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Dinner Date

03/30/2010 11:16AM ● Published by Wendy Sipple

Wine photo by Aaron Roseli

Shoulder of Lamb with Roasted Vegetables

Casual Entertaining by Ross Dobson

(Ryland Peters & Small, $27.95; rylandpeters.com)

  • 3-3 1/4 lbs. shoulder of lamb, on the bone
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano, preferably Greek
  • 4 garlic cloves, lightly smashed
  • 1 zucchini, roughly chopped
  • 1 large red onion, cut into thin wedges
  • 1 small yellow bell pepper, seeded and thickly sliced
  • 3 waxy potatoes, thickly sliced
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped dill
  • Handful of fresh flatleaf parsley leaves, roughly chopped
  • Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • Kitchen twine

Put the lamb, skin-side up, in a non-metal dish. Add the wine, lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, the rosemary, oregano and garlic. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Remove from the refrigerator 1 hour before cooking and season the skin of the lamb well with salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Remove the lamb from the marinade, reserving 2 tablespoons of the liquid. Roll it firmly and secure with kitchen twine.

Put the zucchini, onion, yellow bell pepper and potatoes in a bowl with the reserved marinade and use your hands to toss the vegetables until well coated. Set a roasting pan over high heat and add the remaining olive oil. Heat until very hot. Add the lamb and cook for 5-6 minutes, turning often, until golden all over. Add the vegetables to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, turning the vegetables often. Transfer to the preheated oven and cook for 40 minutes, turning the vegetables after 20 minutes. Transfer the vegetables to a bowl, cover with foil and keep warm until ready to serve. Makes 4 servings.

2007 Altitude 2401 Dark Forest Syrah

The Dark Forest. The name invokes mystery, adventure, romance, danger...and the possibility of meeting a mythical creature, such as the “Zinman,” who has occasionally been spotted dancing through the vineyards at Perry Creek Winery. This particular bottle however, is the 2007 Altitude 2401 Dark Forest Syrah. This wine comes from a block of Fair Play farms known as the “Dark Forest,” due to its location adjacent to a thick growth of oak forest. The vines yield very little, but the fruit is concentrated and lives up to the mysterious and romantic namesake! The nose is luscious and inviting, offering notes of rich cherry and damp earth. The taste of fruit bursts in your mouth and then you notice the mineral and vanilla flavors, each revealing another layer of complexity. No wonder it took a silver medal at the “San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition” and double gold at the “Best-of-Appellation” event. The Altitude 2401 Dark Forest Syrah will really impress when served with richer foods, and even with a variety of hard cheeses or smoked meats. Wine from the Dark Forest will light up any dinner table.

Russell Reyes
Russell is a local wine enthusiast and freelance writer whose focus is Foothill wines.

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