I’m happy to share that the Northern Kentucky Wine Festival is on October 15 from 3 – 10 p.m. at MainStrasse Village. The Sixth Street Promenade will feature over 15 Kentucky wineries. Local restaurants will be also offering delicious food items to complement the wines that will be available for sampling. You will also enjoy visiting with local artists who will be showcasing their works during the event. The $10 Admission includes a souvenir wine glass and 4 sample tickets. Additional sample tickets may be purchased for $1 each or 6 for $5. If an attendee wishes to purchase a full glass of wine, special tickets can be purchased for $5 each. Wines may also be purchased by the bottle or case. You must be 21 to attend.
This year, the Northern Kentucky Wine Festival at MainStrasse Village is partnering with Full Spectrum 2011. During October, the City of Covington celebrates the Full Spectrum Arts Festival to emphasize the celebration of artists and crafters.
MainStrasse Village is an historic neighborhood comprised of shops, restaurants, taverns and homes, located just off I-75/71. Take the Covington, 5th Street Exit (Exit 192). Free parking is available in the 5th Street Parking Lot, located between Philadelphia Street and Main Street. For more information please call 859-491-0458 or visit www.mainstrasse.org.
I’m very excited to see MainStrasse Village host the Northern Kentucky Wine Festival, please join me for the wine, art, and fun!
Last night I decided to treat myself and go to the View Cucina Wine Dinner. This great deal happens every month for only $49 for a 5 course meal with wine pairings. (It’s the third Thursday of every month) I must admit I walked in there and I didn’t know anyone and I ended up knowing everyone, the staff and all the guest were very nice. The atmosphere is wonderful on Victory Parkway overlooking the river in this quaint little restaurant. Enough about the people and the atmosphere lets get down to the Wine and the Food Pairings.
This month’s Wine Dinner was A Night of Pinot Noir. The Chef integrated the wines in each food pairing.
1st course – 2009 Cantaluna Pinot Noir, Maule Valley, Chile served with seafood ravioli, mornay sauce (which was made up of Nutmeg and Parmesan cheese). The wine leathery, jammy, and spicy like a Pinot Noir should taste but pair it with this food pairing and bam it knocks your socks off. My 2nd favorite wine, excellent Chilean wine thats great with food or enjoying with friends.
2nd course – 2008 Robin K. Pinot Noir, Santa Lucia Highlands Central Coast served with Endive, Pear & Pecorino salad with Honey balsamic dressing. Okay, not the best pairing, I mean the wine was great and so was this salad but they didn’t compliment each other. The wine had hints of oak that was creamy and had tastes of black cherry. The salad was wonderful, the pears and the Parmesan with the balsamic dressing melted in your mouth. It is on View Cucina’s regular menu, I suggest order it and indulge.
3rd course – 2008 Treasure Hunter Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley, Sonoma, CA – Wow, big Pinot with tastes of raspberry, oak, and leather. My suggestion is decant this bad boy for a good 30 minutes before drinking. This was served with Veal Involtini, pistachio risotto. Oh my goodness the veal was wrapped around asparagus…the asparagus was so crunchy and fresh. The veal tender and the sauce that was a made with this wine, I thought I was going to lick my plate. I hope they decide to go with this sauce instead of the regular sauce that goes with the veal. Best food and wine pairing of the night.
4th course – 2007 T.W.O. Pinot Noir, Santa Rita Hills, CA served with Pork Shank, Butternut squash-mashed potatoes and pan drippings. This dish won 2nd place for best entree in the Taste of Cincinnati, I can’t believe this dish didn’t win! It was awesome the pork braised for 4 1/2 hours with white wine, sage, and prosciutto and the butternut squash mashed potatoes were so creamy/buttery. The wine was very jammy and peppery worked excellent with the pork.
Last course – 2007 Fiddlehead Cellars Lollapalooza Pinot Noir, Santa Ynez Valley, CA served with Sfogliatella. An Italian dessert that has a flaky pastry served filled with Ricotta cheese atop blackberries and fresh whipped cream. Another bad pair up but both were delightful! Excellent wine my favorite of the night and the dessert was to die for, the blackberries were so juicy and sweet. This dessert deserves a great cup of espresso or coffee not wine. The wine was jammy with tastes of plum and had a creamy/buttery taste. The wine maker is a female who won the Winemaker of the Year Award a couple of years back.
What a great night at the View Cucina, it’s definitely a wonderful restaurant that I will frequent again. I can’t wait till the next wine dinner in October…so why don’t you join me.
Last week I was lucky enough to attend the Mollydooker Blending and Wine Making Celebration on behalf of wine-girl.net. The event, which took place at Morton’s The Steakhouse Cincinnati, featured Sparky Marquis, award-winning winemaker and owner of Mollydooker Wines.
Before I get too far, Mollydooker is Aussie for left-hander. Both Sparky and wife, Sarah, are left-handed. The husband-and-wife team established Mollydooker in 2005 and they’ve won many awards for their wines since.
This event was entertaining and educational. We were first greeted with a tasting of Mollydooker’s only white wine, The Violinist, made from the Verdelho grape. We all learned later in the evening that it was Sparky’s mum, Janet, who greeted us with the wine! We munched on Miniature Crab Cakes and Blue Cheese Tenderloin Crostini, and Sparky came in to welcome us and chat for a while.
We were then led to another banquet room with assigned seating. There a personable and extremely entertaining Sparky told us the story behind Mollydooker. He also demonstrated the Mollydooker Shake – the best way to prepare and enjoy most Mollydooker wines. The vigorous shaking of the wine bottle releases nitrogen, which allows these young wines to show their full, creamy flavor profile.
Then it was time for the interactive part of the evening. We were paired up and challenged to create our own blend of wine. Each pair designed very different flavors using three Mollydooker Lefty Wines: a Merlot called The Scooter; The Maitre D’, a classic Aussie Cabernet; and a Shiraz called The Boxer. Each table voted on the four creations and my team’s blend was the ultimate favorite! Funny thing is Mollydooker makes a blend with the perfect combination of these three wines called Two Left Feet.
Finally, we tasted Mollydooker’s Party Wines, including Gigglepot, a Cabernet Sauvignon named after the Marquis’ daughter, Holly; and Blue Eyed Boy, a Shiraz named after their son, Luke. We also tried the Love Wines: Enchanted Path, a Shiraz/Cab; Carnival of Love, a Shiraz; and the fabulous Velvet Glove. Many thanks to the event organizers for comping my ticket.
Some fun Mollydooker facts:
- All Mollydooker bottles are screw caps so that no wines ever experience cork taint.
- Bottles include a Wine Find tear off tab on the back label so you always remember the name of the wine you just drank.
- Sarah is the inspiration behind all the labels. Each label tells a story about some aspect of Sparky and Sarah’s lives.
On the drive across Kansas, a state that seems to be roughly 12,000 miles across, Michelle and I noticed a billboard for the Oz Museum. With her love of the Wizard of Oz and my desire to not be in the car for a few minutes, we decided to make a small detour to Wamego, KS. Wamego was a very nice little town and in addition to having coffee at The Daily Grind, next door was the Oz Winery.
The winery offers free samples while they are open and this gave us a chance to try what they had to offer. The dry whites were tasty, especially the Poppy Fields, a balanced Pinot Gris. The wine was well made and we ended up with a few bottles.
Oz Winery is worth a stop for anyone on their way through the Sunflower State.
And if you want to know more about our cross-country road trip, from Cincinnati to San Francisco, you can follow along over on the Posterous Blog.
By Angela L.
In my spare time I like to come up with my own recipes for drinks. This is a recipe that I came up with while waiting for my Italian dinner to finish baking. I thought about some of the key ingredients that are in a lot of Italian drinks or foods for example vanilla, lemon, and white wine. What I came up with was something called Italian Sparkle. Its light, has a hint of vanilla, and it adds to any dish.
The Italian Sparkle
¾ bottle of dry white wine
1 ½ oz of Ginger Ale
10 oz of club soda
1 ½ oz of Sugar-Free Vanilla Syrup
¾ oz of lemon juice
2 oz of Apricot Brandy
Mix in chilled pitcher
Chill champagne flutes or wine glasses
Garnish the flutes or glasses with lemon slice
Serves – 8 champagne flutes
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