Summer Tomato & Watermelon Salad celebrates the fruits of the season. Every summer Chef Thierry Burkle of The Grill at Leon Springs in San Antonio, TX, pairs fresh heirloom tomatoes grown in the Texas Hill Country with sweet watermelons and a drizzle of balsamic reduction. Unfortunately, The Grill suffered a fire in May 2021 completely destroying the nearly 100 year-old building. While the team at The Grill regroups and rebuilds, we can still enjoy a taste of the summer with this chef-inspired recipe.

Prep time:15 minutes
Cook time:10 minutes
Servings: 6 – 8

Ingredients

  • 2 – 4 high-acid Tomatoes
  • 1 ripe seedless Watermelon (small or personal size)
  • 4 -6 fresh Basil leaves
  • Feta Cheese, crumbled
  • 4 – 6 ounces Balsamic Reduction (see step 1 for recipe)

Preparation

  1. To make reduction: In a sauce pan over medium heat, combine 1 cup Balsamic vinegar and 1 cup white sugar. Stir and bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer. Continue cooking until mixture reaches a syrup-like consistency (coats the back of a spoon) — about 10 minutes. Let cool. Store in refrigerator. May be prepared days in advance.
  2. Cut Watermelon into fork-size sections. Cut tomatoes into wedges. Pile on plate.
  3. Chiffonade basil leaves (roll all leaves together cigar-style and cut crosswise into strips), crumble Feta over salad, then sprinkle with basil.
  4. Drizzle with Balsamic reduction.

Wine Pairing Guide

CHAMPAGNE & SPARKLING
Domestic
Look for Methode Champenoise or Traditional Method stated on the label. Another option is Pet-Nat (petillant naturel) wine, produced in the artisanale or rurale style.
Imported
France: Champagne, Crémant, Mousseux
Germany: Sekt
Italy: Asti Spumante, Prosecco, Prosecco Rosé
Spain: Cava
CRISP, DRY WHITE or ROSÉ
Domestic
Texas: Albarino, Trebbiano, Picpoul Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Rosé
West Coast: Sauvignon Blanc, Fume Blanc, Rosé
Imported
Argentina: Sauvignon Blanc, Rosé
Austria: Gruner Veltliner
France: Chablis, white Bordeaux, Sancerre, Muscadet, Petit Manseng, Picpoul Blanc, Rosé
Germany: Dry Riesling
Italy: Pinot Grigio, Pinot Bianco, Frascati, Trebbiano, Vernaccia, Garganega (Soave), Orvieto, Gewurztraminer
New Zealand: Sauvignon Blanc
Portugal: Vinho Verde (Blanc or Rosé)
South Africa: Chenin Blanc, Rosé
Spain: Albarino, Verdejo, Godello, Viura, Rosé
UNOAKED, MEDIUM-BODY WHITE
Domestic
Texas: Vermentino, Semillon, Chardonnay
West Coast: Pinot Gris, Fume Blanc, Chardonnay
Imported
Austria: Gruner Veltliner
France: Chablis, Macon Village/Saint-Véran, Alsace Pinot Blanc, Picpoul Blanc
Italy: Vermentino, Verdicchio, Fiano, Greco, Cortese (Gavi)