My brother lives out in Califon and the selection of wines nearby is not as abundant as what we enjoy in and around Montclair. He likes Italian wine and the dinner was all Italian from Giada De Laurentiis's wonderful cookbooks.
I wanted to introduce Tim to two grapes that he had never tried before.
The red is 2009 Rapitala Campo Reale Nero d'Avola from Sicily and the white 2010 Brunori Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi le Gemme from Marches.
They both were very very good. And measured up to the fabulous meal.
Gary's Wines says:
Rapitala Campo Reale Nero d'Avola
"One of the most traditional Sicilian grape varieties, with a deep colour and powerful structure. The grapes, picked in the middle of September, are vinified on their own in small, stainless steel containers, with temperature-controlled medium long macerations. A wine with a bright red colour, a bouquet of ripe fruit and an intense and balanced flavour."
"The Marche region of Italy is home to lush green hilltops overlooking the Adriatic sea, to fishing villages and sweeping vistas. And for the last few decades, its been home to a growing number of vintners looking to participate in the resurgence of a local grape called Verdicchio. But the Brunori family has been at it with Verdicchio for three generations, and today their white wine is among some of the more interesting in the now-established Castello di Jesi designation.
Grown in vineyards approximately 200-250 meters above sea level, their le Gemme Verdicchio is stunningly aromatic, and on the palate matches crisp clean white fruit flavors with stony minerality (no doubt attributed to their limestone soils.)
In the fishing villages of la Marche, Verdicchio would accompany a steaming bowl of brodetto, or fish stew. We suggest you try the same."