The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Go-To-Wine Tuesday

Posted on | January 25, 2011 | Written by David Bertot | 2 Comments

My fiancée and I were delighted to have my little sister visit over the weekend from Miami, FL.  Since she was completely shocked by the New York cold front, I felt it necessary to cook lots of warm, feel-good food for us to enjoy Friday and Saturday nights.  We ate delicious food and drank even better wines.  This set the stage for a Monday night feast consisting of a risotto recipe from the Veneto with red wine, radicchio, smoked mozzarella, and parmigiano reggiano; a succulent pork roast braised for three hours in white wine, leeks, and mushrooms; and a few pieces of cheese including a wonderful Piedmontese semi-hard goat cheese.  It’s a lot of food, but I’m a giant fan of leftovers, especially the kind that get better after a day or two in the fridge.

I needed a white wine that would be crisp, fresh, and clean but still have enough structure that it would stand up to hearty dishes and strong cheeses.  Frecciarossa Pinot Nero Sillery 2008 from Italy’s Oltrepò Pavese region in Lombardia was an excellent choice.  In the red category, Oltrepò Pavese has become one of very few Italian regions to establish a reputation for high-quality Pinot Noir, a grape that is notoriously difficult to work with.  Of this particular interest is the Sillery bottling, which is a pure Pinot Nero vinified as a white.  The wine demonstrated a beautifully strong yet subtle backbone that stands up to the rich, bitter, and smoky flavors of the risotto.  The wine also exudes light floral aromatics (classic traits from this producer) and exuberant white peach flavors that stood up beautifully against the pork. Something I found incredibly interesting was that the wine’s crisp and fresh qualities highlighted the grassy, herbal qualities of the olive oil that I served with bread. Pretty awesome for a wine under $25.00.

Although this wine would be awesome with simple foods such as salads, light soups, and all sorts of vegetable dishes, its ability to stand up to big flavors proved the wine to be a workhorse against leftovers.  The wine cleansed the palate and made every bite more enjoyable; in turn, the food made the wine taste great, whether that food is a Saturday night special occasion with a first course, or a Monday night of leftovers. Which, actually, is exactly what I plan to enjoy tonight.


2 Responses to “Go-To-Wine Tuesday”

  1. Dum Long
    January 25th, 2011 @ 5:14 pm

    Solid recommendations, will have to try at home.

  2. David Bertot
    January 25th, 2011 @ 5:48 pm

    Dum Long,

    Thanks! I can forward you any recipe you may wish mentioned in the blog. Also, the risotto from the Veneto pairs incredibly well with Amarone’s, as well as captures the terroir idea incredibly well.

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