Cheers To You

An exploration of all things wine with local wine expert Mary Earl.
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Wine pairing for Super Bowl finger foods

Friday, February 1st, 2013

By now the 12th Man has probably cried all he’s going to cry into his beer — or in our case wine — over the Seahawks heartbreaking loss to Atlanta two weeks ago.

Still, watching the Super Bowl will be rough in light of how close the Hawks came, and knowing their full potential wasn’t reached. So, yes, we plan to do a little drowning of our sorrows as we watch San Franscico take the field Sunday.

We also plan to do our fair share of eating Super Bowl goodies like Ann Vogel’s Pizza Balls.

Filled with cheese and pepperoni, and of course marinara sauce for dipping, this finger food is a petite Italian meal. That’s why we think an Italian Chianti is the best wine to wash it down.

Chianti is a great go-to wine when looking for a red wine that can stand up to tomato-heavy dishes. It also does great withe meat, which is why it’s a perfect match for these pepperoni-stuffed treats.

To be labeled Chianti, the grapes used to make the wine must be entirely sourced from any of the eight subregions of Chianti, a denominazione di origine controllata, or DOCG. The wine must also be made of at least 75 percent Sangiovese.

The beautiful thing about Chianti is you don’t have to spend a small fortune to get a good bottle locally. In fact most every store in our area carries multiple labels, many from Itlay.

For this recipe we recommend Da Vinci’s Chianti.

This Italian winery uses grapes from the Chianti region, fusing experience and modern winemaking techniques to produce a fruit-forward wine that is soft across the palate. The winery’s goal is to highlight the Sangioveses characteristics, while minimizing acidity to keep bitter and astringent flavors often found in traditional Chiantis out of the wine.

The wine has aromas of cherries and red fruit balanced by soft, round tannins. The winemaking techniques to produce a round mouth feel are evident. One sip and its smooth finish leaves you wanting more.

The winery produces three Chiantis: Chianit, Chianti Classico and Chianti Riserva.

The Chianti, likely the cheapest of the three, starts around $11.


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