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Unoaked Chardonnay & Scallops St. Jacques

By Kale Anderson, June 19, 2013

2012 Jayson Unoaked Chardonnay Napa Valley

With the glorious arrival of summer comes the release of our first-ever Jayson Unoaked Chardonnay. This refreshing wine has a Chablis-like purity,  yet is uniquely endowed with the rich ripeness one expects from our Waters Ranch Vineyard high above the Napa Valley. Plush tropical aromatics lead into crisp citrus and green apple flavors with racy notes of lime zest and grapefruit.

This wine begs to be paired with delicious summer fare like scallops, and our good friend and chef Cindy Pawlcyn has graciously shared her fresh twist on Coquille St. Jacques.

Coquilles St. Jacques
From Big Small Plates by Cindy Pawlcyn, Ten Speed Press

Serves 6

3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
3 beefsteak tomatoes, peeled, seeded and sliced into wedges
1/2 cup white wine
grated zest of 1/2 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds sea scallops
3 or 4 leaves fresh basil cut into a chiffonade, plus some small leaves for garnish
1/4 cup (loosely packed) chopped fresh Italian parsley, leaves and tender stems only
1 cup tiny croutons (1/4 inch dice)

For the sauce, put half the butter in a saucepan with enough olive oil to coat the pan nicely, and heat over medium heat. Add the garlic; sauté 1 minute, but do not let the garlic brown. Add the tomatoes, and cook 2 minutes, or until the tomatoes exude some of their juices. Continue cooking until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the wine, lemon zest and lemon juice, season with salt and pepper, and reduce about 3 minutes, until it is fairly thick.

While the sauce is reducing, coat 1 large or 2 medium sauté pans liberally with the remaining olive oil and set them over high heat. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper on the scallops. When the pans are very hot, add a small amount of the remaining butter and put the scallops flat in the pan being careful not to crowd them. Cook 1 minute, until golden brown on the bottom; turn them, using tongs, and cook another minute, until golden brown on the other side. Be careful not to overcook these rich, sweet seafood delicacies or they’ll become tough and chewy. (Keep an eye on the sauce while you cook the scallops, and take it off heat if it's done before the scallops.) Transfer scallops to a warmed plate and place in an oven on very low heat.

To finish the sauce, return it to the heat. Add any liquid that has drained from the scallops, and stir in the basil chiffonade and half the parsley.

To serve, put a spoonful of the sauce on each plate, and place a few scallops on top. Sprinkle with croutons, small basil leaves, and the remaining parsley.

Cindy Pawlcyn is the founding chef/owner of three beloved Napa Valley restaurants: Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen, Cindy Pawlcyn's Wood Grill and Wine Bar, and Mustards Grill - celebrating 30 years.