Wine & Food Pairing: California Lamb Mediterranean Style

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Ever since Napa Valley Wine Train Executive Chef Kelly MacDonald was a child, he helped his family create culinary masterpieces at family gatherings. This is one of his favorite recipes for you to use that is sure to please your family this holiday season.

Recipe: California Lamb Mediterranean Style
Wine Pairing: Chef recommends pairing this dish with a soft, mildly tanic, fruit forward red wine like Swanson Vineyards Merlot.


Lamb Rub
  • 2 tablespoons Achiote  
  • 4 filets Anchovies
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic (minced)         
  • 1 teaspoon Rosemary (finely chopped)
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt                  
  • ¼ teaspoon White Pepper
  • ¼ cup Extra virgin olive oil       

In a bowl, mix all ingredients above and let stand at room temperature for 10-15 minutes.
Whisk vigorously before applying to the rack.

Olive Tapinade
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic (chopped)
  • ½ cup Black Olives Pitted
  • ½ teaspoon Orange Zest  
  • ½ teaspoon Lemon Zest
  • 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Chopped Chives
  • 1 tablespoon Dry Gin

Mix well until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Select rack of lamb that has eight bones
(Preheat BBQ for indirect cooking) and Preheat oven to 350 degrees)

  • Rub 1 tablespoon of sea salt and rub over entire rack
  • Rinse off all salt and pat dry
  • Apply lamb rub evenly to entire rack
  • Cover all bones with aluminum foil (to prevent burning)
  • Grill rack of lamb on all sides to give coloration (7-8 minutes on grill)
  • Let meat rest for 5 minutes
  • Place in oven for 15 minutes for an approximate medium rare
  • Let meat rest 5-6 minutes before serving 
  • Apply olive tapinade on top of the lamb and accompany the dish with seared vegetables or potatoes

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