I like a wide variety of wines, red, white, rosé, still or sparkling, I’m always up to try new wines. As much as I like a good cabernet or zinfandel, I also like a light sparkling moscato. I especially like the bubbly light fruity taste when I pair it with a spicy hot dish. The light fruity slightly sweet wine goes down so well and fast when I eat a spicy dish like chicken fajitas.
For dinner I had fixed chicken fajitas and opened a bottle of Ecco Domani Sparkling Moscato. It is an Italian wine, 2011 vintage and only 8.5% alcohol, which makes it so easy to drink a lot more than I usually drink. I paid under $15 a bottle so quite reasonable. This is a wine I love to keep on hand.
The wine is almost clear in the glass and has a fresh fruit aroma. I could taste orange blossoms and tropical fruit. The sweetness helped soften the heat of the jalapenos and red chiles in the fajitas. The heat of the fajitas made it necessary to drink more wine. A win – win situation, wouldn’t you say?
As promised this is a sampling of some of my dessert and sparkling wine suggestions for the coming celebrations and festivities. Some of these are a bit pricey and there are certainly a wide range of Champagnes and Sparkling wines out there that will fit into all budgets. As for the dessert wines and Ports some of them can be very expensive especially the aged Ports but I’ve also found a few less expensive bottles of Port that taste very good. The most expensive Champagne below is the Tattinger “La Francaise” Brut that sells for $65 a bottle, but it is a very good bottle, something to save for a special celebration.
Le Tertre Du Lys Sauterne – A French dessert wine that is a bit sweet but definitely not too sweet. This a wonderful after dinner wine. One that I think I could drink the whole bottle all by myself.
Sandeman 10 year old Tawny Port – A wonderful port with warm caramel and honey flavors and smooth and very drinkable.
Provincia di Pavia – Roscato – This is a red sweet wine, that goes very well with desserts, it’s soft and smooth a bit sweet but not overly sweet.
Sandeman Tawny Port – This is a more affordable port than the 10 year old aged port but it is still a very nice tawny port with the warm honey and caramel flavors.
Tattinger “La Francaise” Brut – This was very nice, dry with a bite.
Gloria Ferrer Blanc de Noirs – This is one of my favorites, not too dry with a slight bit of sweetness that tasted like strawberries.
Renardat Fache Cerdon du Bugey – This one is a bit sweeter than the other Champagnes, but very drinkable.
Domaine Carneros by Tattinger Brut – This one is dry with a mineral taste and very clean tasting.
Cavicchioli – Spumante – This is light and bubbly a touch sweet perfect with cherry pie.
I seriously overate last night. I’m still recovering today and see about an hour on the elliptical. We have a tradition that for your birthday, you pick your menu and I will fix it for you. From the salad to the dessert whatever you want, I will fix it from scratch. Last night it was Mitch’s turn to pick the menu. His menu choice is always the same.
Chicken Fried Steak
Corn on the Cob
Cherry Pie ala Mode
I throw in a tossed salad so that at least one thing will be healthy, because the rest consists of about a million calories and a thousand grams of fat. And because I don’t want to be the only one indulging in this gastric nightmare besides Mitch, I invited our friends and family over to suffer through with me. They brought along a bottle of Joel Gott Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 and a bottle of Cavicchioli Spumante.
We started off with the Cabernet and it was delicious. The wine was a dark red ruby color in the glass. It had a lush smooth taste with a hint of berry. It had a full body and a wonderful finish. It tasted so good that I almost forgot that I was not helping my heart and waistline chowing down on all that comfort food.
For dessert we opened the bottle of Cavicchioli an Italian Spumante to accompany the cherry pie. It was very tasty too. The alcohol content was 8% making it easy to drink and drink and drink. The sparkling wine was a great pairing with the pie, not too dry and not super sweet. It was a light bubbly wine that went down so very easy. It reminded me that I need to drink sparkling wine more often.
Thank goodness Mitch’s birthday happens only once a year.
Last night we went to a sparkling wine tasting hosted by one of our local liquor stores. I had never been to a sparkling wine tasting and thought it would be fun. Champagne and sparkling wine is really hard for me to buy because for one we don’t drink much sparkling wine which makes it difficult to pick out a good bottle and two the price of sparkling wine is all over the place, anywhere from under $10 to that of my monthly mortgage payment.
It wasn’t a large group for the tasting, there were a couple of empty tables with glasses poured of our six selections leaving them victims of the table of three women to our immediate right. The three slurped their glasses and then went about snagging unattended glasses even asking the couple in front of us to pass over a favorite glass on their table. One word, rude. They talked throughout the presenter’s dissertation making it difficult to catch all of the information I would have liked to learn.
The first glass was a Cava, an inexpensive Spanish sparkling wine called Freixenet Blanc di Blanc, for <$9, served as a reception glass. It was dry and I could taste the telltale chardonnay grape. The six wines in the tasting ranged in price from $15 to $88 and surprisingly my favorite came in at $23. I was not a fan of the Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé Brut, the $88 bottle we tasted. To me it was too dry and bitter. My favorite was the Renardat Fache Cerdon du Bugey, a rosé the was slightly sweet and only had 7% alcohol, which means I could probably drink a lot before I realized that I couldn’t walk.
I was a bit disappointed that we didn’t get to taste any Proseccos, an Italian sparkling wine. Those are my personal favorite sparkling wines, not too sweet and not as dry as brut Champagne. All in all we had a good time and came away with a couple of bottles to add to our meager collection.