Shana Speaks Wine

Wine Journalist, Copywriter, and Marketing Consultant

Drinking out loud. 

Linguine with Cockles and Picpoul de Pinet

They eat, they drink, they work out. Meet Knife + Cork, a chef and wine guru brought together by their love of the Reformer. What started as a miniseries for their Pilates studio turned into this healthy recipe and wine collaboration.  Every week we're featuring a brand new dish with an incredible (and affordable) wine pairing.  We'll keep you full and slightly buzzed all summer long! 
@deansheremet @shanaspeakswine 

The Dish

Do you want dinner on the table in 20 minutes, prep included?
I thought so.
This is one of the oldest of old school Italian meals. This simple shellfish pasta is a no fuss dish that is made mostly from ingredients that you probably already have lying around the house.
My summer meals are all about fresh and fast, so don’t waste precious sunshine time slaving behind the stove!
Soak shellfish in cold, salted water that tastes of the ocean for about 10 minutes as you clean them. This will help the shellfish naturally release any grit or sand they may be holding on to. Don’t like cockles? Mussels or whichever shellfish you prefer will work great here as well!

  • 1 lb Linguine
  • 3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 cloves Garlic (thinly sliced)
  • 3 anchovy fillets, minced
  • 1 Shallot, diced fine
  • 2 lb Cockles or (Littleneck Clams) scrubbed and cleaned
  • 1 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 cup Dry White Wine
  • 1/4 cup of unsalted butter
  • 1/2 bunch Italian Parsley, roughly chopped
  • ½ Lemon

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. In a large sauté pan over medium high heat, heat 4 tablespoons olive oil until hot but not smoking. Add garlic, anchovy and shallot and sauté until just golden, about 30 seconds. Add wine, clams and red pepper flakes and cook covered, just until clams open, 4-5 minutes.
  3. Cook pasta according to the package instructions, drain and set aside reserving ½ cup of the cooking water
  4. Carefully remove the clams and reserve them in a bowl.
  5. Whisk the butter into the pan along with half of the parsley, season with salt and pepper
  6. Add the butter sauce, linguine and remaining parsley to a large pan and toss to combine over high heat, adding the pasta water until you have a nice emulsified pan sauce
  7. Add the clams, tossing a few more times and serve at once with a good squeeze of lemon on top
The Wine

Step away from the Chardonnay! (Or, as Dean puts it, “F*** Chardonnay.” ). Summer is a great time to explore some fun and funky whites that may not feel weighty enough in the winter but on a balmy summer night they are perfection.
Picpoul, a white grape native to the south of France, is one at the top of my summer “to-drink” list. Given the climate of its mother region, you can bet this wine is made for long, lazy days spent lounging in a hammock. On the nose, there are notes of honeysuckle and lime but on the palate, the floral tones are replaced by apricot and other subtle orchard fruits. Most interestingly, there is a saline, salty finish, with a few notes of slate, that round out this light-bodied, acidic and zesty wine.
Picpoul pairs extremely well with the briny flavors of the cockles and anchovies in this dish but its light body won’t overwhelm the delicate seafood. And check it out: you need to cook with some dry white wine – well, better pick up two bottles.
This wine is very reasonable, usually around a $12 price point. One I highly recommend in the HB Coteaux du Languedoc Picpoul de Pinet 2011.