2007 Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery Pinot Noir,
Sonoma Coast, Calif.
Two Thumbs Way Up
Quite aromatic with waves of red berry fruit and a floral quality. Lots and lots of fresh raspberry and strawberry flavors, which are accented by tart acidity. Beyond the juiciness, it also offers cinnamon, clove and a subtle earthiness.
(Wines are rated on a scale ranging up from thumbs down, one thumb mostly up, one thumb up, two thumbs up, two thumbs way up and Golden Thumb Award. Prices are suggested retail prices as provided by the winery, one of its agents, a local distributor or retailer.)
A colleague of mine recently commented that I should stick to wine and leave my family/personal life out of these columns….So, last night, I made my favorite plate of food for my family: wild mushroom risotto with roasted chicken. This is a good move in my home whether you’re in or out of the doghouse.
Generally, I’m not picky about most wine selections. It’s my view that if the food is good and the wine is good, they’ll be great together. If you push me, I’ll admit there’s always a wine selection that sings a little louder and stronger than just “any wine.” I usually save the overwrought thoughtfulness for weekend dining or for guests.
That said, there are some foods regardless of when they’re served that stand up, look me in the eye and say: “I need (Fill in the blank) wine.” Dark chocolate and ruby ports fall into this category. A medium-rare, slightly charred, bone-in, grilled rib eye and a cabernet sauvignon-based wine also share a pretty firm bond for me.
If I’m having chicken and risotto, I’m like a spoiled kid if I don’t have a pinot noir. For example, you might hear me say: [spoken in my best whiney voice.] “This is really good, but if I just had pinot, it’d be sooo muuuch better.”
Lucky for everyone around the dinner table last night, I just happened to have a pinot noir on hand. It turned out to be the 2007 Sebastiani Pinot Noir. Not the cheapest (decent pinot noir typically comes at a price). At 18 bucks, not the most expensive either. But Boy! did it scratch that itch. It doesn’t get any more personal than when you start talking about your itches.
Gil Kulers is a certified wine educator with the Society of Wine Educators and teaches in-home wine classes. You can reach him at Gil.Kulers@WineKulers.com.