The Magician Shiraz, Pinot Noir Paired with Mushroom Strudel by John Pekka Woods

Mushroom Strudel

The Magician, an unusual blend of Shiraz and Pinot Noir, is Reif Estate’s first appassimento style red wine. In 2009 the winery purchased two tobacco kilns and refurbished them for a number of research projects including the drying of grapes prior to fermentation. The grapes were hand harvested and slowly dried in the kilns over a three week period until the fruit was concentrated by 20-25%.

Intensity and complexity are the main ingredients here.  Named ‘The Magician’ and magic it is!  All the nuances of these two great grape varietals unfold on your palate. The 2009 vintage is now sold out at the winery but will be released into Vintages at the L.C.B.O. in October while the 2010 vintage – the second edition of The Magician – was released at the winery on August 1st. The Magician – Shiraz Pinot Noir $19.95

Try pairing The Magician with this Mushroom Strudel – recipe provided by John Pekka Woods, Chef The Epicurean in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Mushroom Strudel


4 sheets of phyllo pastry approximately 10″ x 11″
1/2 cup melted butter (for brushing pastry)
2 tablespoons butter (for cooking)
150 g button mushrooms, quartered
150 g portabella (gills removed) or crimini mushrooms cut the same size as the button mushrooms
150 g Savoy cabbage chiffonade (shredded)
50 g double smoked bacon, cut into thin “lardon”
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup 35% cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Add a little lemon juice or white wine to the recipe just to brighten up the flavours


Heat a fry pan until quite hot and sauté the bacon until it begins to caramelize.  Add the cabbage, turn the heat to medium and toss to cook.  When the cabbage begins to soften add 1/4 cup of water and 1/4 cup cream and cook until most of the liquid has been absorbed.  Transfer the bacon and cabbage mixture to a bowl and set aside.

Return the frying pan to heat and immediately add 2 tablespoons of butter, all the mushrooms and season with salt and pepper.  If the pan is not large enough do this step in two batches, button mushroom first then portabellas.  Sauté the mushrooms over a medium heat until they are cooked through, all the moisture in the pan has been absorbed and they begin to caramelize.  Once all the mushrooms have cooked return everything to the pan over high heat.  Add the remaining cream and cook until most of the cream has been absorbed. There should be a rich cream sauce coating the mushrooms.  Check the seasoning then allow the whole mixture to cool.

When the mixture is cool lay down a sheet of phyllo and brush lightly with melted butter.  Place a quarter of the mushroom mix near but not at the bottom right corner.  Fold the pastry around the filling, first up then across then up and across; continue until the sheet of phyllo is wrapped around the filling.  Repeat with the other three sheets of phyllo.  When finished brush the tops of the phyllo packs with butter, place on a sheet tray and allow to cool.

Cook in a preheated oven at 375 F until golden brown, approximately 20 minutes.  Allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve with your favourite sides.

By: John Pekka Woods, Chef The Epicurean in Niagara-on-the-Lake



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