Announcing the First-Ever Nashville Wine and Food Festival!
It feels like just yesterday that we were blogging from within the depths of an exceptionally long and dreary cold snap, but springtime pollen counts never lie: we’re poised on the edge of yet another beautiful summer in Music City.
We couldn’t be more excited to welcome the season with a delectable surprise — in fact, we’re so excited that we’re throwing a one-day culinary affair the likes of which Music City has never seen: Midtown Wine and Spirits is proud to present the first-ever Nashville Wine & Food Festival!
Scheduled to take place on June 14, 2014 at Riverfront Park, the Inaugural Nashville Wine & Food Festival will pear tasting booths stocked with over 150 wines from around the world with mouth-watering offerings from a staggering lineup of Nashville’s very best chefs, merchants, and vendors – from Duckhorn and Holland House to Orin Swift and Olive & Sinclair, festival guests will have the opportunity to sample the creme de la creme of everything that Nashville’s culinary scene has to offer — and much more!
Tickets are disappearing quickly and this inaugural event is already shaping up to be the most talked about wine festival in an already jam-packed culinary season, so don’t hesitate — buy your tickets today!
For more information on the 2014 Nashville Wine and Food Festival – including admission pricing, V.I.P. opportunities, and an up-to-date list of participating restaurants, wineries, vendors, and benefitting charities – please visit www.thenashvillewineandfoodfestival.com.
If you or someone you know would be interested in participating in the festival as a volunteer, please email us with your name and contact information to email@example.com “Wine and Food Festival 2014 Volunteer” in the subject line. (**IMPORTANT: All volunteers must be 21 years of age or older as of June 14, 2014**)
This is the perfect time of year to pair your favorite wine with fresh produce from the farmer’s market. This week, Nat has a suggestion for a vegetarian-friendly dish that will play very nicely with the Calcu Rose Reserva:
“Because this is a refined and elegant Chilean Rose with wild berries and lemon blossoms on the nose followed by crisp, vibrant, fresh notes on the palate, it works very well when paired with vegetable dishes such as risotto or rice.
Primarily Malbec with 35% Syrah and just 10% Petit Verdot (this last grape being the one that gives the wine its crisp dryness), this Rose would also be delightful with a potato salad made of tiny fingerling potatoes (very Chilean!), along with cilantro, onions, garlic, celery, and chopped hard-boiled eggs. You can also further integrate the Calcu by dressing the salad with a simple homemade mayo made of whipped olive oil, a bit of egg, salt, pepper, and a few drops of Rose!”
Rose and farmers' market fresh salad make for a light dinner that pleases your palate AND your budget!
Vina Maquis Calcu Rose, Colchagua Valley, Chile
If you have a wine or a dish that you want to try (or if you just want to learn more about pairing), please let us know in the comments — we would love to help you out!
Wines from Spain are a personal love for me. I think everyone has had that one great taste of vino that makes them take a step back and go, ” Whoa! “.
For me, it was when I first sipped Petit Verdot. Petit Verdot, you say? For those of you not acclimated with this wonderful varietal, let me shed some light. Petit Verdot is one of the five “classic” Bordeaux grapes. When grown in perfect conditions, it gives off a beautiful bouquet of fresh blueberries, lavender and violet. It’s only problem is that it ripens very late, even more so than Cabernet Sauvignon, so it’s a particularly difficult character to master. This is not the case in Spain. With their extended growing seasons, light rainfall and dry, arid climate, it’s a match made in heaven. Some research has even shown that it is actually native to the regions of Tarragona, Aragon, Navarra and Rioja, and was brought to France by the Romans thousands of years ago. Other parts of the globe with similar conditions such as Argentina, Chile and Australia have seen an influx of Petit Verdot plantings in the past 20 years. But Spain in my opinion has shown just how amazing this grape can become when given proper care and attention.
Take Chapillon’s Cuvée Harmonie, rated 90 points by The Wine Advocate, for instance. Blended with 10 percent Tannat, this wine shows off scents of bright, dark berries, spicy floral components, and leaves you with a finish that seemingly lasts forever. For 15 bucks. For those of you interested in pairing ideas, all things pork are perfection, with cured meats such as Jamón ibérico being even better. Hard, nutty cheeses, preferably sheep’s milk, are fantastic as well. So do yourself a favor, put on some Spanish guitar and check out Petit Verdot. You will be more than happy you did.
I couldn’t help but laugh when I read the first few paragraphs of Tim Fish’s latest blog entry over at WineSpectator.com. If you’re into wine and have a significant other who isn’t quite as passionate as yourself, you may have experienced this type of situation — I know I have. But now my fiance and I have a nice little agreement that allows us to avoid any confrontations: I don’t ask her how much her purses/shoes/(insert fashion item here) cost, and she doesn’t ask about my wine purchases.
Ain't fancy, but this works just fine for me.
Here’s a snippet of of the blog:
“My first wine cellar was a lame attempt no matter how you looked at it; I was young and my discretionary income bought 10 minutes on a parking meter. But I had the wine bug and had it bad.
Loitering in wine shops became a favorite hobby. I’d buy a good $10 or $20 bottle on the weekends and occasionally splurge. I still remember the day I bought a Château de Beaucastel Châteauneuf-du-Pape 1989 for $45 and worried how I’d explain it when I got home.
Like many new collectors, I avoided explaining it and stashed it in the closet when the wife wasn’t looking. Since she didn’t ask, I wasn’t technically lying, right? I couldn’t help it, wine was my mistress, and I rationalized everything, like all cheating husbands do.
I’m not alone in the ‘what she doesn’t know won’t hurt her’ school of wine collecting. A few years back, I wrote a story titled ‘Inside the Mind of a Wine Collector,’ and Michael Davis of Chicago auction house Hart Davis Hart told me, ‘Hiding purchases is not unusual at all.’” Click here to read the rest of his blog.
You don’t have to have a massive cellar to be a collector. Whether you keep 15 bottles tucked away in the corner of a closet or 1500 in a temperature controlled room, your wine collection is what you make of it. It’s all about having a passion and wanting to learn. It’s fun to pick a favorite bottle of wine and see how it evolves over the course of five or 10 years.
Then again, you must have at least a modicum of patience to make it happen. For some, laying a bottle down for even six months may seem impossible to do, but I would encourage everyone to try it.
So tell me then, is wine your “mistress”?
Before diving into our options for wines with your barbecue, burgers and such, let’s all take a few minutes to remember the true meaning of Memorial Day.
While it may be the unofficial starting point for Summer, Memorial Day is really about remembering all the brave men and women who have died in our armed forces while serving the cause of freedom. Be sure to thank a soldier if you see one and take a few moments to remember those who have died so that we may continue to live and enjoy our nation’s freedoms.
And now… on to the wine!
Some people make ribs and grill barbecue chicken. Others whip up some burgers or throw a nice ribeye over some charcoal. Maybe you throw in some hot dogs or sausage to go with the cole slaw, potato salad and baked beans. But then comes the question — what to drink?
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One of the most well-known wines in the United States, Merlot has suffered of late. Don’t get me wrong — it’s still immensely popular. Yet in critical wine circles, it suffers from the preconceived notion that much of it is thin, bland and just downright boring.
And in many cases, this assumption is in fact correct. But in equally as many cases, merlot can provide beautiful experiences. From Washington bargains like Columbia Crest’s H3 bottling to top-shelf Napa bottlings from the likes of Duckhorn and Shafer, this is a wine worth a second look.
And don’t let the signature tagline from Sideways deter you: “I’m drinking any *$%!*@% merlot!”
Take a look at the latest blog from The Wine Spectator’s Tim Fish, “Fear and Loathing with Merlot,” for his take on this perplexing grape variety:
I’ve been drinking California Merlot for 20 years, and it still makes me crazy. It’s one of the most popular red wines in the United States, but so much of it is damn boring.
The funny thing is, I still like drinking it. As Wine Spectator’s lead critic for California Merlot since 2005, I’ve come to appreciate the challenges.
Merlot’s reputation as a soft and supple red is only partially deserved in California. In the 1990s, wineries and growers all over the state planted Merlot with the assumption it would thrive. It didn’t.
California learned what France found out long ago. Merlot is a persnickety grape, good for blending but challenging by itself. It’s every bit as difficult to grow and just as finicky about the growing season as Pinot Noir…”
Read the rest of his blog by clicking here, and come on by to ask us to for our recommendations!
Few people had a greater impact on American wine than Jess Jackson, founder of Kendall-Jackson, who passed away early this morning at the age of 81. He personified the American Dream — he began as a dockworker in San Francisco in the 1950s and wound up a self-made billionaire, revolutionizing the wine industry in the process.
Here’s what The Wine Spectator’s Tim Fish had to say about Jackson in today’s article, “In Memoriam: Jess Jackson” –
Jess Jackson, who built a wine empire around Kendall-Jackson Vintner’s Reserve Chardonnay, becoming a self-made billionaire and one of the most influential and controversial producers in the United States, died in Sonoma County early this morning. He was 81 years of age. The intensely private Jackson reportedly had been undergoing treatment for melanoma for several years.
During nearly three decades, Jackson launched or acquired more than 30 wine brands in California, Italy, South America, Australia and France. Combined, they currently produce more than 5 million cases annually. In addition to Kendall-Jackson, the labels include La Crema, Stonestreet, Cardinale, Arrowood and Matanzas Creek in California, Villa Arceno in Italy, Yangarra in Australia and Château Lassègue in Bordeaux.
Jackson was a maverick by nature, often mercurial and unabashedly competitive. A savvy businessman, he preferred to meet challenges head-on. “I think he enjoyed a good scrap,” said winemaker Richard Arrowood, a friend of many years who later worked for Jackson for four years. “He was a pistol, no two ways about it. But no one could ever call him stupid.”
Jess Stonestreet Jackson was born Feb. 18, 1930, and was raised in San Francisco’s working-class Sunset District. His introduction to wine came while breaking bread with Italian neighbors who made wine at home. Laboring at the docks in San Francisco and as a Berkeley policeman, he worked his way through the University of California at Berkeley, where he also graduated from Boalt Law School…
Click here to read the rest of the article at Wine Spectator.
If you’ve been following the wine industry for any decent period of time, you know about the Niebaum-Coppola Rubicon Estate, or as it was formerly known, Inglenook. Even if you are new to wine, you’ve surely heard of Francis Ford Coppola’s wine along with his films.
Now Coppola has finally acquired the rights to the Inglenook name and plans reunite it with its original vineyards. The Wine Spectator’s James Laube has the full story:
The Rubicon Estate is one of the most beautiful in California.
Making good on a longtime vow, Francis Ford Coppola announced today that he and his wife, Eleanor, have acquired
the iconic Inglenook trademark and that henceforth his Rubicon Estate in Rutherford will be once again known by its historic original name, Inglenook.
For years, Coppola had expressed an interest in acquiring the Inglenook name. Today, he sealed the deal, acquiring the trademark from the Wine Group for an undisclosed amount. Rubicon, a Bordeaux-style blend made from Coppola’s property, will become Inglenook’s flagship wine.
Coppola also announced that he had hired a new winemaker to succeed Scott McLeod, who resigned last year. Starting this summer, Bordeaux winemaker Philippe Bascaules will leave Château Margaux to assume the position of estate manager and winemaker at the renamed Inglenook.
Inglenook was founded in 1879 by Gustav Niebaum, a Finnish sea captain who built the magnificent stone winery. From the 1930s to the 1960s, John Daniel Jr., a descendant of Niebaum, oversaw winemaking with a run of tremendous vintages. Inglenook’s wines played a prominent role in defining Napa Valley as one of the great wine regions of the world…
Read the rest of Laube’s story here…
Each year we look forward to our annual employee wine dinner. Some excellent catered food, friends & coworkers and of course, lots of stunning wine. 2011 was no exception.
The Clay Pit, located in Murfreesboro, catered the dinner. If you’re not familiar with them, you must check it out — primo Indian cuisine!
But naturally, the wine paved the way for our excellent evening.
We kicked things off with a selection of bubblies. After all, what’s a party without Champagne?
- Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve NV
– Pol Roger Brut Reserve NV
- Heidsieck Monopole Blue Top Premier Cru NV
- Jean-Paul Deville Brut Carte d’Or NV
- Simonnet-Febvre Cremant Brut and Brut Rose NV
From there, we moved on to the whites:
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Welcome to the new website for Midtown Wine & Spirits, Nashville’s premiere retailer of the finest wines, spirits and high gravity beers!
It has been a long time coming, but we are thrilled to have our site up and running. With the widespread growth of online marketing and social networking, we felt that the Nashville market lacked a significant online presence, and we aim to fill that void.
Here at MidtownWineAndSpirits.com, you’ll be able to keep up to date on all our new items, check out our weekly and daily specials, learn about upcoming events and keep track of all the latest news in the wine & spirits industry.
For all you foodies and winos out there, we hope to make this THE PLACE to go for insight into wine, spirits and beer, quirky commentary/stories and all things Nashville. We love to share our experiences with food & wine, and we hope you’ll join us in sharing your own unique tales, comments and questions. Our goal is to interact with you and make this a fun and interactive space for us all.
We want to provide the most comprehensive online experience in town, so in phase two of the website we’ll roll out additional features like an online store inventory!
Thank you for visiting and we welcome your feedback.