Tzora Judean Hills and Bone Licking Good Short Ribs
This past weekend saw us enjoying some really nice food and wine. We were in the mood for a nice cut of meat and so, we dipped into the freezer and pulled out some of my wife’s favorite cuts of meat – short ribs (or ribs in general). Now ribs and short ribs really have nothing in common, short of the name. Short ribs come in two styles as explained here, flanken which is cut against the bone, so a strip of flanken comes with many small pieces of bone, and the riblet is cut along the bone and is more akin to a rib. Short ribs are not particularly short; they are called as such because of where they come from – the short plate.
Short ribs are a hard and tough piece of meat and love being braised. We started the braise by browning the riblets, and then we removed them from the dutch oven, and sautéed a mirepoix in the rendered fat. After that I deglazed the pot with red wine and a thick and meaty sauce of liqueur, brown sugar, and onion base. I brought the pot to a boil and then transferred the pot to a 350 degree oven for two hours.
The meat was fantastic, but like all cuts of meat from the lower section of the cow that is riddled with connective tissue, intercostal muscles, and tons of collagen, the meat needs to be cooked low and slow and left overnight to cool. The next morning you want to skim the fat from the pot, strain the sauce, and thicken it. Reheat the meat inside the sauce and serve right away.
We served them over a bed of firm rice. This is not a classical match, but we were in the mood, and the sauce was a bit watery, so the pairing went along quite nicely.
We paired the meat with a nice red wine blend from the Tzora winery. I have blogged about this particular wine before and it has pretty much stayed the same, except that this time I noticed a nice roasted herb in the nose and finish. Also, the wine stood up to the meat and the rich sauce, which impressed me and once again, the price to value ratio of this wine sticks out from the prices of kosher wines now a days.
Tzora Judean Hills 2006 – Score: B++
The nose on this bright garnet colored wine is filled with earth, blackberry, cherry, raspberry, and roasted herbs. The mouth on this medium to full bodied wine starts with blackberry, raspberry, and herbs. The mid palate is highlighted with acidity, integrated tannins, and coffee. The finish is medium long with spice, coffee, and more tannin.