The Smashed Grape: A Wine Seminar

11 Jun

On Wednesday night, Dan and I had the pleasure of attending a wonderful event which was held at the The Spicy Green Bean and hosted by the liquor store next door, The Smashed Grape. Both places are owned by the same family and they also own Shad Row in Rocky Hill. The event was their first ever wine seminar featuring Bon Vivant Imports, which features a selection of organic wines from Italy and Spain. The representative from Bon Vivant was Brad and he provided an excellent presentation which was very educational. He made sure to emphasize the fact that organic wine is really the best wine to drink. Also there was Marissa from Missing Link Wine Company which was the Connecticut distributor that helped to arrange for Brad to come. She also believes that organic wine is important and as she stated, “If you care so much about what you’re eating, why not also care about the wine that you’re drinking?”

The Spicy Green Bean always does such a nice job with their presentation :)

The Spicy Green Bean always does such a nice job with their presentation 🙂

There were also appetizers provided which was a nice touch since I fit in a quick workout after work and didn’t get a chance to eat dinner. The event was also free, which was amazing since there was both wine and food involved. The wines provided were quite diverse and I want to tell you guys a little bit about each one that I tried.

The water in the adorable carafe was also a nice touch!

The water in the adorable carafe was also a nice touch!

  • Ill Colle Prosecco, Vento

This first wine which we tasted was excellent, although not what I usually expect when I think of Prosecco. It was made at a small family estate in Italy, north of Venice. It was very dry (a Brut) but also light and crisp at the same time. I would definitely purchase this wine any time that I’m craving something sparkling and refreshing.

All the bubbles!

All the bubbles!

  • Redentore Pinot Grigio, Veneto 

We progressed from the very dry Prosecco to something with a little bit more sweetness. This Pinot Grigio was made in northern Italy as well at a small family estate. I should have mentioned that Bon Vivant Imports only deals with small family estates. According to Brad, “wine should be a reflection of the grape and the land“. This wine was very smooth and didn’t give off a strong alcohol taste, which is great and dangerous at the same time.

  • Quinta Do Romeu Rose, Duoro

This wine was probably my favorite overall. When I think of Rose, I think of a sweet summertime wine but apparently a typical European Rose is meant to be dry and not sweet. This Rose is great because according to Brad, it pairs well with any food. It was very refreshing and I loved that it was a blend of at least three different grapes since blends are my favorite!

Pink wine is always so pretty

Pink wine is always so pretty

  • Fatalone Gioa Del Colle Primitivo, Puglia 

This was our first red wine of the evening and to be honest, it was my least favorite. It had an odd aftertaste, although, Brad explained that since most of us had just taken a bite of our dessert (coconut cake), it was pretty much decided that the wine would taste bad. He told us that this wine would be good with savory food but anything sweet would be absolutely “fatal” to the taste of the wine. I would definitely be interested in trying this again, possibly with a steak.

This wine would have gone very well with the appetizers, not the dessert

This wine would have gone very well with the appetizers, not the dessert

  • Volvoreta Flores De Cerezo, Toro

This red wine was excellent and it reminded me of a Pinot Noir which is one of the easiest drinking red wines in my opinion. It was a single varietal wine and there is only a very small production made of it. I found it to be very light and Brad informed us that there were less tannins in this wine which also made it easy to drink.

  • Asenjo y Manso, Ribera Del Duero

Another red wine but this one completely impressed me! This was my favorite red wine and it was definitely the boldest of the bunch. This particular vineyard has vines that are over 100 years old which help to contribute to the excellent flavor of the wine. It uses a tempranillo grape and you can drink it right away but it also ages very well. I would love to pair this wine with a nice steak!

I can honestly say that I enjoyed each of the wines that we tried for different reasons. Another major plus is that they are all sold at The Smashed Grape which is located across the street from our apartment, and they also all fall under $20 a bottle. It’s good to know that there are five completely different wines that I know I enjoy whenever I’m looking for a good bottle. According to the lovely Aida from The Smashed Grape, they should be having these events once a month and I definitely recommend attending to anyone who is local!


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