The bachelorette was a fun, but a very late night. I’m still a little tired, but there is too much to do today, including tell you about the wine pairings I planned for Amanda’s Bachelorette!
The Zardetto Prosecco was a great introductory bubbly for the crowd. Everyone is in their mid-twenties, so everyone was learning the basics on how to taste, etc. Rule number one: don’t swirl your bubbly wine! You lose the bubbles that people work so hard to get in the wine! In my experience if I shell out the money for actual wines made in the Champagne method, young ladies get a sort of ‘beer face’ and decide they hate Champagne. It’s too yeasty or dry or bitter or not fruity enough. i.e. not a pleasant drink for most young tongues, and imagine toasting with a crowd of ‘beer faces’! Well this prosecco was a great choice. The crowd downed the bottles, it was very fruity, with peach and grapey flavors. The bubbles were short-lived, but it is expected with prosecco. Very refreshing, it probably would make for great bellinis too! I wouldn’t say we discovered a mindblowing pairing with the wine, but nothing clashed. The prosecco was very versatile with most everything in the spread. Hummus, crackers, cheese, pizza.
The clear pairing favorite of the night was the La Mozza 2005 I Perrazzi Morellino di Scansano with the pizza. The wine was lightly oaked, and the bright cherry flavors worked very well with the pizza, in particular the sausage and pepperoni. The flavors did not compete, and the wine stood on its own. I definitely prefer this less oaked style of Sangiovese versus Chianti. Bachelorette Amanda, who normally only drinks whites loved it and went for big glasses of it.
The Grotta de Sole 2006 Fiano di Avellino was very pretty in the glass. Crisp, floral, and slightly off-dry. Delicious! The salad dressing and toppings provided were sweet (cranberries, spiced pears), and the wine definitely tasted sour with it. With the pizza, it was transformed to be a strangely heavier wine, with more fruit flavors showing, but unfortunately also more bitterness in the finish. Not an ideal transformation in my opinion, but it still was an interesting pairing.
Finally came the ice cream and port. Surprisingly, only one chocolate ice cream was present, the rest were surprising choices like dulce de leche, Hawaiian lehua honey, coffee heath bar, and mint chip. The Jonesy Rare Aged Port definitely dominated. None of the ice cream flavors had acidity to match and transform, but the port definitely was sweet enough and heavy enough to match the creaminess. Still, the crowd mostly just wanted to eat the ice cream on its own, and have the port on its own. I think that this issue would be apparent with whatever dessert wine I got, so in the end this pairing probably worked out as well as it possibly could.
So overall, I think I picked some good wines for the group, the pairings went over pretty well with the crowd. Considering I was operating blind on what type of salad and what types of ice cream folks were going to bring, I think I did well enough. I don’t think I would have done anything differently except ask the hostess to get different salad! Would you have done anything differently?