A BIG Hello today!

A few weeks ago I was talking with my friend Ross Burtwell, owner/chef of the Cabernet Grill. He was at the vineyard pairing his “Warm Texas Goat Cheese with Roasted Garlic & Herbs” with the newest vintage of our beloved Bellissimo at our April Wine Club pick-up event. (It was fabulous, by the way!)

He mentioned that he had some recipes that might be fun material for Jeff’s Corner. Of course I jumped at the idea, and later he wrote to me: “The two items I decided to highlight are two of my all time favorite pairings from a couple of vintner dinners we did featuring Grape Creek a few years back.”

These, along with the above goat cheese recipe, are found in Ross’ cutting-edge cook book “Texas Hill Country Cuisine: Flavors from the Cabernet Grill Texas Wine Country Restaurant”. This, and all the lovely photographs in his book, are by Jennifer Whitney.

We’ll do these one at a time. Again in Chef Burtwell’s own words: “The first recipe is for an appetizer of Jumbo Lump Crab with Avocado and Coconut Curry Lime Broth. We paired that with the Cuvee Blanc and it was simply stunning how well it worked together.”


Jumbo Lump Crab with Avocado and Coconut Curry Lime Broth

Serves four


½ cup yellow onions, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 shallots, minced

3 Tablespoons fresh ginger, minced

1 oz safflower oil

2 cans coconut milk (13.5oz cans)

1 ½ Tablespoons curry powder

1 ½ Tablespoons fresh lime juice

Kosher salt and white pepper

1 cup jumbo lump blue crab meat

1 small avocado, peeled and cut in quarters


• Sweat onions, garlic, shallots and ginger in oil over medium low heat for about eight minutes

until translucent, do not allow to brown

• Add curry powder and sauté briefly until aromatic.

• Add coconut milk and bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and cook for about 10 minutes.

• Add in lime juice.

• Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and strain the onions, garlic and ginger from the soup and


• Divide lump crab and avocado equally and place in the bottom of each soup bowl and place the

bowls in a hot oven for three minutes to heat the bowls and the crab and avocado.

• Pour very hot soup over crab and avocado and serve.