19 weeks ago I launched a blog series called “52 weeks of wine on the mind.” This week after attending Wisdom 2.0, my mind is actually on that “soul” stuff of “wine and soul,” especially the way that wine connects us in community.
Wisdom 2.0 is a (un) conference, a gathering unlike most and better off for it. What happened on the stage was matched equally by what happened in the halls – and over the dining table.
As an introvert I needed to meet people in a small and structured setting and so I agreed to host a dinner in my hometown. I chose Dosa on Valencia because it can accommodate any kind of dietary restrictions and I had no idea would say, “yes” to my invitation. I titled the event, “Wine, Wisdom and Open Conversation.” The mention of wine sparked interest and one of the registrants remarked how she was looking forward to a glass of wine after a long day of conferencing. One person also appreciated that I was leaving space for open conversation. All I could say is that for me, wine goes with conversation like cheese goes with wine. We opened the conversation by asking people to “please share a powerful cultural memory of food from your childhood.” We allowed the conversation to then flow organically.
Thus, I had found my tribe within the larger Wisdom 2.0 tribe, and the seeds of relationships were planted. We agreed that it was odd to do a dinner about wine with Indian food, something notoriously difficult to match. But I was up for the challenge. Dosa made it easy by doing what any restaurant serving wine should do – it had on its wine list, wines that went well with their food. Duh. Of course, a Riesling – I was hoping for a Chenin Blanc – but also a Croatian red that was soft, fruity and intriguing. Bonus!: an article on the rise of Croatian wine.
Wine with Indian food, of course. Wine with any meal, indeed.
When it comes to pairing, I like to be playful and tend toward iconoclasm. Steak? Big red? Well, when I made a steak with blue cheese sauce I matched it with a Cremant and it was fabulous. The bright bubbly cut through the richness of the steak and the sauce and brought out the best in the cheese.
So my word to you this week: pair playfully. You don’t need a guide to pairing. You just need wine, your palate and a willingness to experiment (and to fail).
Do share: what was your worst pairing ever? What was your most triumphant pairing?