By Marco Giovanetti
Easter. We always want to make it cool but it remains a very planned food party.Obviously us the foodies enjoy it: we always eat as if we were on the brink of a nuclear emergency. But this does not seem new to me. Pasqua reigns, at least in my biographical imagination, made of wild chops, pasta and torrential amount of alcohol drinks. And then lying on a couch, brimmed in a food coma, I always ask myself why the Lord Jesus resurrected every year on a different date. I know, there is a very valid explanation but to me this thing always generates dismay and confusion.
Obviously, whether you are with family or friends, in full invasive offspring slaughter or at the restaurant, it seems right to me to put the effort to drink nice wines but nothing ultra complex like certain x wine must pair y plate.
Relax and let’s try to imagine three typical situations:
Easter at home:
Even if you hold dearly the most conventional wine wisdom, the context must always be taken into consideration. A lunch with friends or close relatives makes all the difference in the world and then we live in gastronomically uncertain times. Maybe you have chosen the perfect wine for lamb in a perfectly vegan easter menu!!. What to do?. Piedmont,Tuscany and Campania are your safe bets.
Easter: BBQ style with friends
I hold dearly to the idea that the grill is a fantastic medium for the combination of conviviality, virile friendship and enogastronomical anarchy on which it must be based. Forget about age worthy wines and wine-centrism and think instead on what to drink out of the paper cup. This dramatic situation demand fresh and versatile wines. I would propose Mr. Barbera and Miss Verdicchio and delinquent natural wines.
Easter: Being single
You are single, you have not organized anything, you have stalked some contacts on facebook and obtained an invitation to lunch. Unfortunately you do not know the menu nor the tastes of the guests. There will certainly be appetizers and a dessert, though. Let’s buy a sparkler and a sweet wine and pass the anxiety. I wouldn’t do a mala figura with Champagne to make up for the social gap (you always refused an invitation); try a Trento or Prosecco Doc.
Suggested wine recommendations for a happy Easter
Sonovino Rosso. SAQ # 13996804, $7.50 ( Sample)
There is no excuse to bring a bottle of wine if you get invited to an Easter supper this weekend. It can’t get any cheaper than this. A hearty blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon from diverse parts of Italy, it is classified as an European Commision wine. A pretty hearty red blend with sweet red fruit nuances and a touch of sweet vanilla in the end. It is drinkable, not bad at all and could be quite superb with a coal bbq in the park.
Montresor Fattorie Valpolicella Classico Superiore 2015. SAQ # 13863737, $24.00 ( Tasted at the importer office)
There is plenty of mediocre Valpolicella in the SAQ but this is one of the best ones available in Quebec. The Montresor family has been in the wine business since 1892. Their “Recioto Rustego”, is a forerunner of Amarone della Valpolicella, the Amarone Capitel della Crosara is an important reference for all the Amarone della Valpolicella as well and the Amarone “Satinato”, famous for the patented Satin bottle.
This Valpolicella Superiore has plenty of savoury notes of figs and jammy dark fruits with touches of cocoa. On the mouth, rich and concentrated yet with bright fruit flavours displaying a lovely balance. Pretty herbal finale. Will be top with the ravioli or fazzoletti first course.
Fattoria San Donato Vernaccia Di San Gimignano 2017. SAQ # 13675429, $19.45 ( Bought by the author)
Vernaccia di San Gimignano is one of Italy’s most important white wine appellations, and it is always a good place to look for great values. This 2017 Vernaccia di San Gimignano is fresh and zesty with pretty mineral notes to follow. Vernaccia is not known for exuberant aromas, but the wine is steady and firm on the palate with a lean and fine texture