Here’s a 30 minute video one of my favorites wine regions in the world. Who doesn’t enjoy and respect a Spring ritual of blessings for the vines?
Most blogs I’ve read, including mine thus far, review successful pairings of food and wine. Today, I am taking a new approach, success and failure. This time it took 3 attempts to get it right. Sure, I could’ve read the wine maker’s notes or researched the grape first then picked a food pairing. But, I’m an Aquarius (aka: rebellious tendencies and when channelled appropriately can be fun, not destructive). I like to challenge myself sometimes, not all the time. 🙂
Onward———– and at the end of this page you’ll find a general guide to pairing food and wine.
Here’s the wine: 2013 Librandi Ciro White Wine, Southern Italy, Grape is Greco. Alcohol level: 12.5%. and I paid $12 a bottle. (45 grapes to go for wine century club and those of you who follow my journey of tasting 100 grape varietals)
Winemaker’s notes: Food pairings: Excellent as an apéritif, and with fish or vegetable starters. It matches well with egg-based dishes, fish soup; crustaceans (either roasted or with sauces) and it enhances all grilled fish dishes, especially swordfish.
Greco wines are some of the most popular white wines to consume in Southern Italy during autumn months, when the grapes are in full harvest. Greco Bianco (or simply Greco) is an ancient, light-skinned grape variety. As its name implies, Greco originated in Greece and was transplanted by Greeks to southern Italy around 600 B.C. The grape flourishes in southern Italy due to the area’s volcanic soil and favorable meteorological conditions, which bring out Greco’s intriguing aromatic flavor. Armed with excellent acidity and a fresh, clean flavor profile, Greco wines are best consumed young. The simple island wines of Capri are predominantly Greco.
This wine is made from 100% Greco Bianco. After a soft pressing, the must is fermented in stainless steel tanks to keep its freshness. Refined briefly in tanks and bottle for a few months for extra finesse, Cirò Bianco is ready to be enjoyed upon release. The name Greco relates to both white (Greco bianco) and black (Greco nero) grape varieties. While there is more land area dedicated to Greco nero, the Greco bianco is the grape most commonly referred to by the shorthand “Greco”.
After World War II, the fate of Greco was in peril. The wartime devastation of vineyards as well as the mass migration of Italian vine growers from agriculture to urban industries in the cities and abroad, ushered in a period of general decline for viticulture in the region. As plantings declined and vineyards were ripped up, many varieties were on the verge of extinction. The efforts of family winemakers and heritage winemaking projects such as the Villa dei Misteri project headed by Piero Mastroberardino, helped sustain the existence of the Greco vine in southern Italy.
Greco bianco wines are noted for their aromatic qualities similar to Viognier. Greco pairs well with delicate fish such as sole and catfish, especially when served in a light lemon sauce. It is wonderful with savory foods and can go well also with baked, roasted or fried fish. Another flavorful combination is Greco with a light appetizer or salad. Non-vinegar-based dressings work best to bring out the full flavor of the wine.
Aromas of peaches and citrus fruits complement undertones of herbs and flowers, some fresh green foliage notes. On the palate, zesty acidity and a long finish showcase this wine’s hints of toasted almonds and macadamia nuts.
Here are my experiences of the 3 pairings… “3rd time’s a charm”
#1 pairing with pasta – ziti cooked with lots of garlic, broccoli, butter and chicken. The dish remained delicious and the wine did not diminish the taste of the food. The food overpowered the wine, making the finish of the wine much shorter and the complexity of the wine disappeared.
#2 pairing with sliced carrots (recipe seen in earlier blog on Pecorino wine) dressed with a vinaigrette of apple cider vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, oregano, parsley, white pepper and lastly salt infused with floral (petals of rose, lavender, calendula, and cornflower). This pairing was ok, not bad, not wow. The finish of the wine was longer than in the first attempt at pairing. The almond aromas of the wine did shine through. The herbal flavors of the wine paired well with the oregano and parsley. Although not intentional, the pairing of the floral salt with the floral notes of the wine was clear and complimentary.
#3 pairing with homemade salmon cakes : flaked pink salmon (which is a very light flavor) mixed with panko bread crumbs, egg, floral salt (as described in #2), pepper, cooked shallots and parsley. Once cooked, salmon cakes were drenched with freshly squeezed lemon juice. I served the cakes with sautéed green cabbage. This pairing allowed each participant to shine. The salmon was front and center, the wine complimented with its bouquet of citrus and herbs. The cabbage being light and green agreed with the green notes in the wine.
Food and wine pairing guidelines I learned in the WSET training at Napa Valley Academy:
The best pairings take advantage of the effects of food on wine and the effects of wine on food so that each offer more taste pleasure. People have different sensitivities to flavor and aroma components, meaning one person may be more sensitive to a particular flavor such as bitterness, sweet, sour, etc. The foods below don’t literally change the wine but rather they change your perception of bitter, acid, sweet, fruity and the body or mouth feel of wine.
Sweetness in Food: This will increase bitterness of wine, decrease the fruitiness of wine, increase acidity of wine, decrease the sweetness of wine and the body of wine. Pair with a wine with at least as much sweetness as the food or the wine will seem more bitter.
Umami in Food: considered a savory taste and is often seen with other tastes (with saltiness in MSG). Taste a raw button mushroom and you’ll taste umami. It increases bitterness of wine, increases acidity of wine, decreases body of wine, decreases sweetness and the fruitiness of wine. Many foods considered difficult to pair with wine contain higher levels of umami, like eggs, mushrooms, asparagus, some ripe, soft cheeses. Pair with a more fruity wine. Stay away from more tannic wine because the bitterness will be emphasized. Merlot, a more fruity with medium tannin and medium to fuller body, is a classic pairing with mushrooms. A favorite is sparkling wine with Chinese food (known for the MSG).
Acidity in Food: Increases body of wine, increases sweetness of wine and the fruitiness of wine, decreases acidity of wine. Pair with a high acid wine or the wine may taste flabby. Acidic foods might be salad with a vinaigrette dressing.
Salt in Food: Increases body of the wine, decreases bitterness and the acidity of wine. Pair with high acid wine or wine may seem flabby. For example, pair Sauvignon Blanc (high acidity) with salty food will make the wine seem less acidic. One of my personal favorites is Chinese food paired with sparkling wine, generally considered to have high acidity.
Bitterness in Food: Increases bitterness of wine. Pair with low tannin red wines or white wines. Bitter foods might be charred steak or roasted red pepper and of course bitter greens. Try a spicy Syrah, pairs well with grilled meat, spicy meats or cured meats.
Chili heat in Food: Increases bitterness in wine, increases acidity in wine, decreases body, sweetness and the fruitiness of wine. Pair with low tannin red or a white wine. Try a wine that’s very fruity because once paired with this food, the fruitiness will decrease. A failed pairing would be Cabernet Sauvignon which is a high tannin, high acidity wine. Using these principles, the chile heat would make the wine more bitter and more acidic, and ruin an otherwise beautiful wine.
A few more considerations: It’s typically best if the flavor intensity of the food and wine match, as you read in the pairing experiments above, one could overpower the other. Acidic wines pair great with fatty or oily foods as the wine cuts through the fat. Many people enjoy pairing sweet wine with salty foods, like a port with blue cheese but this is a subjective experience.
Lastly, the more structural components (meaning tannin, high acidity, high alcohol, complex or layered flavors) in a wine, the more possible taste interactions occur. Depending on the pairing, this may mean an exceptional experience or a displeasing experience. Simple unoaked wines with little sugar won’t change much with food. Therefore the food and wine pairing may not be particularly interesting.
Saturday night, I dressed in my skinny jeans and a white t-shirt, my glittery navy blue pumps I bought a year and half ago and looked forward to wearing them for the first time. I completed my classic, simple, sexy outfit with my genuine Chanel earrings and long strand of faux gray pearls. I looked good and I felt confident.
I strutted my way to a meetup dinner at Feng Shui. Meetup(s) are an easy way to meet new people in a group setting and do fun activities with others when you have no friends 🙂 I’ve never met these people and I’ve never been to this restaurant. The group of people who attended were super fun! We really had silly, simple fun at this hibachi dinner. The whole evening was a joy 🙂
Prior to the dinner, I reached out to The Passionate Foodie, a friend of mine and a professional food and wine writer. I’ve never had Sake before and he is a master Sake Educator, I think one of a very select few in the U.S.
Anyway, I copied/pasted the online Sake menu from the restaurant and sent it to him (with what I planned to order for dinner) for his opinion on which Sake would best pair with my dinner choice. He responded promptly and recommended the Kimoto- dry and umami, which would go well with my choice of strip steak and lobster. Oh man, was I excited to go try this Sake with dinner. I have a lot of experience with wine and food pairs but Sake is new and I get excited to try new things!
Seated at the hibachi table, menu in front of me, I happily and eagerly searched for my Kimoto to order. Ugh, there was no Kimoto and the Sakes on the menu had descriptions with no mention of umami. I asked the server about the Kimoto, she had no clue. I asked her if they had changed their Sake menu and she answered no, they had not changed the Sake menu. Her Asian face stared back at me, confused by my request for Kimoto and discussion of the Sake menu. I showed her the Sake menu from their website, that I copy/pasted on my phone, she was clueless. She grabbed my phone out of my hand and said she’d bring it to the manager to see if they had this Kimoto! Off she went, my iPhone in her hand, before I could say Sake.
OMG, now this turned into a huge deal and she had taken my phone!
My table mates found this quite entertaining and teased me that I was needy 🙂 and we had a good laugh. She returned and informed me that they in fact did change their Sake menu and I had the “old menu” listed on my phone. She left again. She returned – brought me a bottle of some random Sake and asked me if this is one I would want to have ” Many customers order this one” she told me, yet she was unable to provide any information about this Sake. Now mind you, I had already told her I know nothing about Sake and therefore know not which one to order. This random bottle she showed me meant nothing to me. Huh? Now, my confused face stared at her. I asked her if she’d tried any of the Sakes on the menu. She answered she doesn’t drink 😦 I wondered- was this server even 21 years old?
For the love of God! now what? I found this all quite hilarious but at the same time, I really wasn’t looking for this absurd drama.
Wanting my new-found meetup acquaintances to see my kind and thoughtful side and a quick ending this server drama, I thanked her for the time and effort she put into this, but assured her I would figure it out.
In the end, I ordered a scorpion bowl, which is a safe bet and always a pleaser.
So…en route to becoming a member of The Wine Century Club a few years ago, I researched 100 grapes and tried many wines. The entry level requirement is 100 grape varieties. There are higher levels as well. Here is a link to the club website: winecentury.com.
Please check out the poll found in my earlier post titled The Wine Century Club.
Here are some facts about the 2 wines (both are now on my favorites list) and a couple of grapes that were new to me.
2013 Colomé from Valle Calchaquí, Salta, Argentina… grape variety is Torrontés.
Torrontés has quickly risen to become Argentina’s signature white-wine grape, and one of the most widely grown. Torrontés wines range in style from light and fresh to heady and intensely perfumed, often expressing spicy character and aromas of white flowers. The cooler climate here helps with the retention of acidity, yielding a light, refreshing white wine with tones of jasmine and orange blossoms. The wine I tasted had a longer finish, good acidity and floral notes. It reminded me of a Viogner or a Gewürztraminer, both noted for floral a bouquet.
Salta, in the far north of Argentina, is home to some of the world’s most extreme vineyard sites. Many sit at lower latitudes and higher altitudes than anywhere else on Earth. Interestingly, these two factors balance each other out; the cold temperatures associated with high altitude are mitigated by the high temperatures found at these latitudes, producing bright, intensely flavored wines.
2011 Kanonkop ” Kadette” from Stellenbosch, South Africa… grapes varieties are Pinotage 57%, Cabernet Sauvignon 26 %, Merlot 14%, Cabernet Franc 3%.
Pinotage grape is a native product of South Africa, developed in 1925 by Abraham Izak Perold, the first professor of Viticulture at the University of Stellenbosch. Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and the more obscure Rhone varietal, Cinsault, was born in South Africa. The professor hoped to combine the virtues of the two grapes. Pinot Noir is recognized for its aromas and flavors, but can be difficult to grow. Cinsault yields an abundant crop and is resistant to disease. Pinotage typically produces deep red wines. Some have been criticized for sometimes smelling of acetone. The wine I tasted had no aroma of nail polish. Pinotage tends more toward dark fruits, tar, tobacco, and chocolate; sometimes touches of banana have been noted. The grape also tends toward high tannins and low acids.
Pinotage is easy to grow and ripens readily. Plantings didn’t really get started commercially until the 1960s, and, despite a few successes, acreage dwindle from then until the 90s and then the end of apartheid and end of international boycotts on South African products. Interest in South African wines was high, and Pinotage in particular as it was unique to the country.Kanonkop’s Pinotage vines were some of the first commercially planted Pinotage to be established in the Cape and most are over 50 years old. Hardly any irrigation is needed due to the ideal soil type and location.
Kanonkop is a fourth generation family estate, which was originally purchased by JW Sauer, a cabinet member in the parliament of the Union of South Africa. The name Kanonkop was derived from a kopje, something from which a cannon was fired in the 17th Century to alert farmers in outlying areas that sailing ships had entered Table Bay for a stopover at Cape Town.
It’s so nice to have a few minutes to write to you. My dog Elvis is improving but we still have a long way to go. I celebrated two things over the weekend. The first and most important- Elvis started bearing weight on his affected hind leg. The second- I have an appointment with a local school department to discuss writing and teaching a curriculum for the kids on Self Love and Self Care. Afterall, so many people have to re-learn how to really love when they hit adulthood. So, let’s teach them young, when it really makes a difference for communities and families.
So, in celebration, I bought myself some Scotch. I will be writing on each one I taste in the upcoming posts. The posts may still be brief as I’m still dealing with a lot at home right now, but I do like to share my experiences with you whenever I can jot down some quick notes. I hope you’ll give this Scotch a try and leave a comment if you have tried it. Enjoy!
Below you will find a photo of the cutest little tasting pack from Glenmorangie. I spent $25 US dollars and the tasting pack has 4 different bottles, each one is 100 ml.
I’ve tried one, which is also shown below in the photo. This is Highland Single Malt Scotch Whiskey, aged 12 years in Sauterne barrels. It’s called Nectar D’Or. It is a gem, for sure. The choice of barrels , along with the aging of 12 years really provides a smooth finish, not too smokey or peaty at all. There is a viscosity to this one. I enjoyed this gold-colored scotch on the rocks. It’s silky and ever so slightly sweet. Scotch from Highlands is less smokey compared to Scotch from the Isle, which is more smokey. This Nectar D’Or is Luscious!
Glenmorangie’s website reveals this interesting tidbit: “The Tarlogie Springs, Glenmorangie’s own water source and most prized asset, is the product of rain that has been forcing its way through layers of limestone and sandstone for a hundred years. These natural minerals give it its ‘hard’ water qualities and provide Glenmorangie with a raw ingredient unique amongst Highland distilleries. Our ancient ancestors drank here, considering the pure, mineral-rich waters of the Springs to be sacred”.
I’ve had one thing after another going on since late last summer. My dog Elvis had a torn ACL right hind with surgical repair and a 6 month recovery , now his left one is torn and surgery mostly likely next week. His sister has just been diagnosed with Cushings disease so I have my hands full at the moment, not to mention I work a day job as a nurse practitioner. So, Wine and Meaning will be reposting some fun articles to keep you entertained and informed during my hiatus and I will be back asap. Thanks for all your good wishes and understanding and loyalty along the way. God Bless each of you.
A beautiful Trimbach Pinot Blanc from Alsace paired with hard salami wrapped around mozzarella cheese.
In Alsace, the wine produced from this grape is a full-bodied dry white wine and it pairs very well with the saltiness of this hard salami and the creamy mozzarella. It is both fruity and floral with high acidity and generally made for immediate pleasure!
It’s always a good time for Sparkling Wine! Too many people I know enjoy it only for celebration. Think of sparkling wine as an everyday wine. There are many good producers offering bottles in the $15 USD range. I recommend a Brut (dry) version. Sparkling wine will go with just about any food you could try pairing with it. This Friday after work instead of cooking, pair take-out Chinese food with a sparkling wine.
Here’s a tip: try something new by enjoying your Champagne or Sparkling Wine in a white wine glass instead of a champagne flute. You’ll find it enhances the aspects of bubbles, aroma and taste.
There are several other glass types, more commonly used for Sparkling wine.
The flute is a stem glass with a tall tapered or elongated shape, designed to retain sparkling wine’s carbonation by reducing the surface area for it to escape.The champagne flute was developed in the early 1700s.
The coupe is a shallow saucer shaped stemmed glass. Romantics will tell you that the shape of the coupe was modelled on the breast of French queen Marie Antoinette. The facts tell us the glass was designed in England in 1663.
The tulip glass has wider flared body and mouth than the flute. Some think the tulip glass allows more of the aroma than a flute while still slowing the loss of carbonation.
Stay in touch with Wine and Meaning. Here’s a link to a previous post on several influential female Champagne producers:
Wine Lover’s Devotional: 365 Days of Knowledge, Advice, and Lore for the Ardent Aficionado by Jonathan Alsop (2010) provides today’s recipe and wine pairing. Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, I thought the readers would appreciate this.
1 crusty baguette
olive oil, to taste
sea salt, to taste
1 bar of chocolate (8 oz)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Slice baguette into 12 (1/2 inch) oval slices. Arrange them on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Place generous amount of chocolate on each slice and bake in oven for 5-10 minutes. Serve immediately.
Zonin Primo Amore Juliet: 7.5% alcohol, white semi-sparkling
Zonin Primo Amore Romeo: 8.5 % alcohol, red semi-sparkling
These refreshing table wines from the Zonin family in Italy will surprise and delight your sweetheart. Take a lesson in amore from the Italians! Primo Amore wines are made near Verona, Italy, home of the real-life couple who inspired Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Romeo is made from a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Malvasia Rossa. Juliet is a blend of two aromatic white grapes; 70% Garganega and 30% Moscato.
Saint Valentine’s Day (commonly shortened to Valentine’s Day) is an annual commemoration held on February 14th celebrating love and affection between intimate companions. The day is named after one or more early Christian martyrs, Valentine. It is traditionally a day on which lovers express their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (“valentines”). The day first became associated with romantic love in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished.
“WEARING YOUR HEART ON YOUR SLEEVE” IS MORE THAN JUST A PHRASE.
In the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names to see who their Valentine would be. They would wear the name pinned to their sleeve for one week so that everyone would know their supposed true feelings.
Source: KATHLEEN DAVIS DEC 15, 2016 -Woman’s Day
Alessandro Rivetto, amarone, Barbaresco, Barolo, best wine lists, Etna Bianco, Franciacorta, Italian sparkling wine, italian wine, Italian wines, lambrusco, Lorenzo Baricca, New York city, New York City Green Market, Ormeasco, pomoria bianco, Tarallucci E Vino, Trebbia di Lugana, Vin Santo, wine, wine and food pairings, Wine Director
This blog is named Wine and Meaning. Meaning is finding the connection between things. I admire Tarallucci e Vino’s philosophy of wine : “it should embody the true character of the grape, the people and the land where they are grown”. This philosophy fits right in with the heart of this blog. I enjoy learning about places, the people and their passions, the climate, the geography, the food and wines of the world. In psychological terms, this gives me a connection to the world: a common ground with others of hobby, passion, and community. Wine is the bridge.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Lorenzo Baricca (Wine Director and Partner at Tarallucci e Vino (4 locations in New York City). His professionalism and extreme knowledge is highlighted in our conversation as you will read below. Many vineyards he works with in Italy are small batch, family-run and biodynamic. Some of the grapes he offers cannot be found anywhere else in the US except on the wine list at Tarallucci e Vino. Terroir is a way to talk about the connection between food or wine and the place from where it’s grown. Terroir is a way of adding meaning to the food and wine we enjoy. At Tarallucci e Vino, Chef Ben Lee has announced that each week, Tarallucci will feature a farm from which they get fresh produce at the New York City Green Markets. Lorenzo discussed Chef Ben Lee’s long time cooperation with the GREEN MARKET FARM and Chef maintains close relationships with many of the farmers. Tarallucci e Vino has a special selection in their menu called DALLA FATTORIA. This consists of dishes created based on ingredients from two selected farms for that week. Chef creates one appetizer and one entree from products that come only from the week’s chosen farms(s).
Tarallucci e Vino
Abruzzese restaurateur Luca Di Pietro founded Tarallucci e Vino to capture the authentic taste and casual elegance of Italy’s dining culture. The culinary philosophy at Tarallucci e Vino adheres to the Italian ideal of high quality, sustainable, seasonal food, sourced locally and prepared to highlight the natural beauty of the products. The menus rotate with the seasons, using crops from the neighboring farmer’s market and from a network of local purveyors.
Recent two-time Ospitalità Italiana Award winners for authentic Italian cuisine, Tarallucci e Vino is rated “the best and the most true to the Italian way” by Vanity Fair and lauded as “satisfying in every way” by The New York Times.
Lorenzo grew up in in Vezzano sul Crostolo, Emilia Romagna watching his grandfather make wine. He owned and opened wine bars in Italy before moving to New York. He joined the Tarallucci e Vino team in 2007, becoming a partner in 2013, and has made it his mission to fill the wine list with unique, small-batch producers. He takes frequent trips back to Italy to see his family and to discover new winemakers. (Bio courtesy of The James Collective)
Lorenzo and I had a fantastico conversation about the wine list at Tarallucci e Vino in New York City.
W & M: What is your wine for every day?
LORENZO: ONE OF MY FAVORITE WINES FOR EVERY DAY IS LAMBRUSCO, EASY TO DRINK, LIGHT AND REFRESHING. YOU CAN HAVE IT AS AAPERITIVO, WITH PASTA, MEAT OR EVEN FISH. IT IS VERY VERSATILE. I GREW UP DRINKING LAMBRUSCO AS A LITTLE BOY. MY MOM MIXED IT WITH WATER FOR ME WHEN I WAS LITTLE. IN THE AREA WHERE I GREW UP, EVERY FAMILY HAS A BOTTLE OF LAMBRUSCO READY FOR EVERY LUNCH AND DINNER.
W & M: What is your special occasion wine?
LORENZO: AMARONE DELLA VALPOLICELLA ( I CONSIDER IT TO BE MEDITATION WINE MOST SUITABLE TO DRINK IN FRONT OF THE FIREPLACE) AND WINES WITH THE NEBBIOLO GRAPE, LIKE BAROLO OR BARBARESCO IF IT IS FOR A SPECIAL OCCASION DINNER.
W & M: Do you have a favorite wine quote?
LORENZO: LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO DRINK BAD WINE.
W & M: Please give a brief history of your time in Italy as owner of a wine bar before moving to New York.
LORENZO: MY BAR FOCUSED ON A FEW DRAFT BEERS AND LOCAL WINE FROM SMALL PRODUCERS. WE USED TO PREPARE EVERY DAY, SMALL BITES TO OFFER TO OUR CUSTOMERS DURING HAPPY HOUR. MANY LOCAL PEOPLE, BUT ALSO SOME TOURISTS, BECAUSE WE WERE LOCATED ON THE ROUTE TO THE NATIONAL PARK OF APPENNINO REGGIANO AND CLOSE TO THE CASTLE OF MATILDE DI CANOSSA. WE USED TO ORGANIZE PRIVATE PARTIES AND OUR “CHEFS” WERE ALWAYS MY MOM, HER SISTERS AND SPECIAL SUPERVISION BY OUR GRANDMA. EVERYTHING WAS HOMEMADE AND WHEN POSSIBLE DIRECTLY FROM OUR GARDEN.
W & M: I see that you work with many vineyards that are family-run and biodynamic, and some of the grapes you offer cannot be found anywhere else in the US. Please list one of the wines you have with those grapes and name the grape. How often do you return to Italy to discover new winemakers?
LORENZO: I GO TO ITALY EVERY 3 TO 4 MONTHS. EVEN IF I AM ON VACATION, I CONSIDER MYSELF VERY LUCKY BECAUSE MY WORK IS MY PASSION. I ALWAYS TRY TO VISIT SOME PRODUCERS TO LEARN SOMETHING NEW. TARALLUCCI e VINO IS THE ONLY RESTAURANT IN THE UNITED STATES TO CARRY THIS SPECIAL LAMBRUSCO CALLED LAMBRUSCO BARGHI, L’INCONTRO, CANTINA PUIANELLO– ONLY 2800 BTL AND ONLY ONE PRODUCER . THIS IS A SPECIAL VARIETAL OF LAMBRUSCO. IT WAS CONSIDERED EXTINCT, BUT A FEW YEARS AGO THEY REDISCOVERED A FEW PLANTS IN ONE VINEYARD. THIS WAS A FAMOUS LAMBRUSCO IN THE 1800’s AND IT WAS MENTIONED IN MANY BOOKS OF THAT TIME. I AM SO PROUD OF THIS BECAUSE IT IS FROM MY AREA OF ITALY.
W & M: Let’s talk about a couple of wines of interest to me on your wine list: please tell the readers about each wine.
Frizzante wine (sparkling)– Franciacorta, Ferghettina, Brut (Lombardia) … pronunciation-franchacorta
LORENZO: THIS IS A BLEND OF CHARDONNAY AND PINOT NERO. VERY FINE PERLAGE AND CLEAN AFTERTASTE. STRAWBERRY AND APRICOT ON THE PALATE. LOCATED CLOSE TO LAKE ISEO. IT IS A SMALL PRODUCER WITH VERY HIGH QUALITY PRODUCT. ELEGANT, MEDIUM BODY, PERFECT AS APERITIVO OR WITH OYSTERS.
Bianchi wine (white)– Etna Bianco, Bianco di Caselle, Benanti ’11 (Sicilia)
LORENZO: 100% CARRICANTE HIGH MINERALITY BECAUSE IT IS MADE IN A VOLCANIC SOIL. IT IS DRY WITH A PLEASANT ACIDITY AND NICE AROMATIC PERSISTENCE. TASTE OF ANISE ON THE PALATE. BENANTI IS CONSIDERED ONE OF THE BEST PRODUCERS OF WINE IN ITALY. GOOD PAIRING WITH SEAFOOD.
Spergola, Pomoria Bianco, Cantina Puianello ’14 (Emilia Romagna)**** this is from his home town 🙂
LORENZO: 100% SPERGOLA MEDIUM HIGH ACIDITY, WITH FLORAL NOSE, THIS WINE IS UNIQUE. SIMILAR TO SAUVIGNON BLANC BUT MORE FULL BODIED AND CRISP, WITH GREEN APPLE ON THE PALATE AND A TOUCH OF TOASTED ALMOND ON THE AFTERTASTE.
Rossi wine (red)– Etna Rosso, Rosso di Verzella, Benanti ’12 (Sicilia)
LORENZO: GRAPES- NERELLO MASCALESE AND NERELLO CAPUCCIO, IT IS A WINE WITH HIGH MINERALITY BECAUSE IT IS MADE ON VOLCANIC SOIL. MEDIUM BODIED, IT IS RICH IN FRUIT ON THE NOSE LIKE RASPBERRY, POMEGRANATE AND PLUM. INTENSE AROMA WITH HINTS OF VANILLA.
By the bottle– Ormeasco Superiore di Pornassio, Guglierame ’11 (Liguria) 100%
LORENZO: ORMEASCO HAS VERY SIMILAR DNA TO DOLCETTO FROM PIEMONTE. MEDIUM-FULL BODIED DRY WINE, RUBY RED COLOR, WITH NOTES OF LICORICE ON THE PALATE. THE PRODUCTION IS VERY LIMITED DUE TO THE TERRAIN. THE VINEYARDS ARE PLACED ON TERRACES, EVERYTHING IS HAND-KEPT. THE WINE IS PERFECT WITH STEW MEAT OR FISH AND WITH MEDIUM AGED CHEESES.
W & M: I’d like to give you my choices for a meal, start to finish. Would you please recommend a wine to pair with each course and briefly describe why you chose that wine to pair with these food choices.
Brushette Course: Baccala 5 which is cod, potato, artichoke, mint
LORENZO: 100% TREBBIAN DI LUGANA, FAMIGLIA OLIVINI, MARKED MINERALITY, MEDIUM LIGHT, WELL BALANCED, FRESH GOOD MINERALITY
Cheese Course: Caciotta del Lazio which is sheep milk served with Chef selected condiments
LORENZO: COULD BE MANY PAIRINGS- BARBARESCO, ALESSANDRO RIVETTO, A BAROLO, TANNINS ARE MORE GENTLE, WITH A NOTE OF MINT AND TOBACCO, IT CAN MATCH PERFECTLY.
Secondi Course: Sogliola which is a pan roasted local sole, saffron sun dried tomato & green olive relish
LORENZO: ETNA BIANCO, PIETRAMARINA. IT IS A COMPLEX WINE, WITH INCREDIBLE ELEGANCE. THIS IS DELICATE, SO IT WON’T OVERWHELM THE TASTE OF THE WHITE FISH.
Dolci: Vin Santo Wine and anise cookies: why do these two pair so well
LORENZO: BECAUSE IT IS SOMETHING TO MAKE YOU HAPPY AND SMILE. USUALLY IT IS SHARING A PLATE OF COOKIES, SOMETHING I LOVE TO SHARE WITH FRIENDS.
On that note W & M says …Lorenzo, you made me smile and this wine list makes me smile. Thank You for the unique wines and your passion certainly radiates in the wine list at Tarallucci e Vino!