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Otto

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WTN: Otto's mad pairings: Travaglini Gattinara '98

by Otto » Fri Aug 25, 2006 3:30 pm

I've got this funny thing for pairing strong and spicy Indian food with youngish Nebbiolo. The fruit + acid + tannin + alcohol intensify the chili while making it also juicy! It's not a pairing that I guess anyone else will like (it can be a bit painful, lol!!), but I sometimes yearn for it. Today was one such day. The Travaglini worked well in this respect, but is the producer going over to the dark side? It seems rather modern compared to previous examples of them that I've tasted.

  • 1998 Travaglini Gattinara Riserva - Italy, Piedmont, Northern Piedmont, Gattinara (8/25/2006)
    Surprisingly dark for the grape. The nose is surprisingly oaky for the producer - probably caught it at a bad time? There is lots of fruit (it's certainly not closed, though maybe a bit awkward), but it is darker toned that I would hope and is a bit pruney and "modern". The palate is very fruity, but tight and tannic with fair acidity. Moderate length. I didn't like it as much as I have other Travaglinis, but was a fine wine anyway.

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Bill Buitenhuys

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Re: WTN: Otto's mad pairings: Travaglini Gattinara '98

by Bill Buitenhuys » Fri Aug 25, 2006 4:38 pm

Yup, that's a pairing I never would have attempted :D
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Re: WTN: Otto's mad pairings: Travaglini Gattinara '98

by Otto » Sat Aug 26, 2006 1:59 pm

Bill Buitenhuys wrote:Yup, that's a pairing I never would have attempted :D


You should try it at least once. If you want a true kick of heat, nothing beats a good curry and a nebbiolo!! The masochists' gazette .... is a new wine mag ... that will appear in the future ... editor is .... me .....

(Sorry for the bad joke.)
I don't drink wine because of religious reasons ... only for other reasons.
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Dave Moritz

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Re: WTN: Otto's mad pairings: Travaglini Gattinara '98

by Dave Moritz » Sun Aug 27, 2006 5:58 pm

Otto:
I almost broke out into a cold sweat when I read of your characterization of the '98 Travaglini Gattinara Riserva as somewhat "pruney and modern." This house has always been a reliable producer of the more traditional nebbiolo style, and I surely would not want to see them go over to the dark side! However once they were acquired by the Berringer-Blass conglomerate, I've felt that they were in danger of succumbing to market pressures for a more modern and international style.

I've laid down several (non-Riserva) bottles from each of the '97 and '98 vintages; I'd also like to lay down some from more recent vintages. What do you know about later vintages? Are you aware of a "fall-back" producer of traditional, value-oriented Gattinara in the event that Travaglini "modernizes" their entire line?

Perhaps I'm over-reacting, and that the characteritics you've described can be attrributed only to their Riserva bottlings. IMHO, there is nothing like good, genuine and affordable nebbiolo!

Dave Mo
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Re: WTN: Otto's mad pairings: Travaglini Gattinara '98

by Otto » Mon Aug 28, 2006 5:37 pm

It was better on the second day open, seemed more like good Nebbiolo albeit from a warm year. I'm hoping it's just the year which made it a bit modern seeming. We just got the '99 Riserva here. I'll be trying it out soon (I hope). I'll report back when I do.

-O-
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Mark Lipton

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Re: WTN: Otto's mad pairings: Travaglini Gattinara '98

by Mark Lipton » Mon Aug 28, 2006 7:25 pm

Otto Nieminen wrote:I've got this funny thing for pairing strong and spicy Indian food with youngish Nebbiolo. The fruit + acid + tannin + alcohol intensify the chili while making it also juicy! It's not a pairing that I guess anyone else will like (it can be a bit painful, lol!!), but I sometimes yearn for it.


I have a very tolerance for hot chilis, Otto, and years ago my wife and I discovered the pairing of Zinfandel with lamb vindaloo (a Goanese dish that uses vinegar and chilis in the curry). The curry brings out the fruit of the Zin while not obliterating the other notes. Alcohol and acid may also contribute to the overall sensation. It should be noted, however, that this pairing was devised back when Zins were 14.5% abv typically rather than the grotesque 16+% that we often see today (exhibit A in why I buy mostly Ridge Zins and Storybook Mtn Zins these days).

Mark Lipton

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