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Hoke

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WTN: HAT Ranch Dry Moscato, Idaho, 2015

by Hoke » Fri Jun 02, 2017 4:16 pm

HAT Ranch Dry Moscato 2015 ($18) is a wonderfully balanced wine, a combination of plush florality and musky melon stopped short of dullness with the nervy electric tension of bright acidity and an Alsace-like minerality commingled with the fruit. Even better, in this age of global climate change, the Dry Moscato comes in at a refreshing 12.7% alcohol, so you are not dealing with the ‘weight’ of alcohol on the palate. The taste is clean, precise, pervasive, but always fresh and lively.

Wrap some prosciutto around a slice of just-ripe cantaloupe, sprinkle a dash of fresh-ground black pepper (perhaps touched with a grain or two of allspice in the mix), serve with the Dry Moscato, and be amazed at the profusion of aroma, flavor and texture when the two come together. It’s one of those magical moments in wine and food the great chefs strive for, and yet easily obtainable on a picnic table in your back yard.

Tackle an imposing mound of Choucroute Alsacienne, the juniper-scented sauerkraut mounded over with potatoes, fatty rashers of bacon side meat, and sausages galore. The HAT Ranch Dry Moscato handles that with great aplomb.

Challenge the Moscato’s depth and accommodating versatility with the toughest of all accompaniments, a combination of cheeses, fruits and charcuterie. Make sure you have smelly-ripe, rich and fat and buttery, and grainy dry-aged cheeses; green melons, crisp apples, throw in a dab of quince jelly and a slab of fig almendrado; and finish it off with rich, glistening terrines and pates and slices of cured saucisson, pork and rabbit and duck. Doesn’t matter. The HAT Ranch Dry Moscato can handle it all, enhancing each and every texture, aroma and flavor and doing what a table wine is supposed to do: make the food taste better, the lights shine brighter, and the conversation flow.

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