The evning was tastefully choregraphed to expand your palate through food and wine, while socializing between bites and sips. Now was the time to venture into the "World of Wine".With over five hundred wines ahead of me, I had to figure out how to navigate the wine scene efficiently.With over fourteen hundred people attending this event, the logical approach was to talk to my neighbors and get recomendations. What I pleasently learned was the crowd was wine savvy and knew,decriptively, about the wines they recommended. What I also learned was that this event has more wines that are affordable to the consumer than many of the events that only sample the higher end wines. Many attendees told me that they attend this event, specifically,so they can taste all of the wines that they have interest in and make a decision whether to buy the wines or not. All of this without buying a single bottle of wine.I admire that approach. It makes the price od admission a true bargain.I started my quest with a glass of Cristal champagne, from the recommendations I received. Small bubbles and a nutty, elegant flavor made this 'Cult Classic' a true crowd pleaser.Normally, my approach is simple: Sparkling wines first, followed by whites, roses and reds. After this I search for ports and dessert wines. If I am still standing, I will end the evening with a spirit like limoncello or grappa.The choices at the TOAST OF THE TOWN fit that bill.There were so many wines that stood out and were affordable that I believe the best way to share this information with you is to list the vineyards that consistently produce excellent wines, rather than specific anmes and vintage years that I tasted. These are the wineries I liked the most, both for value and quality:
Choose any of the above wineries and I am sure that you will find a wine you will like, both for price and quality. All of the vineyards produce excellent wines and information about them can be found at your local wine shop or on the internet.now that I have had so many wines, it was time to move towards spirits.As I stated earlier, at the end of meals I like to drink a glass of Linoncello (always store the bottle in the freezer) for digestion, as was the case at the TOAST OF THE TOWN.Laird and Company (NJ) poured Casani Linoncello, which was absolutely wonderful. My relatives are from the Isle of Capri, own a restaurant named La Capannina , and once exported Limoncello to the states years ago. That is the reason why I like Linoncello so much.And what goes with Limoncello? Desserts,of course.being the glutton that I am, I couldn't pass up dessert. I had quite a few choices,but, my favorite dessert was the mini-cupcakes from the Cupcake Shop in Manhattan.To top all of that off and to end the evening, I had a decadent cup of Serendipity's (225 East 60th) famous Frozen Hot Chocolate.I was in Heaven!!What a night to remember.!!One that I will remind my readers to experience in 2010.TOAST OF THE TOWN is money well spent.I can't wait until next year, so, I can ask you "WHAT WINES DID YOU LIKE?'.
Posted by Philip S. Kampe 'Cheesy Concepts'