Snow Covered Thursday


It never snows in Italy so what we experienced today was a figment of our imagination. 6 inches of fluffy white sunshine coated the vineyards, hillsides, and in many cases the roads on our way to Villa Matilde. Indown coats, fleece lined gloves, and furry boots we persevered. Our pursuit was rewarded by an extraordinary day of wine and food.

(And if you thought that Italians could not drive, wait until the roads are buried in snow. Thank goodness our bus driver once served in the military tank division. )

Wine Pleasure’s arranged an amazing tasting and lunch at Villa Matilde. The staff there were warm and charming. From Georgio, the passionate manager in charge of exports, to the two Italian cooks, who prepared our wine and food pairings, to the owner Salvatore Avallone who came to greet us, the hospitality of Italy was well represented.

Since Villa Matilde presented their wines as food wines to be consumed with food, they served each wine with a dish.

2010 Falanghina, an idigenous grape that reminds me of viognier with a long finish, was served with a fried pie stuffed with what tasted like cabbage, artichoke, bell peppers, and herbs. It reminded of fried pierogi. The crispness of the wine went very well.

2007 Caracci, also a Falanghina of the Falerno clone, was more honeyed and round showing an elegance of age. It was paired with a broccoli and sausage stuffed pizza ball.

2007 Falerno del Massico Rosso, made of 80% Aglianico and 20% Piedirosso, was described as the “Barola of the South”. It was rich dark red fruit paired with fried stuffed rice balls. It reminded me of a hush puppy stuffed with rice, spicy red sauce, and soft cheese.

Camarato was my favorite red. We got to taste both the 2005 and 2001. Both were rich and full of ripe raspberries, tobacco, menthol characters with full bodied sex appeal. The 2001 expressed more dried fruit characters. Camarato is the same blend of the Rosso but came from different vineyards. This was paired with sausage stuffed rolls similar to pigs in a blanket (just more sophisticated pigs).

For dessert we enjoyed Eleusi 2007. This was an amazing dessert wine made from Falanghino. From its rich amber color and maple sugar, dried apricot nectar flavor this wine was a dessert by itself. It made the perfect celebration wine for our birthday toast to travelling friend and blogger, Marcy Gordon. Happy Birthday! Please visit wine pleasures for more.