Wine Varietal: Merlot
Springtime in Montana means two things:morel mushroom hunting in areas where fires recently burned through and cherry blossom season in the Flathead Valley. These two ingredients, along with world-renowned Montana beef, of course, seemed as if they would make great companions to a uniquely Montana burger. And, married with Sutter Home Merlot, they do!
For Morel Mushroom Sauce:
1 / 4 cup butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped morel mushrooms (can use re-hydrated dried morels, or substitute fresh cremini mushrooms)
1 / 4 cup finely chopped onions
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 / 2 cup Sutter Home Merlot
1 / 2 cup whipping cream
1/ 3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 pounds freshly ground chuck
1 / 2 cup chopped onion
1 / 2 cup dried, chopped cherries
1 / 2 cup packaged real crumbled bacon
1 / 2 cup roasted sunflower seeds
1 / 2 cup grated Parmiggiano-Reggiano Cheese
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons chopped, fresh sage
12 pieces Texas Toast
About 2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Preheat a gas grill to medium-high.
To make morel mushroom sauce, melt the butter with the olive oil in a large skillet on the grill. Add mushrooms, onions, and garlic and saute‘ for 5 minutes. Add the Sutter Home Merlot, and cook until reduced by half. Add the whipping cream and cook, stirring, until sauce thickens, maybe 5 more minutes. Stir in the grated Parmiggiano-Reggiano cheese. Set aside as you prepare the burgers.
To make the burgers, mix all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl, and gently form into six patties.
When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil, and place the patties on the rack. Cover and grill, 5 to 7 minutes each side. During the final few minutes, place the Texas Toast on the edge of the rack to toast lightly, turning once, so that each side is toasted. Also, re-heat the Morel Sauce. If your grill has a side burner, use it to re-heat the sauce.
To assemble the burgers, place burgers on one side of Texas Toast, followed by equal amounts of the the Morel Sauce, and top with the final piece of Texas Toast. Makes 6 servings.