Last St. Patrick's Day we went all out. We had a party that included eating Irish lamb stew and drinking black and tans and copious amounts of Irish whisky all while listening to Irish folk music. We even made chocolate stout cupcakes with green frosting which we ate while watching a documentary on Shane McGowan. It was about as Irish as you could get for two people with a wee bit of Irish blood living in L.A. For our post, we paired Vinho Verde (an essentially green wine) with The Pogues.

This year, we are feeling a bit less festive as we've just moved to a new apartment and have not had the time to make it party-ready. But we still wanted to do a St. Patrick's Day post- albeit a more subdued and subtle one. We knew which wine we wanted to do, the Corte Gardoni Bardolino as we'd been eyeing it for weeks and thought it was ripe for review. But how could we make an Italian red Paddy's Day-pertinent? We pondered it for weeks until the other day the planets aligned- while enjoying some sausages and Belgian brews at Wurstküche in downtown L.A., Derek and I were discussing our dilemma. I mentioned to him that the wine we chose, and the label itself kind of reminded me of Richard Harris (for reasons I have yet to understand). “He's Irish!” Derek exclaimed. And the rest is VINE-YL history.

The Bardolino DOC is from the region of fair Verona in northeastern Italy. It is generally a lighter, more gulpable red made from a blend of the grapes corvina, rondinella and molinara. It is one of those great Italian wines that was made to drink with the local food and its easy to image slurping down a few bottles of this stuff while working your way through a hearty northern Italian meal. Corte Gardoni is a small, family run winery that produces only Bardolino and the local white Bianca di Custoza. Their 2008 Le Fontane Bardolino is damn near perfect. An almost mauve colored wine with red cherry and grapey notes on the nose, it is about as refreshing as a red wine can be. Light in body with with a touch of effervescence and lip-smacking, juicy fruit on the palate, it may be the perfect Springtime red.

I still haven't quite figured out what all of this has to do with Richard Harris in my mind, but it may have something to do with the warmer, longer days and the changing sunlight. And, I think it also may have something to do with my childhood memories of Richard Harris's heartbreaking voice floating ethereal through my father's den singing, “If ever you could leave me, Oh please don't go in Springtime...”

 

 

 

 

 

CORTE GARDONI LE FONTANE BARDOLINO, 2008