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Old 05-30-2008, 11:44 AM   #1
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Help me with my pairings - Italian 4 course...

So, I have this change jar on my desk at work, and when it fills up, I take it to coinstar and use all the money for wine. Usually just 1 nice bottle, but sometimes a few different things to "try out"

well, today is jar day. I usually get about 75$.

I'm cooking a mini-feast for my fiance and I tonight for some nice NJ weather outdoor dining.....

first I'm going to make a Caponata on garlic toast as kind of an antipasti

then I'm going to make a spring green salad with some breaded/broiled goat cheese

then for main I'm going to make a fettuccine with asparagus, roma tomatos, some left over mushrooms some herbs, with some Dill with just some oliveoil, lemon....I might put some salmon filet in there for the misses and some chicken in there for me.

for dessert, I'm not sure, probably a tiramisu that I'll pick up from wegmans or something. or just whip up some ice cream or maybe some cheeses.

So, tonight I thought it would be fun to pair with each dish.

with say...100$....which of some common-in-the-store wines would you get for each dish? I prefer reds but i realize the main is not very red friendly....so I'm open to whites for this meal too.

I don't know italian wines but enjoy chianti very much and usually stock classico reserve chianti....

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Old 05-30-2008, 12:00 PM   #2
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Have a reisling with your first course, merlot with the second course. Third course can be beaujolais, and have port or sauternes with dinner.


oops, I meant dessert... edited because ...well, because
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Old 05-30-2008, 12:01 PM   #3
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A nice white is Louis Jadot Pouilly Fuisse. Chappalet makes some killer Cabs. Or Roger Perrin Cotes Du Rhone is a great French red as well.

I don't worry about red for this, white for that. Drink what you like. Sometimes I'll even start with a white with my appetizer and switch to a red for my entree.

Label shopping works great too.
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Old 05-30-2008, 12:34 PM   #4
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I would look for 2005 Byron Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley--Around $20 but its about as good as it gets for a nice white..

Nothing wrong with Red with the main dish, just not something as heavy as a Cab...
Something like a Clos du Bois 1996 Marlstone would work nicely with dish. ($40-$50 per bottle). It will satisfy your preference for red, with a light enough flavor to not overpower the dish.

Desert... Tiramisu Interesting. A desert with both subtle and strong flavors..
I would go with something like Novella 2000 Synergy Paso Robles Estate Bottled. It should be under $15 and is a nice soft blended wine that is easy on the palate. I would stick to a blended wine for desert, preferably a Zin based to keep the flavors full but mild.

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Old 05-30-2008, 03:23 PM   #5
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Well, since you're going Italian with the food, why not go Italian with the wine? I'm not going to give you specific brands because it will depend on availability, but I'll give you the names of the type of wine. Most large supermarkets that have good wine selections should carry these. If not, just take a trip to your local wine store. They'll should have a nice selection with wines in varying price ranges.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMcMurphy View Post
first I'm going to make a Caponata on garlic toast as kind of an antipasti
Many traditional Italian meals start with a glass of Prosecco so you could go with that.

Quote:
then I'm going to make a spring green salad with some breaded/broiled goat cheese
Most goat cheese from Italy is produced in the northern regions like Piedmont and Trentino so a wine from this region would pair well with those flavors. Look for a white wine from the Trentino-Alto Adige region. They are made from the Chardonnay grape but are not oaky like California chards. They are really good food friendly wines.

Quote:
then for main I'm going to make a fettuccine with asparagus, roma tomatos, some left over mushrooms some herbs, with some Dill with just some oliveoil, lemon....I might put some salmon filet in there for the misses and some chicken in there for me.
Mushrooms tend to bring out the tannins in wine, and with your other flavors, you wouldn't want to pair this course with something big. I would recommend a Montepulciano or Barbera. These wines have nice fruit flavors, are low in tannins, and have acid levels that are food friendly.

Quote:
for dessert, I'm not sure, probably a tiramisu that I'll pick up from wegmans or something. or just whip up some ice cream or maybe some cheeses.
If you're not doing the cheese, then you can't go wrong with a Moscato. Just don't get a Moscato d'Asti which is a sparkling Moscato.
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Old 05-30-2008, 04:42 PM   #6
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Oh, I really like all the wine suggestions!

My favorite Italian white, when I can find it, is Gavi di Gavi. Goes very well with seafood. La Scolca runs a bit high ($35-40/bottle) but is excellent with seafood. Villa Sparina is about half the price but I think taste more a younger wine and would do well with cheese, fruit, salad/vegetable pairing. But either of these would do well with your salad and main.
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Old 05-30-2008, 04:54 PM   #7
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The only wine that really goes with asparagus, is an Austrian whhite called Gruner Veltliner. The good news is that you can get a really good one for around $20.

otherwise, I would serve Prosecco throughout the meal. Sparkling wine, served cold, always goes with everything!
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Old 05-30-2008, 04:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Mushrooms tend to bring out the tannins in wine, and with your other flavors, you wouldn't want to pair this course with something big. I would recommend a Montepulciano or Barbera. These wines have nice fruit flavors, are low in tannins, and have acid levels that are food friendly.
You are right, IC, about mushrooms bringing out tannins, BUT the asparagus is going to make any red wine taste tinny, and that's never a good thing. If he's using asparagus, the most successful route is to pair with it...
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Old 05-30-2008, 05:30 PM   #9
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awesome suggestions thanks!
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Old 05-30-2008, 06:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefJune View Post
The only wine that really goes with asparagus, is an Austrian whhite called Gruner Veltliner. The good news is that you can get a really good one for around $20.

otherwise, I would serve Prosecco throughout the meal. Sparkling wine, served cold, always goes with everything!
Huh?

I mean....there's only one whole bottle of wine in the world that should be consumed with asparagus?

Sorry, just like all the other comments, thats just one's opinion.
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