This is simply, brilliantly, nothing more than a dressed-up grilled cheese sandwich, perhaps one of life's most perfect foods.

But while a plain grilled cheese sandwich would be okay with a glass of Cabernet, this one really works, thanks to the addition of savory bresaola, bright Dijon mustard, and either sun-dried tomatoes or arugula. (Although that last ingredient—sun-dried tomatoes or arugula—gives you two pretty different options, they both add color and Cabernet-friendly notes, the tomatoes being richly savory and the arugula having a slight nuttiness.)

Learn how to pair wine with this and other dishes.
Servings: Serves 4
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter , room temperature
  • 6 slices sourdough bread
  • 4 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 4 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese , thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup drained oil-packed julienned sun-dried tomatoes or 2 cups (about 1 ounce) loosely packed arugula
  • 24 thin slices (about 5 ounces) bresaola or 3 to 4 ounces Italian dry salami
  • Directions
    Spread the butter on one side of each slice of bread, dividing it evenly. Place 3 slices, buttered side down, on a work surface and spread the unbuttered side with the mustard, dividing it evenly. Top with the cheese, sun-dried tomatoes or arugula, and bresaola, dividing them evenly. Top with the remaining bread, buttered side up.

    Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Add the sandwiches, cover, and cook, in batches if necessary, until golden brown and the cheese is melted, 3 to 5 minutes per side. (You can also cook the sandwiches on a panini grill for 3 to 5 minutes.)

    Cut the sandwiches into quarters and serve hot.

    Food and wine tip: Sharp Cheddar has a great affinity to Cabernet Sauvignon—as do blue cheeses, aged cheeses, Parmesan, and sometimes stinky cheeses.


    Next Story