Beef Daube: Braised Beef Stew

Pair with Estate Cabernet Sauvignon

Recipe by Richard Olney | Wine Pairing by John Olney

I began traveling to Europe at an early age, visiting the south of France where I spent time with my uncle, Richard Olney, the celebrated food and wine writer. Richard passed away in 1999, but his memory lives on through the food he created and the memories he made. For this year's Holiday Pairing Feast, I have chosen six of his classic recipes that pair perfectly with our wines. -John Olney, Head Winemaker

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Yield: 4-6 Servings


  • 4 pounds boned beef shank and chuck, in approximately equal proportions, cut into 3 ounce pieces
  • 4 ounces salt bacon, in a single slice, cut across into 1/3 inch thick lardons, or slab bacon, unsmoked
  • 1½ cups peeled and thinly sliced carrots
  • ½ pound onions, sliced into thin rings
  • 3 branches thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Parsley stems
  • 1 strip dried orange peel
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups Ridge Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, or similar deeply colored tannic red wine
  • Coarse sea salt
  • Bouquet garni (thyme, bay leaf, strip of dried orange peel)
  • 1 pound large elbow macaroni, or penne rigate, tortiglioni, etc.
  • Freshly grated parmesan (served separately)


In Provence, it is considered essential while a daube is cooking to keep the daubiere (cooking pot) covered with a soup plate containing red wine, which is regularly replenished as it evaporates. This tradition causes the steam inside the daubiere to condense on the underside of the soup plate and fall back into the daube. It is also common to prepare daube in advance, leaving it to cool, uncovered, and reheat it very slowly on the day following its preparation. Leftover daube makes creative ravioli filling.

In a large bowl, intermingle the meats, vegetables, herbs, and dried orange peel, sprinkle over the olive oil, and pour over red wine to cover. Marinate, covered, for several hours or overnight, turning the contents of the bowl around in the marinade two or three times. Strain the marinade into another bowl, discard the carrots, onions, herbs, and orange peel. In a daubiere or other heavy pot, layer the meats, sprinkling with salt, and place the bouquet garni between layers. Pour over the marinade and, with a heat disperser placed over the heat source, bring slowly to a boil over medium heat. This will require about 1 hour. Adjust the heat to maintain a slight simmer, the barest ripple of movement at the liquid’s surface, for 6 hours, the pot covered with a soup plate containing about ½ cup of red wine (or water), which should be replenished as it evaporates. (If the shape of your pot doesn’t lend itself to being covered by a plate, cover it with a sheet of foil with a lid pressed atop.) Lift off as much floating fat from the surface as possible. Discard the bouquet garni. Boil the macaroni in abundant salted water, according to the instructions on the package (about 12 minutes), drain well, empty it into a deep, heated serving dish, ladle over some of the daube’s cooking juices, and serve at the same time as the daube, accompanied by a dish of freshly grated parmesan.

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