By Robbie Sigona
Seedless red muscat grapes from Chile are here and they are truly a delight to pop in your mouth.
Most wine grapes are not eaten out of hand, and most table grapes do not make great wine; but the Muscat with its distinctive floral perfume crosses all boundaries and is equally enjoyed in all three categories: wine, grapes, and raisins.
It is probably as wine that Muscat is best known, from the floral and fizzy Moscato D’Asti to Conundrum, a very well regarded Californian wine made from a blend of Muscat, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc. Wines made from these grapes range from dry to syrupy sweet and from aperitif to dessert.
Muscat grapes are grown over much of the Mediterranean and it is nearly impossible to sip its wine without evoking images of craggy islands, warm summer sun, and bees buzzing amongst white blossoms. Fermentation greatly changes the flavor of many subjects, whether it is sourdough bread or converting grape juice to wine, but I find the flavors of raw Muscat grapes and those of the wines to be inextricably linked.
Nothing but nectar could compare with the flavor of the Muscat. Sipping a glass of a good Moscato is drinking the nectar of flowers, and eating a Muscat grape is much the same. The flavors are characterized as floral with a honeyed sweetness.
Not only do they have distinct compounds that produce that rich, spicy and complex muscat flavor, they also have unusually high concentrations of antioxidant flavonoids. Plus, they are seedless, making them perfect for munching.
The season for these delicacies is just two months, so pick some up while they’re here. If you put them in the center of your dining room table, they’ll disappear in a flash.
They’re also particularly tasty paired with nuts and Maytag Blue or goat cheese.
If you’d like to try something unusual, add them to a curry dish or freeze them for a bite sized burst of flavor.
And for a meal outside of the ordinary, try this recipe from one of our customers, James Marks of Redwood City. Let me know how you like them best!
Robbie Sigona firstname.lastname@example.org