Text by Charles Miller
Twenty-five years ago, when Maria Helm Sinskey’s future husband, Robert, built a barn-like house (read, bachelor pad) near the winery that now bears his name, its kitchen was a sparsely outfitted scullery with a relic of a stove. Then Robert met Maria. One year with that stove and she knew that it, along with just about everything else, had to go.
Maria is the former executive chef of San Francisco’s award-winning Plumpjack Café, a cookbook author, and the “chief cook and bottle washer” for Robert Sinskey Vineyards. Her specialty is food that goes well with wine, so her kitchen is part laboratory where she tries out new recipes and part gathering spot for friends in the local winemaking and food-growing communities.
Like so many great kitchens created by chefs, this one grew organically, fitting into the existing space. But its welcoming ambiance and emphasis on pairing durable appliances, finishes, and wine accessories with antiques store treasures warrants a close look. So I swung by to check it out and left feeling inspired (and ready for happy hour).
Watch the slideshow to go Behind the Kitchen Door for a tour of Maria’s kitchen.
Leave a comment on Maria’s Must-Have Wine Tools Giveaway post for your chance to win her favorite wine tools.
Maybe you won’t score an invite to belly up to Maria’s antique table, but you can still get a taste of some of the dishes she’s serving this summer. . .
|Cucumber, Basil, and Peanut Salad||Chilled Cucumber-Buttermilk Soup|
|Cucumber and Herb Salad with Crumbled Feta||Cucumber and Peppadew Grilled Shrimp Bites|
|Green Bean and Israeli Couscous Salad with Pickled Red Onions||Green Beans with Parsley and Sesame Tahini Sauce|
|Sautéed Green Beans with Water Chestnuts and Ginger||Green Beans with Cherry Tomatoes and Niçoise Olives|
|Zucchini Tart with Lemon Thyme and Goat Cheese||Grilled Summer Squash with Pesto and Balsamic Syrup|
|Roasted Squash with Pimentón and Manchego Cheese||Shaved Summer Squash with Almond Salsa Verde|