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Food Arts Silver Spoon Award to Gerry Dawes


 Premio Nacional de Gastronomía - - James Beard Foundation Nomination (Best Wine Writing)
Premio Periodistíco Cava

Gerry Dawes's Article Medieval Riches of El Cid's City (About Burgos, Spain)
Front Page, The New York Times Sunday Travel Section

 About Blog Author Gerry Dawes, Premio Nacional de Gastronomía (National Gastronomy Award)




6/12/2018

Excerpt from Homage to Iberia (Chapter One): My Arrival in Spain 50 Years Ago on January 2, 1968



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Bullring, El Puerto de Santa María.
Photo by Gerry Dawes©2011 / gerrydawes@aol.com.

On January 2, 1968, not long after daylight, our military plane banked near El Puerto de Santa María and I got my first glimpse of Spain: whitewashed buildings surrounded by palm trees in a sea of stubby vines surrounded by stark white soil, for the base at Rota lay near the Sherry vineyards between Jerez de la Frontera and Sanlúcar de Barrameda.  As the plane circled before landing, I could not help noticing the circular enclosures which I would learn were bullrings, the big one at El Puerto de Santa María and smaller ones where I would one day find first hand that young fighting cows are tested for bravery.  Spain was already beginning to fascinate me and I had not even touched the ground.     
 
The plane landed, physically in Spain, but on an American enclave, where I would stay for the next week, champing at the bit to discover my first foreign country.    New arrivals were not allowed off  the base until they had attended the don’t-drink-the-water, don’t-eat-the-food, don’t-get-in-fights-with-the-natives, don’t-molest-the-señoritas lecture, which was held once a week.  Alas, for our just arrived group, the indoctrination lecture was not scheduled for nearly a week.  

All I saw of Spain during my first week in Rota were the glimpses I got on the daily bus rides to my work assignment at a large white security building, surrounded by a huge antennae field-- derisively known to the enlisted men as the “hum locker” because of the constant humming sound the antennaes made--where Navy linguists in French, Arabic, and Russian clandestinely eavesdropped on radio conversations from around the Mediterranean.  
    
From the perimeter road, across the strands of barbed wire that encircled the base, I saw men plodding along on burros past scrappy-looking farms with cottages, many of which in those days still had thatched roofs and in whose sparse environs grew cactus and palm trees.  I saw little of the greenery and trees that I knew from my native Midwest; this was more like parts of California, perhaps even more barren.  Still, those few glimpses were tantalizing and exotic. 


Burros, once common in Spain, now very rare. 
Photo by Gerry Dawes©2011 / gerrydawes@aol.com.

Finally, along with other new arrivals, we were given the indoctrination lecture and allowed off the base.  I went to downtown Rota with a fellow sailor for my first meal in Spain: Spaghetti with meat sauce, served in an “American” bar, where Spanish and foreign girls, very few of whom were actually prostitutes, tried to keep lonesome young men engaged in conversation, thus keeping the wheels hot on the trucks that delivered San Miguel and Cruzcampo beer to the bars of  Rota.  The latest American rock music blared from a jukebox, continually reminding my compatriots of the girls they had left behind, perpetuating their homesickness and underscoring their determination to get out of “Mother Nav” and away from Spain, whose people some of them contemptuously referred to as “Moes” (or Moroccans) the name laid on the local Spaniards by sailors who had been transferred to Rota from Kenitra, Morocco.  


La Gitana Manzanilla, a Sherry made in Sanlúcar de Barrameda, about 10 miles northwest of Rota.  
Sanlúcar de Barrameda has long been one of my favorite towns in Spain. 
Photo by Gerry Dawes©2011 / gerrydawes@aol.com.

I knew men who spent two years at Rota and never got more than a few kilometers from the base.  Once I lured one of them as far away as Cádiz, that wonderful, exotic seaport city across the bay from Rota, to see the sights, but he became so uncomfortable after a couple of hours, that he demanded we return to the Rota to drink in the American bars.

I too joined the daily post-shift migration to the bars of  Rota, drinking my share of drinks,  playing my share of pool, telling my share of jokes, and trying, like hundreds of other enlisted men and officers, to woo the too many times wooed, often hardened, young women who served drinks.  But, gnawing away at my insides was the thought that Spain was my chance to see Europe, maybe my only chance, before returning to small-town Illinois, where, with the help of  the GI Bill, I would  resume pursuit of my teacher’s degree at Southern Illinois University.


But, in addition to hanging out in the bars, I continued reading about Spain, and like many others before and since, became enamored of Ernest Hemingway’s books, especially the ones set in Spain, For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Sun Also Rises, and in particular the latter, which drew on the experiences of the Paris-based Lost Generation.  Influenced by images of Hemingway writing in cafés, I would sometimes sit for hours in a beach front bar in Rota and scribble in a notebook, my imitation prose flow lubricated by sherry or beer.  

Sunset, Bay of Cádiz.
Photo by Gerry Dawes©2011 / gerrydawes@aol.com.

5/25/2018

A Modern Version of Cordoban Classic Tomato-based Salmorejo at the Legendary Taberna Mesón Juan Peña

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At the legendary Taberna Juan Peña in Córdoba, the classic tomato-based salmorejo with Cordoban extra virgen olive oil, topped with hard-cooked egg and small bits of Spanish jamón Ibérico de bellota (from the D.O. Pedroches, Córdoba province), ham from free-range pata negra (black hoof breed) pigs fattened on acorns.  Juan's wife, Mari Carmen, makes theses salmorejos.  It was served with a sherry-like fino from Montilla-Moriles, a D.O. also from Córdoba province.  Berenjenas fritas, olive oil fried eggplant strips are often served with salmorejo as a sauce into which the eggplant strips are dipped.  Like the most exquisite French fries with the most exquisite ketchup you have ever eaten.  


At Taberna Juan Peña in Córdoba, two exceptionally good salmorejos, one tomato-based, the other white-and-green asparagus-based, both topped with hard-cooked egg and small strips of Spanish jamón Ibérico de bellota (from the D.O. Pedroches, Córdoba province), ham from free-range pata negra (black hoof breed) pigs fattened on acorns. Photos by Gerry Dawes©2009. Contact: gerrydawes@aol.com

5/21/2018

Jewish Spain: Toledo Santa Maria La Blanca 12th-Century Ibn Shushan Synagogue


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Toledo Santa Maria La Blanca  
12th-Century Ibn Shushan Synagogue

Now maintained by the Catholic Church as la Iglesia de Santa Maria la Blanca, this unique 12th-Century Ibn Shushan synagogue, thought to be the oldest synagogue in Europe, is of Mudéjar construction and was contracted by Jews in Toledo and built by Moorish craftsmen in a style desired by their Jewish patrons, when all three religions were living in relative "convivencia." There are few greater examples in the world of the influences of three great religions under one roof. Although this marvelous structure with its horseshoe arches could easily be mistaken for a mosque and an exceptionally beautiful one at that, it was a synagogue. 

During the period when this synagogue was flourishing in the late 12th to early 15th centuries, Toledo became a city of exceptional historical importance to the Western World, because of the Toledo School of Translators, many of the best of them Jewish. Here the great philosophical, scientific and religious works of the Greeks and Arabs were translated, at first into Latin, later into what was nascent Castilian Spanish. This was being done at a time in Spain when the rest of Europe was living in the Early Middle Ages and considered many of the works being translated in Toledo to be heretical. 

"Under Alfonso's leadership--GD note: 13th century, Alfonso X de Castilla, el Sabio, the Wise, ruled from 1252-1284, at a time when this synagogue was flourishing--Sephardic Jewish scientists and translators acquired a prominent role in the School. They were highly valued by the King because of their intellectual skills and mastery of the two languages most used in the translations: Arabic and Castilian.  The King kept some of the Jewish scholars as his personal physicians, and recognized their services with splendid favors and praises. Alfonso's nephew Juan Manuel wrote that the King was so impressed with the intellectual level of the Jewish scholars that he commissioned the translation of the Talmud, the law of the Jews. . . ." -- Wikipedia (Google Toledo School of Translators)

So, this lovely synagogue in Toledo is a great symbol of what people from various religions can achieve when they work together towards goals that are beneficial to all, not just to their own narrow interests, as some minds of the Middle Ages mentality are trying do in this country today, striving towards bigotry rather than enlightment. 

Photographs by Gerry Dawes copyright 2017.

_____________________________________________________  

 Gastronomy Blogs
 About Gerry Dawes

 Gerry Dawes was awarded Spain's prestigious Premio Nacional de Gastronomía (National Gastronomy Award) in 2003. He writes and speaks frequently on Spanish wine and gastronomy and leads gastronomy, wine and cultural tours to Spain. He was a finalist for the 2001 James Beard Foundation's Journalism Award for Best Magazine Writing on Wine, won The Cava Institute's First Prize for Journalism for his article on cava in 2004, was awarded the CineGourLand “Cinéfilos y Gourmets” (Cinephiles & Gourmets) prize in 2009 in Getxo (Vizcaya) and received the 2009 Association of Food Journalists Second Prize for Best Food Feature in a Magazine for his Food Arts article, a retrospective piece about Catalan star chef, Ferran Adrià. 

In December, 2009, Dawes was awarded the Food Arts Silver Spoon Award in a profile written by José Andrés

". . .That we were the first to introduce American readers to Ferran Adrià in 1997 and have ever since continued to bring you a blow-by-blow narrative of Spain's riveting ferment is chiefly due to our Spanish correspondent, Gerry "Mr. Spain" Dawes, the messianic wine and food journalist raised in Southern Illinois and possessor of a self-accumulated doctorate in the Spanish table. Gerry once again brings us up to the very minute. . ." - - Michael & Ariane Batterberry, Editor-in-Chief/Publisher and Founding Editor/Publisher, Food Arts, October 2009. 
 
Pilot for a reality television series on wine, gastronomy, culture and travel in Spain.
 

5/10/2018

Viña Cazoga, Jorge Carnero, The Spanish Artisan Wine Group's "Wild Child" From Ribeira Sacra


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Viña Cazoga Mencía - Jorge Carnero, Ribeira Sacra, Amandi sub-region (Lugo province), Galicia


Jorge Carnero, Viña Cazoga, La Ribeira Sacra (Lugo province), Galicia.

Tuesday, May 8, 2015 on Gerry Dawes & Friends on WPWL Pawling Public Radio 103.7 FM in Pawling, New York, my guest Ron Miller and I tasted The Spanish Artisan Wine & Spirits Group wine Viña Cazoga 2016 (Ribeira Sacra, Amandi sub-region, Sil River).


One of the stars of The Spanish Artisan Wine & Spirts Group is a unique wine from a rustic bodega in the back country. It is owned by a young winemaker, Jorge Carnero, who took over his late father’s vineyards and decided to make his own very personal wine, Viña Cazoga. We import both Jorge’s Viña Cazoga Tinto 2016 and Viña Cazoga Don Diego 2012 & 2015, a wine that spends some several months in 6-year old, 500L re-conditioned Allier oak.  For more information on Viña Cazoga or any of the other wines of The Spanish Wine & Spirits Group - Gerry Dawes Selections, please e-mail:  contact@spanishartisanwine.com

Viña Cazoga Mencía 2016***  $27.99  13.5% (alcohol)



Tasting Viña Cazoga Ribeira Sacra Mencía 2016
from Gerry Dawes on Vimeo.

Viña Cazoga has a long history of fine wine production in the Ribeira Sacra and was once one of the largest and most important estates in the area, but during the nadir of the region’s fortunes- which really started at the dawn of the twentieth century, when so many of these steep vineyard sites were abandoned and young people emigrated en masse in search of more profitable work- Jorge Carnero’s family’s vineyard holdings in the village of Amandi dwindled down to almost nothing. 

Jorge’s grandfather, Raimundo Vidal, was instrumental in starting to resurrect the Ribeira Sacra region in the 1970s and today the family owns a single, 3.9 hectare parcel of vines right above the Sil River that was long recognized as the finest vineyard in Ribeira Sacra. Almost the entire vineyard is planted with vines in excess of one hundred years of age, with ninety-five percent planted to Mencía and the balance made up of a mix of Tempranillo and Merenzao.

The 2010 Viña Cazoga Mencía is a beautiful wine, offering up a deep, very intense and complex nose of black cherries, pomegranate, black pepper, a touch of spiced meats, slate soil tones, espresso and a topnote of cigar smoke. On the palate the wine is deep, fullbodied and very sappy at the core, with great focus and grip, excellent balance, bright acids, virtually no tannins and outstanding length and grip on the dancing and palate-staining finish. Great Ribeira Sacra! 2012-2020. 94. -- John B. Gilman, View From The Cellar

"From old vines on the Sil River, this is "back-country" wine as described to me by the importer Gerry Dawes.  I am not sure if he is referring to the rustic qualities of the wine or the people that make it.  Either way, "the ram's head" is all rustic beauty - cherry, raspberry, smoky, spicy, meaty with lifted aromas of lavender and rosemary. Cazoga is serious business.  Although drinking now, I would hold onto this; there is enough density, concentration and balance to age at least for a few years.” - - Chris Barnes, Chambers Street Wines   

Even the most expensive wine in Dawes's porfolio, "Viña Cazoga Don Diego Crianza from Ribera Sacra, an exotic, chocolate- and tobacco-flavored wine with some of the "wild" character the French call animal, retails for only $50." - - Colman Andrews, The Daily Meal.

To read more, click on title:
Spanish Wines — A Seductive New Crop:Godello, mencia, and other less-than-famous Iberian grapes shine in a new selection from Spanish wine expert Gerry Dawes.

Gerry Dawes, Jorge Carnero and John Gilman at Cazoga with the 1995 Mencía, which was made by Jorge's late father.

"Jorge Carnero is one of the sweetest and most self-effacing winegrowers in all of Ribeira Sacra, and I am not really sure if he truly knows just how spectacular his wines are, but he is quite clearly one of the stars in the region. He very generously offered to open a few older bottles the morning following our dinner with other growers at O Grelo in Monforte, but apologized in advance that “Mencía from the decade of the 1990s was going to be a very old wine and probably no good to drink!” We chuckled, anticipating something a wee bit more vibrant at that age, and the following day, I think the light was beginning to go on for Señor Carnero regarding the aging capability of his wines, as his 1995 Mencía was absolutely stellar!" – John Gilman, View From The Cellar

The 2014 Mencía from Viña Cazoga is another absolutely stellar wine from Jorge Carnero, who has run this small family estate with great skill since taking over from his father several years ago. The wine offers up a superb and youthfully complex bouquet of blackberries, pomegranate, wood smoke, a touch of pepper, a fine base of slate minerality and a touch of tree bark. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, pure and still fairly primary in personality, but with the complexity to come readily apparent. The wine is sappy at the core, focused and seamless in balance, with moderate tannins and outstanding length and grip on the vibrant finish. While this is deceptively easy to drink today, it is still a puppy and I would give it at least three or four years in the cellar to start to develop some of its secondary layers of complexity. It is a great bottle of Mencía in the making! 2019-2045+. 94.- - John Gilman, View From The Cellar    

Viña Cazoga Don Diego 2008, a wine that spends some several months in 4-year old, 500L re-conditioned Allier oak, is one of the top wines in The Spanish Artisan Wine Group - Gerry Dawes Selections.  Photo: Gerry Dawes©2011 / gerrydawes@aol.com.


Viña Cazoga Tinto 2010 ($27). Another Ribeira Sacra mencía, surprisingly soft, with a generous bouquet, a blackberry-and-black-pepper tang on the palate, and a long, satisfying finish. - - Colman Andrews, The Daily Meal.  Read more: Spanish Wines — A Seductive New Crop: Godello, mencia, and other less-than-famous Iberian grapes shine in a new selection from Spanish wine expert Gerry Dawes

Viña Cazoga Don Diego Tinto 2011 Ribeira Sacra 13.5% $39.99

"Oh, and he doesn't have much patience with excessive pricing, either, and all but one of the 30-plus selections in his portfolio (he is adding more) have a suggested retail price of less than $30 a bottle, and some are less than $20. (Even the exception, Viña Cazoga Don Diego Crianza from Ribera Sacra, an exotic, chocolate- and tobacco-flavored wine with some of the "wild" character the French call animal, retails for only $40.)"- - Spanish Wines — A Seductive New Crop: Godello, mencia, and other less-than-famous Iberian grapes shine in a new selection from Spanish wine expert Gerry Dawes

One of the stars of this group is a unique wine from a rustic bodega in the back country. It is owned by a young winemaker, Jorge Carnero, who took over his late father’s vineyards and decided to make his own very personal wine, Viña Cazoga. We import both Jorge’s Viña Cazoga Tinto 2014 and Viña Cazoga Don Diego 2011, a wine that spends some several months time in 7-year old, 500L re-conditioned Allier oak.

We don’t expect either of these wines to be for everyone because they are so unique and unlike other red wines you may have tasted before.  For this reason, on my fourth visit to the winery when I took a guest, l I decided not to say anything and just let him make up his own mind about the wine without any pre-suggestion from me.  Cazoga wines were the ones the guest liked the best of all from our 2,500 km., 20-winery trip.

Cazoga wines show themselves best with food. By the time you get to the last glass in the bottle, you realize you have been drinking something unique and special.  And you don't like that old-fashioned label with the Cazoga (ram) head you say.  Cazoga is Gallego for Carnero, or ram, the owner’s name.  Get over it and concentrate on the wine in the bottle.  We wouldn't change a thing about this place.  Besides, there is not enough wine to fill even the modest demand we think those who really like this wine will create.  The Spanish Artisan Wine Group’s wild child; if you don't like it, I will drink it.

Viña Cazoga consists of 3.9-acres in a single plot bordering on a slope just above the water line of the Sil River.  The site wine was traditionally recognized as the best for growing wine grapes in the parish of Amandi.  The grapes are 95% Mencía, the rest Merenzao and Tempranillo.
The history of the winery is very old.  Jorge Carnero’s grandfather Raimundo Vidal owned the largest winery  in Amandi, which he inherited from his father. Carnero’s grandmother remembered from her childhood bringing down to the fair in Monforte 37 carts each with a cask of new wine.

But at the beginning of the 20th century the cultivation of those steep river banks was not profitable, so there was much emigration and many descendants inheriting their portion of a vineyard )under the Galician mini-fundia iheritance rules, so the old family vineyard was divided into dozens of plots among the cousins, some of whom kept making wine for themselves for home consumption, but other vineyards were abandoned. 


It was not until the late 70's when Jorge Carnero’s father, Diego Carnero Vidal, set out to re-unite the former vineyards of the Vidal family, re-open the old winery and recuperate the denominación de origin claim for Amandi, for which he always acted as ambassador, when, at a time, it was considered insane to try to cultivate those precipitous river banks.

During the grape harvest and fermentation period, they used a cuba (a large horizontal wine vat, a huge barrel) from the epoch of Jorge’s great grandfather to sleep in.  They cut a door in one end of the barrel and put a bed, lights and a television inside, making a bedroom out of the ancient barrel.  "They called my father “el tolo de Cazoga,” the crazy Cazoga, slept in a barrel and was going to bury los cuartos, the money from the vines," Jorge told me.  The barrel now has a taxidermist-prepared head of a ram mounted on the front of the barrel, the image of which is on Cazoga’s wine labels.

 
Jorge Carnero (Carnero is Cazoga in Galician, which means “ram,” thus the ram’s head, the symbol of the winery), tasting his wines with a visitor from New York.  Jorge Carnero is inside a large barrel formerly used to make wine, now with door installed and a bed and television inside. Cazoga sometimes spends the night in the barrel during the long hours of the grape harvest.  Photograph by Gerry Dawes©2011.

Cazoga was the first important winery in what would later become the Ribeira Sacra D.O.  Cazoga is a pago, a single vineyard cru, in the most rocky location with the best orientation.  Among those who know the Amandi subregion, the wine was always considered the best.  The production is very low and most of  the vines are a century old. 

* * * * *
______________________________________________________________________  
 Gastronomy Blogs
 About Gerry Dawes

Gerry Dawes is the Producer and Host of Gerry Dawes & Friends, a weekly radio progam on WPWL 103.7 FM Pawling Public Radio in Pawling, New York.

Dawes was awarded Spain's prestigious Premio Nacional de Gastronomía (National Gastronomy Award) in 2003. He writes and speaks frequently on Spanish wine and gastronomy and leads gastronomy, wine and cultural tours to Spain. He was a finalist for the 2001 James Beard Foundation's Journalism Award for Best Magazine Writing on Wine, won The Cava Institute's First Prize for Journalism for his article on cava in 2004, was awarded the CineGourLand “Cinéfilos y Gourmets” (Cinephiles & Gourmets) prize in 2009 in Getxo (Vizcaya) and received the 2009 Association of Food Journalists Second Prize for Best Food Feature in a Magazine for his Food Arts article, a retrospective piece about Catalan star chef, Ferran Adrià. 

In December, 2009, Dawes was awarded the Food Arts Silver Spoon Award in a profile written by José Andrés

". . .That we were the first to introduce American readers to Ferran Adrià in 1997 and have ever since continued to bring you a blow-by-blow narrative of Spain's riveting ferment is chiefly due to our Spanish correspondent, Gerry "Mr. Spain" Dawes, the messianic wine and food journalist raised in Southern Illinois and possessor of a self-accumulated doctorate in the Spanish table. Gerry once again brings us up to the very minute. . ." - - Michael & Ariane Batterberry, Editor-in-Chief/Publisher and Founding Editor/Publisher, Food Arts, October 2009. 

Pilot for a reality television series on wine, gastronomy, culture and travel in Spain.
 

4/18/2018

Gerry’s Dishes: Langostinos Cocidos (or a la Plancha) con Aioli (Garlic Mayonnaise


* * * * *
(Recipes from the first broadcast on the Gerry's Dishes segment of Gerry Dawes & Friends, a weekly radio program on WPWL 103.7 FM Pawling Public Radio in Pawling, New York.)
  

 Gerry’s Dishes: Langostinos Cocidos con Aioli

I cook every night that I am at home and I will share the results of successful dishes on Gerry Dawes & Friends and the Gerry Dawes & Friends Facebook page. I will also post the photos and recipes of the dishes on the WPWL Pawling (NY) Public Raido website and on my Gerry’s Dishes Facebook page.

Raúl Aleixandre's Technique for Cooking Shrimp 

Raúl Aleixandre, formerly the Chef-owner at Ca Sento in Valencia, Spain taught me this technique. I get very good heads-on langostinos, prawns from Restaurant Depot in Newburgh, New York.

One dozen heads-on shrimp or prawns.
Coarse sea salt
Pot or pan with enough water to cover the shrimp
(preferably fresh shrimp or prawns with the heads still on).



Sometimes, I use frozen or refreshed shrimp from Ace Endico or DeCicco’s in Southeast or even purchased from local supermarkets. Nevertheless, the technique is the same and works well even without fresh shrimp. 

Put the shrimp a bowl in ice water with sea salt for ten minutes or put frozen shrimp in a bowl of water with sea salt for half an hour or more before cooking. 

Heat a pot or pan with enough water to hold all the shrimp, but do not let the water reach a full boil, just a simmer. 

Put all the shrimp you plan to cook in the water at once and set a timer for no more than five minutes, depending upon the size of the shrimp or prawns. Cooking properly may take 3 -5 minutes. 

Never let the water return to boil, just watch the vapors coming off the hot water and when they return to the state they were before you put the shrimp in, turn the flame off. 

Watch the shrimp turn a rosy color, then take out the shrimp with a slotted spoon and put them on a platter in a single layer. For a lot of shrimp you may need more than one platter, but the idea is to keep them in a single layer, so they do not keep cooking from their own heat. 

Let the shrimp cool a bit before serving, so you can peel them without burning your fingers. Put out a bowl for the shells. 

You can keep any prawns or shrimp cooked this way in the refrigerator for a couple of days. 

I also sometimes pat the shrimp dry in a paper towel and do them a la plancha style, but since I do not have a plancha-type grill, I grill them in their shells in a cast-iron skillet with a little Spanish extra virgin Olive Oil and some coarse sea salt, turning them once until the are cooked, but not overcooked. 

 Langostinos a la Plancha, done in a cast-iron skillet doubling as a plancha grill.

Gerry’s Aioli (Garlic Mayonnaise)

 Aioli (garlic mayonnaise)

Make an aioli* to serve with the shrimp as a dipping sauce. (Or serve a good cocktail sauce if you prefer or do both.)

(*Real aioli has no eggs, just olive oil, garlic and salt. If you make it like real back country Catalans and some do in Barcelona, it will curl your eyebrows, with its industrial strength pungency.)

I make aioli with a blender. If you enjoy martyrdom, you can do it in a mixing bowl with a whisk. 

1 fresh raw egg
splash of Chinese red chili oil
1-2 cloves of good quality garlic
1 Tbs. Dijon Mustard
Sea Salt (salt to taste)
I -2 Tbs lime juice or 1 Tb lime juice
1 cup Trader Joe's Extra Virgen Olive Oil


(Optional: add saffron to the mixture while blending or cilantro (not stems) or basil or make the aioli, spoon out some and mix in whatever herb you might want to flavor it with. My next stunt with aioli is going to be blending in romesco sauce (made with hazelnuts, almonds, nyora (or ancho) peppers, paprika, parsley, and Spanish pimentón [the best paprika in the world].)

Put a fresh, raw egg in the blender, add a splash of Tabasco sauce or Chinese red chili oil, which is what I use, and one to two cloves of fresh garlic, depending upon how much you like garlic. 

Add a teaspoon sea salt and a tablespoon of Dijon-style mustard (classic Spanish aioli recipes do not call for the mustard, but I use it and love it).

Start the blender and mix those ingredients and puree the garlic. 

Remove the small top cap from the center of the blender, start the blender on the blend setting and begin slowly adding about a cup of Spanish extra virgin olive oil – I use Trader Joe’s at $7.99 per liter--to the egg, chili oil, sea salt and garlic mixture. 

When you have added about half the olive and the mixture begins to thicken, add 1 Tablespoons of fresh squeezed lemon juice or 1-2 Tablespoons of lime juice (lime is my preference, in Spain, cooks would use lemon) to taste. 

After the citrus juice is integrated, continue adding olive oil until the aioli gets thick and smooth. Your blender will tell you that it is about to choke, so shut it off and mix any un-integrated olive oil with a spatula. 

Pour and scrape with a spatula the aioli into a Pyrex type bowl with a cover, one that you can also use to serve the aioli with a spoon. 

Refrigerate until ready to use. I keep my aioli for about a week in the fridge, if it lasts that long at our house. 

Spoon some aioli onto your plate and dip the peeled shrimp into the spooned out dollop of aioli.  Do not dip your shrimp into the aioli bowl, not if you want to use the remainder again with another dish. 

Paco Dovalo's artisanal Cabaleiro do Val Albariño 2013 (or any other vintage from this great bodega) from Rías Baixas in Galicia is a superb match for this dish. Available from the Spanish Artisan Wine & Spirits Group (e-mail gerrydawes@spanishartisanwine.com) for more information.
 
Paco Dovalo, President of the Asociación de Bodegas Artesanas, and Gerry Dawes 
at the Encontro de Viño de Autor in Meaño.

Again, this recipe for shrimp with aioli (and other dishes that I make) can be found on my Gerry Dawes & Friends and Gerry’s Dishes Facebook pages and on my blog, Gerry Dawes’s Spain: An Insider’s Guide to Spanish Food, Wine, Culture and Travel at http://www.gerrydawesspain.com.
 
 ___________________________________________________  

 Gastronomy Blogs
 About Gerry Dawes

 Gerry Dawes was awarded Spain's prestigious Premio Nacional de Gastronomía (National Gastronomy Award) in 2003. He writes and speaks frequently on Spanish wine and gastronomy and leads gastronomy, wine and cultural tours to Spain. He was a finalist for the 2001 James Beard Foundation's Journalism Award for Best Magazine Writing on Wine, won The Cava Institute's First Prize for Journalism for his article on cava in 2004, was awarded the CineGourLand “Cinéfilos y Gourmets” (Cinephiles & Gourmets) prize in 2009 in Getxo (Vizcaya) and received the 2009 Association of Food Journalists Second Prize for Best Food Feature in a Magazine for his Food Arts article, a retrospective piece about Catalan star chef, Ferran Adrià. 

In December, 2009, Dawes was awarded the Food Arts Silver Spoon Award in a profile written by José Andrés

". . .That we were the first to introduce American readers to Ferran Adrià in 1997 and have ever since continued to bring you a blow-by-blow narrative of Spain's riveting ferment is chiefly due to our Spanish correspondent, Gerry "Mr. Spain" Dawes, the messianic wine and food journalist raised in Southern Illinois and possessor of a self-accumulated doctorate in the Spanish table. Gerry once again brings us up to the very minute. . ." - - Michael & Ariane Batterberry, Editor-in-Chief/Publisher and Founding Editor/Publisher, Food Arts, October 2009. 
 
Pilot for a reality television series on wine, gastronomy, culture and travel in Spain.
 

4/16/2018

Chefs, Drugs and Rock & Roll: How Food Lovers, Free Spirits, Misfits and Wanderers Created a New American Profession by Andrew Friedman


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“Much would change in the (American) chefs’ social landscape in the early 1990s, connecting them with each other and with their growing fan base in unprecedented ways. . .An early agent of change was Gerry Dawes, who hailed from southern Illinois, fell in love with wine, especially Spanish wines and culture. . .led Dawes to create a more intimate, periodic gathering of chefs who met once a month at each other restaurants, where the host chef would prepare a five-course lunch for the others. . . The name of the group: Chefs From Hell (Acrobatic Unicyclists and Winetasters Club). . .The original group included future culinary deity Thomas Keller, . . . Le Côte Basque alum Rick Moonen (chef a The Water Club). . .Tom Valenti (Alison on Dominick). . .Brendan Walsh (Arizona 206). . .original Union Square Café chef Ali Barker. . . Hudson River Club’s Waldy Malouf. . . and Rusty Staub (baseball great and owner of two Manhattan restaurants) . . . (Other members joined shortly after the inaugural gathering: Steve Lyle (The Odeon), George Faison (D’Artagnan), Michael Romano (Union Square Café), Don Pintabona (Tribeca Grill), Michael Lomonaco (‘21' Club), Mario Batali, Bobby Flay, Anne Rosenzweig, Rose Levy Beranbaum, Pamela Morgan, Martha Stewart and honorary member Julia Child.) Such a gathering is commonplace today, but at the time was uncharted territory. . .”

“Thomas Keller. . . says he believed in the cause: “It’s camaraderie. It’s the one thing that we did not do enough at any time throughout our careers. . .So the idea of bringing chefs together is an extraordinary thing. . . .Prior to Chefs From Hell, says Keller, New York chefs were too busy to connect. “Gerry brought it together just for the benefit of us, to have fun.” And Tom Colicchio is quoted as saying, “We would literally sit around and drink and laugh our asses off. A lot of these guys have their ‘chef personality.’ When you get together in a room with them they’re funny as hell. . .We had a good time. . .It was also in the light of day, which was just something that never happened. . .” - - Part of a ten-page treatment of me and the upcoming book, Chefs From Hell in Chefs, Drugs and Rock and Rock & Roll by Andrew Friedman (available at Amazon.com)



Gerry Dawes, Founder of The Chefs From Hell, with Chef From Hell Brendan Chef Brendan Walsh, Dean—School of Culinary Arts (behind Malouf, next to Nieporent), with the great Drew Nieporent, Founder-Director of the Myriad Restaurant Corporation and one of America's most respected and celebrated restaurateurs, former New York Times Restaurant Critic Bryan Miller, Culinary Institute of America President Tim Ryan, Author Andrew Friedman, (back row), Chefs Fron Hell member  Waldy Malouf, CIA Senior Director of Food and Beverage operations,  Chef Diane Forley, Meringue Shop (Scarsdale, NY) and Mike Colameco, chef, author, host of Real Food on PBS and Food Talk on Heritage Radio Network, at The Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, New York, April 11, 2018 prior to the panel discussion on Andrew Friedman's new book, Chefs, Drugs and Rock & Roll.  (Walsh and Malouf are original members of The Chefs From Hell Acrobatic Unicyclists & Winetasters Club, a group I founded in 1989.)   Photograph by Myriad Corp's Tony Torres©2018 with a Samsung Galaxy G9+ phone.

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 About Gerry Dawes

 Gerry Dawes was awarded Spain's prestigious Premio Nacional de Gastronomía (National Gastronomy Award) in 2003. He writes and speaks frequently on Spanish wine and gastronomy and leads gastronomy, wine and cultural tours to Spain. He was a finalist for the 2001 James Beard Foundation's Journalism Award for Best Magazine Writing on Wine, won The Cava Institute's First Prize for Journalism for his article on cava in 2004, was awarded the CineGourLand “Cinéfilos y Gourmets” (Cinephiles & Gourmets) prize in 2009 in Getxo (Vizcaya) and received the 2009 Association of Food Journalists Second Prize for Best Food Feature in a Magazine for his Food Arts article, a retrospective piece about Catalan star chef, Ferran Adrià. 

In December, 2009, Dawes was awarded the Food Arts Silver Spoon Award in a profile written by José Andrés

". . .That we were the first to introduce American readers to Ferran Adrià in 1997 and have ever since continued to bring you a blow-by-blow narrative of Spain's riveting ferment is chiefly due to our Spanish correspondent, Gerry "Mr. Spain" Dawes, the messianic wine and food journalist raised in Southern Illinois and possessor of a self-accumulated doctorate in the Spanish table. Gerry once again brings us up to the very minute. . ." - - Michael & Ariane Batterberry, Editor-in-Chief/Publisher and Founding Editor/Publisher, Food Arts, October 2009. 
 
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