Friday, March 12, 2010

Wine Pairing Class

Tim and I attended a wine pairing class hosted by Adriano Teston, owner of Ca Madresca winery at Da Beppo Ristorante. During the class, we learned how the senses of sight, smell, and taste all combine to truly appreciate a glass of wine.

Adriano had each of sniff a numbered bottle and guess what we thought each of the various scents were. They were grouped together as to what scents and flavors would be part of the same "family." It was very difficult! A whiff of the scent would keep your mind turning as the smell was familiar, yet we all just couldn't put our finger on what a lot of the scents were.

Next we learned about the appropriate types of wine glasses to serve the various wines in as the size of the glass allows the right amount of oxygen to mix with the wine, presenting you with the perfect smell and taste. We also learned a little about the types of grapes and process to produce each kind of wine we were about to sample and how age can change the taste.

Finally it was time to eat and drink! We paired a Biano Nibbio (Chardonnay) and a Elfo Biano Chardonnay '07 with our first course of marinated angus beef with a pear and montastic cheese strudel.  Next were the red wines, a Brioso delle Venezia '08, a Ninfa Cabernet, and a Reys Cabernet Sauvigno '06 which we paired with our second course of grilled Irish beef with rocket salad, Parmigiano cheese, and Modena balsamic vinegar glaze. The sweet dessert wine, Moscato Rosa (a favorite of mine from Adriano's winery!) was delightfully paired with a caramel and almond mousse.

It was truly amazing how pairing a certain wine with food could dramatically change the taste of the wine. Wines we did not really like on their own transformed when paired with the right food!