Welcome to Episode 3 of The WA Wine + Food Show.

Hosted by Chef Andrae Bopp, Episode 3 brings together Fiona Mak of SMAK Wines and Kelsey Albro Itämeri of Ita Wines for a day of food prepping and wine pairing. What’s on the menu for Episode 3? Nashville Fried Chicken Sandwich paired with Smak 2020 Spring Rosé Sangiovese, and Crab Cake Sandwich with Lemon Aioli paired with Itä 2019 Breezy Slope Pinot Noir. Text your taste buds, because it’s time for a beautiful feast. And if you get a little hungry, we got you: the recipe with ingredients, directions, and tips from Chef Andrae are below.

Let’s chop it up.

We might be a bit biased, but Washington Wine goes great with everything, especially street-style food. And if there’s one thing this series says, it’s that wine is a human experience. In that spirit, we have the recipes below, so you can make them alongside us, and pair them with the featured wine or something of your own choosing. You’ll also see some tips and tricks from Chef Andrae below, and words from our winemakers about the pairings.

Rosés that have high natural acids go well with fried things in general. It works like a squeeze of lemon. Our Sangiovese Rosé is tart and lime-y, and provides a great balance to the spiciness and fat that almost makes the wine taste sweet. It’s a magical pairing.  
Fiona Smak, SMAK Wines


Nashville Fried Chicken Sandwich paired with Smak 2020 Spring Rosé Sangiovese

For the dry brine:

  • Chicken Thighs, skinless and boneless
  • Salt, black and white pepper 
  • Ratio for every 1 tablespoon kosher add 1 teaspoon each black and white pepper

For the wet mix:

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tablespoons Crystal Hot sauce

For the dredge:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • salt
  • 3 tablespoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

For the sauce:

  • 1 cup Crystal Hot Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • ½ tablespoon black pepper
  • ½ tablespoon white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Pickle slices, for servingCanola Oil for frying


  • In a bowl, season chicken pieces with about 1 1/2 tablespoon of the salt/pepper mix.
  • Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • In a bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs and hot sauce. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and spices.
  • Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture, then dip in the milk mixture, then in the flour mixture again, shaking off the excess after each step. (CHEF TIP: Use one hand for the dry mix and the other for the wet mix. Don’t mix up your hands and you’ll keep yourself and your workspace cleaner).
  • Heat the canola oil in a deep-fryer or heavy frying pan to 320 degrees F. Cook the chicken until crisp, internal 165 degrees, about 15-18 minutes . Remove chicken and drain on the rack.
  • In a medium pan heat the Crystal and whisk in the cayenne pepper, brown sugar, salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, the paprika and garlic powder. Whisk well. This mixture can be made spicier if desired. Taste as you are making it. Baste the mixture over the hot fried chicken and serve immediately on a sturdy bun with pickle slices. Enjoy with a bottle of Smak Rose!

Crab Cake Sandwich with Lemon Aioli paired with Itä 2019 Breezy Slope Pinot Noir


  • 1 pound Crabmeat, well drained and picked over for shells 
  • 1/4 cup aioli (good quality mayonnaise will work)
  • 3 tablespoons minced chives 
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice 
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey 
  • 1-2 tablespoons Crystal Hot Sauce, more if desired
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper 
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons Canola oil 
  • All purpose flour 
  • 3 large eggs, beaten 
  • 2 cups dry breadcrumbs 


  • In a large bowl, combine the crabmeat with the aioli, chives, lime juice, honey and the Crystal; season with salt and pepper. Stir well to break up some of the crabmeat.
  • Form the mixture into 8-10 crab cakes, packing them firmly. Put the crab cakes on a baking sheet and refrigerate or freeze until firm, about 25 minutes. 
  • Put a handful of flour into a medium, shallow bowl.
  • Put the eggs (CHEF TIP: add a splash or 2 of Crystal hot sauce) and whisk well in another shallow bowl and the bread crumbs in a third bowl.
  • Take a crab cake in your hand and carefully dust it all over with flour, shaking off any excess. Dip the crab cake in the beaten egg mixture and then coat it well with the breadcrumbs.
  • Repeat with the remaining crab cakes. At this point they can be fried in a pan with oil (preferred way) or baked.
  • To fry, in a shallow fry pan add about 1-2’ canola oil, heat over medium flame, add the cakes, not crowded, fry till lightly browned and carefully turn over.
  • Fry to light brown and remove to a paper towel lined plate, season and serve with some killer wine from ita Winery!

It’s our hope here to show you just how simple it can be to make some of the most delicious memories with local wines and street-style dishes. We can’t wait for you to get to know #WAwine on a whole new, and next, level.

Andrae Bopp // WA Wine + Food Show // Walla Walla Valley // Watch //