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The sparkling wine from Italy that most American consumers are familiar with is Prosecco, made in a specific area of the Veneto region from the glera grape in the bulk Charmat process. Prosecco tends to be simple, tasty, with notes of ap...
The sparkling wine from Italy that most American consumers are familiar with is Prosecco, made in a specific area of the Veneto region from the glera grape in the bulk Charmat process. Prosecco tends to be simple, tasty, with notes of apples and almond blossoms, and often fairly sweet, though the best examples imported to this country are increasingly dry. Another area of Italy produces sparkling wine that deserves attention, however, and that’s Franciacorta, in Lombardy, where the sparkling wines use not only the traditional champagne method but the typical chardonnay and pinot noir grapes of the Champagne region. These are sparkling wines of real character that make Prosecco and other Italian sparklers look like mere bagatelles. Not that there’s anything wrong with mere bagatelles; sometimes they fill a necessary place in life. My recommendation today, Wednesday, is the Satèn Lo Sparviere non-vintage Franciacorta from the producer Gussalli Beretta. Made completely from chardonnay grapes, this sparkling wine, which fermented 80 percent in stainless steel and 20 percent in large casks, offers a pale gold color with a gentle surge of tiny glinting silver bubbles. The initial effect is clean, fresh and energetic; aromas of roasted lemon, jasmine, ginger and quince and lightly buttered cinnamon toast are delicate and fine-spun, while the whole package, though enlivened by dynamic acidity, is dry, elegant and high-toned, with great bones and a whip-lash limestone spine. 13 percent alcohol. We drank this delightful Franciacorta over several nights as aperitif with various snacks and appetizers. Excellent. About $22, a Steal, and a terrific addition to restaurant and bar by-the-glass programs. Imported by Siema Wines, Springfield, Va. A sample for review.
about 2 hours ago
Beautiful. Rose petal and Turkish delight, tobacco, wilted leaf and perfume; it's cloud like, ethereal and soft, with a lining of spice. In the scent you can see how Frappato and Sangiovese are genetically entwined. 12.5% alcohol. It's f...
Beautiful. Rose petal and Turkish delight, tobacco, wilted leaf and perfume; it's cloud like, ethereal and soft, with a lining of spice. In the scent you can see how Frappato and Sangiovese are genetically entwined. 12.5% alcohol. It's focused, tart and brisk; the first mouth feels lean and bright, but by nights end there's more depth and substance. The texture is wonderful, plush and mushroom flavoured, while the tannins very fine and will-o'-the-wisp like. Yes.Day 2. The re-corked bottle left overnight on the kitchen table. It's still pretty, but darker and more savoury. Fenugreek perhaps. . . The wisps of tannin have grown into thick tongues and the texture is more meaty and assertive.http://feeds.feedburner.com/WinoSapien Click here for the original context
about 2 hours ago
  Why do I advocate drinking global wine? It satisfies my desire to dream about other places, cultures and people, and it’s a favorite game, quite entertaining. Food and wine is an easy way to explore the world. Chianti with I...
  Why do I advocate drinking global wine? It satisfies my desire to dream about other places, cultures and people, and it’s a favorite game, quite entertaining. Food and wine is an easy way to explore the world. Chianti with Italian Foccacia sandwiches at San Francisco’s Mario’s Bohemian Cafe was my first introduction to pairing, at age […]
about 4 hours ago
@ChMontelena #cookingwithwine #wine #foodpairing #fall #cooking #riesling #veggies #wineglass…
@ChMontelena #cookingwithwine #wine #foodpairing #fall #cooking #riesling #veggies #wineglass…
about 4 hours ago
RT @NYFarmer: @tomphilpott @savortooth Horrific situation in South Dakota needs coverage badly
RT @NYFarmer: @tomphilpott @savortooth Horrific situation in South Dakota needs coverage badly
about 4 hours ago
Culling from his à la carte menu, Chef Paul Qui — Top Chef winner, Uchi alumnus, etc. — created a superb tasting menu for us last night at his eponymous Qui in Austin last night. But the best dish — for reasons that are wholly self-expla...
Culling from his à la carte menu, Chef Paul Qui — Top Chef winner, Uchi alumnus, etc. — created a superb tasting menu for us last night at his eponymous Qui in Austin last night. But the best dish — for reasons that are wholly self-explanatory (see above) — was the chitarra-shaped long noodles that he prepared for our daughter Georgia P and tossed with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano. You wouldn’t think that Chef Qui — a nationally acclaimed chef who knows the heat of the celebrity kitchen and the bright, glaring lights of reality television — would care about the “little people” who dine in his restaurant. But this dish alone, which Tracie P and I both slurped down as well, was enough to make our experience there one of the best dinners in recent memory (and I have had some pretty extraordinary meals this year). The way we were greeted and treated, with a toddler and newborn in tow, was just the first indication of the humanity and brilliance of his hospitality, a first taste of the wholesome and delicious food that would follow. After dinner I asked Chef Qui about how he achieves the freshness and avoids the freeze-dried flavor in the raw fish he serves. “It has a lot to do with the way the fishermen handle the fish,” he said. And simply put, “it has a lot to do with how much you’re willing to pay.” The quality of the yellowtail sashimi was simply thrilling. The texture of the baby octopus was like a gummy bear. In this dish, the quality of the materia prima was rivaled only by Chef Qui’s deft hand in how he delicately sautéed the cephalopod. Compressed, intensely flavored watermelon played counterpoint to its gentle saltiness. Wine director and general manager June Rodil needs no introduction from me: she’s one of the brightest stars of the Texas wine scene and she’s one of the few Austin-based wine professionals who lands in the national wine media on a regular basis. With every one of her lists, she’s impressed me with her ability be au courant with the international wine dialogue despite the obstacles that the Texas wine industry can pose for buyers like her. Tracie P and I LOVED the 2006 Foreau Vouvray Sec (June knows how much we love classic Chenin Blanc) and the seven-year-old wine had just the right balance of freshness and muscularity to go with the sea- and landfood that appeared before us. Skimming through her focused, tight list, I found so many wines that I would have loved to have drunk: López de Heredia, Scarbolo Pinot Grigio Ramato (this is what I’ll drink next time), and Gaudio Barbera del Monferrato Bricco Mondalino (I DIG that wine). The noodles appeared again in the “pasta curry style,” with fresh herbs and Thai eggplant. This dish was stunning and the Chenin Blanc made for a dreamlike pairing. The plat de résistance was the Dinuguan, pork offal and pork blood braised until melt-in-your-mouth. I was blown away by the lightness and elegant flavor of this traditional dish from June and Paul’s childhood (they’re both Filipino-American). And once again, the Chenin Blanc delivered its delightful freshness with just enough umpf to work well with the richness. The gnocchi were tender, with delicate but consistent texture. I couldn’t talk Georgia P into eating any Dinuguan but she loved the dumpling. Chef Qui (above) and sommelier June, we love your restaurant. Thank you for a truly wonderful evening!
about 7 hours ago
New Fall Creek Vineyards Winemaker: Sergio Cuadra Schlie Fall Creek Vineyards Hires a New Winemaker: Sergio Cuadra Schlie In a recent news release, Susan Auler announced the hiring of a new winemaker at Fall Creek Vineyard – Sergio...
New Fall Creek Vineyards Winemaker: Sergio Cuadra Schlie Fall Creek Vineyards Hires a New Winemaker: Sergio Cuadra Schlie In a recent news release, Susan Auler announced the hiring of a new winemaker at Fall Creek Vineyard – Sergio Cuadra Schlie. He is  an experienced winemaker from Chile who was recommended by Paul Hobbs! Sergio is an Agronomy Engineer and Winemaker with nineteen years of experience in the Chilean wine industry. He had the privilege of having worked in two of the most successful Chilean wine companies, Viña Concha y Toro and Viña Caliterra, sister company of Viña Errázuriz, where he gathered a comprehensive knowledge and skills in many angles of the business, which includes all the way from vineyard assessment to supporting sales teams in several markets. He also lead the production of significant amounts of wines of different varieties over twenty vintages, including one in Fetzer Vineyards in the mid-1990s, and making wines from a wide range of origins in Chile. Sergio has also taken part in the creation of marketing strategies for new wine brands to be introduced in different markets. Widely experienced on the design, control and managing the annual winery budget. He has also worked with renowned winemakers like Paul Hobbs, Jacques Lurton, and Kym Milne MW. – — – — – Here is an excerpt from Sergio’s 2013 Fall Creek Vineyards vintage report: Chardonnay.  This year we harvested only a very small amount of this variety due to the freezes.  Regardless of the small sample, we had the chance to try a whole cluster pressing to direct the juice straight to the barrels to ferment.  It took about three weeks to finish and after the first racking it tastes just wonderful.  It is such a shame we have so little, because we would love for everyone to taste this wonderful wine.  We plan to sell it only through the tasting room.  Therefore, if you want a taste of it, you will have to come and get it at Fall Creek Vineyards in Tow! Merlot.  We harvested this on August 8th with a nice ripeness in terms of sugar and taste. There were no green characters after tasting the fruit, which evidenced a good healthy condition.  The wine, even though it’s a bit too early to tell, is phenomenal, actually.  This was a very good surprise for me as it is difficult to see this quality from where I come.  Good color and fruity aromas, soft and round tannins only presage a tremendous wine. Cabernet.  It was harvested on August 15th, just at the right time.  Like the Merlot, it already is showing a promising future.  As a matter of fact, both are resting in barrels where we are expecting malolactic fermentation to happen.  They might be good candidate for Meritus quality, which is our top wine. Mourvedre and Syrah.  We put them together because we wanted them to ferment in the same tank, so we have a co-fermentation of the two. There are very interesting fruit characters and a soft and easy mouth feeling.  The idea is to blend them with Grenache to make a wonderful “GSM”. Sangiovese.  This grape was severely hit by the freeze, so a very small amount of grapes were produced.  Hence, the plants were not in the best balance to concentrate the fruit, so this is not a good year to evaluate the potential of the grape.  Anyhow, with such a small amount of Sangiovese, there is a great chance we will only have it available in the tasting room. Grenache.  It came in on August 29th, even though it behaved like if it did not want to get ripe, strangely enough.   It may be one of the grape varieties least hit by the frost, as evidenced from the more generous yield, compared to the short crops of the other varieties.  It took its time to ripen, maybe because of the heavier load it had.  There is a nice fruity nose and smooth mouth feeling.  As usual, color is not its main attribute, but it isn’t all about the color, is it? Black Spanish.  This variety is so well adapted to the local conditions that it was not even harme
about 7 hours ago
While the roasted eye of round roast was the main course for this challenging wine pairing dinner, it was the shallot sauce that added something extra to the meat. Roasted beef can get a little boring if you’re not careful. I love beef, ...
While the roasted eye of round roast was the main course for this challenging wine pairing dinner, it was the shallot sauce that added something extra to the meat. Roasted beef can get a little boring if you’re not careful. I love beef, but I do like to see what can be done to give it a little more personality. In the case of this meal, the shallot sauce was the star. It was an easy sauce to make with ingredients that included shallots, red wine, and country Dijon mustard, but it certainly added to the overall flavors of the roasted meat as well as the entire meal. In addition to the roasted eye of round roast with the shallot sauce, we had a mixed green salad with fresh raspberries drizzled with blackberry ginger balsamic vinegar, seasoned green beans with sautéed red bell peppers, and rosemary roasted tri-colored fingerling potatoes. In addition to being yummy, the various side dishes made a very colorful presentation. As always, I referred to my favorite book, What to Drink with What You Eat, and decided to try a Cabernet Franc and a Merlot with this meal. We selected the 2009 Fielding Hills Cabernet Franc and the 2009 Columbia Crest Reserve Merlot, both from Washington State. Both wines were excellent, but the unanimous choice as the best pairing was the Cabernet Franc. What would you have paired with this meal? Your suggestions for future challenging pairings are always welcome. Bon Appétit! 2009 Fielding Hills Cabernet Franc (Riverbend Vineyard, Wahluke Slope, Washington): Deep, dark purple. Nice nose with black cherry and spice aromas. More black cherry and spice as well as herbs and a touch of earth come through on the palate. Full-bodied with crisp acidity and medium to high tannins. Well-balanced and smooth with a long, lingering finish. Quality: 4.5 stars (out of 5) QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5) Where to buy: Winery $30 2009 Columbia Crest Reserve Merlot (Stone Tree Vineyard, Wahluke Slope, Washington): Deep, dark purple. Nose is a bit tight at first and then plum aromas come through. Plum and black pepper dominate the palate. Medium to full-bodied with lively acidity and medium tannins. Well-balanced with a very long finish. Quality: 4 stars (out of 5) QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5) Where to buy: Winery $30 Challenging Wine Pairing: Roasted Eye of Round with Shallot Sauce was originally posted on Wine Peeps. Wine Peeps - Your link to great QPR wines from Washington State and beyond.
about 8 hours ago
Our exclusive ranking of the years best value wines under $15.
Our exclusive ranking of the years best value wines under $15.
about 11 hours ago
Majella is clearly among the most reliable wine producers in Australia. But a terrible season is a terrible season.
Majella is clearly among the most reliable wine producers in Australia. But a terrible season is a terrible season.
about 12 hours ago