Something tells us this is going to be wildly delicious.

The Little Rock Zoo's annual Wild Wines events are just around the corner, bringing bites from the city's best restaurants paired with hand-selected wines from O'Looney’s Wine & Liquor. As one of spring’s most fun events, this two-night party also features live music and animals, with all proceeds benefiting the Arkansas Zoological Foundation.

Downtown's Allsopp & Chapple is one of the local restaurants bringing the goods to the table April 26-27, and here Chef Bonner Cameron is giving a taste of some of his modern American cuisine (plus a little O'Looney’s) to tide us over until the big event.

Enjoy!

 

Grilled Veal Chop

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp. rosemary leaves
  • 1/4 cup sage leaves
  • 4 14-16-oz. veal rib chops, cut 1-inch thick
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions:

Light a charcoal grill.

On a platter, mix 2 tbsp. of olive oil with the garlic, rosemary and sage.

Season the veal chops with salt and black pepper and drizzle generously with olive oil.

Grill the chops over moderately high heat, turning once, about 6 minutes per side for medium.

Transfer the chops to the platter and turn to coat with the olive oil and herbs.

Generously drizzle the veal with olive oil and let stand for 3 minutes, turning the chops a few times.

Spoon the juices and oil over the chops and serve medium rare.

 

Stone-Ground Gouda Grits

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth or water
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground white pepper
  • 2 cups uncooked stone-ground grits, cooking grits
  • 1 2/3 cups shredded smoked gouda cheese
  • 3 tbsp. unsalted butter

Instructions:

Bring low-sodium chicken broth, milk, salt and ground white pepper to a boil in a medium saucepan, gradually whisking in grits.

Cover, reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until thickened.

Add cheese and butter, stirring until melted.

 

Bonus sides:

Garlicky Spinach:

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a frying pan. Add garlic and cook for 1 min. Add spinach, salt and pepper. Toss the spinach for 1-2 minutes until mostly wilted.

Cipollini Onions:

Heat oil over medium heat in a frying pan. Lightly sauté until caramelized.

Demi-Glace:

Heat in a frying pan over medium heat. Add 1/4 cup of Minor’s demi-glace. Whisk until thinned out.

 

Wine Pairing:

To complete your meal, pair it with O’Looney’s 2016 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from Pine Ridge Vineyards. This wine, which will be served at Wild Wines VIP Night, includes bold notes of cassis and blackberry with a long finish that highlights rosemary, sage and a hint of cocoa powder.

 

For tickets and more information, visit the Little Rock Zoo website and follow along on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

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