Friday, March 7, 2014

Dine Italia, Vancouver International Wine Fest

Last weekend we attended the Vancouver International Wine Festival; a huge tasting on Friday night, and Dine Italia, a beautiful lunch at La Terrazza, my new favorite Vancouver Italian restaurant.

I can sum up our lunch in one word: YUM

Here is the menu, with wine pairings, with my comments and ratings in RED within.

For those of us who have trouble reading Italian wines on the menu: the name of the winery is in bold at the end; the name and/or type of wine to the left.


Seared Alaskan scallop, crispy tara root chip, meyer lemon basil aioli, tapiko caviar

Villa Teresa Organic Rose Frizzante NV ~ VINI TONON
Crisp and fruity, with lots of strawberry on the nose and palate. Very refreshing, absent of a lot of the bite you can sometimes find with this type of wine. 87.



Buffalo mozzarella, heirloom cherry tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, herb salad

Burrata cheese, herb crostini, Parma prosciutto, wild arugula, basil olive oil


Prosecco Brut Spumante DOCG NV ~ MIONETTO
 ($19.99) Very light, well balanced with just the right amount of acidity. 84.

Maso Canali Pinot Grigio 2012 ~ DAVINCI
($19.99) Light and flinty on the nose, with a crisp, refreshing palate of apple with a touch of minerality. A very nice Pinot Grigio. 87.

Ca Del Magro 2011 ~ MONTE DEL FRA
($19.99) Elegant, subtle, light and well balanced. A blend of the following:
50% Garganega, 10% Trebbiano Toscano, 10% Tocai, 15% Cortese; 15% Chardonnay-Riesling. 88.



Truffled bison meat balls, seasonal mushrooms, parmigiano reggiano cream


Tenuta Frescobaldi Di Castiglione 2011 ~ Marchesi de Frescobaldi
($26.99) Non-traditional Italian grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc,
 and Merlot, joined by Sangiovese. Lots of red fruits on the nose and palate.
I originally gave this wine an 85; then I tasted it with the meatballs it was
supposed to pair with, and bumped it up to 87. I'll have a special
blog post in the next couple days on wine and food pairings!

Chianti Classico Riserva di Fizzano DOCG 2009 ~ Rocca della Macie
($39.99) Notes of plum, berries, and tobacco on the nose and palate.
Finishes very smooth. 86.

Chianti Classico Colledilà DOCG 2009 ~ Barone Ricasoli
($66.00) Now we are playing with the big boys. 100% Sangiovese, with aging potential (15+ years) that this grape doesn't always offer. Beautiful
fruit with a touch of spice on the long, smooooooooth finish.
Very special. 94.



Sous vide AAA Alberta beef tenderloin,  25yr balsamic reduction, creamy mascarpone polenta


Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2009 ~ Castiglion del Bosco
($59.99) Another 100% Sangiovese treasure. Lingering notes of
dark fruits, with a hint of spice and chocolate. Simply brilliant. 94.

Villa Donoratico 2010 ~ Tenuta Argentiera
($36.99) Non-traditional Italian grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc,
 and Merlot. Plums and blackberries on the nose. A hint of pepper
on the palate, with a very long and smooth finish. 85.

Barolo `Lecinquevigne’ DOCG 2008 ~ Damilano
($49.99) Ladies and Gentlemen, the King of Italian wines, I
present to you BAROLO. Here's the catch: Barola needs to age.
Not for months, not for years, but for decades. This wine is tasty
now, but it needs another 10-15 years to truly hit it's potential.
If you can wait, for $49.99, you'll probably have
yourself a steal. 88.
Barolo di Serralunga d’Alba DOCG 2009 ~ Fontanafredda
($44.99) See above. Black cherries on the nose, with some
chocolate, flowers, earth and mocha on the palate. It's already
great; in another decade, watch out. 93.




World renowned Dutch Gouda style cheese / caramelized pear tart

Amarone della Valpolicella Costasera DOCG 2008 ~ Masi
($54.99) Most big Italian reds need to age and this is no exception,
but if you decant it for an hour or so you'll have a treat now
as well. I already have one of these in my cellar to open up
in the future. 91.

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