June Featured Wine: Fontaleoni Vernaccia Di San Gimingano

Vernaccia di San Gimignano is from just outside the village of San Gimignano in Tuscany.  It is considered one of the finest white wines of Italy and was the first white wine to be granted DOC status.  The wine is a pale yellow green color with medium intensity. Floral, lemon and melon notes hit you on the nose, with citrus notes and minerality on the palate.  The wine finishes with refreshing acidity and minerality. Fontaleoni is one of the best producers of Vernaccia di San Gimignano, normally $13.99, this month on sale for $10.99.  

What to Eat it With

Vernaccia is a crisp white wine from Tuscany.  It pairs well with vegetables, fish and light chicken dishes.  I had this with a light dinner of mostly vegetables and some cheese.  We usually eat our large meal mid-day so dinner is light.

Cucumbers and Peppers:

No cooking here, simply wash and slice the cucumbers and place in a bowl.  Also, wash and cut 2 red peppers, remove seeds and slice.  Also place these in a bowl.  This evening I used avocado oil, lemon and cilantro.  Whisk the lemon and oil until thick, add cilantro and salt and whisk some more.  Pour half of mixture over the cucumbers and peppers.  Using a spoon, lightly toss the vegetables in the dressing.  Place the cucumbers on a circle in a round plate with peppers in the center.

Avocado and Tomatoes with tune and chick peas:

Remove the skins and pit from an avocado and slice into 5 or 6 slices lengthwise, put aside.  Next slice a large plum or roma tomatoes in the same fashion.  Place the tomatoe and avocado on a plate forming a circle, first an avocado slice then tomatoe, continue until you form a circle around the plate.  Leave the center open.  Using a can of tuna, preferably packed in olive oil from Italy, remove most of the oil and put tuna in a bowl.  Next open a can of chick peas, from Italy, Spain or the middle east, drain and pour into the same bowl.  Add a little finely chopped raw onion, cilantro, one table spoon of real mayonnaise, salt, lemon and olive oil.  Mix well with a spoon and taste, add additional salt as needed.  Plate the tuna and chick peas into the center of the dish with avocado and tomatoe.  Pour the remaining dressing from the cucumbers over the avocados and tomatoes.

Cheese:

You can of course use any cheese of your liking, but this evening I used a pecorino and a provolone, both from Italy and a simple brie from France.

That’s it!  No cooking, 15 minutes to prepare and you have a simple light meal for two.  Just add a bottle of Vernaccia and if desired some nice crusty French or Italian bread.  
Buon Appetito!

May Featured Wine: Why Whine?

Robs Review

Why Wine Pinot Noir is a fantastic California Pinot Noir that is light in body and full of flavor.  There is candied cherry and strawberry on the nose.  The flavor on the palate is beautiful red fruit with nice oak spice and smooth tannins.  This wine pairs well with light fare and drinks well all by itself on a warm spring day.   

What to Eat it With

Why Whine?  I don’t know, but everyone does sometimes.  When it’s your time, whine with us!  

Why wine is a simple traditional California Pinot Noir with a really cool label.

We wanted to have our first private label be simple and recognizable yet stand out!  The label design is the feature that stands out.

California Pinot noir is one of the most popular and recognizable red wines in the country and it pairs well with so many different foods.  Its simplicity makes it so versatile.

Recently I made gourmet burgers for our Sunday lunch.  They were very simple, just organic grass fed beef rolled into balls and pressed flat onto a cast iron pan, seared to perfection!

On the side we had caramelized onions, sauted portobello’s, a roasted red pepper aioli, raw onion and tomato as well as 4 types of cheese.  It was a make your own gourmet burger and the Why Whine Pinot went perfectly.

The cheese included cheddar, muenster, gouda and Havarti slices.  The rolls I also made myself using pizza dough.  I tool a pound of pizza dough, cut it into 6 equal pieces, rolled into 6 balls and placed on the baking stones in the oven.  450 degrees for about 15 minutes.  They were perfectly soft but just slightly crunchy outside.

The sides included glazed baby carrots, baked sweet potato fries and green beans.  

Bon Apetit!

Glazed Carrots – mix just a table spoon of maple syrup in a bowl with olive oil and salt, then using a brush spread on the carrots.  Place in 400 degree oven for 20 – 30 minutes to bake.  

Baked Sweet Potato Fries – wash then cut up the sweet potatoes into strips, keep the skins on.  Place on baking sheets, only one layer with spaces between each potato.  Using the same basting mixture as the carrots, brush on the fries.  Place in 400 degrees oven for 30 mins or until they are cooked to your preference.

Green Beans – simply boil in salted water until starting to turn soft but still a little cruncy.  Remove from water, drain and dry.  10 minutes before serving, saute the green beans in olive oil, lemon and garlic then salt to taste and serve.

Summer Wine Special

Three Amazing Wines, all with prices slashed.

Have you ever had a wine that you knew was “the one?” Something so good that you had to keep drinking it.  We have a lot of Sauvignon Blanc drinkers like that, and personally, I feel that way about Rickshaw Chardonnay.  Vernaccia is another phenomenal white from Italy that will definitely please anyone that loves a crisp refreshing white in the summertime. Reminiscent of Sauv Blanc, with fresh citrus notes, and refreshing acidity on the finish.