with gnocchi in pistachio butter. (yum!) Sure you can peruse the wine menu at Café V, but Philippe's offers a different arrangement.

Check out the Café V menu here, choose your appetizer and entree, then head over to Philippe's to pick up the perfectly paired wine to go with your dinner. There's a lot of variety in the choices: French beaujolais, burgundy, rhone and languedoc wines, California sauvignon blancs and pinot noirs, and Tuscan and Venetian whites. All the wines are between $20-50. Philippe's is offering a 10 percent discount, and Saturday nights through November, Café V will waive the corkage fee. That's a huge savings in wine costs, restaurants ordinarily mark up bottles at least 100 percent.

Below is the parings list. Some personal faves are the bacon wrapped shrimp paired with a white Chateauneauf du Pape and the braised pork shank matched with a surprisingly inexpensive Bila-Haut. Salut.

Pan seared Crab Cakes: Ancien Chardonnay / St. Romain

Crispy Calimari: Spottswoode Sauvignon Blanc

Bacon wrapped shrimp: Clos St Jean Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc - or any white Rhone

Steak Louis XIII: Decoy Zinfandel / Rydge Lytton Springs

Mediterranean grilled fish: Moulin-a-Vent / Savigny-les-Narbantons 1er Cru

Ribeye Royal: Antica Cabernet Sauvignon / Chateau Belles-Graves

Lapin Duet: Duckhorn Migration Pinot Noir

Fresh fish Acadien: Giuseppe Quintarelli Bianco / Solosole Vermentino

Filet Mignon: Antica Cabernet Sauvignon / Chateau Bellevue-Peycharneau

Coffe & Pepper Crusted Venison: Waters Syrah

Diver Scallops: Ancien Chardonnay / St Romain

Braised Pork Shank: Decoy Zinfandel / Chapoutier Bila-Haut Lapidem Occultum