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  • Writer's pictureCarlos Sarmiento

Baked Grouper, Bacon-Leeks-Mushroom ragout & Saffron rice featuring Knights Bridge Chardonnay wine

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

In my pursuit of finding savory ways to infuse new (and unusual) ingredients to dishes, I found a combination that is amazing. Bacon and fish!

Yes, I know…strange, but believe me, you are going to love it. Binding bold flavors such as bacon, leeks and mushrooms produces a unique and aromatic ragout.

Ragout is a slow-cooked, French-style stew that can be made with meat or fish and vegetables—or even just vegetables.

A delicate fish dish with complex flavors merits a white wine that can accentuate the nuances of the spices and vegetables.

Fortunately, my collaborative partnership with Knights Bridge Winery enabled me to pair this dish perfectly with a fine 2019 Chardonnay from their KB by Knights Bridge wine series.

(Courtesy of Knights Bridge Winery)

While creating this dish, a backlog of memories of the many quaint hidden restaurants in Europe I had been to, quickly came to mind.

It is in these types of establishments that daring chefs take simple dishes and elevate them ever-so-subtlely to quite an art form.

(Photo: Serge Ramelli)

I just hope I can come close to it. There is only one way to find out…

Let‘s get cooking!

Menu: Baked Grouper with Bacon-Leeks-Mushroom ragout and Saffron rice.

Wine pairing: 2019 KB by Knights Bridge Winery - Chardonnay (Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California)

Serves 4



  • 4 Grouper fillets (approximately 3/4 to 1 pound each), skinless and deboned

  • 4 tablespoons of extra Virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 cup of white wine

  • Sea salt & pepper


  • 1/4 cup of chopped cooked bacon (cut in small pieces)

  • 1 pound of fresh mushrooms, sliced

  • 1 large leek, cut in small, thin rounds (white part only)

  • 1 tablespoons of fresh dill, finely minced

  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced

  • 2 tablespoons of extra Virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 cup white wine

  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock


  • 1 cup of jasmati rice

  • 1 1/2 of vegetable stock

  • 1/2 teaspoon of saffron strands (diluted in 2 tablespoons of water

  • 2 tablespoons of extra Virgin olive

Directions Rice:

  • In a medium pot, being vegetable stock to a boil.

  • Add rice and stir. Add saffron mixture and stir again. Add olive oil and stir.

  • Cover pot and reduce heat to a simmer. cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, fluff rice and set aside.


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

  • On a large, shallow ovenproof dish, place fish fillets and season with sea salt and pepper.

  • Drizzle one tablespoon of olive oil on top of each fish fillets.

  • Carefully pour white wine around the fish.

  • Bake in oven for 35-45 minutes or until lightly golden on top.


  • In a large pan, heat up olive oil on medium heat. Add garlic and leeks and cook for 2 minutes.

  • Add mushroom and cook for 5 minutes.

  • Add bacon bits and stir. Add white wine and reduce wine for about 2 minutes, slowly stirring.

  • Add vegetable stock and fresh dill, stir and continue to cook until the liquid is almost evaporated.

  • Remove from heat, keep warm.

Serve it up!

This flavor-packed and textured dish is best served on individual plates. Trust me, your going to need room to scoop up the ragout with every morsel of the fish and rice.

On each individual plate, spoon a geneorus heap of the saffron rice in the middle. Place one fish filet on top of the rice. Next, spoon some of the ragout on top of the fish and also around the dish.

Bon appetit! Enjoy!

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

About the wine...

2019 KB by Knights Bridge Winery - Chardonnay (Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

Tasting notes: Precision and freshness define the aromas of chilled Anjou pear, French pastry dough, and orange blossom honey. Bracing and racy flavors of Asian pear, honey, and white tea are all supported by underlying minerality.

Grape: 100% Chardonnay

Production Notes: Grapes hand-harvested at night, sorted, de-stemmed, gently pressed, thoroughly settled, and fermented cold for 30 days. 30% malolactic fermentation.

Food pairing: This poised and elegant wine pairs well with roasted chicken, grilled halibut with lemon and rosemary, or chilled salmon with dill and crème fraîche.

Awards 2021 North Coast Wine Challenge - 95 Points

Anthony Dias Blue, Blue Lifestyle - 92 Points

Ken's Wine Guide - 92 Points

A very special thank you to Knights Bridge Winery for their generous contribution of this fragrant and delightfully complex Chardonnay wine.

For more information, visit:


Decorative wine drip collar by:

(Special discount promo code: CFW15)


Special thanks to my friend Serge Ramelli, for his captivating Parisian photos.

Merci beaucoup Serge pour votre fantastique photographie et votre talent artistique. Santé!

Follow Serge on Instagram at: photoserge

(Photo: Serge Ramelli)

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1 Comment

Aida Limongi
Aida Limongi
Jul 02, 2021

Love anything containing leeks , bacon and mushrooms, brilliant to accompany this fish and Chardonnay, my favorite white wines , giving Knightsbridge a try !

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