Rain, Pork, and Vino Nobile

Vecchia Cantina, 2009

Vecchia Cantina, 2009

Tonight the skies have opened with all the fanfare that thunder and lightening can bring. This isn’t anything unusual in the summer time of the Midwest, but I live in the western desert. Lightening is so unusual here in the great basin, when it happens we run outside to watch it. Rain brings the same reaction.

Vecchia Cantina is a Vino Nobile Di Montepulciano. It is made from Prugnola di Gentile, a Sangiovese clone. It is tangy, juicy and delicious, anchored with a spicy earthiness, the tannins soft and round. There is a lushness to this wine that I don’t expect in a Sangiovese. That made it all the more pleasing.

Last month I was in Ohio and experienced four rain storms in one week. For me, they were absolute pleasures. For the native Ohioans, the rain was an inconvenience. I noticed while I was there in my home state, that just as the Inuits have 50 words for snow, and the Japanese have 42 words for the color blue, the Ohioans have 23 words for pork. Don’t get me wrong, I was raised in Ohio, and eat pork like a Midwestern Protestant. Funny story, on one of our visits to my parents, my husband commented that they put pork in everything. I defended them, ‘They don’t put pork in fruit salad!’ That night my mother served melon balls with prosciutto. But I digress. My point is language reflects culture. And the culture of Ohio is pork and rain.

Sangioveto, Brunello, Prugnolo Gentile, Morellino, and Nielluccio and all synonyms for Sangiovese. That there are so many words for one grape is surely a reflection of the culture of Tuscany. It is when a culture knows a thing well that it creates language for all its nuanced facets. Tuscany knows Sangiovese like Ohio knows pork.

Just like rain in the desert, the lushness of Vecchia Cantina was an unexpected but welcomed pleasure. And it goes really well with ham.

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9 comments on “Rain, Pork, and Vino Nobile

  1. Beautiful, Linda! And now you’ve got me craving Sangiovese. And bacon 😉

  2. And we in the northwest have a million words for rain. Only here does someone say, “Is it raining outside?” and hear an answer like this: “No it’s just sprinkling.” 🙂 Melon balls with prosciutto sounds fabulous by the way.

  3. I love your seemingly random digressions, which aren’t, after all–weather-grapes-wine-pork-food&wine-memories–they goes together like Bogie and Bacall (maybe Hollywood doesn’t fit here, or does it?)

  4. vinoinlove says:

    Vino Nobile di Montepulciano is a good wine especially if one doesn’t want to splash out the cash for a Brunello (which basically is the same wine..).
    I haven’t tried the Vino Nobile from Vecchia Cantina yet. Would you recommend it? I know a retailer that carries it and if you recommend it I’ll probably give it a try 🙂

    • foxress says:

      Oh, yes, I would whole-heartedly recommend Vecchia Cantina. So many Sangiovese’s are stark in their acidity, but this one had a roundness to it that was really lovely. Try it, and let me know what you think.

  5. aFrankAngle says:

    Many reds match well with pork … but the seasonings and/or marinades make a difference. Our church wine group had three tenderloins with three different marinades … and three different wines. A fun event …. and people noticed differences!

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