A few days ago my bestie asked me if I’d like to join her for a wine tasting dinner on Saturday night. She sent me the menu and incredibly some of our top favorite foods were being featured with wines from Greece. Now between the two of us, my girl is the wine connoisseur, while I’m a tad more than a novice when it comes to wine and most of what I’ve learned has been from her. So honestly, for me it was about the food! The menu consisted of an amuse bouche and five courses. The courses in order were Oysters Portoheli (a Greek version so Oysters Rockefeller), Pan Seared Scallops with leeks and balsamic reduction (the scallops were wrapped in bacon, and we love bacon anything), Chilean Sea Bass with a vegetable ragout, Grilled Lamb Chops with mashed potatoes and mustard greens, and Chocolate Mousse Cake for dessert. The wine dinner was divine and I actually liked all of the wine selections, both white and red, and the pairings were perfect.
A Greek wine distributor and a visiting Greek wine professional gave presentations on the history of wineries in Greece and explained the different regions the wine was from. Greek wines are beginning to be recognized around the world. The two shared a few interesting tidbits. One was that some vineyards were actually planted on top of rock formations, such as marble and gold. The dust from the formations penetrates the grapes and leaves a distinctive taste as opposed to those vineyards that are not above the formations. When tasting a couple of wines the distributor asked us to guess what the rock formation taste was. I initially thought that was weird; how am I supposed to know what granite, slate, or marble tastes like? However, when someone said “salt”, I thought I could probably distinguish a salt taste. The other interesting tidbit was about “mastic”, which I’d not heard of before. Mastic is the gum that comes from the branches of a tree. Layers of limestone are placed under the tree to make mastic gum easier to pick up. It is typically used for medicinal purposes; however, it is also made into a liqueur. We were surprised with a glass of mastic after dinner (after the dessert wine selection). It was pretty strong and I couldn’t decide if I liked it or not. The last tidbit I’ll share is that Yamas is the Greek word for cheers!
Although I was on day thirteen of the cleanse I wouldn’t say I totally blew it, the creator of the cleanse realizes people will have challenges and temptations, and this was my first in thirteen days! You just pick up where you left off, make it up and keep it moving.