My boyfriend and I are creatures of comfort. Board games, movie nights, and lazy Sunday mornings are some of our fave things to do. We do love going out to bars and restaurants, too, but we made a pact to only eat out if it’s a good value, if the experience is unforgettable, or if we’ve had a hankering for something in particular. With our philosophy, we’re saving a lot of money that we can apply to something responsible like student debt, or to something fun, like vacations. And we’ve also been doing a lot of cooking at home, which is fun to do together and has resulted in lots of new favorite recipes and food & wine pairings.
Both of us like wine, but neither of us is an expert, so partnering with Crios and trying one of their wines was a cool opportunity to be a little more intentional about what we eat with our wine.
Crios, meaning “offspring” in Spanish, is a family-owned brand by Susana Balbo, created as a tribute to Susana’s son, José, and daughter, Ana. José and Ana have both joined the business and add their young-adult point of view to the wines that are dedicated to their family bond. I can totally relate to that – as you know, I went into business with my mom too!
All Crios wines are harvested from specific areas in Mendoza and Salta in Argentina, where grapes are optimal for the fruit-forward style of Crios.
Before we could drink the wine, though, we had to get the rest of our date night fare ready. So, it was off to the grocery store, but not before taking a selfie.
For our date night in, we decided to do an hors d’oeuvres plate to have with our Crios Malbec in front of the fire that afternoon, watch the Penn State/Ohio State football game, and then cook dinner a little later. After that, we planned to end the night with a movie.
One new recipe and one old recipe were on the menu for that night. We’d made this brown sugar and rosemary porkchop recipe once before and adored it, and we saw this braised red potato recipe on an episode of America’s Test Kitchen and thought we’d try it out!
We already had some of the key ingredients like spices and seasonings and the porkchops we’d bought earlier that weekend. Our shopping list looked something like this:
- Red potatoes
- A bulb of garlic
- Fresh thyme
- One hard cheese & one soft cheese
- A loaf of bread
- A 12-pack of beer for the sad and inevitable moment we finished off the Crios Malbec 🙁
Once we got home from the store, my boyfriend got a fire going in the new chiminea he bought for us to enjoy this fall!
Once the fire was roaring, we put together a nice little platter of cheeses, bread with olive oil for dipping, grapes, olives, and of course the lovely bottle of Crios. I love their modern label design – anything with stripes is a win in my book!
Crios Malbec was created when Susana Balbo, Argentina’s leading and most innovative winemaker, was inspired to change the perception of Malbec from a forgotten grape to Argentina’s iconic varietal. It’s velvety, slightly spicy, and full of signature notes of black cherries, oak spice, and violets. This wine definitely elevates Malbec to world-class quality.
It’s great to pair with things like tuna steak, lamb, and hamburgers, but my boyfriend and I took a page out of Susana Balbo’s book and bravely paired it with these little bites instead…and then bravely polished the bottle off almost as soon as we opened it! Oops.
We poured ourselves glasses of the gorgeous, inky-purple Malbec, toasted to a great weekend, and enjoyed our appetizers in front of the fire. I picked the Malbec for us to try because I love a full-bodied red wine, and it was a great choice – it’s lush with hints of spice, and stood up perfectly to the flavorful cheeses (a horseradish cheddar and an herbed asiago) and hearty loaf of bread.
As I hinted above, despite our best intentions, the wine didn’t make it past our little happy hour because we polished it off with relish. I’m sure it would have been delicious with our dinner later, had it survived the afternoon. 🙂
Later that night, we tuned in for the Penn State vs. Ohio State football game. The stakes were high because those are our alma maters! Naturally, we bet against each other. Guess who won…muahaha!
We worked up a hunger with all that yelling, so after the game it was time to make some dinner. The porkchops turned out perfectly, just like they did the first time we made them, and the braised potatoes were excellent. Definitely a new favorite.
Are you a red wine or white wine person? Have you ever tried a Malbec?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.