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Pairings: Mussels with bacon, apple and shallot and Chablis

March 09, 2013|By S. Irene Virbila
  • Mussels with bacon, apple and shallot pair beautifully with a premier cru Chablis from William Fevre. The recipe is from Seattle chef John Sundstrom's new book "Lark: Cooking Against the Grain."
Mussels with bacon, apple and shallot pair beautifully with a premier cru… (S. Irene Virbila / Los Angeles…)

For a dinner at home last night, just the two of us, we made steamed mussels — not our usual recipe that involves lots of freshly cracked black pepper, but “mussels with bacon, apple and shallot” from the new book and iPad app “Lark: Cooking Against the Grain.”

I liked Lark chef John Sundstrom’s idea of including a splash of apple cider, apple cider vinegar and a diced Granny Smith apple in the broth, along with thin rings of shallot and crisp bacon lardons. He adds a splash of cream too, but just enough to give the broth a lovely silkiness.

We opened a bottle of Chablis that night, the 2010 Chablis Premier Cru "Vaulorent" from William Fèvre, and it was spectacular with the mussels. I love its cool minerality and hint of citrus. Pure and focused, the Vaulorent has a long gossamer finish. The mussel juices’ subtle apple-sweetness is beautiful against the Chablis.

We still had some left in our glasses for the cheese, a creamy Fourme d’Ambert blue, which turned out to be another serendipitous match with the Chablis.


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