There are a few things that stuck in my head during my food & wine pairing classes. Old adages like “what grows together, goes together”, you might say. One was related to pairing chocolates and wine. My ever so flamboyant instructor, who probably drank more in class than we did, asked “who in here likes red wine and chocolate?” You can imagine that mostly of us rose our hands and to our reply he said “You probably like it, but it’s actually one of the worst pairings. It’s kind of like sex on the beach- it sounds like a good idea in theory- beach, sex…but then the reality kicks in and you got sand and all that ruining the mood.” Continue Reading →
My liver is not ready, neither my psyche but I’m about to embark on a food and wine tour through Tuscany, Umbria and Emilia-Romagna…for 25+ people! Why am I letting you know? Well, because I plan (hope) to be sharing unique bits from the tour over the next several days either via the blog but for sure on the social media sites I’m keen on like Instagram and Snapchat so you can follow along the wine tour adventures, too! Continue Reading →
Better ask a who??? A sommelier! What’s a sommelier and why you better ask him?!
Let me first explain a bit this category. Since I maintain a food blog in Florence, I’d like to interject expert voices from time to time on this complex yet highly sought out matter. Experts to me are those who work blood, sweat and tears in what they do like chefs, sommeliers, bakers, farmers, artisans, culinary instructors (not the touristy type) and OG food critics like Ruth Reichl (an expert in expressing both soul and poignancy). Because I muse about these topics and lead wine tours in Tuscany, I wanted to provide a platform to ask experts their opinions. Also to have an excuse to drink more…you know for “research.” Continue Reading →
I’m not one for resolutions for the New Year, especially when it comes to eating and drinking. It’s all about moderation! I did a no-booze January once in my life and that was plenty, marked that one off the bucket list. I do envision goals and one of them for this year is to share some of my passion for food and wine pairing with readers of this blog. The worst part about not drinking in January (or not drinking in general) is that food is then left with some uncovered potential. In small quantities, not a whole bottle, wine can really elevate an eating experience. The acidity in the wine, the aromatic nuances, sumptuous savory notes echoed on the palate all help to bring out the best in the food you’re dancing around with. Continue Reading →
Piedmont is the holy grail of culinary wine travel. It is home to the Slow Food Movement, an annual Cheese Festival in Bra, prized white truffles from Alba, pastured heritage beef, rugged un-manicured terroir with unique variations in its soil and orientation making it a complex home for age-worthy Nebbiolo, comforting rich cuisine, delicious tangy creamy cheeses, the heavily contested University of Gastronomic Sciences AND Eataly, birthplace of Vermouth in Turin and the producer of some of the most interesting wines in the country: Barbaresco and Barolo. This is a frightening short synopsis of the culturally rich region, however the only way to get the full feel for it is to visit for yourself.
I recently had the pleasure to visit the area with local blogger, Valerie Quintanilla. Valerie also dabbles in wine travel and introduced me to all things Nebbiolo. Not only was she able to take me to some of the most special producers of the region, she effortlessly pulled off a wine maker dinner and whipped up a feast to be paired along with it. I pinched myself every moment of this trip, hoping to never wake up from this delicious dream.
Thanks to Valerie spending some time with me and a friend visiting, I decided that in addition to being able to hang with Val, these are the top reasons to visit Piedmont: Continue Reading →
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