ITALIAN

Wineries of the Month

Morgante LLS

Morgante LLS
The Morgante winery represents one family’s initiative to employ five generations of viticultural experience. In 1994, Antonio Morgante, with the enthusiasm of his sons, Carmelo and Giovanni, decided to vinify their vineyard grapes. This decision represented the beginning of a strong commitment to achieve the best results with indigenous grapes while keeping an eye toward innovation. In 1997, the family hired Riccardo Cotarella as their winemaker. Cotarella, widely recognized for his work crafting compelling wines from Italy’s native varietals, shares the Morgante passion for producing great red wines from Nero d’Avola.

Tasca d’Almerita
The island of Sicily is home to the Tasca d’Almerita family of estates: Regaleali, Capofaro, and Whitaker. The Regaleali estate is at the heart of the family’s wine production, and also serves as an escape from the bustle of the coastal capital of Palermo. In 2002, the family purchased vineyards on the small island of Salina to create Tenuta Capofaro, which produces elegant sweet wines with high acidity yet fresh balance throughout. The Whitaker estate consists of vineyards originally planted by the English family of the same name in the 19th century.

As a result of Count Giuseppe’s hard work and dedication over the past 50 years, all the wines of Tasca d’Almerita are celebrated worldwide for their outstanding value and prestigious history. Count Giuseppe’s son, Count Lucio, is president of the family-run winery, and his two sons, Giuseppe and Alberto, serve as vice president and managing director, respectively. In addition to the wines, the estate is practically self sufficient, producing most of the vegetables, fruits, wheat, olives, cheeses and meats they need

Cantine Colisi
The name Pietro has been passed down from father to son in the Colosi family. In the 1970s Pietro Colosi “Senior” worked alongside Carlo Hauner: besides their close friendship, the two also shared a love for the wines of the island. This friendship continued to grow and a short time later Pietro found himself managing both his own property and cellar and Carlo’s. Thirty years ago, in 1987, Pietro, son of Pietro, began to follow in his father’s footsteps.

 


CALIFORNIAN

Wineries of the Month

Sojourn Cellars

Sojourn Cellars
Based in the town of Sonoma, Sojourn Cellars is a highly acclaimed winery specializing in the production of artisan Pinot noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. They source fruit from celebrated vineyards in both Sonoma and Napa Counties. They consistently produce remarkable wines with a hands- off natural winemaking style that showcases the character and personality of the individual vineyards.

Sojourn Cellars began in 2001 as a collaboration between two tennis buddies who discovered a mutual passion for great wine and the things that tend to go with it – good food and good company. Utilizing Erich’s experience as an Assistant Winemaker at Arrowood Winery, Craig Haserot and Erich Bradley developed a plan to produce distinctive Pinot noir wines complemented by small bottlings of Cabernet Sauvignon from extraordinary vineyard sources. Over the next 10 years, they worked together to develop their shared love of fine wine into a winery that has established a consistent track record of producing highly rated wines under the Sojourn brand.

Michael Pozzan Wines
Behind every good man is a great woman. Such was the case with Michael and Mary Ann. MaryAnn Giannini is a Bay Area native whose family was familiar with the Pozzan’s. She motivated Michael to start the winery and the two of them ran every aspect of the business for years. In fact, it wasn’t until their oldest son Dante joined the business that they had another full time employee.

Michael secured grape contracts and made the wine, Mary Ann was busy designing Labels and handling administrative duties. When they were not working at the winery they hit the road selling wine across the country. Today nothing has changed except having the support of their two sons to carry on the family Legacy.

 


ITALIAN Wines of the Month

SiciliaARTISAN SERIES

2016 Rosso IGP Terre Siciliane
80 % Nero D’Avola, 20% Mascalese
Alcohol: 13.5%
Intense ruby-red color, on the nose fruity with aromas of cherry and blackberries. Scents of black pepper and vanilla. Palate, fresh, full-bodied and lasting with soft and elegant tannins. Pair with red meat, aged cheese, and sausage products.

2017 Bianco IGP Terre Siciliane
50% Uve Inzolia, 50% Catarratto
Alcohol: 12.5%
Straw yellow color with green light hues. Stands out on the nose for its particular aromaticity, with a boquet of white flowers and yellow fresh fruit, followed by green tea. Palate is fresh, fruity, and savory. Pair with seafood and shellfish.

WINEMAKER SERIES

2015 Tasca Lamuri Nero d’Avolia Scilia
100% Nero d’Avola
Alcohol: 13.5%
Intense ruby-red in color, aroma of black cherry, black fruits, vanilla, tobacco, and wild-herbs. Palate, velvety tannins and refreshing acidity make for an elegant, expressive, crowd-pleasing wine. Pare with spaghetti and meatballs, Bolognese sauces, papa Pomodoro, and lamb.

2015 Morgante Nero d’Avola Sicillia DOC
100% Nero d’Avola
Alcohol: 14.5%
This wine shows aromas of ripe black cherries and blackberries accompanied by hints of vanilla, peppery spice, and smoke. On the palate, abundant flavors of ripe fruit and exotic spices are balanced by a pleasing acidity and silky tannins. Pair with grilled meats and vegetables, legumebased stews, or flavorful seafood.

2017 Colosi Salina Bianco IGP Salina
50% Uve Inzolia, 50% Catarratto
Alcohol: 12.5%
Obtained from Inzolia and Catarratto grapes, it fully encapsulates the area thanks to the characteristics brought by the volcanic soils, rich in magnesium and potassium, the lack of water and the intense sunshine. It is a white wine of great distinction, with strong hints of ripe fruit and exotic fruits. The wine has the typical sensations of the Mediterranean scrub. It has the intense flavor of white peach. Excellent with hors d’oeuvres, fish and seafood.

COLLECTOR SERIES

2014 Morgante Don Antonio Nero D’Avola Sicillia DOC Riserva
100% Nero d’Avola
Alcohol: 14.5%
Deep ruby red color, with deep violet flashes. Its strength and complexity immediately stand out at the nose. Blackberry and cherry notes balanced with vanilla scent. Soon there are tobacco aromas, and towards the end balsamic notes, and elegant vegetal notes. Fruity taste, intense, elegant tannins and freshness. Very long at the palate. Pair with tasty red meat and medium and long aged cheeses.

2009 Tasca Cabernet Sauvignon Contea di Sclafani DOC
100% Cabernet Sauvignon
Alcohol: 14.5%
Deep purple in color, aromas of red cherries and black fruits complement undertones of vanilla, black pepper, cinnamon, and mint. On the palate, it is silky, concentrated, elegant, and balanced with a persistent finish. Pair with roasted beef, mushroom sauces, and Yorkshire pudding.

ITALIAN Region of the Month

Sicilia

Some say that today, Sicilians have less Italian blood in their veins than Phoenician, Greek, Arabic, Norman, Spanish, or French. Because Sicilia is on a crossroads between Europe and Africa, it has been overrun by many different cultures, which have left their traces on this beautiful island, the largest in the Mediterranean. The Greek cities of Sicily flourished during the 6th and 5th Centuries BC, and their ruins are some of the most impressive outside of Greece, especially the Valley of the Temples near Agrigento. Today, Sicily is the leading wine region in Southern Italy, its wines garnering many awards. Mt.Etna, Europe’s largest active volcano, is one of the most exciting vineyard locations in Italy, and is attracting much attention and investment. The white Bianco d’Alcamo and the red Cerasuolo di Vittoria show notable class. Increasingly prominent are the fruity aromatic whites, Inzolia, Catarratto, and Grecanico. Native reds have also achieved prominence, such as Nero d’Avola, Nerello Mascalese, and Perricone. The newly introduced French varieties, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah are also producing exciting results.


 

CALIFORNIAN Wines of the Month

SonomaARTISAN SERIES

2016 Michael Pozzan Annabella Red Blend
66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Zinfandel, 4% Tempranillo
Alcohol: 14.5%
Generous aromas of ripe raspberries, peaches, and root beer. In the mouth, the wine shows sweet, supple tannins that lay heavily on the tongue, with flavors of juicy raspberries, white peach espresso, and deeply charred French Oak with a persistent finish of vanilla bean. Pair with pulled pork served with corn bread and your favorite spicy BBQ sauce.

2016 Michael Pozzan Annabella Napa Valley Chardonnay
100% Chardonnay
Alcohol: 13.5%
Golden in the glass, volunteering enticing aromas of red pear, mandarin oranges, a light crème brule, and a diaphanous vanilla spiciness. In the mouth, the wine shows flavors of golden delicious apple, subtle white flowers, and a light candied Lemon peel. The light oak influence is well integrated into the wine’s delicate structure, melding well into a round, soft palate with a bright, youthful acidity. Pair with sea scallops served over buttered pappardelle and arugula salad with goat cheese.

WINEMAKER SERIES

2016 Sojourn Pinot Noir Russian River Valley
100% de-stemmed Pinot Noir
Alcohol: 14.2%
Pale ruby-purple color and gives up notes of minted cherries, crushed red plums and raspberry leaves with wafts of black tea and unsmoked cigars plus a touch of wild thyme. Medium-bodied, the palate provides an electric intensity of red fruit and savory flavors with a lively line and very fine grained tannins to support. Pair with steak, barbeque, or a hearty stew.

2016 Michael Pozzan Annabella Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot, 2% Merlot
Alcohol: 14.5%
Enticing aromas of cassis, Bing cherry, and a hint of strawberry mingled with tobacco and dark chocolate. In the mouth, the voluptuous, broad wine shows flavors of ripe black cherries, root beer, and graphite, with a textured mid palate perfumed by well- integrated French oak. The finish is exotic with hints of wild flowers and nutmeg. Pair with filet mignon, roasted vegetables, or lamb.

COLLECTOR SERIES

2016 Sojourn Cellars Pinot Noir Reuling Vineyard-Sonoma Coast
100% Pinot Noir
Alcohol: 14.4%
An impressive and distinctive Pinot, it opens with complex aromas of earth and forest floor that lead to dark cherry, mushroom and truffle notes. So young, and yet so complex. Wine critic Owen Bargreen calls this wine “an outstanding and graceful style of Pinot noir for Sojourn.” Pair with hearty stew, spaghetti and meatballs, or roasted lamb.

2016 Sojourn Pinot Noir Gap’s Crown Vineyard-Sonoma Coast
100% Pinot Noir
Wine Advocate 91 points – Medium to deep ruby-purple colored, the 2016 Pinot Noir Gap’s Crown Vineyard opens with pronounced notions of Black Forest cake, blackberry compote and red plums with nuances of lilacs, underbrush, camphor and oolong tea. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers concentrated black fruit flavors with a velvety texture and just enough freshness, finishing on a lingering earthy note. Pair with steak, rich, red pasta dishes, or a hamburger.

CALIFORNIAN Region of the Month

Sonoma

Russians planted the first vineyards after establishing a colony at Fort Ross on the Pacific in 1812. In 1824 while he built the Mission in the Town of Sonoma, Father José Altimira planted grapevines to provide sacramental wine for religious services and for the table. Sonoma County is large and boasts a huge diversity of vines and wine styles because micro climates, soils, and topography are infinite. Some of these micro climates are hospitable to grapes that require warmer temperatures, like Cabernet Sauvignon and associated Bordeaux varieties or Zinfandel and other Mediterranean grapes. The County also offers cooler areas where Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and additional white varieties thrive. Marine fog, breezes, and cool nights prolong ripening to produce complex flavors. Sonoma County so far includes 16 distinct American Viticultural Areas (AVAs) recognized by the Federal government. AVAs include Alexander Valley, Bennett Valley, Carneros, Chalk Hill, Dry Creek Valley, Fort Ross-Seaview, Green Valley, Knights Valley, Moon Mountain District, Northern Sonoma, Pine Mountain-Cloverdale Peak, Rockpile, Russian River Valley, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma Mountain, and Sonoma Valley.


 

DINNER WITH DEBRA

By Debra Williams

Baked English Omelette
Serve with one of our Proseccos at brunch. This is one of my favorite recipes. My kids were raised on this recipe. Perfect winter dish and so easy to make.

6 eggs
2/3 cup milk
¼ tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. peppe
1 ½ cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 green onion, thinly sliced
3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese

Beat eggs in and milk in bowl until smooth. Stir in seasonings, Cheddar cheese, onion, and bacon. Melt butter in a 9” omelette pan. Pour egg mixture into pan. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 min. or until set and golden.

Winter Fruit Salad
From Dinner at the Zoo. Great way to enjoy the fruits of winter.

3 cups cubed pineapple
1 cup peeled, quartered, sliced kiwis
2 cups mandarin orange
½ cup pomegranate arils
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon or lime juice
3 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp poppy seeds
Mint leaves for garnish

Place fruit into bowl. Whisk lemon juice, honey, and poppy seeds. Pour over fruit, tossing gently to coat. Garnish with mint leaves if desired.