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FOOD & WINE

Paleo Pumpkin Spice Muffins

Paleo Pumpkin Spice Muffins

I came up with these paleo pumpkin spice muffins, that are also nut free, for some very special clients of mine. In a previous post (on Peruvian chicken skewers), I mentioned that I have been hired to cook for some clients in October with a lot of different dietary...

Pound Cake Bites – The Best Accident

Pound Cake Bites – The Best Accident

These accidental pound cake bites came about because it's The Somm Chef's birthday month, my birthday month, and the anniversary of Ian and I moving down to FL (and sort of the anniversary of The Somm Chef inception). In short - September of last year was quite the...

Carbonara with Pancetta: Go To Weeknight Meal

Carbonara with Pancetta: Go To Weeknight Meal

Carbonara is an awesome meal for those nights when you don't feel like cooking and when you're out of groceries. Bon Appétit says that it's the perfect "no food in the house" dinner, and I completely agree. So what is Carbonara? Carbonara is an egg-based sauce that...

Hi! I'm Sydney,

nice to meet you!

I left a marketing career in Hollywood to go to the Culinary Institute of America. After a few years of working in restaurants, I am now a private chef and sommelier in the 30a area.

Wine Help Docs

Sugar and Wine – Residual and Added

Sugar and wine. This whole thing about tons of sugar cubes filling up wineglasses, and advertising "zero added sugar" wines has to stop. This is so not right. Advertising a ZERO ADDED SUGAR wine is like advertising ground beef with ZERO ADDED GLUTEN. What? Sometimes...

How Does Climate Affect Wine?

Köppen-Geiger Climate Map In the simplest of terms, think about climate in hot versus cold. You can do this fairly easily by thinking of the world map in your head and how close or far away a region is to the equator. If it's quite far, you'll know its cold (i.e....

Wine Tasting: Why Do You Swirl Wine?

In short we swirl wine because swirling helps release aromatics in young and older wines. However, it's important that you don't swirl too much! The Purpose of the Swirl The purpose of swirling is to release aromas. If a wine is "closed" it means that the wine's...

THE LATEST & GREATEST

Truffle Pasta Dough

Truffle Pasta Dough

Truffle pasta may sound like a lot of work, but I promise it's actually quite easy. And no - you don't need a stand mixer, or a food processor, or even a pasta machine to make it! You can use those things, of course, but not required. The thing I love about homemade...

Alexander Valley Cabernet : Jordan 2008 Wine Review

Alexander Valley Cabernet : Jordan 2008 Wine Review

Alexander Valley may not be the first place you think of when you hear "California Cabernet Sauvignon." Typically, one's mind most naturally thinks of Napa Valley. However, today we are going to take a look at an exceptional winery in Alexander Valley, in Sonoma...

Peruvian Chicken Skewers and Basil Chimichurri

Peruvian Chicken Skewers and Basil Chimichurri

These Peruvian chicken skewers have a bit of a back story. In October I'm cooking for some amazing clients. They booked me for their wedding weekend to prepare and serve food at their home for three different days: a wedding kick-off evening, breakfast and lunch for...

Girls Getaway Weekend & The Somm Chef

Girls Getaway Weekend & The Somm Chef

Hi, Everyone! I am so excited to announce something that I've been working on with the Rosemary Beach Foundation and Hidden Lantern Bookstore. What is Girls Getaway? I am teaching a class for Girls Getaway weekend which happens every Super Bowl weekend. Girls Getaway...

White Chicken Chili

White Chicken Chili

Chicken chili can sometimes take the back seat to the classic beef chili, but I'd like to propose a recipe to counter even the best beef chilis out there (sorry, mom!). Not that it will replace them - after all, there's a time for chicken chili and a time for beef...

Barbera, Barbaresco and Barolo: How They Differ

Barbera, Barbaresco and Barolo: How They Differ

I am pretty excited about this Barbera post because I think there's a ton of confusion about Barbera. It's sort of pushed to the side and forgotten, seen as the "lesser" sister from the famous land where big brother and sister, Barolo and Barbaresco (the King and...

Steak Au Poivre: Steak & Sherry Cream Sauce

Steak Au Poivre: Steak & Sherry Cream Sauce

Steak Au Poivre is a black pepper crusted steak that comes with a sherry cream pan sauce. You cook the sauce in the same pan that has the "fond" (those black bits stuck on the bottom from pan searing the steaks) which add so much incredible flavor! I've added in a...

Dairy Free Cilantro Lime Crema

Dairy Free Cilantro Lime Crema

My Cilantro Lime Crema first appeared on my post about my favorite recipe for Fish Tacos. That one does include sour cream, but you can definitely omit it and use the key ingredient I've switched it for in this recipe instead. My husband, Ian, and I try to stay away...

End of Summer Wine List: Transition to Fall

End of Summer Wine List: Transition to Fall

With labor day around the corner, I felt it was high time for an end of summer wine list. It's nearly September, but some of us are a little weary of stepping into fall. We're slowly transitioning from light meals to heavier ones, incorporating pumpkin spice into...

Priorat Wines and 2014 La Petite Agnes Wine Review

Priorat Wines and 2014 La Petite Agnes Wine Review

Priorat makes some of the most concentrated wines in the world. Did you know that Priorat has some of the lowest density plantings of anywhere else in the world? Priorat's climate is incredibly hot and dry. This means that the vines struggle during the growing season,...