Monday, April 30, 2012

Wine Glass Tethers

I'm a big fan of Real Simple magazine, and was cracking up when I found this wine glass steadler in the magazine:

Wine Glass Tether
(Photo from Google Images)

These simple, rubber pieces help keep your lower-end wine glasses from clinking around in the dishwasher.  Now one should never machine wash really nice glasses, but for those that are more inexpensive, there's nothing wrong with running some of your glasses through the dishwasher. sells a 4-pack of these tethers for $12.99.

While I was on that website, I also found these:
Wine Bottle Neck Ring
(Photo from
Which would be perfect for my fridge because I have bottles rolling around everywhere!!!  These bottle neck holders can also be found on  I do think this is a great idea, actually. 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Friday Feature: Tri-Fold Omelet and Bubbly... OK Mimosas!

Seriously, who doesn't love a great breakfast?  Now... who doesn't love a great breakfast with wine?  :)  I thought so! 

Breakfast with a Mimosa
(Photo from Google Images)

One of my favorite things to wake up to in the morning is when "Johnny Depp" jumps in the kitchen and makes me a tri-fold omelet.  You know what I'm talking about: those perfectly folded and cooked to perfection omelets.  Add a side of mimosa, and you have yourself one awesome day.  [Note: I would suggest this type of breakfast on a weekend when you can drink more than one mimosa.]

Tri-Fold Omelet
(Photo from Google Image)

The Tri-Fold Omelet
2 to 3 eggs
Cooking Spray (or Butter)
Goodies (veggies, cooked meats, etc.)
Cheese (your favorite kind!)

1) Spray the bottom of a cooking pan with cooking spray.
2) Whisk eggs and milk together.  Cover the bottom of the pan with the eggs so that there is a somewhat thin coating of egg.  Cook until eggs are almost completely done.
3) Add goodies and cheese into the center of the egg.
4) When the cheese melts, fold one side of the egg over the goodies, followed by the second side so that the omelet looks like a tube.
5) Add cheese on top.  It's optional to add the omelet to a slightly warmed stove to melt the cheese.

(Photo from Google Images)

Food Pairing Options: The Mimosa!
When it comes to wine in the morning, I always opt for the mimosa.  It gives you just enough bubbly for a happy face and a touch of orange juice to make you feel refreshed.  Plus, it compliments the meal well.  :)  Come on... Live a little...

Sparkling Wine (Bubbly!  Get your favorite.  Even an inexpensive bubbly will do here.)
Orange Juice (or if you dislike orange juice, try grapefruit juice)
Wine Flutes

1) Pour sparkling wine into the flute until it fills up about halfway.
2) Top with orange juice.
3) Enjoy!

The Mimosa
(Photo from Google Images)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wine & Food: The Supper Club

One of my favorite things about traveling to the western part of Pennsylvania is getting a chance to eat at The Supper Club in Greensburg.  This restaurant, built into the old train station in Greensburg, has some of the best food in western Pennsylvania!  The backdrop within the restaurant is gorgeous.  When the train goes by the old station, the building actually shakes.  It makes the whole dining experience quite real!

 The Supper Club
(Photos by Steph from The Blue Daisy Floral Designs)

I personally love the Supper Club for the cuisine (make sure you try the pizzas and the house dressing on the salads), which is seasonally oriented.  But I also love the wine cocktails, like the one below: the Saintly Spritzer.  The drink menu (like the food) changes seasonally.  This recent drink was quite delightful: a mixture of rose (blush) wine with elderberry liqueur and topped with fresh berries.  Doesn't it look yummy?

The Saintly Spritzer
(Photo by author)

The Supper Club also hosts cooking classes and wine tastings: great activities for foodies and wine connoisseurs alike.  This is just one more great farm-to-table restaurant example that is sitting in YOUR backyard.  It's quite "Wine Country"-esqe!  Places like this exist everywhere, and it's a fantastic way to incorporate wine education and tasting into your everyday routine.  For more information about The Supper Club, please visit their website.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What's in my Glass Wednesday! 2009 Chianti Classico by Casalino

Ahh... Chianti - Italy's claim-to-fame.  The one and only pasta-loving wine.  Chianti Classico, produced primarily by the Sangiovese grape, is a light- to medium-bodied red wine with bright red fruit character and a crisp acidity.  It's that acidity which goes so well with equally acidic tomato-based sauces: part of Italy's prime cuisine!

I should note that Chianti Classico is different than the ever-popular, made-to-compete-with-high-alcohol-California-wines Super Tuscans, which use Sangiovese as a base and then blend with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and/or Cabernet Franc.  Super Tuscans have much greater body, usually a higher alcohol, and a bigger incorporation of oak compared to the traditional Chianti. 

2009 Chianti Classico by Casalino

The D-2010 Scale 
2009 Chianti Classico by Casalino (Italy)
Appearance (10 points possible): Light red with slightly brown-tinted edges. Clear. - 10 points
Aroma/Bouquet (20 points possible): Lots of red fruits with a complex hint of leather, earth, and a sensual smokiness. - 15 points
Taste (10 points possible):  Light-bodied red wine with crisp acidity.  Red fruits and leather on the palate.  Slightly astringent with a lingering smoky finishing. - 7 points
Balance (5 points possible): The acidity made this wine a bit thin, but it's traditionally made in this style.  I wish it was integrated together just a bit better.  I'm surprised the wine is at 13% alcohol because I didn't pick up on this too easily. - 5 points
Finish (5 points possible): Lengthy and smoky with a hint of astringency and lingering acidity. - 5 points
Quality of Package (5 points possible):  Heavy glass bottle with the DOCG seal indicating that it's a real Chianti.  - 5 points
Label Marketability (10 points possible):  Nice large label, but I did over-look this originally because the label was a bit dull to me.  For some reason, I'm not overly big on Italian labels and understanding them, so I'm slightly biased against them.  Eventually I chose this label (over lots of others) because there was a note below it indicating it's quality and because it was a DOCG wine, as opposed to the other which was not. - 8 points
Other (5 points possible):  No big extras on this one. - 3 points
Total Points: 88 points
Overall Thought: This is a wine I'd probably buy again if I was in a bind for an inexpensive Chianti.  The quality is good enough that it was worth the $11 for me.  But I wasn't overly impressed with this wine when I had it.  That being said, this wasn't the only wine of the evening, so in my head, I'm comparing it to another wine that I was more attracted to.  Hahaha.  I guess no wine is created equal!  Regardless, it's definitely a good example of a Chianti Classico, and one that I think is worth trying.
Food Pairings:  This is your ultimate pizza and pasta wine.  Any time you have a red-based sauce, I'd grab a wine just like this!  I had it with baked zitti... yum!
Cost: I think you'll find this around $11.
Splurge Factor (out of 4): 1... Definitely a good wine for under $20.
Where to buy:  I purchased this at Total Wine.  (Actually, I lie.  I picked it out, but my grandparents bought it.)  :)  Cheers!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Feature - Apologies

Dear Readers:
I had a schedule blog post today for a tri-fold breakfast omelet and mimosas.  Unfortunately, the post published "blank" so I have since deleted it.  I will re-write this blog post for next Friday.  I'm sorry for this technical error and have contacted Google about this problem.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Where to go for wine reviews if you live in Pennsylvania...

It's been a long time since I lived in Pennsylvania... and some days, it wears on me as a wine buyer.  I still find it difficult to pick out wines at the state stores - they aren't organized, I question storage conditions, cashiers are rude, I get disgruntled (yes, I said "disgruntled").  :)  I guess if you never leave Pennsylvania, one doesn't quite realize how easy many other states have it.  If you leave Pennsylvania, return to Pennsylvania, or move into Pennsylvania... well... then... you get it.  Recently, a colleague of mine said he had found some of the best reviews for the PLCB State Stores in terms of wine selections.  So I thought I'd share this wealth of information with the rest of my readers.  Follow Craig LaBan from  You can even follow him on Twitter!  I've recently started following his posts, and I can assure you that as a PA resident... you won't be disappointed.  :)  I loved his recent post on the 4 best restaurants in Philadelphia!

Craig LeBan is a columnist from
(Photo from Google Images)

Cheers to Thursday!  One more day until Friday!! :)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What's in My Glass Wednesdays! 2007 Pinot Blanc by Domaines Schlumberger

Pinot Blanc is not a white variety that you see very often, but every once and awhile I come across a bottle, and take a chance.  This was no different.  I found this one from Alsace (France) in a wine retail store for about $10.  To me, that's worth a chance!  :)  But I guess I'll have to let you be the judge of that...

2007 Pinot Blanc by Domaines Schlumberger

(Photos by author)

The D-2010 Scale 
2007 Pinot Blanc by Domaines Schlumberger (Alsace, France)
Appearance (10 points possible): Light hay yellow in color. Brilliantly clear - 10 points
Aroma/Bouquet (20 points possible): Lightly floral and fresh citrus zest.  The nose is weak on this, but it's not a very aromatic variety to my knowledge. - 16 points
Taste (10 points possible):  Light-bodied with a flinty, minerality and crispness.  No oak in this wine.  Just a touch of sweetness lingers with this wine.  The finish is tart and refreshing with citrusy flavors. - 7 points
Balance (5 points possible): This wine is well balanced and very light. - 5 points
Finish (5 points possible): Acidic or tart by nature, with just a hint of sweetness and citrus flavors.  Quite lengthy. - 5 points
Quality of Package (5 points possible):  Alsacian bottle shape with signature green-glass color.  Traditional label and packaging.  - 5 points
Label Marketability (10 points possible):  This wine took me a while to find, simply because it "blends in" with its surrounds.  But I do like the extra information on the back of the label.  Gives the buyer good details on exactly what they are buying. - 8 points
Other (5 points possible):  No big extras on this one. - 3 points
Total Points: 96 points
Overall Thought: If you like white wines with light structure and mouthfeel, and no influence of oak, then this is your wine.  It's very food friendly, summer friendly, and refreshing.  I very much enjoyed this wine, but I wish I would've chosen a different food to eat with it.  :)  To me this is a crisp, summer wine: something that you can sip on while sitting on your patio watching the kids or enjoying a good book.
Food Pairings:  I think this went well with a spicy red curry.  [I had peanut curry with this wine and it didn't go quite well with that.]  But for some reason, I could also see this with sushi.  I don't know why, but I kept thinking sushi while drinking this wine.  I think this could also go very well with something like fish and chips or a lightly breaded white fish (think cod or haddock).  Ooo... scallops a very light white sauce, anyone?
Cost: I've seen this marked anywhere between $10 to $17, depending on where it is being retailed.
Splurge Factor (out of 4): 1... I think this still falls in the "good enough to try and see how it goes" range.  :)
Where to buy:  I would check a local retail store near you.  :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Wine and Food in Sausalito, California

As the tour of northern California continues, I'd like to look at Sausalito, California!  Back in the day, Sausalito was a WWII seaport, but since has given way to an artistic haven.  I really enjoyed the Sausalito culture.  On a bright sunny day, this little city was enlightening to walk through.

Boats in the Bay off the Sausalito Coast
(Photo by author)

Local Restaurants and Tourists by the Sausalito Coast
(Photo by author)

Wine Tasting Shop in Sausalito
(Photo by author)

Spring Time in Sausalito
(Photo by author)

Flower Shop in Sausalito
(Photo by author)

Sausalito Coast
(Photo by author)

For a little bit of cuisine, I'd recommend the Salsalito Taco Shop.  This place was absolutely packed as we were strolling through the town on a busy Saturday late-morning.  Although there were plenty of higher end restaurants all around us, some of which came highly recommended, we couldn't get past the enthusiasm surrounding this little restaurant.  I am SO glad we stopped.  We had some of the best Mexican cuisine that I've had in a long time!

Salsalito Taco Shop in Sausalito, CA
(Photo from Google Images)

Chips and Guacamole with Fresh Ice Tea and Red and Green Salsa
(Photo by author)

I'm not going to lie... when it comes to Mexican and Spanish cuisine, I'm partial towards Sangria.  The citrusy sweetness in Sangria pairs very well with the spice in salsas that accompany the main dish.  However, I wish I would've taken a chance and tried their Sol Splash: a mixture of sparkling wine and hibiscus or mango juice with lime.  I also highly recommend the Taco de Camaron, which is Baja-style shrimp tacos.    Also goes well with Sangria.  Yummy!

Sangria: A good pairing for Mexican food
(Photo from Google Images)

While in town, if you are searching for some "early" evening activities, I can recommend Wellington's Wine Bar.  I say early because this one closes at 11:00 PM!  I really enjoy wine bars.  They have a much different atmosphere than other bars.  This one was quite chill and relaxing.  I enjoyed the vast beer and wine selection, as well as its proximity to the bay's coast.  As I was there in the evening, I wasn't able to grab some good pictures, but I found a few pictures online:

Entrance to Wellington's Wine Bar: Sausalito, CA
(Photo from Google Images)

Interior of Wellington's Wine Bar: Sausalito, CA
(Photo from Google Images)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Wine and Food in the North Bay, California

California is one of those states that you just have to visit if you are in love with food and wine.  Luckily, I was given a great opportunity to visit for a few days and enjoy some of the food and wine culture in Sausalito and Corte Madera.  These aren't big "wine country" areas for northern California, but I'll show you that you can find wine just about everywhere you go.  :)

As I was staying just north of Sausalito, the Yankee Pier restaurant in Larkspur was recommended to me for a great culinary experience!  What a fun restaurant to visit with great, local seafood.  A great selling point - all you can eat fish and chips on Monday nights for $19.00.  That's such a great deal in California!
Yankee Pier, Larkspur, CA
(Photo from Google Images)

Cutest appetizer plates ever at Yankee Pier
(Photo by author)

We started off with ceviche, which is fresh raw fish marinated in citrus juice and chili peppers.  The marination step is how the fish is "cooked."  The acidic conditions that the fish is exposed to denatures the fish proteins, which is similar to what happens when fish is cooked.  (Only, different, I guess.)  :)  It's served cold and is quite refreshing.  I learned that it is traditionally served with avocado, which are a dime a dozen in California!
Ceviche with avocado and tortilla chips
(Photo by author)

This was the first time I had ceviche and I really enjoyed it.  It was a wonderful light, refreshing appetizer.  Even though we had lots of wine choices for this meal, both of us decided on a brew so I can't go on and on about how well our wine paired with this.  But if i was to have this again, I'd suggest a refreshing and crisp Sauvignon Blanc!  New World New Zealand style may be too tart and flavorful for ceviche, but there are other Sauvignon Blanc blends that I think would be fabulous with this:  
Vellum White 
(Photo from Vellum's Facebook Page)
Vellum Wine Craft is a California-based production that produces two wines (to my knowledge!): a red and a white.  Their red Cabernet blend has received much publicity and their white blend has been quite popular since it's release in 2011.  Their Vellum White is crisp, floral, and citrusy with just a touch of creaminess to it that makes this wine incredibly appealing.

Provenance Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc
(Photo from Provenance Website)
Another personal favorite Sauvignon Blanc of mine is from Provenance Vineyards.  The above image is not the correct label.  The lower priced Sauvignon Blanc (~$22) is very well done and quite affordable.  Lots of grapefruit and citrus flavor accompanied in the palate with freshness and creaminess.

Chateau Haut Guillebot
(Photo From Google Images)
Let's not forget one of my favorite <$15 Sauvignon Blancs from Bordeaux!  For a quick recap on this $11 Sauvignon Blanc, please visit the What's in My Glass Wednesdays page.

Despite the wonderful appetizer, we also had a refreshing meal.  Both my guest and myself ordered fish in a spicy aioli sauce.  I had my tuna with pea tendrils and asparagus.  She had her cod with asparagus and braised kale.  Both meals were absolutely delightful!
Fresh Fish with Asparagus and Pea Tendrils or Braised Kale
(Photo by author)

Obviously you can see here that we were enjoying our local brews.  Asparagus and greens are generally difficult to pair anyway.  So some of these suggestions may be hit or miss.  Obviously, some people would carry over the Sauvignon Blanc into their main course.  And that is okay!  However, I think these meals would have been a prime candidate for old world style Cabernet Franc.  This can be a difficult thing to find on the western side of the U.S.  Here's where I'd make a few eastern U.S. suggestions.

Galen Glen Cabernet Franc
(Photo by author)
Galen Glen Winery's Cabernet Franc is a pleasant, medium-bodied red wine that would match well with this meal.  It's lighter in body compared to California red blends, less oak influence, and more old-world style with fresh cherries, raspberries, and a touch of herbaceousness (dried leaves, slight hints of tobacco).  Cost: $15.

Award Winners at Briar Valley Vineyard & Winery
(Photo by author)
Briar Valley Vineyard and Winery also makes a pleasant old-world style Cabernet Franc at a value cost ($19.95).  I wish I had a picture of the specific label, but the above image features their logo.  Like Galen Glen, this is a medium bodied wine with lots of ripe cherries in the nose and married nicely with the varietal herbal and tobacco notes.  For me, this wine has slightly more toasty oak flavors than Galen Glen's and a little more structure.  Another good possibility!

Veritas Winery Cabernet Franc Reserve
(Photo from KThread; found via Google Images)
Another rising brand in the eastern U.S. is Veritas Vineyard and Winery in Virginia.  I'm not sure if Veritas still sells this wine, as I can no longer find it on their website, but this was one of the reds that I enjoyed while living in Virginia.  Great tannin structure with fresh red berries and toasty oak flavors, this wine was sure to please and would be another pairing for the above meal.  If they no longer produce this wine, I'd recommend one of their red blends like their Red Star ($18) or the Vintner's Reserve ($35).

Friday, April 13, 2012

Friday Feature: Portobello Mushrooms with Pinot Noir

Who here doesn't like mushrooms?!  (PLEASE don't raise your hand!)  Ok, ok... mushrooms are definitely an acquired taste, but as I've gotten a tad older, I've come to appreciate their subtlety as well as the various array of flavors all sorts of mushrooms provide.  Portobellos can be made stuffed, sauteed, grilled, steamed, marinated, as sandwiches... and the list goes on and on...

Portobello Mushroom Melts
(Photo and recipe at BBC Good Food)

Portobello Mushroom Sandwich
(Photo and recipe at: Taste of Home)

Portobello Mushroom with Onion and Balsamic Reduction
(Photo and recipe at Planet Forward)

And, of course, the traditional pairing with Portobellos is definitely Pinot Noir.  Pinot is known for it's earthiness and mushroom flavors, if made in the old world style.  Here are a few fancy Pinots that might suit your fancy:

If you're looking for something in the "value-price" range (<$20) try this $18 1.5 L bottle of PN II from Anthony Road Winery.  For $18, I'm surprised at the quality of this wine.  Remember that the price of Pinot's is all relative.  In most cases, you cannot find one of value below $50 that is still representative of a Pinot Noir.  But if you want something a bit more sophisticated, grab Anthony Road Winery's Pinot Noir label that I reviewed last week:
You won't be disappointed with this oaky, delicate, earthy, and cherried Pinot Noir.  It is one of my favorites to date!

If you're looking to splurge, I suggest finding an old-world Burgundy bottle.  These can be tricky to buy and without knowing much of the region, you'll either find a winner or a bottle you'd like to toss.  If you can afford the investment, then by all means, go for it.  But if you want to play it a bit on the safer side, I'd try some of these other suggestions, first!

(Photo from Google Images)
I will admit that Rex-Goliath is an "old faithful" when it comes to being in an [inexpensive] wine-buying bind. I've purchased it several times for large family gatherings or last minute arrangements with friends.  This used to be one of the best valued Pinot Noirs on the market, but since it's raised in popularity, I've found that it now lacks that characteristic Pinot Noir flavor like many bulk-produced Pinots.  Still, you can find it everywhere and anywhere (even in Pennsylvania) and it'll do the trick if you're looking for an inexpensive Pinot.

Other wine regions to try include Carneros (from California) and Russian River (from California), but the selection nation-wide is scattered.  These tend to be a bit more intense in oak and cherry flavor, drawing away from the earthiness of other regions, but it's still worth a shot if you're trying out Portobellos!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Bamboo Wine Chock

This is one of those things I saw in a fashion magazine and thought it was interesting.  It's a wine chock, which is a shaped support system to hold wine bottles.  In this case, it holds the wine bottles in a pyramid structure.  I like it because it's super flexible - you can fold it up and store in the home or take with you to any particular outing.  It easily holds up to six bottles on its bamboo support system.  I'd use it as a gift for your wine savvy friends, or a newly married couple, that they may not be expecting.  

It's also a great idea for those you know that store no more than about half a case of wine at a time.  This provides easy an comfortable storage on any counter top.  Cheers to that!
Wine Chock by David Lapin ($25)
(Photos from MoMA Store)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What's in My Glass Wednesdays! 2010 Cote Est by Jean-Marc Lafage

This was one of those wines where I was walking through the wine store and was stopped by A) the label and B) the variety selection.  This Cote Est is a white wine blend of 50% Grenache (Blanc and Gris), 30% Chardonnay, and 20% Marsanne.  

For those readers that enjoy white wine blends, especially without oak, this is the wine for you.  And I found it at a measly $11.  (I've seen that normal retail is around $13.)  An extra bonus: David Schildknecht from The Wine Advocate (by Robert Parker) actually rated this wine 90 points.  [Extra side note: I bought the wine before knowing that.] :)

2010 Cote Est by Jean-Marc Lafage

The D-2010 Scale 
2010 Cote Est by Jean-Marc Lafage (Cotes Catalenes (Roussillon), France)
Appearance (10 points possible): Light hay yellow in color. Brilliantly clear - 10 points
Aroma/Bouquet (20 points possible): Fresh floral bouquet with hints of wet pebbles, canned pears and canned pineapples, freshly-picked apricots and zest of lemon and orange peels. - 19 points
Taste (10 points possible):  Light-bodied with a zesty citrus and pear flavor and lingering flavors of fresh cut flowers.  The wine is smooth, filling, and juicy with a long finish. - 9 points
Balance (5 points possible): This wine is well balanced - lots of flavor, crispness, and just a hint of floral sweetness in the finish. - 5 points
Finish (5 points possible): Lingers for a long time with a filling floral and juicy finish.  Very refreshing and flavorful. - 5 points
Packaging *Introduction to the D-2010 Scale*
Quality of Package (5 points possible):  Screw capped bottle with bright white label and matching lime green screw cap.  This type of package really fits this style of wine.  - 5 points
Label Marketability (10 points possible):  This wine actually caught my attention because of the tip of the grapevine on the label.  And then after my attention was caught, I actually read what was in the bottle.  This peaked my interest and caused me to buy the wine.  It was only "after the fact" that I realized the wine was French.  How's that for marketability? - 10 points
Other (5 points possible):  No big extras on this one. - 3 points
Total Points: 96 points
Overall Thought: If you are out looking for unoaked wine blends, here's the wine for you!  I loved how intriguing this wine was: from the label through the blend and finished in the glass.  This is what wine tasting is all about!  I loved the fresh mixture of spring flowers and fruits with hints of crisp minerality (which is all the rage these days).  What's really interesting about this wine is the blend.  This is quite a different mixture compared to previously-evaluated wines.  I highly suggest this gem!
Food Pairings:  I like this with roasted chicken and a crisp and fruity salad (perhaps, spinach and pear salad with goat cheese).  Or, I'd grab this with a low country boil (see photo below)...  Sometimes, these suggestions make me quite hungry!
Cost: $10.99
Splurge Factor (out of 4): 1... If you don't try this wine, you're missing out on the fun and excitement of wine tasting.
Where to buy:  If you can't find it in your local retail store, it can be purchased through Wine Library with a thorough explanation from David Schildknecht.  Cheers!

Low Country Boil
(Photo by author)

Friday, April 6, 2012

Friday Feature: Easter [Ham] Dinner with Pinot Noir

I'm sure many of you are prepping for Easter dinner.  In that case, you are probably wondering what types of wines to pair with your Easter meal.  To be honest, it can slightly difficult to pair an Easter feast with just one wine, so I have provided you with a few selections that may work for your perfect Easter Sunday.

Easter Meal
Steamed Ham with Pineapple Preserves, 4 Cheese Scalloped Potatoes, 
and Balsamic Green Beans and Red Peppers
(Photo by author)

- Cook ham according to package directions.
- I placed my ham in an aromatic water bed of rosemary, 1 bay leaf, and nutmeg. 

Four-Cheese Scalloped Potatoes (From The Food Network)
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for brushing
1/2 clove garlic
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup shredded asiago cheese
1/3 cup shredded raclette (or comte cheese)
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
4 fresh bay leaves
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1) Position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F. Generously brush a large skillet with butter, then rub with the garlic. Combine the mozzarella, asiago and raclette in a bowl.
2) Heat the skillet over medium-high heat. Add half of the potatoes, spreading them out. Sprinkle with 3/4 teaspoon salt, half of the cut-up butter, half of the shredded cheese blend, and pepper to taste. Arrange the remaining potatoes on top. Sprinkle with 3/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste. Pour the cream over the potatoes, then add the nutmeg and bay leaves; simmer 3 minutes. Dot the potatoes with the remaining cut-up butter.
3) Generously brush a shallow baking dish with butter; slide the potatoes into the dish; arrange with a fork, if desired. (If your skillet is ovenproof, you can skip this step and bake the potatoes in the skillet.)
4) Sprinkle the potatoes with the parmesan and the remaining shredded cheese blend. Bake until golden, about 25 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before serving. Discard the bay leaves.

Wine Pairings

I really enjoy Pinot Noir with ham.  It's usually light enough bodied to accompany the smokey, light nature of the ham.  I recently reviewed a Pinot Noir from Anthony Road Winery that would be more than appropriate for the Easter holiday.  It's medium bodied with fresh cherry and toasty flavors that will go quite nicely with the above meal flavors and hold up well against the fatty cheesy scalloped potatoes.
(Photo by author)

Another fine choice is a Beaujolais wine.  The Gamay grapes from Beaujolais will provide a light- to medium-bodied wine that will, again, go well with the ham and cheesy scalloped potatoes.  Beaujolais is often low in tannins and is a very pleasant red wine for traditional white wine drinkers, too.
Beaujolais Wine
(Photo from Google Images)

Of course, never under estimate the choice to "drink local."  :)  You'll be amazed at what light- to medium-bodied red wines you can find that pair nicely with ham.  Cheers!
(Photo by author)