Last week I posted that The Grape has temporarily set up shop in the old Stoney’s space next to their iconic Greenville Ave. restaurant, and will be holding weekly wine tastings in the space. I was able to make it out to the tasting on Tuesday (a day before their normal Wednesday nights for the holiday) and it was fantastic. GM/Sommelier, and always delightful, Courtney Luscher teamed with Steve Masir from Republic Beverages for what I’ll call “A few of Courtney’s favorite things.”
The tasting of four different wines started with a crisp Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut Rose Sparkler from Napa, which is what Courtney typically ends her Saturday nights with, paried with a handful of Marcona almonds and St Andre Triple Cream Brie. The creaminess of the cheese cut through the bright acidity of the sparkler beautifully.
A Spanish Albarino from Paco & Lola was the second sip. Aromas of lemon peel and wildflowers with layers of citrus, herbs and green apple paired with a perfect bite of Chef Brian Luscher’s smoked ham and house made Boursin. The smoky ham and herb filled Boursin elevated the herbal flavors in the wine.
Chef Lusher’s decadent pork rillette was paired with Courtney’s go to Chardonnay, Merryvale Starmont . Pork rillette is not the dish for those watching their waistline, as I think 3 of the main ingredients are fat, fat, and fat….but you don’t need much to enjoy this flavor sensation filled with creamy pork and herbs, pairing well with the Napa Chardonnay filled with green apple, pear and vanilla flavors.
The final taste was one of my favorites as well, Meiomi Pinot Noir from Belle Glos. You will see this on a lot of wine lists these days, and is always a safe choice. From Caymus producer Joseph Wagner, this Pinot is filled with coastal California flavors, red raspberry, strawberry and cherry with sweet spices like nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves. Paired with Chef Lusher’s housemade saucisson sec and blue cheese. Bold flavors paired with a lush Pinot.
The night was well done – just enough education and pairing tips to be interesting; not too much to be over done (or put you to sleep.) The seating is comfortable and communal, and you have plenty of time between each taste to get to know your neighbor.
Courtney teams with Whit Meyers of Virtuoso tomorrow night for “A Taste of Spain.” Four Spanish wines paired with bites of cheese and Spanish inspired tapas. The cost is $25; enjoy dinner at The Grape that night and get 15% off your dinner bill. The tasting starts at 6pm, reservations required. 214-828-1981.