Next Food Network Star Justin Warner’s Robert Mondavi-Infused Cheese Wontons


Knowing the importance of matching food with wine, Robert Mondavi Private Selection has collaborated with Justin Warner to create a few seasonally-appropriate recipes. A self-taught cook, Warner is the owner and chef at Brooklyn's Do or Dine restaurant. In 2012 he appeared on Food Network's The Next Food Network Star and took home the eighth season title. The following year, the chef started his own television show called Rebel Eats.

Together, Mondavi and Warner hope to encourage consumers to think outside the box and experiment with pairing home cooked meals with California wines. Warner crafted this particular recipe for broccoli and cheese wontons to show that just because Sauvignon Blanc sounds French, it doesn't mean it can't pair well with Asian- and American-influenced food. Playful and fun, this recipe is party friendly and can be used as a snack or a meal.

Broccoli & Cheese-y Cheese Wontons

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Makes: 23-30 wontons
Pair Alongside: Robert Mondavi Private Selection Sauvignon Blanc

Ingredients for Stuffing:

  • 6 oz. chopped broccoli florets (use fresh, not frozen)
  • 4 oz. goat cheese, softened
  • 2 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 2 teaspoons minced parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Ingredients for Preparation:

  • 25-30 wonton skins
  • 1 egg white
  • Oil for frying

Ingredients for Dipping Sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons Robert Mondavi Private Selection Sauvignon Blanc
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar

Directions for Stuffing:

Moisten some paper towels and wrap the broccoli with them. Put the moistened broccoli parcel on a microwave-safe plate and microwave for two minutes on high power. Carefully place the florets in a mixing bowl with the cheeses, shallots, parsley and kosher salt. Using a wooden spoon, a fork, or a rubber spatula, mix the ingredients until thoroughly combined.

Directions for Preparation:

Put heaping teaspoons of the mixture in the center of the wonton skins. Brush some of the egg white on the edges of the wrapper and seal. Continue until you run out of filling. Place these guys in the fridge while you make the sauce. Preheat the oil in a Dutch oven to 350F.

  • Chef's Tip: "I like to fold these into triangles, and then fold the bottom corners up to make a sort of crown shape. Get creative. As long as they're sealed you're good to go!"

Directions for Dipping Sauce:

Put the soy sauce and the Sauvignon Blanc in a saucepan and slowly bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in the sugar. Refrigerate until you're ready to use it.

Directions for Frying:

Fry the wontons in the 350F oil, in batches of three, or until they are golden brown. Drain on paper towels and serve hot, with the sauce and a cold glass of Robert Mondavi Private Selection Sauvignon Blanc.

  • Frying Tricks of the Trade: "The key to frying is to work in small batches. Like ice in a drink, the wontons lower the temperature of the oil when you put them in. When I fry, I keep a constant eye on the thermometer and adjust the heat accordingly. I use a plate lined with paper towels to allow the wontons to cool because the towels absorb excess oil which can cause sogginess...and sogginess and snack do not mix in my book. Crisp wine deserves crisp food."