If summer is the time to leave routines behind and embrace new adventures, then autumn is a welcome transition back into the comfort of tradition, familiarity, and family. As the leaves change color from grassy greens to pumpkin orange and pomegranate red, children head back to school, adults settle back into work for the final quarter of the year, and families come together to celebrate everything from the return of football season to Halloween, and of course, the ultimate family gathering, Thanksgiving.
At our local farmer’s market on Clement Street, I’ll find tables packed with pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and butternut squashes, side by side with another row of tables piled high with perfectly ripe apples, rainbow carrots, persimmons, and pomegranates. And the greens! The once bitter or lifeless swiss chards, radicchio, and escarole are best when picked in cooler temperatures, allowing that subtle sweetness to peek through. But my favorite is the autumn mushrooms - so full of flavor, color, and personality - all they need is a little polenta, pasta, or simply great piece of bread, and you have the perfect fall meal to welcome you into the evening.
Mirroring our return to routine and tradition in the fall is this selection of a traditional grape from a traditional region. This is a beautiful Chardonnay from the Macon region of France that I’m so excited to share with you. Located in the south of Burgundy, this region is experiencing a well-deserved resurgence thanks to a number of young producers’ dedication to traditional farming and winemaking practices, organic farming, and unwavering quest for exceptional quality.
This Chardonnay from Domaine de la Saraziniere, with its flavors of Fuji apple, Meyer lemon, and subtle savory notes of fennel, and a breathtaking perfume of white blossoms, hazelnut, and clove, all topped off with a lingering mineral finish, practically begs you to come back for more. It’s a deliciously sophisticated wine from an underrated region that’s delightful on its own, but would pair perfectly with: