Wine: Old World wines that are perfect with spring food

10:53 AM, Apr 30, 2013   |    comments
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Adrien Matthews, The Tennessean
At long last, spring has arrived. Root vegetables give way to asparagus and pea tendrils. Dinner goes from in front of the fireplace to the porch. The wine goes from inky, teeth-staining goodness to crisp whispers of elegance. Here are three fun wines that go perfectly with spring fare.

ON 207: Old Port Wine & Cigar

Broadbent Vinho Verde 2012: Vinho verde. Green wine. Really, it infers young wine. Vinho verde is a non-specific field blend and another of Portugal's great gifts to the world. The Broadbent is a classic example. Slightly tart with hints of green apple and delightfully effervescent, it tingles on the palate and just loves food. Typically, vinho verde is a spring wine served with spring foods (especially seafood). I am currently having it with cold, leftover barbecue chicken. Yes, the keyboard is covered in sauce.

Vitiano Rosato Umbria 2012: This glorious rose is a blend of 30 percent sangiovese, 30 percent merlot, 30 percent cabernet sauvignon and 10 percent aleatico, and comes from the Umbria region of central Italy. This is a very versatile and easy-drinking wine. The play between the fruit flavors and minerality is perfectly balanced. It would pair well with grilled foods, fresh salads, as well as meats and cheeses. The finish is dry like strawberry sour candy but made of real fruit. Some wines challenge the palate, some overwhelm the palate. This wine takes your coat and invites you inside.

Pascal Poussevin Grande Reserve 2009: This wine is from Bergerac, Bordeaux, France. You can tell from the first sip. It tastes like the region. Beautiful dark fruit, hints of soil, soft sexy tannins and the type of craftsmanship only learned through generations of winemaking. This wine is what turns a spring thunder shower into a magic night. Only at a fraction of what you would expect to pay for it. It's a perfect match for lamb chops, grilled salmon, pulled pork, burgers, cheeses and chocolate.

3 to try:

1. Broadbent Vinho Verde 2012,  $7.99.
2. Vitiano Rosato Umbria 2012,  $9.99.
3. Pascal Poussevin Grande Reserve 2009,  $10.99.
Adrien Matthews tends bar at Miel Restaurant, 343 53rd Ave. N., Nashville, Tenn.

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