This recipe is filled with umami flavors! Umami is the “fifth flavor” in addition to sweet, salty, sour and bitter. It is that earthy, savory flavor you find in monosodium glutamate (MSG) – think miso soup, cooked mushrooms and soy sauce.

Umami is not an easy flavor to pair wine with. It tends to make wine taste more astringent and bitter, especially wines high in tannins (big red wines). The typical suggestion is to pair umami dishes with white or sparkling wines. However, salt is a magical pairing agent for wine. If you add sufficient salt and salty ingredients (in this case, parmesan) to your dish, you can easily pair umami flavors with red wines with delicious results!

I chose to pair this recipe with a 2014 MACHETE by Orin Swift. Not only does this wine have the most bad-ass label EVER, it is wine is bursting with rich, ripe black fruit flavors – blackberry and black cherry all over the place. It is so fruity that it works beautifully with this rich, umami dish, cutting those earthy flavors with gorgeous berry flavors. Yum!


1 pound large sea scallops, patted dry

1 pound pappardelle pasta

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 teaspoon sea salt, plus 1/2 teaspoon

2 cups mixed chanterelle, oyster, trumpet, mushrooms, thinly sliced

3 black garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper, plus more for serving

3 cups arugula

2 tablespoons white truffle oil

2 ounces best quality Parmesan, shaved


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over medium heat and add 1 teaspoon of salt.
  2. Rinse and pat dry the scallops. Season with 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt.
  3. Prep all of your ingredients and have them at ready, then cook the pasta according to package directions.
  4. While pasta is cooking, in a large saute pan, heat the olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. When the butter has melted, add the scallops, cook for 2 minutes then turn over and cook another minute. When scallops are just cooked, remove from heat and set aside, keeping them warm.
  5. Add the mushrooms to the scallop juice in the pan and saute for 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes and black pepper. Add in the reserved scallops, half of the truffle oil and the parmesan. Add in the drained cooked pasta, then the arugula and gently toss or stir to combine.

(Recipe courtesy of Guy Fieri)