Its no secret that Chateauneuf-du-Pape (CDP for short) is my favorite wine..ever...so I'm always looking for an excuse to pop the cork on this Treasure of the Southern Rhone, and a late night meal provided that opportunity recently.
I opened a delicious and extremely affordable ($22 retail) '06 CDP from Domaine de Cristia, which is mostly Grenache and loads of blackberry fruit. I discovered this little gem on a recent visit to The 3rd Corner Wine Shop & Bistro in Palm Desert, and was impressed with its quality and value.
Well balanced, this vintage was a great match for a juicy ribeye steak topped with charred garlic and seared in olive oil and some of the Cristia. The slight spice in the wine was a nice accompaniment to a side of chili powder-dusted snow peas, and the perfect last-minute meal on a chilly winter's night in the desert.