Thursday, January 13, 2011

Pizza WIne

Not every wine needs to be described in terms of bouquets, aromas, flavor profiles and complexity. Sometimes a wine should just taste like wine, and a decent bottle should cost about as much as a decent six pack. These are the everyday wines - wines you can serve with pizza. Or mac and cheese and hot dogs. Or other quick, everyday meals. Without breaking the bank or pretending that you are going on a flavor safari just because you are drinking wine.

For these occasions, there is nothing wrong with picking up a bottle at the grocery store, cracking it open and enjoying it for what it is: an inexpensive beverage that goes with whatever it is you are eating. For example, the Ravenswood 2007 Napa Valley Zinfandel went very, very well with the pizza we had for dinner. It is a wine that accompanied what it was supposed to, and at $12.99 was a good value, too. Zins tend to pair well with pizza, and the Ravenswood, because it is inexpensive and readily available, is a good "go to" wine for such a meal. There are plenty of others that work just as well.

As for Virginia wines, perhaps a good benchmark of the industry's maturity will be that it is able to produce both elegant, well-made high-end wines and wines that can be opened and served on any given night with any given quick meal without being seen as a novelty. It is certainly possible to make that transition quickly. Just ask any winemaker in Australia, Chile or South Africa.

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