Foodie Friday ~ March 16, 2012 – American classics

Each Friday we turn to the wine community for news, tips and recipes for great food and wine pairings . . .

Chef Cella’s gourmet take on American classic foods

The wine pairing featured five courses — Chef Michael Cella’s gourmet take on America’s guilty pleasures.

The first course was everybody’s favorite: A grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup. But the sandwich’s innards consisted of three cheeses and three onions. and the soup was a delicious melding of roasted tomatoes and piquillo peppers. The sandwich was served suspended on a skewer over the soup. (Are you kidding? Of course, we dunked.) The wine was a dry riesling — from the Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars in the Finger Lakes.

Up second was “Fried Chicken and Bacon and Eggs.” At Cella Bistro, that meant cast iron pan-fried, buttermilk-brined chicken with a scrambled egg salad featuring house-cured, smoked Berkshire bacon. The restaurant smoke-cures its own meats; the bacon was of the slab variety sliced to bite size. The wine was a blanc de blanc from Domaine Ste. Michelle in Washington state.