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Nov 14, 2017
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WINE WITH…Salmon with Pink Grapefruit, Beets and Radishes

A new study from Harvard confirms that one of the best things we can do for the health of our heart is to eat more foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, notably fish. Shrimp is America’s most popular seafood, while salmon claims second place. As a country we consume approximately 918 million pounds of salmon each year. It is wonderfully adaptable in the kitchen, and it is richer in heart-healthy omega-3s than shrimp (and for that matter most other fish). According to the USDA National Database, a 3-ounce cooked portion of shrimp contains 200 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids, while the same amount of salmon has 500-1500 (depending on whether it is wild or farmed). The bottom line: Eat more salmon!

Salmon With Pink Grapefruit, Beets and Radishes

Serves 4

The beet mixture may be made up to 4 hours ahead of serving

1 cup thinly sliced radishes
1 teaspoon finely minced mint
1 teaspoon finely minced chives
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup cooked and skinned beets
1 tablespoon unflavored whole milk yogurt or sour cream
1 pink grapefruit
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
About 1-1 ½ pound salmon filet, oven roasted or grilled
Lemon wedges

Toss the radishes with the mint, chives, and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Set aside. Cut the beets into large dice and toss with the yogurt or sour cream.

Peel the grapefruit, cut out and discard all the white pith, then cut the segments into small bite-size pieces, and toss them with the remaining olive oil.

Shortly before serving, combine the radishes, beets, and grapefruit pieces and season them with salt and pepper. Scatter them over a serving platter and arrange the salmon over the top. Garnish with lemon wedges.

* * *

The two most obvious varietal choices--Chardonnay and Pinot Noir--turned out to be fine partners for this dish. But so too did other varieties that share their basic profile: Fairly weighty whites and light-bodied reds. A Piedmontese Dolcetto, for example, performed wonderfully well, as did an Oregon Pinot Gris (sadly now unavailable in most marketplaces). A bright but serious rosé proved also to be a winning choice. One caveat: None of the wines that performed well tasted overtly of oak. The buttery taste from barrel aging will only get in the way.

Connect  on Twitter:   @M_L_Thomas  and  @Wine_With_
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Approx. Price



Dolcetto d’Alba




(Imported by Vineyard Brands)


Earthy flavors vie with fruity ones in a compelling wine that complemented the dish nicely. It paired especially well with both the fish and the beets, while the grapefruit added lift. This will be an especially good choice if you grill the salmon.


Sonoma Coast


Pinot Noir

“Wildcat Mountain”



A lovely because sophisticated and subtle California Pinot, with nothing heavy or excessive about it. Both dried and cherry fruit flavors come to the fore, but these are supported by more rustic, even gamey ones as a backdrop. It’s expensive, but worth the outlay.

Sylvaine & Alain Normand,

Macon La Roche Vineuse




(Imported by Vintage ’59)


A mineral-rich Macon, with rich apple and pear fruit flavors enhanced by echoes of slate or stone. It’s the most delicate wine we are recommending, but it certainly wasn’t overwhelmed by the dish.


Santa Maria Valley


Pinot Noir Rosè



Bright and vivacious, as any dry rosé should be, this wine also tastes substantial, with fairly deep cherry fruit flavors and more than a hint of fresh citrus. Much like the grapefruit in the dish, it made everything seem fresh and lively.

Domaine de Wetshof,

Limestone Hill

(South Africa)



(Imported by Broadbent Selections)


A delicious value (run, don’t walk to buy some), this is an unoaked Chardonnay that nonetheless tastes rich, ripe, and succulent. Tasting fresh but at the same time plentiful, it married seamlessly with all the elements in the dish—even the radishes.