2 Secrets to an Unforgettable White Wine Sauce

I had one of the greatest meals of my life last week while visiting relatives at a fishing lodge on the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska.

Before dinner, Chef Pat put out a delicious halibut ceviche, accompanied by tortilla strips.

As a first course, he served a to-die-for halibut chowder. Think of the best creamy clam chowder you’ve ever had, but substitute halibut pieces for the clam pieces, and you’ll get the idea.

Then for the main course, Chef Pat served a perfectly cooked halibut filet — carved from a fish caught that morning — drizzled with a wine-infused sauce.

We can’t share any of the recipes because a cookbook is in the works, but I can provide two “secrets” for preparing a flavorful white wine sauce of your own:

  1. Use wine that you plan to drink with the meal.
  2. Choose a wine that is not “oaky” — one that lets the fruit flavors shine.

For the recipe that follows, I’d go with the 2016 Wollombi Pass Sauvignon Blanc from the Riverina growing region of Australia. It’s a delightfully refreshing wine that would pair perfectly with halibut or another white fish that’s topped with the sauce for which we’re providing the recipe below.

This recipe yields about four servings (each serving being about a tablespoon-and-a-half)…



* Cooking spray

* 1/3 cup onions, finely chopped

* 1/2 cup chicken broth

* 1/4 cup 2016 Wollombi Pass Sauvignon Blanc

* 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

* 2 tablespoons butter

* 2 teaspoons fresh chives, finely chopped


  1. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray.
  2. Add onions to pan and sauté 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Stir in chicken broth, Sauvignon Blanc and white wine vinegar, and bring to a boil.
  4. Cook until reduced to 1/4 cup (about 5 minutes).
  5. Remove from heat, and then stir in butter and chives.
  6. Allow sauce to cool slightly before drizzling over halibut or your favorite white fish.
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Posted in Food and Wine Pairings/Recipes
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