Monday, August 15, 2005

Mocavero Puteus Salice Salentino Riserva 2000

Taking a cue from my mother (who adopted many classics of Italian-American cuisine when she married my father), I decided to make spaghetti and meatballs. Needing to expand a little beyond Mama's kitchen, I chose to make the meatballs with ground lamb. Stephanie continues to impress with her salad-making capacity, this time producing a basil champagne vinaigrette with lettuces and shaved cucumbers.

Having decided to make the spaghetti, I put Stephanie in charge of selecting a suitable Italain wine to accompany the meal, and she performed admirably. I often shy away from Salice Salentino, fearing the overripe fruit-bombs that often come from this region in the heal of Italy's boot. The Mocavero, however, was a welcome surprise.

Although the nose burst with ripe fruit, pushing towards port or even balsamic, it drank beautifully with the meal. The wine passed through a variety of stages, at some points seeming cab-like, and at others as soft as pinot, but always decidedly Italian. Stephanie detected cranberries and remarked that "this is the kind of wine that feels good in your mouth." I couldn't agree more. And at about $15 a bottle, it'll feel a lot better than most of the increasingly expensive barberas and chiantis coming out of Italy.

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

I have to admit, not coming from an Italian family, I was a little skeptical of these meatballs and pasta. But, this was one of the best meals Chris has created -- which is really saying a lot, as he's an incredible chef. It was just beyond words.