Aug 22 , 2015

Tom Kisthart

Notes on the Friday Wine Tasting, August 21th 2015

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Hello Everyone,

I love underdog wine regions. Last week it nearly brought a tear to my eye seeing how well the 3 Muscadets sold at the tasting and throughout the week. Not one person responded by saying "I don't like sweet wines". Progress.

I really want to continue championing neglected regions and have ideas for upcoming tastings. The first one I'll announce will be a Soave tasting. Some of you may remember those big black bottles from Bolla. Real Soave tastes nothing like that watered down stuff. It tastes like drinking a volcano. Maybe that's a bit extreme but the volcanic soil in the area around Verona (northeast Italy) lends itself to the character of this white wine. I'll announce details of the tasting next week. Thinking about making it a Thursday tasting in addition to our Friday one. If the response is good we'll make it a series of tastings featuring one neglected area at a time. The underdogs. Craft & Curd knows how it can be. We're fighting the fight though.

Friday's Tasting

Continuing on the underdog theme we'll finish tonight's tasting with a Lambrusco. You may think of Riunite when you hear that word but the one we're pouring is not quite as sweet. However it is also light red, slightly sparkling and a bit sweet. Some purists claim real Lambrusco should be dry. The dry ones I've had can be interesting but I find the sweet ones much more drinkable and versatile at the table. Lambrusco comes from Emilia Romagna an area in Italy known for rich fatty foods. So when you're making a pasta with cream sauce, grilling sausages or throwing together fresh mozzarella with tomatoes think Lambrusco. I'll break out some more of the spicy prosciutto spread tonight (which by the way no one has bought but me, you don't know what you're missing) Check out some of the things you can do with it in the kitchen in this New York Times article:

We'll be starting the tasting with a dry sparkling rose from the same producer who makes the Lambrusco. I was turned onto it by my friends and former co-workers at Bianchi's Enoteca (Susan, Romeo & myself worked at Bern's Fine Wine & Spirits during the same period). I highly recommend checking this great Tampa wine bar out if you're not familiar with them. One of my favorite places to grab a drink and discover new things. Hint: don't ask them for a glass of 'Cabernet'.

If anyone saw some of my pictures from the beach this past weekend you might have noticed a bottle of Verdicchio that I was drinking. Verdicchio di Matelica refers to both the grape and the region it is grown in central Italy's Adriatic coast. Although this particular zone is land-locked it is still the perfect accompaniment to many types of seafood. The wines can age pretty long just as long as the producer doesn't seal it with a synthetic cork as I'm starting to see (another way to bring a tear to my eye). Luckily for us this one is closed in screw cap. Verdicchio will be another candidate for our developing underdog wines series. I haven't tasted enough good ones yet but I know they're out there.

I'm also really excited by another Cabernet I've just found from Paso Robles called Broadside. It is a steal. Don't look to Napa for value in California. Look south to Paso. I think it will be a hit.

There will be more wines, of course, and some new additions on the gourmet side. We just got in these excellent crackers or crisps as they refer to them with cranberry and hazelnut. And if you've had the awesome fig & coco spread we carry, we now also have their sister spread which is fig & orange. Those two combined with a new goat cheese that we've gotten in from Vermont Creamery called Bijou will be awesome together.

See you tonight my friends. We appreciate everyone who comes to the tastings and everyone who pops in during the week to support your local small wine, cheese and beer shop. Don't forget the underdogs.

(Tasting: 6:00 to 8:00 Every Friday $10 Per Person)