WIDWD: Brian Carter Cellars 2004 Tuttorosso Yakima Valley
What I Drank With Dinner (WIDWD)
After several delicious dinners paired with less than inspiring Washington wines last week, I was starting to feel like the Rockies in their World Series struggle against the Red Sox. Although the Rockies were swept in four games, I had more bottles of Washington wine to try even after going 0-4. I couldn't have asked for a better way to get out of this wine slump than opening a Brian Carter Cellars 2004 Tuttorosso Yakima Valley. It was an absolutely fantastic wine.
We opened the Tuttorosso last night while celebrating a friend's birthday at our home, with Kari cooking up one of her signature dishes, pasta bolognese. She makes this in a traditional manner, finely chopping carrots, celery and fennel, then sautéing this with onions in a pan of olive oil.
Kari then adds veal, pork, beef and pancetta that has been ground together, slow cooking the ingredients for a couple of hours. After cooking the spaghetti al dente, she transfers the pasta into the pan and mixes it with the bolognese. Topped with freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, it is an incredible dish and is always a big hit with friends and family visiting our dinner table.
Celebrating a birthday, we toasted our good friend, John, with glasses of Nino Franco's Rustico Prosecco di Valdobbiadene and then started dinner with a Germano Ettore 2004 Vigna della Madre Barbera d' Alba. Both were a delicious beginning to our meal.
Then came the Brian Carter Tuttorosso (translates to "all red"), which was a beautiful, elegant wine. The bottle's back label includes a brief statement from Brian Carter, the winemaker and details on the wine's blend of 58% Sangiovese, 34% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 8% Syrah.
The first sip brought me back to the wonderful experience I had tasting wines at Brian Carter Cellars in Woodinville last summer. I remember enjoying all of Brian Carter's wines, but had a particular fondness for the Tuttorosso ($30), his tribute to the "rogue Italian winemakers who broke ranks to create the Super-Tuscan category".
What a wonderful tribute, celebrating a delicious blend of Washington grapes, married in a style that just blew me away. And I loved that the Tuttorosso was a low alcohol (13.5%), food friendly wine, making it an exception to many of the other Washington Sangiovese-based wines I have tasted recently.
Brian Carter Cellars' tagline is, "A Passion for the Art of Blending". Brian's passion certainly shows in the Tuttorosso. On my next trip to Woodinville, I am definitely going to pay Brian Carter Cellars another visit to pick up more of this wonderful wine and maybe a few others from his collection. I encourage you to try a glass or a bottle as well if you're in Woodinville wine country.