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Argentine people have a reputation for the love of eating. Social gatherings are commonly centered on sharing a meal. An Invitation to dinner at ones’ home is a symbol of friendship and the Sunday family lunch is considered the most important meal of the week. It seemed only fitting to host a Southern Napa Family Brunch on Sunday September 23, 2018 with our friend Santiago Gouguenheim at our wine house. The challenge was not having enough seats available. This tasting sold out quickly!
Gouguenheim wines come from one of the highest elevation vineyards in Mendoza, Argentina. 3600 feet above sea level. Their vineyard is one of the first to receive the water, from melting snow caps in the Andes Mountains. In 2002 Santiago’s father (Patricio) purchased the vineyard. Now, Santiago’s children are enjoying growing up in the vineyards.
We had planned an earlier in the week tasting but, travel plans and those afore mentioned children dictate a lot of Santiago’s travel. We were fortunate to still get to host him before he flew out Sunday afternoon. The winemaker hustle is real. We appreciate everyone of the wines they produce because we know the hard work that goes into making them. It’s always an important meal when we have a winemaker in the house! We look forward to hosting them again in the future!
Savory Fall Bread Pudding
Preheat oven to 375°F. Heap squash on a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with oil and 1⁄2 teaspoon each salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Bake, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden brown, about 35 minutes. Transfer to bowl. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large frying pan and sauté leeks with 1⁄4 teaspoon salt until softened. Add garlic, cook 2 minutes and add mixture to squash.
In same pan, brown ground sausage. Drain all but 2 tablespoons of the fat and add mushrooms. Sauté until they have released their liquid and are beginning to brown, about 6 minutes. Add thyme and add to squash mixture.
Stir bread into veggies and scoop into a buttered 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
Whisk together milk, eggs, remaining salt and pepper, the flour and parmesan in a mixing bowl. Pour custard over bread mixture and let stand for 10 minutes. Top with gruyere, then bake, uncovered, until cheese is melted and beginning to brown and custard is just set – 30 to 35 minutes.
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