Friday, June 28, 2013


Jim Sanders Georgia Brunswick Stew

 By Doc Lawrence

ATLANTA. He was the unchallenged “father of fine wine” not only in Atlanta but the entire Southeast region. A French-trained chef, Jim Sanders stayed true to his Southern roots, producing a cookbook pairing the great dishes of the South (his recipes) with the great wines of France. No counterpart exists today.

Each July 4, Sanders served his barbeque pork along with his treasured recipe Georgia Brunswick Stew, something he learned during his childhood days in Covington, Georgia. It is the traditional accompaniment to genuine Deep South barbecue and his recipe is credible.

1 four-pound baking chicken
4 pounds ground pork
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1-tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon thyme
1 tablespoons cayenne pepper
2 cups chopped onions
1 cup red wine, preferably Rhone style
3 to 4 tablespoons bacon drippings 
36 ounces tomato juice
4 ounce tomato catsup
3 cups cut corn
Kosher salt and black pepper

Boil the chicken until it is very tender, cool, de-bone and chop the meat finely. Meanwhile, in a large pot over medium heat, braise the pork until half done. Add half the chopped onions, one chopped garlic clove, chili powder, thyme, cayenne pepper and a generous sprinkling of kosher salt and black pepper. Continue to braise until the meat is well browned, stirring every few minutes to break up any lumps and combine with chicken. Add the tomato juice and catsup and simmer for 11/2 hours. Add the rest of the chopped onions, another chopped garlic clove and simmer for another 30 minutes. Taste for salt and spoon off the fat before serving.

Beaujolais goes well with Brunswick stew. It does not fight the spices and it has a lot of refreshment value. Otherwise, fairly heavy red wines like Cotes du Rhone complement the spice and flavors nicely as do several Italian reds like Chianti, Bardolino and Montepulciano.

Over three decades, Jim Sanders taught thousands in his wine classes in Atlanta, a rich mixture of governors, members of Congress, physicians, Georgia Supreme Court Justices and regular men and women. Although a product of the Deep South, Jim was more French than anything. After World War II-he was wounded five times in the Pacific campaigns-he went to France, bicycled the countryside and found his passion in wine and food. He learned to cook in Lyon and Paris and met Armand Cottin, president of Labourie-Roi and through this brotherly friendship, developed his own cuvee of 179 Burgundies garnering numerous awards. Each day, in the rear of his retail wine shop in Atlanta’s Buckhead, Sanders served most anyone who came in wonderful dishes he prepared along with pours from countless bottles of perfectly paired wines. There was no charge.

Jim’s wines, all under his JSANDERS label, are sold exclusively in Atlanta’s Sherlock’s Wine Merchants.

On the eve of his death in 1999, Jim Sanders entrusted me with his priceless wine notes, lectures, stories and recipes.

Celebrate America. Enjoy the Fourth of July!

Thursday, June 13, 2013



By Doc Lawrence

Sunday is a wonderful day in America. We gather to celebrate dad. They come in all sizes, ages and for many, they remain precious memories. Nothing thrills Dad more than having you with him and here in the Deep South, we celebrate these moments with a feast. No doubt Dad has some favorites, but I asked Chef Lara Lyn Carter to provide something special from her South Georgia kitchen that is original, tasty and just begs for some wonderful wine.

The gourmet celebrity chef on WALB-TV in Albany, Georgia created these and even unveiled her Georgia version of pesto: “Yes, there is a southern version of pesto. Use pecans and local olive oil for amazing flavor!”

 South Georgia Pecan Pesto Grilled Bread

2 cps fresh basil leaves (packed)
¼ cup toasted pecans
1 clove garlic chopped

Juice of 1 lemon
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1 cup Georgia Olive Farm Olive Oil
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 loaf of your favorite bread (I use ciabatta)
In food processor blend basil, pecans, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper until finely chopped. With the food processor still running add olive oil to obtain a smooth but still thick consistency. Transfer mixture to a bowl and blend in cheese. This can be made a day ahead.
Split the bread and spread and toast under the broiler until warm and cheese is golden. You can also use this pesto with pasta, chicken, fish, or vegetables. With pesto the possibilities are endless!

Gulf Coast Roasted Red Snapper

4 eight-ounce red snapper fillets
4 tablespoons of Georgia Olive Farms Olive Oil
2 teaspoons of salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 cup of sliced cherry tomatoes
½ cup of chopped fresh basil
¼ cup finely chopped fresh sweet Vidalia onion
2 lemons - 1 sliced and 1 for juice
Arrange fish on a baking sheet that has been lined with foil and coated with a non-stick cooking spray. Drizzle fish with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange tomatoes, onion, basil, and lemon slices on top of the fish. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove fish from the oven and squeeze the juice of 1 lemon over the fillets.

Doc’s Wine Pairing

The complex yet very compatible flavors in Chef Lara Lyn’s recipes make wine selection even more fun. It’s searing hot in the Deep South this time of year and the right white wines work better with these delights.
Viognier is widely available. Either the French originals or a great Viognier from North Carolina’s Yadkin Valley legend, RagApple Lassie will bring big smiles when dad and others at the table enjoy the celebration.

Another choice is rosé. Not even remotely related to white zinfandel, this is the real deal. Try a bottle from Provence, chilled of course. It’s lovely poured in a crystal stemware and the flavors and body fit quite well with our fruits from Gulf waters.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013



By Doc Lawrence

He’s a wizard at the grill, pours appropriate wines with any meal, loves fishing and adores his family and friends. Because he’s so generous, we want to give him something that shows not only appreciation and honors him as a practical and talented man.

Give him a bottle of Patrón Reposado, the world's number
one ultra premium tequila. He’s sure to make some custom Margarita’s and the flavor is a nice option for tequila drinkers looking for more complexity and smoothness in their cocktails.

For more than 40 years, T. Colin Campbell, PhD, has been at the forefront of nutrition research. Like all of us, Dad isn’t getting any younger and if he’s looking for creative ways to work more fruits and vegetables into their menus, The China Study Cookbook (BenBella Books, May 7, 2013) offers hundreds of appetizing simple-to-make recipe options for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert.

Grilling and outdoor dining minus those gnats and mosquitoes is possible using the new Stinger Insect Zapper Lantern, a portable, cordless and rechargeable bug zapper. This unit uses both black UV light technology, which has been scientifically proven to eliminate up to 40% more flying insects than white UV light, and an Octenol lure, that work together to dramatically reduce the amount of mosquitoes and flying insects in Dad’s personal spaces. 

A companion device is the Stinger Portable Bug Zapper, a hand-held device that kills insects on contact with 3000 safe volts of zapping power. The racket incorporates a flexible rubber neck for use on walls or other flat surfaces, while the angled head easily reaches into corners. It operates on batteries and eliminates insects without leaving a mess.

Sandeman Port, whether the 10, 20, 30 and 40 years old Tawnies, are great gifts for dad, the consummate gourmet who enjoys an elevated lifestyle. (He’s earned the right!)

Some of our best bonding moments with Dad are over a glass of wine. Estancia Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are produced by a winery committed to renewable energy. They reduced their carbon footprint while not compromising the high-quality vino. Solar technology generates 75% of the winery’s energy, keeping 1,492,335 pounds of greenhouse gases out of the air annually, the equivalent of taking 237 vehicles off the road, planting 27,000 trees or 248 acres of forest, powering 164 homes, and not driving 2.6 million miles.

Gillette’s Fusion ProGlide Styler is a high-tech affordable device that reduces shaving discomfort plus extra grooming features that actually work well. With the first 3-in-1 power groomer, the Fusion ProGlide Styler trims evenly, shaves closely and edges accurately.

Few accessories are more welcome by Dad, a snappy dresser, than a beautiful wrist watch that functions well. Armitron, a trusted brand, has a line of stylish high fashion watches including more rugged models for outdoor wear.

The consummate kitchen wizard, Dad will love the advantages of the Chef’s Choice Electric Food Slicer. The model 615 efficiently slices a variety of foods including meat, vegetables, bread and cheese. The perfect solution for home chefs open to options for preparing meals, entertaining cost effectively, controlling portions and enjoying freshly sliced foods.
The Spice Lab has gift sets of sea salts that have function and place in Dad’s kitchen. The range of selection is impressive and is one of the best bargains out there. Easy to order online: Dry aging beef can be done in Dad’s refrigerator. It’s a simple procedure that takes an ordinary steak to the level of Morton’s or Palm restaurants top selections. Visit the company website for this one:

We acknowledge aging and many other health complications with more openness and acceptance. Dad may have diminished hearing caused by anything from service in the military to a sports injury. Instead of ignoring it, why not help him regain the comfort of good hearing with one of the hi HealthInnovations premium digital hearing aids, featuring state-of-the-art digital technology equal to or superior compared to many much more expensive devices. Leveraging UnitedHealth Group's scale, hi HealthInnovations obtains high quality hearing aids at a significant volume discount and transfers the cost saving directly to customers. This eliminates many of the markups that are placed on hearing aids by distributors and other intermediaries.
hi HealthInnovations premium digital hearing aids include fully automatic digital algorithms that adapt to Dad’s  environment and a number of other comfort advantages including a noise reduction system. Best news is this can be ordered online, and any needed adjustments are available locally.

Dad can make the perfect pizza using the grill-top pizza kit. The round stone allows him to cook his masterpiece on the grill to create a crispy, bubbly delight. From Mr. BBQ,
It includes 15" grill-top pizza stone, over-sized spatula, and pizza cutter, ideal for gas grills and indoor ovens. Widely available.

A portable camera is one of the handiest devices for Dad, the skilled photographer. There are times when too much bulk won’t work. The Vivitar S1527 is compact, affordable and gets the job done anywhere.

Grooming and hygiene products for Dad have never been better or more available. With so much to select from, check out the line of designer products at the Body Shop, The Absinthe brand skin products are high quality, containing Community Fair Trade ingredients.

Dad’s great conversation piece is Dad’s well-stocked bar. Giving him something other than a useless gizmo or a bottle he doesn’t like isn’t much of a choice. Jim Beam’s latest expression, Jacob’s Ghost White Whiskey is one of the better spirits products out this year and Dad’s who enjoy a smooth pour sipped neat will treasure a bottle of this delightful elixir. George Dickel Tennessee Whisky is a mainstay in America with a history of wonderful taste and pure enjoyment.

No gift, regardless of the cost, means as much to a good-hearted father as our being with him. Take time to visit. Treat him to brunch. Propose a toast telling him you love him. The days dwindle down and these moments are precious.

NOTE: Unless otherwise noted, all items are available through Amazon or are easily located through Google.

Enjoy Doc’s Georgia Journey: