Next door to the famous DiPalo Selects is Sam DiPalo’s Enoteca DiPalo, a quaint wine shop that houses an immense selection of regional Italian wines. I had the pleasure of attending an exclusive wine tasting earlier this month sampling the best from Andrea Formilli Fendi (yes, I mean the handbag Fendi!) and Gradis’ciutta.
Check out the wines tasted on Facebook Album: Enoteca DiPalo Wine Tasting
I sipped on beautifully robust reds from the Fendi family’s vineyard in Umbria, Italy. (also had a chance to meet the winemaker, Tiziano Vistalli) The first was the Pinot Nero--a deep ruby red with slight strawberry and vanilla notes. The Pinot Noir was perfectly balanced, with good acidity and would go perfectly with a beef tenderloin. The second was a Fralu--a deep purple mixture of Merlot (50%), Sangiovese (40%), and Pinot Noir (10%). This red had berries and jam notes and crisp finish. With its vibrant acidity, the Fralu’ would pair nicely with a juicy steak.
I also sampled crisp whites from Gradis’ciutta in Collio, in northeast Friuli-Venezia Giulia, known for producing quality white wines (also met owner Robert Princic that night). The Collio Bianco Bratinis, which uses Chardonnay, Ribolla, Gialla and Sauvignon, was delicate yet flavorful with slight apple and peach notes. This would pair nicely with a fish, antipasti or first course. Next was the Collio Pinot Grigio, elegant, savoury and gentle, with a pleasing aftertaste which would pair beautifully with antipasti, soups, baked fish and some white white meats. The last was the bolder Collio Chardonnay, round yet balanced with a note of vanilla, and would pair well as an apertif, with a roasted or grilled chicken or white fish.
But a wine tasting at Enoteca wouldn’t be complete with a sampling of dishes, cured meats (hand-cut prosciutto!) or cheeses from next door! Chef Andrea Tiberi, from Eatalian in Greenwich, CT, prepared perfect bites that complimented the sampled wines. A crisp frico with potatoes, onion, and montasio cheese; paninis of prosciutto & mozzarella and broccoli rabe with peperoncino pecorino cheese, and an outstanding strangozzi (an irregular hand-cut pasta) with truffle sauce--divine!