Thursday, May 1, 2014
Yesterday I spent a considerable amount of time cutting down and digging out the eight year old lavender plant in front, the one that attracted all the bees and hummingbirds. The severe winter here was not kind to it and after a month of waiting it showed no signs of life so it was removed and a small replacement put in place. The entire process made me hungry.
Dinner consisted of chicken leg quarters seasoned with herbs de Provence and done over indirect heat on the grill. What was different was that I cut up some of the thicker branches of the dead lavender plant and threw a bare few of them on the grill to create some smoke. The resulting smoke certainly drew the interest of the neighbors because of the smell. It imparted a floral and earthy quality to the chicken pieces and because there were only a few chunks on the coals it didn't overwhelm the meat. Good experiment and I saved some of the lavender pieces for future use.
The wine was a pale pink color with aromas of fresh strawberries and peaches. The first sip was fruit forward but the wine quickly dried into a savory and earthy profile. It was perfect for sipping throughout the evening and a great match with the chicken. Year after year this wine remains consistent, though this year seems a bit drier and I liked it very much. A terrific bargain.
2013 M. Chapoutier Belleruche Cotes du Rhone Rose. 13% alcohol and $10.