Beef bourguignon à la Stewart Turner

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Beef bourguignon is a staple of French fine dining, calling for slow-cooked beef and red Burgundy. Stewart Turner, our Head Chef, shares his take on this classic.

At Berry Bros. & Rudd, we use short rib as our go-to cut for slow cooking. It’s a wonderful cut, but sadly not one a lot of people cook with. Its high fat content prevents it from drying out, and it has a fantastic flavour either on or off the bone. It’s cracking for a beef bourguignon.

The short rib is also known as “Jacob’s ladder”. There aren’t many foods that take their name from religious mythology, but this is one: it’s named after a stairway between earth and heaven, dreamed of by the Hebrew patriarch Jacob in Genesis. Those of you who are familiar with this cut may well agree with the analogy.

How to prepare beef short rib

Before we get to the bourguignon, I’ll start with how to prepare your short rib. In the kitchen at No.3 St James’s Street, we cook our short rib whole in a water bath. But for this recipe, I have adjusted for cooking at home. We also salt overnight, but you can skip this step and just season well before cooking.

Beef short rib

Ingredients

500g piece of short rib, off the bone

30g sea salt

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1 tsp white peppercorns, lightly crushed  

2 sprigs thyme

1 sprig rosemary

Method

Combine the salt, pepper, garlic and herbs. Liberally sprinkle over the short rib and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 120°C. Rinse off the salt mix and pat dry. Lay out a large piece of foil and top with another piece of greaseproof paper, both large enough to wrap the beef. Wrap up in greaseproof and foil to form parcel with the beef inside; make sure it’s well sealed.

Pop in the oven and cook for about four hours until the meat is soft and yielding. Poke a skewer into the meat and if it doesn’t meet with any resistance then it’s done. If it feels a bit tough, return to the oven for another 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Gently remove the foil and greaseproof, place in a tray or dish. Place another tray on top and press with a medium weight in the fridge overnight.

Once pressed, remove from the fridge and cut into about 2cm thick slices; your portions should be approximately 120g.

How to make a red wine jus

The beef is the main event, but don’t overlook the “bourguignon” part of the equation. This quick red wine jus recipe is perfect here and is a great one for your repertoire generally.

Red wine jus

Ingredients

50g butter

2 shallots, peeled and finely sliced

2 cloves smashed garlic

100g button mushrooms, finely sliced

200ml red wine

500ml beef stock

Olive oil

Method

Heat a good splash of olive oil in a saucepan. Fry the shallots, mushrooms and garlic until softened and just starting to brown. Add the red wine and bring to the boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes, or until the volume of liquid has reduced by two-thirds.

Add the stock, return the mixture to a simmer and simmer for 8-10 minutes, or until the volume of liquid has reduced to a nice saucy consistency. Pass through a fine sieve into a clean container. At this point, the sauce can be chilled and kept until needed. When ready to use bring to the boil and finish with the butter.

How to make beef bourguignon

Finally, the beef bourguignon itself. This recipe serves two, so adjust accordingly if cooking for more people.

Short rib beef bourguignonServes two

Ingredients

2 short rib pieces

40 g bacon lardons

80g mixed wild mushrooms

1 medium sized onion – split but unpeeled

Seasonal greens

10ml Sherry vinegar

Red wine jus – see below

Olive oil

Butter

1 sprig thyme

1 clove garlic – crushed

1 tbsp chopped parsley

Method

Preheat the oven to 160°C, heat a frying pan with a good splash of oil and pan-fry the cut side of the onion until lovely and golden, place in an oven dish with 20g butter and the sherry vinegar, pop in the oven for about 30minutes until nice and tender. Take out the oven, remove the peel and keep warm.

Pan-fry the short rib portions in another drop of oil for a minute on each side, place in a dish with a couple of spoons of red wine jus, pop in the oven for about 10 minutes, basting with the sauce 2-3 times during the heating time.

Return the pan to the heat and fry the lardons until golden and crispy, using a slotted spoon remove from the pan and place in the dish with the onions, again return the pan to the heat, in the bacon fat fry the wild mushrooms, season with salt and pepper, when they start to brown add a knob of butter, the garlic and thyme, sauté for a further couple of minutes until cooked. Drain and discard the thyme and garlic, finish with the chopped parsley, place in the dish with onions and lardons.

While the mushrooms are cooking, place the greens in a pan of boiling salted water for approximately 5 minutes or until tender, bring the red wine jus to the boil.

Remove the short rib from the oven, brush with any sauce left in the dish to give a final glaze. Top the beef with the wild mushrooms and lardons, place in the centre of a warm plate; arrange the onion alongside and finish with the greens, spoon over the jus. Serve with some buttered new or creamed potatoes. Enjoy!

If you live in London and would like to have Stewart’s complete Burgundy finish-at-home menu delivered to your door, visit Berry Bros. & Rudd At Home for details.

Category: Miscellaneous

A moment with Domaine de la Vougeraie

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Sylvie Poillot leads the team at Domaine de la Vougeraie, whose vineyards run the length of the Côte d’Or. She tells us what it takes to run such an intricate operation.  

Domaine de la Vougeraie was established in 1999 by négociant Jean-Claude Boisset, bringing together three decades’ worth of vineyard acquisitions across the Côte d’Or. Today, the domaine extends over 42 hectares, with holdings in no less than nine Grand Crus. “It’s a big estate,” says Sylvie Poillot, General Manager and leader of the winemaking team, “but we manage it like a family.”

Biodynamics at Vougeraie

Since its inception, the domaine has been farmed organically. Vintage 2001 saw the first steps into biodynamics; the entire estate is now biodynamic in all but certification. “It would be great for us to be certified,” Sylvie says. “The problem is that I don’t have enough time to do the paperwork!” Third-party certification aside, the estate is a model for biodynamic viticulture: it’s got its own herb garden and plants are dried on-site for biodynamic preparations. “We did the 500P [cow horn] infusion two weeks ago, and to prevent disease we spray an infusion of lavender and lemongrass.” The lunar calendar plays an important role, guiding the timing of practices in the vineyard and cellar. “We do bâtonnage (lees stirring) when the moon is ascending,” she explains, “and we try to do our tastings on fruit days, when you get more expression.” 

Teamwork in the Côte d’Or

Sylvie heads up a team of 30. Her role involves day-to-day management and administration as well as winemaking, vineyard management and plenty more besides. The domaine operates a rather flat management structure with a lot of team decision-making. “We’re a little bit unusual,” she admits. “I’m the General Manager, but I work with everybody. We make decisions together.” 

The domaine is expansive, with holdings running virtually the entire length of the Côte d’Or, from Gevrey-Chambertin to Chassagne-Montrachet. Two vineyard teams work in tandem: one works the Côte de Nuits from a base in Morey-Saint-Denis. The other, based in Beaune, covers the Côte de Beaune. “It requires a lot of organisation,” Sylvie says. Things get even more complex at harvest. “We have three teams for the harvest, and we organise it two months beforehand. With so many plots, maturity control is very important: it’s vital to know which parcel needs to be harvested at what time.”

The Vougeraie range

With such an enviable swathe of prized vineyards, the estate naturally produces some remarkable wines. Sylvie and the team produce 37 individual cuvées each year. “It’s not difficult, it’s just about organisation.” Among the most celebrated is the Clos Blanc de Vougeot, a Premier Cru monopole (solely owned by the domaine) producing the only white wine in Vougeot. “It’s been Chardonnay-only since the Cistercian monks planted it – nine centuries ago.” There’s also a not-insubstantial 1.052-hectare holding in the neighbouring Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru. Another notable Grand Cru is their Musigny, where they have just over 0.2 hectares. “We make three barrels in a good year.” With so many wines, has Sylvie got a favourite? “They’re like our babies,” she says, with more affection than diplomacy. “We love them all!”

Domaine de la Vougeraie’s wines are a part of our Burgundy 2019 En Primeur offer, which is now live.

Category: Burgundy Wine

Our neighbours: Truefitt & Hill

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A glass cabinet filled with shaving brushes at grooming venue Truefitt & Hill
Photograph by Lesley Lau

As part of our series for the autumn/winter issue of No.3 magazine, we step inside our neighbour Truefitt & Hill, the home of luxury grooming in St James’s.

You might say that people go to St James’s because they want to, not because they need to. Arguably, that’s no more true than at Truefitt & Hill, which offers haircuts and wet shaves to locals and tourists, regulars and one-offs.

“The customers who know about the area will come and book a haircut every three weeks,” says Agata Baran, the brand’s marketing manager. “Some of them have been coming here for 30 years.” Yes, you may be able to find a hairdresser on pretty much every high street in the country, but people come to Truefitt & Hill for the comfort it offers them. “There is a specific connection between them and the brand,” says Baran. “And there is just something very lovely about the routine of the English gentleman.”

On doing business in St James’s…

“We’ve been in this location since 1993, but we’ve been in business around the area, since 1805 when the business was established. The quality is amazing. The products are made in England, which is a huge selling point for those who are looking for something very English, or who are visiting London for the first time. In our shop we have excellent barbers. We get a lot of tourists coming specifically to the shop, treating it as a hidden gem, just to find out what being a true English gentleman is all about.”

On the area’s unique atmosphere…

“Jermyn Street is very famous for everything gentlemanly, and the whole area is very specific in that respect. We notice that a lot of our customers are a lot more interested in buying certain products and are more willing to return and repurchase the product if they feel the connection. So it’s not just the amazing quality. It’s also the history and the heritage that we have as a brand, which is something a lot of modern brands don’t have.”

On the St James’s community…

“It’s amazing to be around so many historic brands, to introduce them to our clients and to recommend other neighbours. Our customers can go to Lobb to buy shoes, they can go to Lock & Co to get their new hat, and Berry Bros. for wines and spirits as well. It’s all connected. It definitely makes sense to be in this particular location and have amazing Royal Warrant holder brands nearby. It’s fantastic to have so many brands that are like-minded, and to have them all around us.”

On the changing face of the area…

“It’s definitely changing. We’re seeing new and young clientele who are going back to the traditional way of shaving. They’re more interested in the traditional idea of a gentleman. It’s passed on: we have fathers and sons coming in; we have three generations of gentlemen coming into the shop and buying the same product. It’s a lovely seamless experience for the whole family. That’s how they find out about us.

“And the development of social media helps, too. We’re visible on Instagram and Facebook, and that helps to get younger clientele into something completely different from what you’d get on the high street.”

You can read more about our neighbouts in St James’s here.

Category: Miscellaneous

Wine and literature: Académie du Vin Library

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Picture credit: Académie du Vin Library

George Turner is the Assistant Shop Manager at our London Shop at 63 Pall Mall. Here, he provides inspiration for lovers of wine and literature, explaining how the Académie du Vin Library opens the door to a range of fascinating wine topics.

The most apt comparison I have found for wine is literature. Writing, like wine, takes time and passion for the craft. The winemaker is the author, their wines are the books we read, and vintages are chapters we drink. While we can see their distinctive style and influence throughout, each chapter tells us something new, leading us on a journey that hopefully will never end – or at least until the bottle does.

Académie du Vin Library is an imprint and publisher marrying my two great loves: wine and literature. Its carefully curated library is designed to help you find topics that will fascinate you – whether it be from the lesser-read pages of their ‘Classic’ range where you’ll find knowledge and wisdom of ages past, or from their ‘New’ titles, which provide background and insight into vibrant wine producers and styles. All the titles are there to help you understand your experiences and interactions with every sip of wine you take from then on

Discovery through literature

If it weren’t for wine literature, I would be blind to the beguilement of Sherry. During my studies as an undergraduate in Viticulture and Oenology, it was a bright orange book with the Académie du Vin Library imprint that lifted the veil to this fascinating world. Sherry: Maligned, Misunderstood, Magnificent by Ben Howkins brings light to a misunderstood and esoteric wine.

This immensely readable book painted a fascinating history I did not know existed and gave me the tools to navigate what is a confusing wine category. Finally, I came to understand that once you see what incredible value you find for such complexity in a single glass, you will never want to put it down.

Taking the time to read

Especially now that we have all found ourselves with more time on our hands, and undoubtedly a few more glasses of something delicious to ensure an amicable passing of said time, I have found myself joyfully engrossed in reading far more than I am usually able.

My suggestion would be to use this time to your advantage. Do not just wonder if you like what you’re tasting – understand why. Learn how to get more out of each glass, and when (fingers crossed) we can go out to dinner again, feel more confident when given a glass of wine. Be delighted by the wines you choose, not nervous that you have picked the wrong thing.

So, whether for yourself or as a gift, I suggest perusing through the Académie du Vin Library and picking out something like Michael Broadbent’s Wine Tasting, Commemorative Edition as this would be an ideal companion as you begin this journey of discovery. Or, when we’re open again, come into the London Shop at 63 Pall Mall, and I would be delighted to help you choose something.

Chin-chin!

Category: Miscellaneous