Wine Weekly – Best Wines to Pair With Our Skizzas!

As many of you may know, Gigi has won the Best of the Hudson Valley award for Best Pizza!  We are so thrilled with this honor that we are offering 20% off our Skizzas Monday-Thursday for the next two weeks if you check-in at Gigi Trattoria on Facebook, Yelp or Foursquare.  Gigi not only wants to give you a great deal but we also want you to get the most from your Skizza experience.  So for this week’s Wine Weekly blog, we are going to let you know just what wines go best with our award-winning Skizzas!

Whether you take our word for one of these delicious pairings, or chose your own, be sure to check in on Yelp, Facebook or Foursquare to get 20% off our Skizzas, Monday-Thursday.  If you come in on Wednesday, all our or bottles of wine are 30% off!  Now that is quite a pairing!

Let’s begin with the Margherita Skizza.  Simple yet satisfying.  Our infamous thin crust is topped with Gigi Tomato Sauce, a blend of mozzarella, swiss & provolone cheese and finished with fragrant fresh basil and a touch of dried oregano.  A wine to pair with such perfect simplicity must be bold yet refreshing.  The Evodia Grenache from Cataluyd, Spain is just that.  The minerality enhances the earthiness of the herbs while hints of black cherry and raspberry add a new depth of sweetness to tomato sauce.  For only $8 a glass and $25 a bottle, you will be making the Evodia-Margherita pairing your new “go-to” in no time!

For meat lover’s there is no Skizza better than the Mamma.  Tangy Gigi Tomato Sauce topped with plenty of cheese and thin slices of robust fennel salami and Tuscan-style porchetta make for a fulfilling 10” of flavor.  To hold up to such a powerful Skizza, you need a wine that delivers.  The Altos de la Hoya Monastrell is just that.  Firm tannins, minerality and a hint of spice in this Spanish wine make it strong enough to pair with the heartiness of the Mama while hints of dark berry and red fruit make the Monastrell well-balanced.  This 92% Monastrell and 8% Garnacha is $10 a glass and $26 a bottle, an affordable pairing for an irresistible Skizza.

Seasonality is important at Gigi Trattoria and we are showcasing the flavors of fall with our Zucca Skizza.  Creamy Delicata squash “pesto” is topped with Coach Farm Fig Goat Cheese, thinly sliced coppa and crispy fried sage leaves.  This Skizza is a delicate balance of sweet and savory with a hint of spice from the coppa.  Either of the red wines mentioned above pair nicely with this Skizza but we believe the best pairing for the Zucca is the admired Lugana Limne.  The refined bouquet compliments the crispy sage while the subtle fruit accents bring out the flavor of the squash and hint of fig.  The Lugana can be paired with any Skizza or sipped on its own for just $10 a glass and $33 a bottle.

Last but not least is one of our most popular pairings, the Bianca Skizza with the Gavi.  Loved by staff and customers alike, nothing beats a warm Bianca with a crisp glass of Gavi.  If you are not familiar with the Bianca, it is our traditional crust topped with Gigi Fig Jam, creamy Coach Farm Goat Cheese, shaved pear, Sky Farm arugula and finished with white truffle oil.  To go with such a complex Skizza, you need a quality wine.  The Stefano Massone’s Vigneto Masera Gavi made from 100% Cortese grapes brings out the flavor of pear and fig.  The citrus notes of the Gavi cut the richness of the goat cheese resulting in a clean palate.  If you don’t already know the Gavi is $10 a glass and $30 a bottle, a steal for such an excellent wine.

Whether you take our word for one of these delicious pairings, or chose your own, be sure to check in on Yelp, Facebook or Foursquare to get 20% off our Skizzas, Monday-Thursday.  If you come in on Wednesday, all our or bottles of wine are 30% off!  Now that is quite a pairing!

 

Wine Weekly – Altos de la Hoya Monastrell

Let’s take a trip back to Spain in 1872.  That is the year that the grape vines for this week’s wine weekly were planted. The Altos de la Hoya Monastrell is as fierce as its vines are old. This 92% Monastrell and 8% Garnacha is from the Jumilla wine route in the Murcia region of Spain where many Monastrells are produced. What makes the Altos de la Hoya stand out is that it is more balanced than a typical Monastrell. Monastrells usually reflect black fruits and firm tannins. Altos De La Hoya does have notes of dark berry, but there is also a lot of minerality to this wine. The finish is more reminiscent of red fruit than dark and even has a bit of spice. This wine drinks similar to a Rioja, pairing it well with grilled meats, cheeses and even burgers. It is a lovely counterpart to our Gigi Burger and Tuscan Fries with Gigi Dipping Sauce.

 It is truly a miracle that the Altos de la Hoya Monastrell has made it to our wine list.  In 1989, phylloxera hit the Jumilla DO, causing many wine growers to have to abandon their vines.  Bodegas Olivares, the producers of this Monastrell, not only managed to salvage their vines, but even were able to save some of the original vines planted in 1872.  This could be the reason why this Monastrell is unique compared to the other Monastrells of the Jumilla DO that were replanted after the phylloxera tragedy. 

We are definitely happy that the Altos de la Hoya Monastrell made it all the way from 1872 to our wine list!  This balanced red wine is moderately priced at $10 per glass and $26 for a bottle. Come celebrate the Altos de la Hoya Monastrell’s heritage at Gigi Trattoria. And if you come on Wednesday, all our bottled wines are 30% off.  Hope to see you soon!

Learn more about the Jumilla DO region of Spain here.

Wine Weekly – Sparkling Wine

Some people think that bubbly is only for celebrations, but we think every day at Gigi is a celebration, especially when we have affordable and tasty sparkling wines on our menu! 

Our Segura Viudas Cava and our Gama Prosecco are two of our best selling wines by the glass.  We find, however, that customers are either Cava drinkers or Prosecco drinkers.  The fact of the matter is Cava and Prosecco are so different that one really doesn’t substitute for the other.  Both are delicious bubbly wines, but each is unique in its own way.

Prosecco is the white grape variety (Glera) that generally is used to make dry or extra dry sparkling wines.  DOC prosecco is produced in the regions of Veneto or Friuli Venezia Guilia, and traditionally in the areas of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene.   Up until the 1960’s prosecco was unbearably sweet.  But with some improvement in production, prosecco has become a popular sparkling wine.  Unlike Champagne or Cava, prosecco is produced using the Charmat method where the secondary fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks.  It has about 11-12% alcohol content.  Prosecco is the main ingredient in a Bellini since its peach and apricot characteristics are enhanced by peach nectar.  On its own or with food such as the HV cheese plate, prosecco is best enjoyed chilled and in a flute.  It even pairs well with a lighter dessert!

The most distinguishable difference between prosecco and cava (other than the fact that one is Italian and one is Spanish) is the way the wine is produced.  Cava, like champagne, is produced using the traditional method where the 2nd fermentation occurs in the bottle.  Yeast and sugar are added to the base wine for fizz and a 1-1.5% increase in alcohol.   The sediment of the dry yeast gives this wine a bit of a savory flavor.  Also unlike prosecco, cava is named for the type of wine not the grape.  It is produced mostly from Penedes near Barcelona.  The majority of cava is made with Macabea, Parellada, Xarel-lo grape varieties.  Recently even some Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes have made their way into cava.  With its outstanding effervescence, cava holds up to even richer dishes and actually is a refreshing accompaniment to our Tuscan Fries. 

Next time you are in the mood for a celebration, stop by Gigi Trattoria for a little bubbly.  We recommend sampling the Gama Prosecco next to the Segura Viudas Cava and deciding which one is your favorite.  We would love to hear your feedback!  And if you are in on a Wednesday, whichever bubbles you chose will be 30% off by the bottle!  Now that is something to celebrate.

Learn more about Segura Viudas Cava here.

Learn more about Gama Prosecco here.

Wine Weekly – Txakoli

A unique white wine from Spain has been recently making an impact in the states.  Called Txakoli, (pronounced “choc-o-li”), this delightful wine has recently begun making an appearance on wine menus and in wine stores around the U.S.  The  wine became popular in the 1980’s, though it actually originated in Spain hundreds of years ago, around the 18th century.

Drinking Txakoli or txakolina within about a year of bottling is recommended and when served, it is traditionally poured from a height.  This is done in order to decrease some of the effervescence, causing it to be soft and light on the palate.  Found most often in the Basque region, this white wine is dry with a low alcohol content and high acidity.

After much research, Gigi Trattoria found an affordable but delicious Txakolina from a vineyard right outside of San Sebastian.  Mokoroa Getariako Txakolina is fresh and balanced with notes of peach, apple and fresh grass.   The Mokoroa Tolosa family began producing high quality txakoli just four years ago on their 7 hectares of land.

The Getariako varietal of txakoli is grown using a trellis system.  The vines are grown at a greater height above the ground with the foliage forming a continuous canopy.  This not only results in a wonderful wine but an aesthetically pleasing landscape.

Since txakoli is becoming so popular in the US, it is difficult to find many good quality txakolis that are moderately priced.  At Gigi Trattoria we’re proud to offer the Mokoroa Getariako Txakolina for only $30 a bottle.  The price is even more reasonable on a Wednesday when all of our bottle wines are 30% off.  Come on in for a taste of the Basque region!

To learn more, you can visit:
http://www.polanerselections.com/wine/antxiola-getariako-txakolina
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Txakoli
http://www.vinemerchants.com/mokoroa

Wine Weekly – Côté Est Catlan

At Gigi Trattoria we are always changing our wine list. With that said, there is one wine that is not only a crowd-pleaser but also a staff favorite.The Lafage Côté Est Catalan is a lovely blend from the Roussillon region of France. This 50% Grenache, 30% Chardonnay, and 20% Marsanne is perfect for summer. The crisp and aromatic blend of wine expresses notes of citrus, white flowers and light minerals.

The young Jean-Marc Lafage has found a way to produce beautiful blends of wine. Though only in his thirties, he has almost 15 years of experience creating juicy and flavorful wines on his 200 hectares of land overlooking the Pyrenees of France and Spain.

Côté Est Catalan & a Bianca Skizza

This wine is best enjoyed chilled (especially on the Gigi patio.)  It pairs well with our mussels, Pollo con Tostone, Barbina salad, most fish specials, and our personal favorite, the Bianca Skizza.  It is also refreshing and delightful on its own and would be a perfect picnic accompaniment. Sold for $9  by the glass and $27 by the bottle, you must try out this gem of the Roussillon region next time you are in Gigi Trattoria. And if you happen to be dining with us on a Wednesday, a bottle of Côté Est Catalan or any of our bottle wines are 30% off!

Chin chin!