The Inside Story from Italian Wine Merchants

Go-To-Wine Tuesday

Bruno Verdi Oltrepo Pavese Cavariola Riserva 2005

Bruno Verdi Oltrepo Pavese Cavariola Riserva 2005 is a wine that everyone should taste for the sake of tasting.  Many people forget that there is life beyond the usual suspects of Brunello, Barolo, Barbaresco, Amarone and Super Tuscans, but when sampling the gambit of Italian wine, the Cavariola is a wine you should not overlook.

Bruno Verdi is a master of indigenous northern indigenous grapes, especially those from the area of Oltrepò Pavese.  Verdi combines the best traditional methods with the best of the modern to create world-class wines in a region where this is not usually the case. He grows Croatina, Uva Rara, Barbera and Ughetta di Canetto here and he meticulously blends them to create the estate’s flagship wine, Cavariola Riserva.

I love this wine and many other northern reds because of their superior freshness, bright fruit flavors, herbal edge and fine tannins. It’s a perfect wine to pair with food, especially the Italian treat known, even in Italian, as “Power Toast.”

This is not the character from the cult cartoon Ren and Stimpy; rather, it’s a northern Italian sandwich that is one of the most delicious treats I know.  Picture two slices of sourdough whole grain and fennel bread with thinly sliced speck (smoked prosciutto) and a couple of slices of whatever the local cheese is.  Now, put this baby in the oven for a minute or two to crisp up and that is what they call Power Toast!

Pair this super sandwich with a glass of Cavariola Riserva, and you’ve got a treat that’ll warm you from the inside out, all while transporting you to northern Italian meadow. It’s a trip to Lombardia in a delicious, piquant, nourishing super—treat, cartoons optional.