WinePoste.com, a Design District Internet wine seller and wine event space has teamed up with Scardello Cheese to do monthly wine and cheese tasting classes. It’s a powerful combination. One of best cheese merchants in town paired with a quality wine merchant (while WinePoste is brand new, its principals have over 30 man-years in the wine business). This week I was fortunate to be a guest at the first event, Tuscany Wine and Cheese Pairing.
After an aperitif wine of Prosecco a dozen of us avid wine and food lovers (including several beginners) took our seats in the tasting room at the side of WinePoste’s main gallery, while James Jordan of WinePoste guided us through four Tuscan wines and Scardello’s Marco Villegas described two to three cheeses matched with each one. For example, the white 2011 La Spinetta Vermentino ($21.99 / $19.80 case) was paired with Melody, a Camembert style goat cheese from Laura Chenel’s Chevre in California, and a Delice de Bourgogne a triple-cream brie from cow’s milk (popular with cardiologist’s for it’s post consumption cashectomy effects). We tasters could prefer either the high acid tension of the goat cheese or the ethereal creaminess of the triple-cream. I went with the latter (but if subpoenaed to testify it, would adopt the defense of “I forget…”).
The Vermentino was actually arguably the most impressive wine of the night. The nose emanated vibrant lime aromas, hints of thyme and white pepper. The weight was medium heavy in the mouth and the wine had tastes of lime, orange, lead pencil and a refreshing high acid level.
My favorite red, the 2008 Badia a Coltibuono Chianti Classico Riserva ($34.99 / $29.99 case) was accompanied by my favorite cheese of the night. Caveman Blue Cheese from Rogue Creamery in Oregon. It has almost the creaminess of Stilton with a more earthy flavor that I would peg at roughly a five-year old sneaker. As one of the participants said “I shall be tasting this cheese for the rest of the evening”. Better than wearing it.
The wine was down-the-line quality Chianti. A ruby color, five spice and nettles in the the nose as well as cedar from the ageing barrels. In the mouth, the wine was fleshy and open with massive expanses of red fruit that contributed towards a long and harmonious finish. Congratulations to James Jordan for having the presence of mind to open it two hours earlier so that it could breathe. It appeared to have greatly helped it open up.
This tasting was a great first effort that met with unqualified approval from the attendees. At the price of $30 it was also a bargain. In the future, June 26th sees a California wine and cheese pairing and July 31st, Burgundy wine and cheese. Reserve spaces at the link at the top of this article as WinePoste/Scardello joint tastings are going to start selling out in advance as predictably as do Scardello’s cheese tastings once people discover how good they are.