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Winegrowers association names winners of Taste Our Terroir pairing competition

Awards include most innovative, best classic pairing, among others

Livermore Valley Winegrowers Association recently announced the winners of this year's Taste Our Terroir Wine and Food Pairing Competition.

The competition returned this year for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and kicked off the four-day food and wine experience that took place from July 14-17.

The pairing competition was held at Garré Vineyard and Winery. Wineries partnered with chefs from local restaurants to create signature bites to complement their wines.

Three judges, including Clay Kallam of Diablo Magazine, Jessica Yadegaren of Bay Area News Group and David Glancy of San Francisco Wine School tasted 12 wine and food pairings and selected the following winners:

Best Classic Pairing: Fenestra Winery and Oyo Restaurant

  • 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon (Aaron Luna, Winemaker)
  • Jack Daniel's pepper filet mignon & duck fat braised potato fondant (Maurice Dissels, Founder & Executive Chef)

Most Innovative Pairing: Occasio Winery and Sabio on Main

  • Occasio Sweet Vermouth, Winder and Bow, Livermore Valley (John Kinney, Founder & Director of Winemaking)
  • Citrus-poached gulf shrimp with K&J Orchards nectarines, Prosciutto di Parma, Olivina Mission Olive Oil (Francis Hogan, Executive Chef & Partner)

Judge’s Best Pairing: Wood Family Vineyards and First Street Ale House

  • 2019 Viva Cabernet Sauvignon (Rhonda Wood, Winemaker & Owner)
  • Creamy polenta with queso fresco, green onion, braised short ribs with Colorado aioli (Savannah Meier, Chef)

The People’s Choice Awards were given to:

Best White Wine Pairing: McGrail Vineyards & Winery and BottleTaps

  • 2021 Kylie Ryan Rosé (Mark Clarin, Winemaker)
  • Pork rillette with balsamic glazed strawberries & herbed goat cheese (Patrick Tripp, Executive Chef)

Best Red Wine Pairing: The Lineage Wine Collection and Posada Restaurant

  • 2018 L’Autre Côte Cabernet Franc (Steven Kent Mirassou, Winemaker & Owner)
  • Braised short ribs with blackberry mole poblano on a bed of black beans with Mexican chorizo, vegetables en escabeche & queso fresco (Eduardo Posada, Executive Chef & Owner)

In addition to their winning titles, the teams that came out on top were awarded engraved paddle-shaped cutting boards.


Cierra Bailey

About the Author: Cierra Bailey

Cierra is a Livermore native who started her journalism career after college as an editorial intern with the Pleasanton Weekly in 2014. After attending graduate school at Syracuse University, she’s back as the editor of the Vine!
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