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Style Magazine

Dinner Date

Jan 03, 2011 09:12AM ● By Style

Wine bottle photo by Aaron Roseli. All other photos courtesy of In Season Publishing.


Placer County Real Food Cookbook: Recipes & Menus for Every Week of the Year by Joanne Neft with Laura Kenny
(In Season, 2010, $28)

  • 6 large yellow onions, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ tsp. sugar
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 cups beef stock
  • ½ cup dry vermouth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp. thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 slices French bread, toasted
  • 1 ½ cups Swiss Gruyere cheese, finely grated

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large saucepan, sauté the onions in olive oil until caramelized, 30 to 40 minutes. Add sugar the last 10 minutes. Add garlic and sauté another 2 minutes. Add stock, vermouth, bay leaves and thyme. Simmer another hour. Discard bay leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Ladle soup into small soup bowls. Cover with toast and sprinkle on cheese. Bake until cheese is browned and bubbly, about 10 minutes. Serve immediately.


Yes, there is a real winery very close to downtown Sacramento! Charles Myers began making wine at his West Sacramento winery, Harbor Winery, in 1972. A former English teacher at Sacramento City College, Myers was a very accomplished home winemaker when he turned his attention towards making wine professionally. He produces a number of interesting wines, and is the only winery left to still produce California Mission Del Sol.

Harbor Winery 2003 Amador County Syrah is what many professional wine judges call “a good drink.” It is a simple and delicious example of California Syrah. This wine is medium-bodied with pleasant berry notes, very subtle tannins and a clean finish; it’s a wine that easily pleases almost all red wine drinkers. It pairs well with red meats, poultry dishes, pastas, hearty soups, and is also perfect to serve at a reception with most finger foods suited for a red wine.

Rick Mindermann
Rick is Store Director of Corti Brothers in Sacramento,
personal assistant to Darrell Corti, and
“The Good Taste Guy” for