appetizers

Livio FellugaPairing wines with foods is a topic that is fascinating and mysterious to me.  For some reason, I don't have the type of mind that can easily assess how to put the two components together and create a synergistic experience.   Fortunately, I'm lucky to know some people who have that gift, and my taste buds are alive enough to perceive the magic result.  And it really is a magical experience if the pairing is right.

I never "got" wine.  All I knew was Manishewitz from our yearly celebrations of Passover.  Later when I started traveling to New York City for work, I had the good fortune and pleasure to enjoy fine meals with, what I was told, were excellent wines.  Still, I didn't understand what all the fuss was about. 

My "awakening" came after becoming friends with Jeff Benjamin, who along with his partner, Marc Vetri, owns four outstanding restaurants in Philadelphia*.  Over a period of years, Jeff would introduce me to many different wines (and beers) from a host of countries.  The wines were always accompanied by a plate of food, and he would encourage me to first experience the wine on its own, and then after a bite of food.  What did that 2004 Grüner Veltliner do to a fisherman's dish from Liguria-corzetti pasta with potato, haricots verts, pine nuts, and pesto?  Did the flavor memory of a bite of black truffle risotto linger on the palate even longer, and enter a new dimension after a sip of a Boscarelli 1999 Super Tuscan?

  • Wed
    Dec 28
    8:00 pm -
    9:00 pm
  • Fri
    Dec 30
    8:00 am -
    9:00 am

GREAT TASTE Winds Up 2011 with Food, Fun, and Great Info!

Danielle NierenbergThe last Great Taste show of the year provides a look back at 2011 from two very different perspectives.  First, we'll speak with Danielle Nierenberg, director of the Nourishing the Planet project.  Nierenberg is a well-known expert on sustainability and livestock.  The project she oversees, "...assesses the state of agricultural innovations—from cropping methods to irrigation technology to agricultural policy—with an emphasis on sustainability, diversity, and ecosystem health, as well as productivity. The project aims to both inform global efforts to eradicate hunger and raise the profile of these efforts. The project also considers the institutional infrastructure needed by each of the approaches analyzed, suggesting what sort of companion investments are likely to determine success—from local seed banks to processing facilities, from pro-poor value chains to marketing bureaus."

The second half of the hour, our guest is Molly Aronica, restaurant editor for The Daily Meal, one of the best food blogs on the net.  Molly will talk with us about the food trends of 2011, predictions for the 2012 trends, share some insights on important kitchen tools to make your holiday meal preparations easier, and much more.