wine of the night: 2009 Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup 'Tour de Pierres'

A natural, unfiltered wine grown biodynamically, this Syrah, Grenache, Mouvedre blend drinks well and a great value at only $18. The three brother operation at Ermitage de Pic Saint Loup has been biodynamic since 1999 and their goal is to show the terrior of their high altitude Languedoc vineyards through their wines. Ermitage makes five wines, this blend labelled as Tour de Pierres. Its bright and balanced, and shows especially well when paired with food. I found it delicious with roasted tomatoes over fried polenta and goat cheese!

It's always surprising to me how people respond to the conversation of biodynamic wines. As a sustainability consultant by day and simply a person who prefers natural over heavily processed, it's an obvious choice for me. I also find these wines more interesting- both in the glass and the story behind the bottle. But so many people either dismiss the notion of natural wine as nonsense (usually condescendingly) or they simply don't understand the various terms and meanings behind 'organic/natural/biodynamic.' Perhaps thats a blog post for other time! But for now, let me leave you with this. If you want to venture into the biodynamic wine world, start with this Tour de Pierres, why not!? It's not a funky wine, just a great Syrah blend. You'll feel great that the guys behind this wine are making sure that you drink great wine without added acids, no artificial yeasts, and no harmful pesticides or fertilizers.


holiday wine style

I'm a big fan of literally dressing for an occasion. So for all those holiday parties, what could be more fun than drinking some sparkling while being covered is in.. you got it.. sparkles! And the better the bubbles, the better the time! I mean it, good champagne just makes me so happy! So whatever your sparkling wine of choice, make sure to pair with some equally as peppy!

Here are some that I have enjoyed...



wine of the night: 2010 Quattro Mani Piemonte Barbera

Another nice simple wine for those of you who are trying to conserve a bit during the weeknights of this holiday season. This 2010 Barbera by Quattro Mani, which means four hands (hmm, two people???) is a great deal at $14. Most importantly, it drinks well, a bit better than $14 in my opinion, and the grapes are harvested sustainability. Not complex, but pleasant with the acidy and structure that I would expect from a Barbera. Great with an easy pasta dinner, or in my case, the standard fried egg sandwich.

Two Dudes Quattro Mani produces wines with the help of celebrity winemakers, using sustainable and biodynamic wine making practices, that express a regions terroir through their more traditional grapes. They have even been working with Movia, a winery well known for their dedication to biodynamic principles- and pretty fantastic wine.


wine of the night: 2010 Iconic Wines Heroine Chardonnay

What a bottle! Hands down my absolute most favorite label I have ever come across. This Chardonnay is the first wine from the guys at Iconic Wines. Although you shouldn't judge wines by the label, let this be your exception. An awesome label and equally awesome wine. This white is a blend of 4 barrels of Chardonnay, each containing juice from grapes of varying harvest dates and different levels of malolactic fermentation. See the breakdown on Iconic's site (www.iconicwine.com/).

Iconic Wines 2010 Heroine Chardonnay $33.99

Heroine a is high acid, mineral driven Chardonnay with a lingering finish of lemons. There a nice amount of complexity too, which I suspect is from the varying levels of malo and that this wines ages on the lees for 10 months.

And did I mention that there are only 104 cases of this juice!! That's right; so find it, grab it, and enjoy it!!


wine of the night: Tintero Rosso

Easy going and modest. That pretty much sums up this Italian red. It's bright, dry and just a pleasant bottle to pour after a busy day. And it's super affordable at $12 a bottle. I drank this wine with triscuits and gorgonzola, and sometimes that is all you need!



odd couple

Yeah I know, I haven’t posted in awhile. But with a few computer issues resolved, I’ll just jump right back in...

I recently had the chance to enjoy a Pithos COS wine; a blended red wine from Sicily of Nero d’Avola and Frappato, fermented and aged in clay pots called amphora. It was one of those ethereal, mind blowing moments; it was everything I ever wanted in a wine! Fast forward a few weeks and I wanted more. Unfortunately my monetary situation left me with a choice that day- wine or groceries, and clearly I chose wisely. I opted for another COS wine, a 2010 Frappato not fermented in an amphorae (but concrete tanks rather).

Right out the bottle it was bursting with cherries. I let is sit as I cooked and about 30 minutes later it evolved so beautifully. The cherries has calmed themselves and the juice became earthy but still bright, with mineral notes, pleasant acidity, and just a touch of funk. Remembering my low financial status, literally the only whole food I had was sweet potatoes. So I chopped those babies up, roasted them with loads of cinnamon, cayenne, and some walnuts. A weird combination I know. But it somehow worked- in fact it was quite awesome. It was the lingering flavors of Thanksgiving with a great Italian red.


style pairing: 2006 Nibio Dolcetto

Earthy and cozy. Enjoy outside with friends around a fire. Extra points for a fall sweater!
blouse reiss, cropped fall sweater rag & bone, shorts alice+olivia, hasbeens, do-it-yourself hat

biodynamic dolcetto $14.99


wine of the night: 2009 La Clarine Farm Syrah

"What is the role of the farmer? To promote life and to help set up an ecosystem as close to Nature as possible, whereby natural processes and systems can function." - La Clarine Farm

Natural and sustainable wines don't simply make a wine drinker feel better about their wine selection; there are real, tangible benefits. One of my favorite attributes of natural wines is their ability to evolve so beautifully over the course of a few days. I opened this La Clarine Farm Syrah last night and enjoyed a small glass, full of flavor and lots of fruit. Tonight, the tannins are smoother, more pleasing. The fruit flavors are still there albeit a bit more subdued, and slight game and mineral flavors are apparent. I'm looking forward to what day three will bring.

La Clarine Farms takes a natural approach to making their wines; with a hands-off farming philosophy to let the vines create their own symbiotic relationships within their environs. This means no chemicals, no fertilizes and minimal alteration. This may also mean no headache or hangover for you, but it certainly provides for a healthy vineyard and prospering environment.


Bubbly with Beth: The Power of Sparkling Wine... An Introduction

I am thrilled to welcome Beth Nestlerode, guest contributor to The Winetender! Beth will bring us reviews of Champagne and other sparkling wines she pops to celebrate the extraordinary moments hiding in the everyday.

"A bold wine with a hint of sophistication and lacking in pretension. Actually, I was just talking about myself." -Meg Ryan, French Kiss

Any fan of Meg Ryan during the 90's certainly knows the movie French Kiss well - it's quirky humor, beautiful European backdrop, and sweet, predictable storyline. And yet, perhaps without intention, that favorite film of my family's also taught me a bit about another one of our shared loves well before I was able to partake. I love the idea that wine can reflect the true you that's hiding behind your inhibitions, shining a light on how you honestly view yourself.

As a new mom of four month old twin boys, my little glass of wine (when I'm able to find time to have one) is calming when I need to relax, insightful when I need to reflect, and peaceful despite the chaos. I know that I can too easily get lost in the inertia of the everyday. Wine allows me to stop, sip and smile. With just one sip, I can't help but be reminded of the more important things in life, and forget the rest.

I love many types of wine - usually bold, flavorful reds - but there's a special place in my heart for ones that bubble. I've never understood the ideology of saving champagne for just those special occasions. Especially today when so many families are counting their pennies and unable to always afford needs, let alone wants, it seems we have even more reason to celebrate the little joys in life...the moments that really matter. In my case, sparkling wine is my husband's and my little vacation after a long week; the perfect excuse after our boys go to bed to momentarily forget about parenthood and long work weeks, and reconnect.

In the hope of sharing my love of sparkling wines, and encouraging everyone to not just save Champagne for weddings and anniversaries, I'll be contributing regularly to The Winetender to track down all sorts of bubbly goodness and share my favorites.

As a kick-off to this new sparkling wine venture, I chose to pop a bottle of Cava Castellroig, a Spanish brut. I was pleased after the first sip to find it both light and bold - very crisp. The wine was friendly, but not afraid to tell it like it is. (Am I projecting, Meg Ryan?). It did have a little bite to it, which I was disappointed to find took away from what was otherwise a pleasant flavor.

At just $14.60 a bottle, I'd give this wine a passing grade and would choose it again. A good summer wine to enjoy outside.

I look forward to popping many more bottles and sharing the experiences here...I hope you join in and share your favorites too. Happy sipping!

- Beth Nestlerode


here's to us!

Happy Anniversary New York! This month marks one year since I moved to the city. Some cannot understand the desire to live here, but right now, I wouldn't have it any other way. I adore my teeny studio apartment, the ease of public transportation, and the ability to do almost anything here. It truly is a wonderful and inspirational place. So here's to you New York; if it weren't for you, this blog may not exist.

And to celebrate in style, I pulled out a gift from my father; a 2006 Stag's Leap S.L.V. Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. What a beautiful wine! Honestly though, I was nervous. I know it's a "nice" bottle, but sometimes Napa Valley Cabs are just too fruit forward for me. So new school (new world wine), neglecting the subtle earthy attributes of the old school (old world wines). But, what a wonderful celebration wine! Kind of dirty (that's a compliment) with bright cherry flavors. It's balanced with pleasant tannins and acidity. From this evening's experience, I can tell you it's great to drink before dinner, during, and afterward.

Thanks Dad!


wine of the night: 2007 Hendry Primitivo

The other night I was able to spend one of the last official  days of the summer by enjoying the season's bounty. Pasta loaded with roasted vegetables right from the garden. Better yet, the base sauce was made from tomatoes, also from the garden. It's amazing how food is so much more enjoyable when its grown in  your own garden (or in my case, my family's garden).

I was in the mood for a red wine with this meal so I chose a 2007 Primitivo from Hendry Wines of Napa Valley. I don't have extensive experience with Primitivo, but I do love Zinfandel and the Primitivo grape is similar. In fact, both grapes are genetically identical. Primitivo is slightly different in that the grapes are smaller and the grape bunches are less dense. It is expected that the Zinfandel grape is larger due to selective cloning from California wine makers to produce higher yields. According to the Hendry website, Primitivo is "a lower-tannin, higher fruit-and-acid red wine" compared to Zinfandel.

So how was it? Well, I wished I would have selected a not so fruit forward and heavy wine. It just didn't work with the meal, like a fruit bomb out to destroy the earthy and complex vegetable flavors of my dinner. The wine itself was very good however with nice tannins and lots of fruit flavors to ponder. I 'm excited to drink it again, with dark chocolate, as Hendry suggests. I would also like to compare their Primitivo to their Zinfandel- perhaps a post for another time!

Cheers and Enjoy! Just watch that sneaky 15.2% ABV.


wine of the night: 2006 Hestan 'Meyer Vineyard' Cabernet Sauvignon

More like today's wine of the afternoon, this Napa Cab just punched me in the face and I liked it. Tongue dry, mouth (and eyes) watering, instantly drunk. Apparently not meant to be an afternoon wine, but rather a big, bold, classically fruit-driven Napa Cab to enjoy with a big, bold dinner. Or sip late night, paired with cigar aromas swirling in the evening air.

2006 Hestan 'Meyer Vineyard' Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, $54.99

Enjoy! For me, it's afternoon nap time.


style pairing: Chateau Julien 2010 Pinot Grigio

clean and carefree. get your tiny buzz on and enjoy an afternoon on an adorable bike in an adorable dress.

bike globevest j.crewdress modclothbag zarabest sneakers ever superga


wine of the night: 2010 Donkey & Goat 'Improbable' Chardonnay from El Dorado

Saturday's wine of the night is a welcome change from the crisp, fresh Savignon Blanc wines I seem to drink on a regular basis during the summer. Tonight I'm drinking a Chardonnay from Donkey & Goat; a winery that is more than just a cute name; if you're a wine nerd like me, you'll enjoy reading about their winemaking process (clicky here). Donkey & Goat winery uses minimal sulfur in their wines and they even stomp the grapes with their feet!

This natural Chardonnay, called 'Improbable' is complex, with subtle flavors evolving in the glass as I swirl, sip, repeat. Tasting notes include meyer lemon, mango, and minerals. A pleasant finish with a roundness that is very enjoyable and interesting. This is a wine to serve when with others who like to taste, think and talk about the wine in their hand.

2010 Donkey & Goat 'Improbable' Chardonnay, El Dorado, $33.99


pizza lovin': Franny's

What's better than pizza and wine? That's right, nothing; well except really good pizza and really good wine. Once a month I'll be seeking out a New York restaurant to enjoy a pie and a glass. Occasionally I'll even attempt to make my own pizza. To kick-start this wonderful journey of pizza gastronomy, I chose Franny's, located in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

First, you should know my background with pizza. Growing up, my mother made her own pizza, completely from scratch. Freshly made dough, the sauce was a puree of roasted tomatoes from the garden, and although she still has yet to make her own mozzarella, I'm sure she is up for the challenge. Basically, I love pizza. The simpler (just tomato sauce, cheese, and basil) and more rustic, the better.

Back to Franny's; dinner started off with a glass of white and appetizers, then slowly transitioned to a full body, bold red to enjoy with the pizza. I can't say that I loved the appetizers;  1. a plate of swordfish, thinly slices radishes and parsley lightly dressed in olive oil and 2. fried green tomatoes. Good, but nothing to write home about. The glass of white, a 2010 Alois Lageder Muller-Thurgau Dolomiti from Trentino Alto Adige, Italy was recommended by the waitress, and it was fabulous. Well balanced, and reminiscent of a Riesling with flowers and honeysuckle, balanced by the wine's acidity.

After an unimpressive first course, I was skeptical about the pizza. All skepticism left after my first bite though. The crust was thin in the middle, light and fluffy around the edges, and the sauce was perfect. Fresh, zesty, perfect for a summer pizza. The mozzarella was not overdone as it often is, but more basil would have been welcome. Overall, this was a fantastic pizza! And the wine!! Ooooooo the wine! Again with the waitress' advice, we settled on  the 2008 Foradori Teroldego Rotaliano, and like the white wine, from Trentino Alto Adige, a North Eastern region of Italy. A dry bold red wine that I cannot wait to drink again.

Next time, I'm skipping the appetizers and going straight to a pizza and a bottle.

Side note; It's get even better! Franny's is an environmentally conscious company, sourcing organic/local/real food. Read about it here.


wine of the night: 2009 Muller-Catoir Riesling

Inspired by Terroir's Summer of Riesling (a great wine bar in the city that likes to celebrate riesling during the summer), I decided to drink a trocken (trocken = dry) riesling tonight. Riesling is so perfect for summer, and there are so many types of rieslings with varying dryness, complexities, and flavors ranging from apricot to burnt caramel to stones. Unfortunately, I picked a dud with a cool label. This riesling is dry with nice mineral notes, but the finish is so short that you will forget what you are drinking after one sip. Seriously, I expect more from a $25 bottle.

However, the salad I made was absolutely DE-LISH!! Shaved brussel sprouts, parmesan cheese, toasted walnuts, and a touch of lime juice and grape seed oil. Combine and enjoy!


wine of the night: 2010 Chilean Syrah

It's been a busy week but Sunday is here; a day of rejuvenation and preparation for the week ahead. So tonight I'm settling down with a glass of Vina Quintay's 2010 Clava Coastal Reserve Syrah from Casablanca Valley, Chile. It's a very young wine and slightly hot (read: a touch alcoholic on the finish), but not unbalanced. Blackberries, chocolate, and very slight pepper flavors appear. A Syrah that is very drinkable and enjoyable; a great wine to bring with you when visiting friends for the night, or just for relaxing on a Sunday evening.


Vina Quintay 2010 Syrah, $13


wine pairing: sauvignon blanc with roasted peppers

Today I whipped up a bit of wasabi arugula pesto to serve with a couple roasted Italian peppers topped with gruyere and cheddar. It was a light and flavorful lunch that I paired with two Sauvignon Blancs. Both 2010 vintage from California. The Teira Woods Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc is from the Dry Creek Valley and the Longboard Vineyards wine is from the Russian River Valley.

Starting with the food; this dish was incredibly easy to prepare. I made the pesto in the morning to allow time for the flavors to blend, but you could also prepare it right before serving. I simply blended wasabi arugula, pine nuts, walnuts (for the omega-3's and because I was low on pine nuts), garlic cloves, shredded parmesean cheese and salt. I then added enough olive oil in order for the mixture to blend nicely. The Italian peppers were first browned lightly using direct heat from the stove burners, then sliced lengthwise and gently filled with grated cheese. I mixed a raw gruyere and raw cheddar, but you could be more creative. I then roasted the peppers in the oven at 375 until the cheese melted, broiling afterward until the cheese browned just a touch. Once the peppers are done, let them sit for a minute or two and top with the pesto. Easy Peasy, right!!

2010 Longboard Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc, $19.99 and 2010 Teira Woods Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, $14.99

Now for the wine tasting! Both bottles are from California Wine Merchants. The Longboard Sauvignon Blanc is fresh, light, and more acidic that the Teira, which is softer but still a bright wine. Although I liked both wines, I recommend the Teira for a dish like this one. The peppers and pesto have a ton of flavors, but many of these flavors are delicate and some subtle. The Teira really compliments the dish, while the zesty Longboard seemed to wash those flavors away, and even clash with the spicy wasabi arugula. I throughly enjoyed the Teira with the wasabi flavor! And this wine has enough acid to cut through the oils of the cheese and pesto without overpowering the dish.

Cheers All!


wine pairing: rhubarb chutney

This past July 4th weekend just happened to turn into a super-great super-girly mini staycation. I embraced floral pants, drank sparkling rose and Prosecco, and brought out my crafty, DIY side and made a chandelier. I also decided to cook with a food that I have yet to use; Rhubarb. Intrigued by the vegetable which looks like celery but commonly associated with pie, I decided to give it a go. I wanted to do something creative, but was not in to mood for pie. I found a recipe on Martha's website (of course, I love Martha!) for a rhubarb chutney to pair with a sharp cheese.

This recipe was easy to make and tasted wonderful with the strong, sharp cheese. I selected a raw cow cheese from Stinky Bklyn. Although the appetizer probably would have been delightful with a baguette, my flour phobia kicked in and I decided to bake squares of my good ol' sprouted bread with a drizzle of olive oil. 

I paired three wines with this recipe. 1. A dry sparkling rose, 2. Prosecco, and 3. the same Sauvignon Blanc which I used to make the chutney. My bias lied toward the rose, hence I dressed up the champagne glass with a cute bow, but it was actually my least favorite with the chutney and cheese. The sweetness of the chutney brought out the subtle sweet flavors of the rose, which I was not looking for. The Prosecco was nice, cut through the chutney and complimented the sharp cheese. This elegant wine was crisp with slight apple flavors, complimenting the rhubarb and the dash of cinnamon I threw into the mixture. Even though the Sauvignon Blanc also paired nicely, as I suspected since I used this wine the make the chutney, the Procescco just seemed to be meant for this dish. And who doesn't love some bubbly with their fireworks!

From left to right: Lucien Albrecht Cremant d'Alsace Brut Rose, $16.99; Carpene Malvolti Prosecco, $11.99; 2010 Pierre Duret Quincy Sauvignon Blanc, $12.99.

And just in case you're interested, here is my DIY chandelier!


wine of the night: 2009 Picpoul de Pinet

Today I officially jumped on board the trendy kale chip train. You have probably heard of kale chips by now, most likely from your friends who shop at farmer's markets and are members of CSA's. I like to believe the kale chi craze started like this:

"So we got a bunch of kale with our CSA box today. WTF am I supposed to do with this?" Then sampling a bit of the kale, "Eww." And after a quick google search; "I know, I'll just coat the kale in some oil and bake it into 'chips,' I'm awesome!"

They may be trendy; you may feel like a total hippie when you make them, and yes, you will see small boxes of kale chips for $10 at your grocery store (obviously marketed to the dimwitted, a bundle of kale cost $2), but they are delicious and are fabulous with the right wine white.

2009 Domaine Guillemarine Picpoul de Pinet, $10.99

This afternoon I baked up some kale chips with a touch of coconut oil and sea salt and enjoyed a light, acidic, and mineral white wine of the Picpoul de Pinet varietal. This Domaine Guillemarine Picpoul was so pleasant with a salty snack on a warm, relaxing summer day. I love the mineral, earthy flavors, and there is sharpnessto the wine (although not harsh in the least)  that clears your palate, readying you for the next bite (or chip).

I recommend drinking this wine with food, something salty in natural, perhaps as you are preparing for July 4th feasts!


wine of the night: 2007 Vignoble Guillaume Pinot Noir

One of the great things about having a dark, 100+ year old root cellar to store wine is that every once in a while a bottle of something you thought you were out of, is found. Of course, I do not have the luxury of having my own root cellar in Brooklyn, but I can share in the excitement of uncovering the once lost and forgotten wines at my parents' house in Pennsylvania.

This makes the wine of the night a 2007 Vignoble Guillaume Pinot Noir, recently found in the depths of said cellar (a photo of the cellar would have been nice- I'll try for one in the upcoming months!). Although not typically a huge fan of Pinot Noir, I love this Pinot! It's a crisp and tart wine with intense raspberry. A really nice wine for summer afternoons, like right now!


wine pairing: father's day shrimp and crab boil

Delicious food, loud laughter, a bit of banter and lots of wine. This is how I spent Father's day at my parents house in Pennsylvania Sunday night. There is something amazing about being around my mother's gardens, my father's cooking, and my awesome family that provides the perfect break from the city every once in awhile. 

With a family full of oenophiles, Sunday provided the perfect opportunity for a group wine pairing. My father cooked up a shrimp and crab boil. A slightly spicy, southern concoction of crab legs, sausage, mushrooms, garlic (the entire bulb was boiled and allowed us to squeeze the garlic cloves onto our food like small packets of ketchup!), corn, shrimp, mussels, and clams. With so much seafood, I instinctively decided to pair the meal with a white wine. But as hearty as it was, I wondered if a red would be nice too. I decided to pour everyone a glass of the two wines below, a California Chardonnay and California Cabernet Sauvignon, both Clos du Bois. 

2009 Clos du Bois Russian River Valley Chardonnay ($18), Clos de Bois North Coast Cabernet Sauvignon ($15)

Of the ten people (of drinking age) around the table, seven preferred the Chardonnay, one liked the Cabernet better with the dish, and two decided to curiously stick to Jameson. Although I too preferred the white, I enjoyed the Cabernet while eating the sausage and vegetables seasoned with the smoky spices, but of course the Chardonnay paired nicely with the main seafood ingredients. Overall, great food, great wine (especially that Chardonnay!) and great company!


wine of the night: 2000 Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Rosado

I'm so exited to share this wine with you tonight. I do not typically drink rosé wines, but this rosé is special. It's dry, crisp and has a great character to enjoy by itself. I paired the rosé with a cheese and cracker plate, but I actually preferred it alone. Orange and mineral tones are apparent with subtle flavors that seem to be ever changing the longer it's in my glass. 

Not only is this rosé outstanding and beautiful in color, but the Lopez winery does not release their wines until ready to be consumed (usually it's at least 10 years). As a typical New Yorker with a hot, 300 square foot apartment, I don't purchase wine to store it and drink years later. I appreciate a winery that ages the wine and doesn't put a bottle on the shelf until it should be there The wine is also produced using natural and organic methods.


wine of the night: south african chardonnay

The other day I attended a wine class called Chardonnay; Old World vs. New World held by Chelsea Wine Vault. I haven't been to a class here before, but I will be back. The instructor, Sarah, was fantastic,  bringing a tremendous amount of wine knowledge to a very intrigued class. The venue was welcoming and the six tastings were more like six full glasses of wine. I felt almost as if I were at a dinner party (sans dinner) with others who enjoyed drinking and discussing wine as much as I do.

The mix of Chardonnays served highlighted the grape's many diverse styles. One of my favorites of the group was the 2010 Glenelly Glass Collection Chardonnay from the Stellenbosch region of South Africa. Much like a Chenin Blanc from the same region (one of my favorite wines!), it was balanced with hints of melon and citrus, lemon flavors. I look forward to drinking this while relaxing in the summer sun.

2010 Glenelly Glass Collection Chardonnay; $14.99


wine pairing: sherried mushrooms with fried egg on toast

I LOVE eggs and red wine together. Eggs poached in red wine, scrambled eggs with a glass, really any combination. So tonight I decided to do a red wine pairing with a recipe I found on Food & Wine's website; Sherried Mushrooms with Fried Eggs on Toast. A very simple recipe that I mostly followed; I have white-bread-phobia so I instinctively used a organic sprouted bread instead (which I recommend because I'm pretty sure white bread kills). Food & Wine recommended "an earthy red, such as Pinot Noir," which sounded appropriate for the mushrooms, so off to the wine store I went for a couple of earthy wines.

I ended up with the two bottles above. The 2009 Stafford Hill Pinot Noir from Oregon ($25) and the 2009 La Vigne en Veron Chinon (100% Cabernet Franc from the Loire Valley, $12). Both wines were enjoyable but the Chinon paired much better with the dish. The Pinot Noir was too acidic and the fruity flavors overpowered the simple nature of egg and mushrooms on toast.

With that said, I did enjoy the Pinot with a bit of dark chocolate!