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Pizza mio, no choosio

what doesn't pair well with pizza? I double dare you to find a red wine that doesn't pair well with pizza. I've tried 3 different northern Italian Reds, our full line up (even some library wines I found in my stash), a rose from my favorite podcast @wineandcrime (I'd ordered a set of their red blend and they sent rose and they wouldn't take the extra rose back. It's not bad, I'm just not a rose drinker), 2 different southern italian reds, 4 California reds (I'm growing!), and even a Pinot. I mean, I guess Pinot goes with everything, but I never drink Pinot or California reds. It's really hard to find a red wine that doesn't pair well with pizza. The point is, I can't find a wine that is born of a red Grape that doesn't pair well with Pizza. Don't @ me.

But have you found a good white wine that pairs with a red sauce based pizza? i mean, sure, white pizza or even those semi-abominations that we all secretly love like cheeseburger pizzas with a ketchup sauce (gross) or Hot Wing pizzas that have buffalo sauce as their base. You can mix it up with those pizzas (Sauv Blanc for the hot wing pizza, right? something you can semi-guzzle and chomp celery with? No? just me?). But red pizza? I think I may have found something, but it definitely depends on what you put on top of that red sauce.

In the latest #covid shut down, I finally had to make a pizza dough. Why? I mean, Chelan may not have many restaurants to choose from, but there is one shop in Manson (the town where Maddy's school is) and two good ones in actual Chelan. The only problem here is our favorite pick up spot closed during the latest shut down. It was attached to another local winery, half way between daycare and home; it was the one spot where the pizza wouldn't be cold by the time we got home. Their crust is amazing and if I needed to, I could pick up a nebbiolo from the winery. It too pairs well with pizza. It was the first time anything was convenient living in the country. the shop, Local Myth, has a spot in Chelan, but to get there adds a full 40 minutes on the trip. my day job normally requires a full 10-12 hours and bill is normally so done by the time he gets maddy any extra time in the car is not welcome. it became easier to make pizza dough than to order pizza would have to reheat.

i found this super easy recipe that i could start before my last round of meetings for a day and then do the last kneading and toppings round up as bill and maddy unwound from their day. it was a good enough stand in. We have a pizza stone because bill is a little extra and if he gets a frozen pizza, sometimes he likes to cook it on a stone. He also made homemade pizza for awhile when he was our chef, sometimes with cauliflower crust (super delicious, btw; for the next non-yeast post, i'm headed back to the GF zone. be ready). the first time I made the dough, I got pulled into some last minute meetings and the dough overproved. The crust was so over doughy and so tall, Billy asked if I was going for a deep dish. Maddy LOVED it (#carbsforlife with that one). The second time, I was able to get out of my day on time and got back to the dough in time to spread the pizzas. Bill's pie had all the meats (pepperoni, Italian sausage, bacon) and onion (not pictured as my camera was worried about clogging it's arteries). I made Maddy and I custom pizzas, hers with all mozz and parm, and mine with artichoke hearts, red onions and goat cheese. I tried it first with the meritage (I almost always have a bottle open), and it tasted great together, because OF Course.

But then I tried something different, because it was a Wednesday and I'd had to chat with this particularly idiotic person that afternoon. What white wine you ask? Not one I normally dip into at all - our Semillon. I normally reserve it at our house for cooking in my Bolognese, but there was something so tart in the artichoke hearts that I thought might go nicely with the floral overtones of the Semillon. this is why I think my wine pairing worked. The artichoke hearts and goat cheese on my pie was a majority of the flavor. I was right. I had so much rich tones in my pizza, the dryness of the Semillon kicked right in to the flavor profile, filling in the rest of my taste buds. Bill would kill me for saying this, but I never drink the Semillon by itself. Like ever. But with this pizza, it was perfect - even in the middle of winter. (sorry for the mixed message photo) Semillion is typically paired with bold flavors, but low on the spice scale, so the smoky artichoke hearts really pulled this one in. I've had an aversion to the Semillion, but I've likely just not had enough of the right meals. Now I have reason to break out some naan and force some curry on this family. 😋

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