Discovering Culinary Treasures in our Artisan Marketplace- Mt. Tam Cheese

Cheese case- Jack and Keith- smallOne of the joys of coming to V. Sattui is discovering our incredible cheese case in our Artisan Marketplace.  It’s fun to hang out in the marketplace and watch people walk in the door, and just be drawn in, like a magnet, to the dizzying display of aromatic, creamy goodness.

One of the “must haves” in our treasure chest of cheeses from around the world is made right down the road in Petaluma.  Cowgirl Creamery was started by Sue Conley and Peggy Smith in the early 1990’s in the small coastal town of Pt. Reyes normalized_peggysmith_sueconleyStation.

One of their flagship cheeses is the Mt. Tam– an elegant, triple cream, washed rind (or surface ripened) cheese made from organic cow’s milk from neighboring Straus Family Dairy. Named after Mt. Tamalpais, a Northern California landmark, this smooth and creamy cheese has a mellow, earthy flavor- sort of like white mushrooms.

CU- Mt Tam with walnutsWe like pairing this cheese with our Los Carneros Chardonnay which has some buttery notes to compliment the cheese, but also some ripe pear, fig and honeydew flavors and enough acidity that balance with the heaviness of the cheese.  We also like serving this cheese as a dessert, with a nice glass of our Late Harvest Riesling. Pairing it with some spiced roasted walnuts will really set off the creaminess of the cheese.

Next time you’re at the winery, be sure to check out our cheese case!  Our Cheesemonger, Keith Idle, or one of our other cheese experts, Jack,  are happy to answer questions, and give you tastes!

 

Viva Moscato!

(14) MoscatoWARNING: Consumption of this product may cause uncontrollable humming, skipping and dancing.

Happy Moscato Day! Millions of folks on the northern side of the Mediterranean Sea from Portugal and Spain to Italy and Greece can’t be wrong as it is widely grown and enjoyed. For many, a sip of Moscato is like a sip of sunshine. You just have to smile.

One place on which the wine world’s spotlight shines is Asti in Northern Italy’s Piemonte Region. Here, Asti Spumante is produced, which is moscato refermented into a sparkling wine with the same effervescent pressure as a Champagne – La Spuma is “the foam” in Italian. Numerous places throughout Italy produce a sparkling wine with less effervescence (about the same as Prosecco) called Moscato Frizzante – La frizza means “the gas” in Italian.

V. Sattui Moscato is fashioned in a very Italian style and the wine is “carbonated” naturally by a second fermentation in a sealed stainless steel tank which does not allow the natural bubbles to escape; just like Spumante. Fermenting in a bottle creates a yeasty wine because of the wine’s intimate contact with yeast. Fermenting in a much larger vessel reduces yeast contact to the point where the wine’s delicate fruitiness remains essentially intact.proscuitto-wrapped-figs

Our Moscato Frizzante exudes the personality of the Muscat grape with peach, orange blossoms and melon. La Frizza creates a lovely edge in the wine which prevents the subtle sweetness from being cloying. A marvelous dessert wine on a hot summer night.

Please DO attempt this at home: cut a little pocket in a Mission fig and stuff it with a semi soft goat cheese. Wrap with prosciutto and affix it to the fig with a water soaked toothpick. Grill until the cheese runs a bit and the prosciutto becomes crisp. Place on a platter, serve V. Sattui Moscato and stand back so that you can watch your guests’ knees buckle.