Wine Pairing: Honey Roasted Chicken and Cranberry Relish with Marsanne Roussanne

January 04, 2015

I have always eaten my condiments with food, not my food with condiments. My mom loves to tell stories of me licking ketchup off of french fries.  I know there are other condiment lovers out there! Are french fries not merely a vehicle for the ketchup?

As I began to experiment in the kitchen, I started by perfecting recipes for the condiments I enjoyed as a kid.  My recent obsession- honey mustard. Local honey simmered with fresh whole grain mustard - to die for.

We all know that honey mustard and chicken are a classic combination. Instead of a dipping sauce, simmer the chicken in the honey mustard with fresh herbs and dry white wine. The house will smell fantastic - drawing your family to the dinner table!

I prefer to cook this in a cast iron skillet, as a one pot meal. If you do not have a cast iron skillet, simply saute the onions and garlic in a standard skillet; then use a baking dish to cook your chicken.

Wine Pairing

Marsanne and Roussanne are two white grape varieties traditionally hailing from the the Rhone valley.

This full bodied white wine, has the brightness of lemon with subtle floral hints of honey suckle. An old dynamic duo - Marsanne adds structure while Roussanne adds more aromatic notes - together they create a medium to full bodied white wine. Its supreme ability to age makes it a collector's favorite. Aging imparts more nutty notes than citrus.

Similar to Chardonnay or Viognier, a dry white wine pairs naturally with most chicken recipes. The tartness of the cranberry relish and earthy notes of the herbs make Marsanne Roussanne my go-to wine for this pairing.




total time: 45 minutes   yield: 4 servings

  • 3 tablespoons of dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 3 tablespoons of whole grain mustard or honey mustard of your choice
  • ½ tsp of fresh grated ginger
  • 2 sprigs of thyme and marjoram
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • ¼ cup of Marsanne Roussanne
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced


  • 1 tablespoon of whole grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Preheat your oven to 400F.
  • Mustard Rub: Combine mustard, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Using your fingers or a brush work the rub into both sides of the chicken. Set aside
  • For the Sauce: Whisk together the mustards, honey, ginger, and olive oil into a small bowl and set aside
  • For the Chicken: Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in your cast iron skillet, or standard skillet, over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add your onions and garlic. Cook until golden brown or about 5 minutes. Add the chicken and sear for 2-3 minutes on both sides. Add the ¼ cup of wine and honey mustard sauce. Nestle in a few sprigs of fresh herbs and place in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes or until chicken has reached the internal cooking temperature.
  • Serve along side rice to soak up the honey mustard sauce. Enjoy with cranberry relish to brighten the dish and pair with Unionville Vineyards’ Marsanne Roussane!  

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