I recently had one of the most amazing food experiences, at Mario Batali's Los Angeles restaurant, Osteria Mozza. My sister and I signed up for a wine tasting dinner, an extravagant indulgence for me ($95 for four courses with accompanying wines) but an incredible experience. The focus was on Southern Italian wines from the Campania region, and, of course, the food was outstanding. I didn't have the presence of mind to bring my camera to take pictures so my descriptions will have to suffice. The menu was as follows:
Mozzrella Trio: Burrata, Bufala, Fior di Latte
Terrantica - Greco di Tufo, I Favati Vineyard
Fiorduva - Campania Marisa Cuomo Vineyard
Spot Prawns with Sunchokes and Salsa Verde
Antece, Campania De Conciliis Vineyard
Pietramara, Fiano di Avellino, I Favati Vineyard
Bistecca with Radicchio al Forno
Terzotratto, Taurasi, I Favati Vineyard
Naima, Campania Paestum Aglianico, De Conciliis Vineyard
Meyer Lemon Panna Cotta with Saba
Profuni della Costiera Limoncello, Ravello Costa di Amalfi
It was one of those charmed evenings of eating amazing food and drinking wine specifically paired to create the ultimate gastronomic experience. It was beyond inspiring; it was life altering. The three different fresh mozzarellas changed flavors with different sips of wine. And the wood-fired grilled prawns with the salsa verde were exquiste, not to mention the roasted sunchokes that simply melted in my mouth. The meyer lemon panna cotta was silken on my tongue but it was the bistecca that stole my heart. It was a Nebraska grass-fed beef served with pancetta wrapped radicchio grilled over a wood fire. I'm sure the wine was the perfect pairing, but all I remember was the stunning steak. The steak was encrusted with porcini dust and served with a balsamic and red wine reduction.
While I bow down to the brilliance of Batali and his business associates I decided finally to attempt steak with a red wine reduction. While I did not have the porcini dust, I am happy to say that I was thrilled with my attempt!
It is a simple recipe but one worth writing down since it is really does work out best when followed correctly.
Steak with Red Wine Reduction
1 4-6 oz good quality, grass-fed steak
3 tablespoons red wine
Make sure the steaks are at room temperature. Salt each side and place at the ready near the pan. Heat a very heavy bottom skillet, like a cast iron pan, over high heat for at least 3-4 minutes. I used my cast iron skillet and really let it get hot. Place the steak in the pan and allow it to cook on each side for at least 5 minutes, turning it only once. Remove the steak from the heat and allow to sit for 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and deglaze the pan with the wine. Scrape up what little bits are on the bottom of the pan and spoon over the steak. Season with pepper and salt as desired.