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Turkey Day – Mussel Feast, The “Big Bird,” Sparkling Zin & Montepulciano…

Enjoying yesterday's harvest with Rock Wall Sparkling Zin. Super first course!

Enjoying yesterday’s mussel harvest with Rock Wall Sparkling Zin. Super Thanksgiving first course!

Welcome back, my friends – and Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you enjoyed yesterday’s beach adventure – and the daring escapades of the mighty mussel hunters… ;)

To tell the truth, there was hardly any danger at all involved – but clambering around on slippery rocks while hearing those huge waves crashing just a few feet away can really get the ol’ adrenaline going…

Toasting our mussel harvest on the beach with Rock Wall Sparkling Zin was so much fun that today we’re enjoying the lovely bubbly again, teamed with the cooked mussels, which I steamed up with garlic, onions, ginger and wine.

 

Six of us toast, then dive into the mussels.

Six of us toast, then dive into the mussels.

Rock Wall Sparkling Zin and a huge kettle of steamed mussels.

Rock Wall Sparkling Zin and a huge kettle of steamed mussels.

Don’t worry about the “red wine with fish” issue. The mussels are huge, really meaty, and full of flavor. And although the Sparkling Zin is basically red, it’s not only paler than your standard bottling, it’s both chilled and bubbly, which tend to lighten it up.

 

Montepulciano from Rock Wall – a taste of Italy for an all-American holiday!

Montepulciano from Rock Wall – a taste of Italy!

Shauna Rosenblum, Rock Wall’s uber-creative, ultra-prolific winemaker/partner, also introduced me to her 2014 Montepulciano (from Contra Costa County), and talked about serving it on “T-day.”

The first thing Shauna said was, “It’s the total hipster Thanksgiving wine! Unexpected, and sure to be a homerun, pairing wise, and a conversation piece.

 
When Shauna added, “It’s not your Italian Grandfather’s Montepulciano,” I wondered, “Hmmmmm, how did she know…”

Montepulciano – a great way to go with turkey and *all* the trimmings!

Montepulciano – a great way to go with turkey and *all* the trimmings!

Because here’s the deal. One oddball thing about this Italian red is that it comes in two completely different versions.

The first comes from south-central Italy, on the Adriatic coast, and is generally labeled “Montepulciano d’Abruzzo” after this particular province.

The other “Montepulciano” is a variant of Sangiovese, from “Chianti country” in Tuscany. (And it turns out that this is the grape that Shauna uses.)

Soooooo, here’s the *huge* coincidence: One of my grandfathers came from Abruzzo; the other from Tuscany. (What are the odds?)

Which brings me back to family – and to togetherness – and to all we have to be thankful for.

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Once again, Happy Thanksgiving, my friends –
Cheers and happy tastings,
Rosina

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And as always, please be sure to grab your *free download* of “Rosina’s 5 Non-Rules for Wine and Food Pairing.” It’s the best way I know to help you make the foods *you* love taste even better!

You can also email me at Rosina@DrinkWineWithDinner.com with comments or questions. I look forward to hearing from you!

Cheers once again,
Rosina

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