Thursday, September 2, 2010

Italian Sparkling Wines and Cheese at Tria Fermentation School Tonight

Here's a sneak peak at what I'll be pouring at the Tria Fermentation School tonight. I'll be schooling the class on some of the finer points of the sparkling wines of Italy, and teaching in harmony with Erin McLean, Tria's resident Manager and cheese maven, who's paired what looks to be a great lineup of formaggio with each of the wines. The session has been sold out for weeks, so this is a little bit of a teaser but only in the best sense, for those who'd like to follow along in part, in whole or in spirit. Gotta say, I'm looking forward to revisiting all of these vini myself.

  • Prosecco Montello e Colli Asolani Extra Dry, Bele Casel NV
    Or is it now Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG? I can't remember which label version I packed... but it matters not as the DOCG is simply a rechristening/theoretical upgrade of the same wine. Always a joyous way to start.

  • Malvasia dell'Emilia IGT "Il Mio," Camillo Donati NV (2008)
    The dry version of Donati's frizzante Malvasia Candia, lot number 01/08.

  • Alta Langa Brut, Ettore Germano 2006
    A traditional method blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, grown in Sergio Germano's vineyards in the Alto Langa, south of and at a higher altitude than his main property in Serralunga d'Alba.

  • Franciacorta "Cuvée Brut," Bellavista NV
    The flagship of Bellavista's broad portfolio of Lombardian bubblies.

  • Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro "Rive dei Ciliegi," Francesco Vezzelli 2009
    An excellent expression of dry, frizzante Lambrusco. I've poured this at a number of events and it inevitably turns out to be a polarizing wine, with some tasters falling immediately in love while others are left scratching their heads.

  • Moscato d'Asti, G.D. Vajra 2009
    Moscato doesn't get much better than this. As classic and easy with cheese as it is on the breakfast table!

  • Brachetto "Fosso della Rosa," Giovanni Almondo 2008
    We couldn't get by with just one sparkling red now, could we? And yes, it makes for three of seven from Piemonte, but if you've been reading here for long that should come as little surprise. Deliciously fruity and sweet, immensely gulpable and a pleasingly low alcohol way to close out with class.


Do Bianchi said...

man, that is such a KILLER flight of wines! nice!

David McDuff said...

Wish you could've been there to taste along, Jeremy. Some of the cheese pairings worked out quite well, btw.

TWG said...

It was sold out almost immediately. There's a certain chain of wine shops where you could purchase all but two of the wines and recreate it at home. Hard to believe the Donati is available in PA.

David McDuff said...

Indeed, Tom. The classroom space at TFS is intimate and most if not all classes tend to sell out very quickly. And indeed, all but the wines from Bellavista and Donati are brought in to this part of the US via Petit Pois/Sussex and are sold seasonally at a certain chain of wine shops as well as at other establishments in the PA/NY/NJ/DE quadrant. Most of them, plus the Bellavista, are also available as SLO items via the PLCB. The Donati is a Dressner import, is not available in PA, and very definitely was "smuggled" in by yours truly specifically for this class.

TWG said...

Ah, how was the Donati? Probably would not have survived the PLCB.

David McDuff said...

Even though I'd predicted the Lambrusco to be polarizing, it was Donati's Malvasia dell'Emilia that was by far the most polarizing wine of the night. It was also the first wine on "the mat" -- the Prosecco was served as an aperitif as people arrived -- so it really took the group straight out of their comfort zone.

I liked it -- great texture, with lots of apple skin and sponti character, just barely frizzante -- and the beer-leaning folks in the class seemed to really enjoy it. The more wine-centric folks, though, didn't all know quite what to make of it, and one or two folks expressed outright dislike. At the very least, it was a great way to get the group involved and interacting.

You should definitely check it out if you haven't already done so, Tom.

TWG said...

David, I've had one botttle and didn't go over well with my wife but she doesn't like beer. One should think of it as beer or have no preconceived notions. I plan on opening a bottle tonight and using a Champagne stopped to hold it over a few days. I'm guessing these bottles also have a fair amount of variation.

David McDuff said...

@TWG - While it definitely has a lot in common with farmhouse/lambic ale or, even more so, cider, I think it's definitely best to just approach it, as you said, with no preconceived notions.

The biggest variation I noticed from bottle to bottle was in the level of fizziness.

I'll be curious to know of your experiences with drinking a bottle over the course of several days.

TWG said...

Only had it over two days and the second day it tasted a bit flat but still similar to the previous day. I have another bottle and will try to make that one last longer.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin