What wine goes best with French fries? The trade group Wines of Southwest France held a Gourmet French Fries Competition in New York on June 6 to find out.
Presented in partnership with The Wine Enthusiast magazine, the contest had five up-and-coming American chefs create gourmet French fries recipes to match with the region’s unique wines. Southwest France boasts more than 300 grape varieties—120 of which are indigenous—used to created aromatic wines ranging from dry whites, fruity and full-bodied reds to floral rosés and sweet wines.
The big winner was chef Matt O’Neill from David Burke Kitchen, who competed for the best French fries pairing with the region’s full-bodied red wines. His fries with foie gras mousse, pickled cherries and squab ragu paired with the Chateau Peyros, Vielles Vignes took the People’s Choice Award, voted on by guests at the event.
O’Neill also won the Judges’ Choice Award for the fries paired Bouscassé from the Vignobles Brumont. The judging panel included Roger Voss, European editor at The Wine Enthusiast; chef/sommelier André Compeyre; and Greg Rubin, chef at New York steakhouse American Cut (and winner of last year’s People’s Choice Award). Both winning red wines are from the Madiran wine region in southwestern France.
Pictured above, from left: Vincent Thebaud, Domain Brumont; chef Matt O’Neill, David Burke Kitchen; and Jonathan Cambournac, Vignobles Lesgougues. Photo credit: Scott Rudd