Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pairing with Whites Wines from the Finger Lakes

I’ll be joining several other wine writers on Twitter tonight for a virtual tasting of selected white wines from Finger Lakes region. The tasting is being hosted by the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance. I thought I might whet some appetites and get the juices flowing with a pre-tasting post.

As many of my readers already know I have only recently (last 9 months or so) spent time getting to know the Finger Lakes region and its wines. I’ve talked with several winemakers and winery owners from the region, and between the tasting room and the wines we brought home; both my wife and I are actively enjoying the fruits of their labors. I’ve been in the region twice in the last six months and will be back there in about five weeks or so for the WineMakerMagazine Annual Conference as both an attendee and a speaker. I am very much looking forward to meeting more of the people behind the wines and networking with the other conference attendees who I hope will be primed to explore the area. The two post-conference days of touring and tasting are going to give me lots of opportunity to visit wineries that are new to me and expand my understanding of the wine story of the region.

When the opportunity to participate in the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance tasting came along I jumped at it to further educate myself on the region. I will be posting a complete report on the wines, the conversation during the event and how the pairings I highlight below actually turned out, in the WineMaker Magazine blog early next month. Here’s what I am prepared to make based on the wines provided for the tasting and my experiences in the region to date.

Shrimp (cooked, cold) with a ginger sesame dipping sauce. There are four Gewurztraminers in the lineup, including wines from Sheldrake Point, Rooster Hill, Wagner and SenecaShore. I have had the first three and generally know that this style of wine in the Finger Lakes trends to the dry side with any sweetness well balanced by a healthy dose of acidity. I think the potential range will work well here with both the ginger in the dipping sauce, and the shrimp. The Pinot Grigio from Goose Watch and Reserve Chardonnay from King Ferry, both new to me, should also pair well with the shrimp, but maybe with just a bit of traditional cocktail sauce or melted garlic butter. Ginger might be a bit overpowering for the wines with a different aromatic profile from Gewurztraminer.

California rolls and spicy tuna rolls. With the consideration of white wines came an unusually immediate consideration of sushi or the like. It isn’t a common food on my table so I am not sure why it came to mind so readily. I went with it though. I am thinking the Gruner Veltliner from Dr. Frank and the Gewurztraminers mentioned above will also work here.

( Can't wait to check out the view from the deck at Dr. Frank again real soon! September 2011. )

Cheeses, Brie and blue in particular. I am betting all the wines will pair well with the cheeses, including the Pinot Blanc from Glenora, which I found to be unusual in the region when I first had it in 2011. I’m going to warm some of the Brie up to allow it’s naturally pungent aromatics to be part of the pairing equation.

White bean & garlic dip. This is a Provencal style dish and my immediate thought was the Glenora Pinot Blanc, and also the Goose Watch Pinot Grigio. The Gewurztraminers might present an unbalanced nose to the herbs and garlic in the dip.

I’m destined to try quite a few combinations tonight because I’m willing to be as wrong as I am right, so long as I enjoy the experience!

To check out the conversation and get tips on wines and wineries to experience in the Finger Lakes use the Twitter hashtag #flxwinevt tonight (April 18th, 2012) at 8PM.



Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” 


Ted Burnes said...

Hi Jason,
Great blog! I recently started a new wine blog called TD Wines, I would love to help you promote your events and anything related to wine.
Hope you have a great day!

Jeff said...

Yet another great write-up on the Finger Lakes! I have been meaning to go for some time now and articles like this make me beat myself up for not going. Thanks for the info and the motivation!