I LOVE my job!!! Yesterday, I had to work — yes, on a Saturday! It was great! I went to Eastern Washington to taste wine (well, someone has to do it) and visit with my friends David & Linda Lowe at Wineglass Cellars in Zillah. As always, the wines were outstanding. And the work, well, as I mentioned before, someone has to do it!
David and I settled in and tasted a number of his wines while putting together the menu for the upcoming winemaker’s dinner, March 6. this is a process that I thoroughly enjoy. First, we discussed about the type of menu that would be fun and a great opportunity to show off David’s wines. We chose Tapas style (small plates of a variety of foods), of Spanish and Mediterranean flavors. Then, it’s down to business â€” tasting the wines, and choosing foods to pair.
I always like to start with the wines, because their flavors are already in the bottle, and I cannot influence them, but I can influence the choices of foods, the seasonings, and the preparation of each. And I especially like to complete this process along with the winemaker, as he or she has a well developed palate, a wonderful knowledge of the wines, and their flavors.
So, back to tasting. I look for both bold and underlying characteristics in the wine, and then picture in my mind the food flavors that will best show off the wine. For example, the tasting notes for David’s 2006 Sangiovese list “strawberry preserve and raspberry, bright fruity acidity.” It is a very food friendly wine, in which I found a hint of cinnamon. This varietal stands up well to zesty foods, so I plan to pair it with Chicken Briouats, triangle of phyllo filled with chicken spiced with coriander, cumin, cinnamon, a few raisins, etc. The anticipation is now thick!! For the full menu, click on the class info here! Hope to see you in class!