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Social Media links;
NBC Montana Today TV Segment with Valentine’s Day wines; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30455384/index.html
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Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip. Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com
Sleep City Missoula www.SleepCity.com
Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.
Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.
It’s nearly Valentine’s Day and the pressure is on, what to do. There are two choices, dining out or staying at home for a nice evening. No matter what your decision is Valentine’s Day involves three things, Food, Wine, and dessert.
Special occasions, in this case, Valentine’s Day is one time when you want the evening to be perfect so it is important to think about what wine you are going to enjoy with your meal. I have a few easy suggestions on how to approach this decision making process.
Choosing a wine for your romantic Valentine’s dinner can be difficult in the sense of what wine will you and your dinner guest both enjoy. If you are dining out I recommend choosing a restaurant, like Ciao Mambo in Missoula, that has a nice wine list and offers many selections of both red and white wines by the glass. If your are like my wife and I she typically enjoys a dinner that pairs well with a white wine while I tend to enjoy dinners that dictate red wine.
For today’s special occasion I’m recommending seven wines today that are fabulous and inexpensive. The red and white wines are super wines and are well rounded and forgiving enough to pair with a myriad of Valentine dinners. The Rose´ is a very food friendly wine that will pair with any entree you may be serving.
When I think about wine and food recommendations I always consider Old World wines that are made to enjoy with food or New World wines that are made in an Old World style.
It’s important to remember to pace yourself so that you enjoy this special evening. All of the Old World wines selections I’m recommending today are lower in alcohol content. This allows the wines not to be too big or bold as not to compete with your meal. In other words these wines are great companions for tonight’s dinner.
The Wine List
Chateau Coustaut Graves Blanc - $13.99 A blend of 45% Sauvignon Blanc, 45% Semillon and 10% Muscadelle. A great white Bordeaux wine.
Nose – grapefruit tones with notes of kiwi and ripe gooseberries
Palate – grassy flavors with nice acidity
Finish – long elegant finish, nice mineral
L’Ecole No 41 – $10.99 Fresh, tart, crisp, with nice fruit from the New World of Walla Walla. This is a great food friendly white wine.
Nose – perfumed honeysuckle and orange blossom aromas
Palate – flavors of apple, apricot, grapefruit, and crisp minerality
Finish – slight spiciness, hint of honey, slight fruitiness
Anselmi San Vincenzo
In the annals of winemaking, Roberto Anselmi is a legend, a charismatic motorbike-riding rebel whose uncompromising quality-over-quantity approach has helped redefine the image of north Italian white wines.
Since taking over management of his family’s winery in the Soave district of northeast Italy’s Veneto region two decades ago, Anselmi has been motivated by an emotional and professional commitment to tapping the unrealized potential of the wines he grew up with. This has entailed a significant parting of ways with traditional vineyard and winemaking practices that have historically characterized the Soave district, and given birth to a new generation of north Italian white wines of unprecedented quality, character and finesse.
Anselmi San Vincenzo- $11.99 The Anselmi San Vincenzo is 80% Garganega, 10% Chardonnay, and 10% Sauvignon Blanc.
Nose – scents of minerals, lemon/lime, apricot and yellow apples
Palate – honeydew melon, pear, yellow flowers, citrus, dry, lush
Finish – nice lingering finish of fruit and citrus
Chateau de Campuget Costieres de Nimes Tradition Rose 2010 - $9.99 Syrah 70%, Grenache Noir 30%. The wine’s color is an intense peony pink.
Nose – scents of small red fruits such as raspberries or blackcurrants
Palate – perfect balance of acidity and fruit
Finish – nice finish, a little strawberry and raspberry
E Guigal Cotes du Rhone Red – $15.99 This is a beautiful wine shimmers in the glass and is inexpensive. 50% Syrah, 40% Grenache, and 10% Mourvèdre.
Nose – red- and blackcurrant, cherry, dried flowers and tobacco, with powerful spice and black olive accents
Palate – ample, not to full, nice berry,spice, earth, great tannin
Finish – long finish, fruit and white pepper
Delas Cotes du Ventoux - $9.99 The color is a deep ruby red, 80%Grenache 20% Syrah. With it’s predominately berry-fruit bouquet, this wine shows the full aromatic power of these two fine grape varieties.
Nose – red and black berries, fresh fruit, and just a hint of spice
Palate – medium body, bountiful fruit
Finish – long finish, fruit
Saracco Moscato D’Asti
Saracco Moscato D’Asti - $15.99 This wine is perfect as refreshing aperitif or a light finish to a meal, incredibly light and floral sparkling wine
Nose – Perfume of fresh peach, pear and aromatic white flowers
Palate – light effervescence, great balance of fruit and acid, not too sweet
Finish – elegant finish with a hint of candied fruit
Paolo Saracco keeps tight control of the harvest to ensure a perfect acid balance to the natural sweetness of this grape. A slight sparkle is traditional for Moscato d’Asti, it lifts the fruit and guarantees a wine that is light and refreshing.
The original Saracco logo had a portrait of a wolf because Luigi Saracco was known in the village of Castiglione Tinella as il Lupo or, The Wolf. He got the name when he was a young man. He would come home hungry after a hard day of work in the vineyards. If dinner wasn’t ready as soon has he arrived, he would walk around outside the house. He couldn’t stand being inside the house smelling the aromas and not be able to eat and he was too hungry to socialize. When the other villagers saw him pacing around smelling the air, they said “Look, there’s Saracco, the wolf.”
Every Saracco after Luigi has been known as “Lupetto” or son of the wolf. Paolo decided to change his labels to reflect the delicate quality of his wines, but in his heart, and in his village, he is still known as “Lupetto”.
Check out Liquid Planet for today’s wine recommendations, this will give you a great head start for a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner. From my table to yours Happy Valentine’s Day, I’ll see you on the radio.