Wines of the Week: Sept. 8-14
Everyday: Sometimes torrontes can be too floral and ripe for its own good, or at least for my good. Not so the 2011 Alberti 154 Salta La Rioja Torrontes ($13), which pulls back just enough on the aromatics and sweetness and nails the juicy/soft part, plus that whole delicious thing. It’s also for surprising length for Argentina’s signature white varietal. The last fresh tomatoes of the season, especially as part of a BLT, would make sweet music with this beauty, but so would some plump shrimp cooked any ol’ way. And as for real music, the sublime singing of the late Israel Kamakawiwo’ole is just the ticket.
Occasion: I’ve had two vintages of this particular (and particularly swell) wine recently, and the most readily available is the 2010 Alto Moncayo Veraton Garnacha ($26). It’s tasty from the get-go, with stout dark red fruit and fluid tannins rolling across the palate all the way through a stirringly robust finish. Anyone who wonders why we talk so much about texture should taste this gem. An herb-laden roasted pork loin with root veggies is a spot-on pairing, but this grenache also would play well with a similarly prepared whole chicken or hearty beef stew. The soundtrack: one of my favorite bands ever, the sturdy, rollicking Rockpile, featuring the redoubtable duo Nick Lowe and Dave Edmunds.