Monthly Archives: July 2020

Homemade Chimichurri Sauce – for Steaks and More!

Summer is finally here! Now that the days are long and the sun is here to stay, it’s also officially time for the summer barbeques to commence. As if we needed a reason to crack open a bottle of our signature David’s Tableau Vivant Bordeaux blend! A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc, that boasts rich espresso and spice with a hint of black cherry, it the dream to serve when you’re firing up the grill. Now, a tender, juicy, peppered steak is already the perfect playmate for a Bordeaux blend – but when you throw in this chimichurri, it takes this experience to a whole new level. 

This chimichurri is a household staple for me. Don’t be fooled by it’s fancy name – this is the type of sauce you can enjoy in all sorts of unusual ways, just like pesto – scrambled eggs, leftover sandwiches, as a pizza sauce? Yep, I can personally attest to all of these options. I always like to let my chimichurri sit and meld for about 20 minutes prior to enjoying so the flavors have time to combine. 

Chimichurri is a fresh, uncooked green sauce that is originally Argentinian. It’s the type of zesty, spicy, herbaceous goodness that is delightful served on top of red meat – think your barbecued pork loins, peppercorn crusted steaks, added into fajitas… the possibilities are endless! With a base of olive oil and vinegar, chimichurri’s strong flavor profile enhances meat by adding a bright and balanced layer of complexity to any meat dish. Now, throw in some of our 2016 David’s Tableau Vivant into the mix and you’ve conjured up a real recipe for magic.

If you’re looking to create the perfect steak dinner, we’ve got you covered – make sure to check out our tips on how to get the perfect steak, every time.


  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1 red jalapeno, seeded and roughly chopped 
  • 4 garlic cloves 
  • 2 bunch of fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley, roughly chopped 
  • ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
  • ¾ cup olive oil 
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste 
  • Jacobsen Black Garlic Salt, to taste


  1. Using food processor, pulse together shallot, red jalapeno, and garlic cloves until roughly combined. 
  2. Add the cilantro and parsley to the food processor. Run the food processor for a good 10 to 20 seconds – it’s imperative that you break down the herbs well so that all the flavors combine. Scrape down the sides of the food processor.
  3. Add red wine vinegar and olive oil, then pulse until combined. 

Sweet Pea Pesto with Rosé


Summer is finally here in the Pacific Northwest! With these long, warm days, there are few places we would rather be than on the patio with a chilled glass of wine. It adds a sparkle to any evening. Is there any better way to enjoy the beautiful sunshine than catching up with friends over some great appetizers?

When I think of an easy but delicious recipe that’s great for sharing, our Sweet Pea Pesto Crostinis immediately come to mind – it’s the perfect recipe for summer get togethers! Our Sweet Pea Pesto was initially debuted at one of our wine club releases back in 2019, and I don’t think we’ve ever had a more requested recipe. It was a huge hit.

It’s a snap to put together (all you need is 5 minutes and a food processor, and yes, frozen peas are just as delicious as fresh). Plus, it is so versatile! Lighter than traditional pesto, it’s the perfect snack to enjoy with baby carrots and chips, or you can dress it up by spreading it on a crostini with half of a fresh cherry tomato. Serve this pesto on its own as a dip, or as part of a larger spread of tapas.

We initially paired this pesto with our 2018 Rosé of Pinot Noir, which was delicious – the slight sweetness of the pea and the refreshing Rose was beautiful. But I have had these crostinis with our 2018 Estate Pinot Grigio, as well as our 2019 Rosé of Pinot Noir, and am happy to report that any of our refreshing white Willamette Valley wines will be just as delicious with this wonderful recipe!

Here’s to happy summer evenings spent on the patio with good friends and good food!


For the pea pesto:

  • 10 ounces peas (frozen works great, as well)
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper (or to taste)
  • ½ cup olive oil 
  • ½ lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar

For the crostinis:

  • Baguette, sliced in half inch slices
  • Olive oil, for brushing 
  • Salt, as desired 
  • 10 Cherry tomatoes, sliced in half (one half for each crostini)


For the pea pesto:

  1. Using a food processor, pulse the peas and garlic until combined.
  2. Add salt, pepper, lemon juice and then pulse again. 
  3. Blending pea mixture continuously, slowly drizzle the olive oil in, blending until smooth.  

For the crostini (optional):

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Slice baguette into half inch slices. 
  3. Lightly brush each side with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown and slightly crispy. Depending on your oven temperature, you may want to rotate the sheets halfway through, or flip the crostini’s to the other side. 

Taking cooled crostini, gently dollop pea pesto on top of each. Spread the pesto with a spoon, garnish with half of a sliced cherry tomato and some of our Jacobsen Black Garlic Pepper Salt, or Coarse Sea Salt. Enjoy!


Summer Wine Jam Recipe Series

Summer Harvest Wine Jam Recipe Series

We know that here in Oregon wine country we can be a bit biased, but we’re absolutely convinced that the Willamette Valley has some of the best family farms and orchards for summer produce. We are swimming in an abundance of u-pick berry farms, roadside fruit stands, and a myriad of farm-to-consumer operations out here that give us access to the best produce around. 

A store bought raspberry is a delicious treat – but a freshly grown raspberry bursts with flavor in your mouth and screams,  “Send help, I can’t stop eating these.” Each summer, we turn to canning to work through the inevitable surplus of fresh fruit & berries we’ll have. (Side note: this might be making you jealous but don’t forget, it rains here…a lot). Back to the jams; enhancing jam with wine is a real game changer. Let’s just say, your peanut butter and jelly sandwich will never be the same. 

This summer, we’re sharing some of our favorite jam recipes that we’ve tested & perfected with a splash of the perfect wine to pair with the fruit. But before we get to the first recipe (Strawberry Jam with Pinot noir!) we want to give a couple notes on the canning process, and how we’ve written our recipes for you.

  • We tend to create our jams without any added pectin. This is just our preference. If you’re more comfortable adding pectin, go for it! 
  • These recipes will be lower in sugar! This allows the flavors of the fruit to shine along with the contrasting flavors of the wine. If you would like to add more sugar, you can safely add up to an additional ½ cup of sugar. We recommend increasing the amount of sugar by a Tablespoon at a time so you don’t go overboard.
  • The total amount of wine used has will depend on how long you’re going cooking the fruit! If you intend to cook your wine jam ‘low and slow’ (which yields a deeper, saucier flavor), add an extra 15 minutes on medium-low heat for each additional ⅓ cup of wine. 
  • All of these jams are fantastic when water bath-sealed, however, they will also be just as delicious when stored in the fridge if you’re going to use it up within about a month.
  • Your jam can be considered ‘set’ when you can put a dollop on a chilled plate, tilt the plate, and the jam moves slowly down the plate (instead of being runny or liquidy).  Remember – it takes 24 to 48 hours for pectin to set completely, so your final result will always be significantly firmer. 

With that, let’s get to jammin’!

Coming up in this series:

Oregon Wine Country Wedding Photo Collage

An Oregon Wine Country Wedding – Jeff & Maija at Laurel Ridge

Hi friends! Maija here being sappy as possible, because today is my wedding anniversary!

Many Laurel Ridge regulars know that my husband Jeff and I got married at the winery – which, to me, means I got married on the farm where I grew up. It was such a lovely day filled with warmth, tenderness, joy, and a lot of food & wine. In reminiscing, I couldn’t resist sharing just a few photos of our special day. Now please excuse me while I go grab a box of tissues.

Oregon Wine Country Wedding Photo Collage I was not the stereotypical girl portrayed in popular culture who always envisioned her wedding day. In fact, when it came time to planning the wedding, Susan and Kira actually planned and executed a lot of the details. And I have to say it was the best wedding gift I could ever have received.

Rose of Pinot noir

While I could never choose a favorite part of my wedding (hello! Marrying my husband was obviously the highlight!) I was absolutely obsessed with my cheese spread. The food was actually one of the only components of our wedding that Jeff and I cared about. When it came time to plan our cocktail reception, we knew we wanted guests to arrive and be offered a glass of our delicious Rosé of Pinot noir.

Cheese Board Photo Collage

We also couldn’t stop dreaming about an epic cheese board to pair with our happy hour wine selections – Rosé and our Pinot noir Cuvée. We knew both of these wines would be easy, crowd-pleasing selections to offer guests and would definitely pair well with a spread of cheeses, nuts, crackers, bread, fruit and more. It took me about ten minutes to figure out where my bridesmaids had disappeared to once I saw the cheese board had arrived. It was such a treat to enjoy and something we hope our guests loved as much as we did!

Up next – I’ll share some Oregon Wine Country wedding inspiration with our menu and how we paired our Pacific Northwest-inspired wedding menu with our delicious Willamette Valley wines. Stay tuned!



I know many had to delay or cancel their dream wedding plans due to Covid-19. I empathize so much with having to navigate such a stressful, costly endeavor. I share this post with levity, I hope it brings you inspiration and joy. Cheers!

A bottle of Laurel Ridge Chardonnay

Oregon Earliblue Blueberry + Chardonnay Jam Recipe

This is a post in our Summer 2020 Wine Jam series! Jam along with us all season long as we transform our abundance of fruit into some delicious treats that are more versatile than you’d think. Today, we’re continuing our summer harvest with…blueberries! Continue reading

A bottle of Laurel Ridge Pinot Noir Cuvee sitting on a wine barrel with the estate vineyard in the background

Oregon Hood Strawberry Jam with Pinot Noir

Perfect wine pairing: 2016 Pinot noir Cuvée

Strawberry Pinot noir Jam

Wine jams are simply amazing and I would even go as far as to say life changing. They are as elevated as you want them to be or as simple as you need them to be. From the delightfully elegant brie en croute to a grown-up pb & j, this is a versatile, do-it-all type of recipe. The Pinot noir in this recipe adds a delicious complexity to the jam, bringing out earthier notes and adding an undertone that is mellow but distinctly unique. Continue reading