Over the past month, a new wine friend of mine, Jo-Ann Ross of JRoss Wine, invited me to a “Sensational Soave” Master class held at Ribelle in Brookline, Massachusetts. The class was taught by Master Sommelier Evan Goldstein and Giovanni Ponchia from the Soave Consortium, Consorzio Tutela Soave, in Italy, and it consisted of a blind tasting of ten different soave wines, followed by an introduction and education on this particular area of the Veneto region of Italy. The event topped off with three courses prepared by Ribelle, paired with a variety of soave wines from different producers.
Below are the delicious pairings from the event to make your mouth water.
Yellow fin tuna crudo with tomato conserva, green tomato and furikake
2013 Cantina di Monteforte “Terre di Monteforte” Soave DOC
2013 Fattori Soave “Danieli” DOC
Orecchiette with littlenecks, black garlic, bok choy
2013 Fornaro Soave Classico DOC
2013 Suavia Soave Classico DOC
Chicken with buttermilk chawanmushi, endive and poppy seed
2012 Marcato Soave Classico Monte Tenda DOC
2011 Roccolo Grassi Soave La Broia DOC
The soave wines that we tasted were very interesting. There was such a variety of styles: Some had been aged in oak, others differed based on the area of production and the different soils. We also had the fortune of tasting a dessert wine, recioto di soave.
Attending this class and wine tasting is right up my alley, as I love to explore the world of Italian wines through my blog, especially those that are unique. I appreciate restaurants that can open up customers’ eyes through their recommendations to unique grapes such as the garganega grape that makes up the soave wine. Many folks run to the common international varieties such as cabernet sauvignon, sauvignon blanc, merlot, but there are so many impressive grapes within Italy that we have access to here in Boston through wine shops and restaurants.
I recently attended an Italian Wine Specialist certification program through NASA, North American Sommelier Association, and met Eric Di Nardo, the General Manager and Wine Director at Tresca in the North End.
Eric shared with me the selection of wines offered at Tresca as they continuously search for ways to offer some of these unique varieties at competitive price points so that their customers are encouraged to experiment and sample different wines. They carry interesting varietals like refosco, cannonau, sagrantino, aglianico, arneis, greco di tufo… and the list goes on! Their wine list is six pages long, with older vintages going back to as early as a 1964 bottle of Barolo from the renowned producer Gaja, in Piedmont. Their staff is well trained to be able to offer suggestions to folks that are interested in something different. Some of Eric’s favorites come from northern Italy, which is hard for him to narrow down, but includes examples of nebbiolo from the Valtellina area of Lombardy and sparkling Franciacorta.
There are other restaurants throughout Boston that are offering unique wines as well, so make sure to get out there and explore and let me know what you discover!