On Wednesday night, Kokomo Winery’s Erik Miller (winemaker) and Randy Peters (grower) joined Russo Rosticceria‘s chef John Franchetti to launch Eventi’s Winemaker Dinners at the third Russo location at 1229 Dutton Ave. Santa Rosa.
John Franchetti and his team have pizzerias in both Petaluma and Santa Rosa, but John’s journey to Italy last year was obvious in the menu for this tasting.
The menu began by pairing Kokomo’s 2103 Grenache Rose, Pauline’s Vineyard from Dry Creek Valley with a scallop crudo with verjus over a saffron tomato risotto cake. In the recent, North Coast Wine Challenge hosted by the Press Democrat, Kokomo won Best of Show Rosé and a 95 point score for this wine. As a side note, for a chance to taste all of the award-winning wines, an Invitational Tasting is being held at the CIA in St. Helena this Sunday and tickets are still available.
In a nod to Rome’s street food, the second course paired Kokomo’s 2013 Timber Crest Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc with Russo’s nectarine-fontina-focaccia topped with arugula, prosciutto, and lemon oil. But the award for the most unusually pairing for the evening was hands-down the 2013 Timber Crest Vineyard Muscat Blanc with lamb rosticcini over an arugula salad with roasted lemon and mint vinaigrette. The roasted peppery and spicy sauce accompanying the lamb blending amazingly with the Muscat Blanc creating a unique change in the wine that I would have normally matched with a sweet treat!
With each course, Erik and Randy’s friendly banter entertained us with facts about the growing season, varietal, and winemaking approach and displayed the out-going and warm personalities of these winery front-men. Erik laughingly commented “Anything we didn’t like was because of the grapes received from Randy and anything we did like was his creative genius.”
Erik appreciates the diversity of Dry Creek Valley and Sonoma County and said he likes to reflect that diversity in the wines that Kokomo offers its consumers.
The fourth course paired the 2012 (95 – North Coast Wine Challenge) Russian River Valley Pinot with spoon pudding and a rosemary marinated portabella mushroom. The fifth course continued with the perhaps signature varietal of the Dry Creek Valley Kokomo’s 2012 Zinfandel paired with honey ginger charred pork steak over an apricot corn salad. We have an incredibly early and beautiful season for apricots, which were well reflected in this dish!
Erik commented that unfortunately this food-friendly varietal (zinfandel) does not seem to be taken as seriously as some other varietals, but he believes that the Dry Creek Valley vintners turn out some incredible wines and I have to agree.
The evening closed with treats from new Rosso colleague Dominique Cortara who has long sold her fabulous sweets of macarons, cakes, pies, and pate choux at North Bay farmers’ markets.
Kokomo’s Tasting Room is located at 4791 Dry Creek Road at Timber Crest Farms in Healdsburg and is open 11:00 AM – 4:30 PM most days. Tell Stephanie Kerkhof their tasting room manager that Discover Sonoma County Wine sent you!
#Wine #KokomoWinery #RossoRosticceria #NorthCoastWineChallenge #DominiqueCortara