THE Wine List

I realized today that I’ve barely spoken about wine in my recent posts. Perhaps because I feel like there is so much to write about? Every time I step into work at 56 Degree Wine, I am greeted not only by a refreshing burst of cool air (the temperature in the shop is ALWAYS set to 56 degrees F) but also by floor stacks of new wines that I will surely learn about that day. Each week, we¬† get new shipments of wines from our suppliers. And each week has in store a whole new lesson in my ongoing course that is my employment at the shop.

No matter who my 56-er is that day (by “56-er” I mean 56 Degree colleague)… I can be sure to get the education that I crave! Every Monday, Jay and I enjoy comparing notes of the wines that we’ve recently tasted. If I have a question about Burgundy or Spain, I go to Joe, the wine director. If I am stumped on a classification of Riesling or a region in Germany, I go to Tim, the store manager. And if I have a question about pretty much ANYTHING wine related, I go to Chris, the owner. He not only answers my question, but then takes me on a geographical journey of the region, then googles the specific winery, and usually ends with personal photos of him drinking that exact wine. Seriously – am I lucky or am I lucky!?

And the greatest part of these 56 relationships… when I invite these guys over, I cook, and they bring AWESOME wines! So, needless to say, most of the times that I have experienced ethereal wine pairings, my 56-ers have been in attendance. So I’m sure you can understand the excitement I felt to be part of a wine dinner that none of the aforementioned crew was at. It was a Friday evening at the end of March (i.e. beginning of Spring.) Not only did I take notes like a librarian, but I followed up with the hosts of this magnificent dinner party to email me the wine list. They were kind enough to do so.

Before I reveal THE WINE LIST (which is TOTALLY what I refer to this list as) I want to also mention that the food that we were served this evening was MAGNIFICENT! We started off with a gorgeous plate of artisanal cheeses and flatbreads as well as some delicious mushroom tartlets. Our first course was a beautifully prepared halibut atop earthy lentils and the dish was topped with a grape tomato butter. The second course was a fennel, blood orange, and goat cheese salad. The main course revealed “melt in your mouth” braised short ribs over a celery root puree (yum!) and the dessert was a decadent piece of chocolate cake. THE WINE LIST needed to be this great to stand up to the amazing food!!

1999 Leroy Bourgogne Rouge (appetizers)
2005 Bachelet Monnot Puligny Montrachet Les Referts (appetizers)
Margaine Rose Brut Champagne (when we were first seated at dinner)
2006 U Baccan (Bruna is the producer, from the pigato grape indigenous to Liguria) (with halibut and salad)
1990 Ch. Ducru Beaucaillou (short ribs)
1990 Ch. L’Angelus (short ribs)
1991 Ridge Montebello (after the short ribs)
1994 Dominus (sometime after short ribs and before/during dessert)
1988 Ch. Climens (during/after dessert)

Thank you to my friends that threw this amazing dinner party! And thank you to my 56-ers because without your knowledge that you’ve graciously shared with me, I would not have appreciated this incredible spread! CHEERS!!!

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