Hey fellow lushes! The Wino's got an offer you can't refuse.
Sorry, couldn't resist trotting out that line from "The Godfather", or as my husband likes to refer to it -- the greatest movie ever made. Francis Ford Coppola doesn't make films anymore, but he does crank out some mighty fine fermented grape juice at his castle down in Napa Valley. Well, it's not exactly a castle. More like a beautiful historic chateau that's been turned into a wine wonderland. (There's a huge swimming pool, two restaurants, a movie gallery and a performing arts center.) I can picture myself sitting by the pool, sipping some Sauv Blanc on a sunny day. And aren't they all sunny days in Napa?
Coppola Winery has an extensive selection of stuff, from the very high end to the a collection The Wino can afford, at about $15 at Safeway, among other outlets. This year's Diamond Collection labels come in the sensory stimulating colors that are so haute this season.
After a long, gray winter, I'm drawn to brilliant hues like Battlestar Galactica was drawn to that mythical place called Earth. And guess what? The wine inside those eye-popping green and yellow labels are like a spring tonic. Like drinking liquid sunshine.
I twisted off the top of the Sauv blanc and served it alongside a freshly foraged nettle pesto pasta. OK, I didn't actually forage those prickly greens, but got them at the farmers market. The wine was tart and refreshing, a teeny bit fruity, but also having that slightly grassy quality that varietal is famous for.
The Pinot Grigio was just the thing to make my super duper first-of-the-season halibut and pickled ramps dish sing. Some Andre Bocelli song, I think. You know the tune about how awesome a sunny day in spring is... for eating halibut and drinking wine from such a fabulous and famous producer.
Please forgive The Wino for being hopelessly starstruck. I won't bore you with the details about how I once came face-to-face with the brilliant dude who revived Brando's career and I completely choked. Couldn't even spit out: "I love your movies Mr. Coppola." Pitiful.
If I saw The Man today, I'd be ready with a line: "Gee whiz, Francis, I'm a huge fan of Coppola wines!" Yeah, and after hearing that, he'd probably invite me into the winery's special cellar for a tasting of the rare, oldies but goodies they keep in there. An offer I wouldn't refuse.