Updated 2009-03-23 14:46:05 ID=310:1

© 2009 The Romantic Table
Giornata Il Campo 2007 and Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio | February Value Wine Picks, ©2009 The Romantic Table 2009-02-13 23:36:36:118
©2009 The Romantic Table

Giornata Il Campo 2007 and Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio, February Value Wine Picks.

Giornata Il Campo 2007 and Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio | February Value Wine Picks.

This month we review two wine recommendations Allison Dominguez of 15 degree C Wine Shop. For our red selection Giornata Il Campo 2007, and for the white, Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio.

It's February and rain has final arrived. So, this month in our recipe section we are featuring more robust and festive fair before the austere Lenten season begins. We stopped off at 15 degree C this month and talked to Allison Dominguez for her picks for the month. The rules were simple, we asked for two food friendly wines, a Red and a White (or Rose) and under $18.00 a bottle. We were looking for a red to go with a robust stew like Chicken Cacciatora and a white to go with an elegant shrimp or seafood risotto.

Without hesitation, Allison said she had the just the right red in mind but... it was $1.00 over budget! We said "well, OK if you can select a great white under-budget." And Allison did.

Allison suggested two we should take a closer look at, Giornata Il Campo 2007 and Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio.

2007 Il Campo, Central Coast

2007 Il Campo, Central Coast, ©2009 The Romantic Table 2009-02-13 23:37:23:119
©2009 The Romantic Table

2007 Il Campo, Central Coast
From the website: http://www.giornatawines.com/wines.html

"...This is our take on a modern field blend, Il Campo in Italian means the field. The main grape variety is Sangiovese: However, what's more important is the style of wine. This wine was made to be the perfect match for our favorite American- made Italian meals. It's a great match with thin pizzas, silky fresh pastas and any other simple dish that includes the pomodoro (tomato)."

Sangiovese | Background:

Sangiovese is from the Latin Sanguis Jovis meaning "The Blood of Jove." Sangiovese is the grape of Tuscany. Most Americans know wine made from it as Chianti. It is one of the great wine grapes, but unfortunately Italian Sangiovese wines imported into the US were not always very well crafted.

Sangiovese can make some very impressive wines. Chiantis are 70% Sangiovese (with 10% local white minimum). It is usually the predominate grape in the higher class "Super-Tuscan" blends. In capable hands Sangiovese creates wines of deep red color, strawberry and blueberry aromas, with hints of spices like cinnamon and thyme, medium to full body and a good balance of tannins and acids.

Our Observations:

In the glass the wine was a deep garnet red . In strong light the wine was transparent and clean. Swirling the glass, the wine nicely coated the glass side with long slow running tears indicating the characteristic substantial body this wine is capable of making.

When sniffing the wine, we noticed the aromas of strawberry and cherry.

On the palette, the flavor continued to open up with a nice sense of vanilla and pepper. The taste was full, dry, smooth, good acidity and mild tannins. The Alcohol at 14.6% was substantial but very balanced and not harsh.

The finish was smooth and substantial, leaving a complex, warm and long echo of the wine in the mouth.

There is a saying in Italy, what grows together, goes together, and this very food friendly red wine is perfectly at home with the Mediterranean fare of Italy. With its berry and spice aromas, mild tannins and good acidity, this wine a great choice to accompany a tomato based braised chicken dish like Chicken Cacciatora | Chicken Hunter Style with soft Polenta - which just just happened to be on the menu this month

Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio

Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio, ©2009 The Romantic Table 2009-02-13 23:45:30:120
©2009 The Romantic Table

Per Bacco Cellars 2007 Pinot Grigio
From the Website: http://perbaccocellars.com

"This wine is the essence of the variety: brilliant, crisp, very clean on the palate, definitely a cool climate pinot gris. Notes of citrus and melon abound with excellent acidity and a long concentrated finish. Flavors of mineral and green apple lead to a rich band of honeydew, grapefruit, and a touch of tangerine. Lively and long, a great wine for a warm sunny day and a plate of oysters on the coast. "

Pinot Grigio Background:

Pinot Grigio is the Italian clone of the French Pinot Gris, both apparently mutations of Pinot Noir. The grape when ripe has a pink to blue grayish color, hence the "Grigio" name. Like Pinot Noir, Pinot Grigio performs best in cooler climates where it can produce very complex wines. In warmer climates the grape does not do as well producing rather thin wines of low acidity.

The cooler micro climates of the Santa Barbara California Coast is an ideal viticulture environment for the grape to fully express itself. Here the grape produces medium bodied wines with aromas and flavors of melon, citrus and apples with good acidity perfect for pairing with the Northern Italian style of cooking.

Our Observations:

The appearance of the wine was a very pale straw - almost clear. Transparent, and clean, the wine sparkled in our glasses as we swirled the wine. The swirled wine coated the glass smoothly with slow developing tears, indicating a substantialness in the structure.

The wine had a wonderful citrus-lemon-tangerine aroma with melon and floral overtones.

The taste of the wine was moderately dry, with good balanced acidity and an overall smoothness. The alcohol at 13.7 % was subdued and in balance with the rest of the flavors. The overall impression was of a full mouthful with lemony acidity.

The finish was very long and smooth, leaving a light lingering citrus aftertaste.

Our impression was this was a lot of wine for $12.00 a bottle. This is a very Northern Italian style food friendly wine. The citrus overtones with just the right amount of acidity will pair it well with a seafood risotto like Shrimp Risotto.


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A tip from Sue!

Cooking with onions and garlic

When your recipe calls for both sauted onions and garlic, saute the onions first - they take longer to soften. Then when the onions are almost softened, add the garlic.The garlic doesn't need very long to become fragrant - and you don't want to burn your garlic and turn it bitter!