Are you ready for something a little lighter after the week of festivities? I’m diving into crisp, refreshing Vinho Verde as Denver continues to break records for warm weather in November.
The Thanksgiving meal was heavy, rich, and intense and my body is craving this exact style of wine now: slightly effervescent, citrusy and mineral-laden, lower ABV, and perfect for pairing with lighter fare.
Most of us have seen Vinho Verde on a label and assume it’s the style of the wine, as in “green wine” -- which to me, translates as young, fresh, and ready to drink. However, I recently learned Vinho Verde is actually the name of the region! The wines are made from an array of indigenous grape varieties grown in several different types of soils on vineyard sites with different microclimates all over the region, in Northern Portugal.
We’ve also mostly seen the light, bright spritzy wines I’m tasting today, but the area also produces some interesting richer style whites, full-blown sparklers, and even some reds! If anyone has tried any of these styles from this area I’d love to hear about your experience.
For food pairing, I chose New Style Sashimi with ponzu, strawberry, and serrano and Green Lipped Mussels topped with crab, a little mayo, sweet soy, and green onion. In just two dishes we have quite a few flavors going on! Here’s what’s cool though: the wines are the mediators. They bring these two dishes together to create harmony and make transitioning back and forth from one dish to a wine and then to the other dish and then the other wine and so on a total joy. The wines are perfect with the seafood flavors, but also work beautifully with the berries and the spice of the serrano
Fun Fact: I was an exchange student in Brazil for a year in high school and I speak Portuguese fluently. When I visited Portugal in 2015, everyone thought I was Brazilian because of my accent! Portugal remains one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited.
Learn more about the region and wines on Instagram at @vinhoverdewines and if you get the chance to visit, don’t hesitate! Until then, travel by tasting! These are wines of place that are truly unique.
How are you getting back into balance following the big holiday?!
Memorial Day weekend is always one of my favorite times of year! It's the kick-off to everything fun, and keeping our social distance doesn't mean we don't enjoy. For the weekend, I selected Broadbent Vinho Verde from Portugal and Secateurs Chenin Blanc from South Africa. Take a peek at the live video tasting I did with the amazing Jo Barrett of Broadbent, the importer that brings us these lovely wines. Read on for recipe pairings and tasting notes!