Unfortunately the vast vineyards of Brooklyn still remain highly unrecognized in the modern wine world. We hope to petition for an A.V.A. this fall while we harvest an abundance of diluted borough fruit.
Thursday, January 25, 2007
Down by the seashore
I have found that the quintessential shellfish companion lies not in the Loire, but in the land of Greece. Her particular name, moschofilero, may not ring in the same tune that Aphrodite did, but boy is she tailor made for some west coast oysters! No offense to the classy sauvignon blancs of Sancerre, nor their crisp, flinty partners of Pouilly Fume, but this new kid on the block is packing some thunder that may even push Muscadet to the B-list of your local French bistros.
Off the beaten path, and on a whim, my fiancee and I stumbled our way through the chilly streets of Park Avenue South in search of the perfect shells to indulge on. We ended up at a snazzy little seafood joint called the City Crab, which seemed to be just the ticket to satiate our early evening craving. While taking a quick poke through the wines by the glass list, our bartender suggested one of their new arrivals from a Greek producer called Antonopoulos named Mantinia. While I had recently heard that Antonopoulos received some positive press, I was still very unfamiliar of the grape (Mantinia is made from 100 percent moschofilero). His recommendation turned out to be my inspiration for this post.....damn was it spot on!
In the most recent edition of textbook pairings there needs to be an insert on Greek moschofilero with Pacific oysters in the 'pair like w/ like' classics column. Big reds w/ heavy foods, delicate wines w/ delicate dishes and, oh yeah, briny wines w/ briny oysters. Briny wines I say! No only did the Mantinia have soft floral aromatics and a sharp citrus blossom skeleton, the palate was filled w/ a salivating sea salt minerality that evoked notions of sweet Kumamoto Pacific oysters. This was one of the first times I chose to eat my oysters sans sauce, just a dab of lemon was more than sufficient. They tasted as pure as the wine, and bringing them together only intensified their sweet, sea-like qualities. Harmony as it should be. Good lord what a match!
Unfortunately my fiance's competitive Turkish roots halted her from enjoying the moment due to the fact that it was tainted by her home land's bitter rival. Perhaps next time I'm adventurous enough to try a white wine that has Mediterranean descent it will have a brown paper bag over it.
Considering that Greek reds seem to offer much less singular qualities at the moment, I think their staple white grape called Roditis should be my next experiment. Maybe I'll just leave the angry Turk out of this research project. It's all Greek to her anyway.