Napa Valley–based vintner Amelia Ceja is on a mission to introduce wine with Mexican food
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Mexican food goes beyond beer
Amelia Ceja’s deep connection with food goes back to her grandmother’s kitchen in Mexico. “Mamá Chepa” cooked only with ingredients they raised or foraged: a riot of chiles, wild mushrooms, and lamb. When Amelia arrived in the States, during the heyday of processed foods, lunchtime was a culture shock. Now, in her vineyard-home kitchen at Ceja Vineyards in Napa, she turns the produce from her organic garden into dishes that are tethered to Jalisco. The layers of earthy chiles hook up beautifully with the spice in Pinot Noir, Syrah, and even Cabernet.
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Serve this fresh ceviche on a tostadita shell for a fun yet elegant appetizer.
Pair with: Ceja 2008 “Dulce Beso” Late Harvest Sauvignon Blanc. This sweet version of the wine the pears are poached in extends the flavor package. Like the pear dish, it has beautiful acidity to cut the sugar.