Vino della Settimana – 07 Langhe Nebbiolo Gavarini, by Elio Grasso

Thanksgiving and wine pairing has been a ongoing debate forever.  It’s so much more than Turkey, more a feast of diverse food if you like. With a variety of sweet pies to round it all of.   As the old rule of white wine with white meat, red wine with red meat, has been thrown out by the wine establishment, what to do?  Red Burgundies, including Beaujolais, barberas and nebbiolos, as well as a dry non-oaky Chardonnay and Champagne does the trick, but like with all wine pairing challenges and you’re stuck:  choose a wine you like, and you cannot go all wrong. If you’re all into Thanksgiving being a celebration of a good harvest, you should go for Beaujolais Nouveau, which in turn celebrates the grape harvest of the year, thus making it a positive double whammy (if such a thing exist). 

We’ve kinda settled on Pinot Noir (the Burgundy kind…) and/or nebbiolos from Piemonte.  This year 11.6 kg of Turkey went down with Waldorf salad, mashed sweet potatoes, creamy sauce, and pumpkin and pecan pies to boot. Turkey spent 24 hrs in an apple and sage dominated brine, before being covered with bacon, and thrown in the oven.

 

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This year, we went for a wine from a winemaker not a stranger to WOTW honors, Elio Grasso (more on Elio Grasso and his wines here http://bit.ly/rfJLoL).  One of the gems in his lineup is the Langhe Nebbiolo, from 15 year old vines in limestone-based, south-facing 1.2 hectare vineyard in Monforte d’Alba.  Elio, Marina, Francesca and Gianluca Grasso, together with their winemaker Piero Ballario, produces around 6,500 bottles of this wine, which has been bottled since 1987. 

Delicate aromas, with dark fruits, tobacco and minerals prevalent. A hint of rose petals.  Red burgundy-like light, tannic (still), and very long.  A dry, fresh, and elegant wine, representing good value for the money. Hard to find sub-par wines at the Grasso family’s estate!

 

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Elio Grasso recommends you drink this wine 3-4 years inn the first 3-4 years after the bottling.  The 07, however, and likewise with the 06, will keep well for a lot longer, we think. A good choice for WOTW, and an alternative to the Perbacco from Vietti, and the Langhe Nebbiolos from Elio Altare, Cavallotto, and Cappellano.

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