Gallo’s Gold Medal Awards

For three years now, the good folks at Gallo have hunted for the best artisan foodstuffs to pair with their wines. This year, seven winners were chosen, and the company was good enough to send some samples along with a bottle of their 2006 Gallo Family Sonoma Reserve Pinot Gris as a pairing.

Both snacks were a hit, with or without the wine.

Anjou Bakery’s Fruit Nut Crostini ($11.50 per bag) is unlike any cracker you’ve had before, a crisp, thick, multigrain slab chock full of nuts and dried fruits and sprinkled with visible, coarse sugar crystals. Really good and unique if you’re into raisin bread and the like.

Lake Erie Creamery’s Blomma cheese was a huge contrast, a tart, lightly sour, creamy raw goat milk cheese with a very smooth consistency and very little in common with the usual, crumbly goat cheeses you get. Straight outta Cleveland, it’s not at all what you’d expect, and though it didn’t go well with the sweet Crostini, most of my visitors to whom I served it had no trouble eating it on its own.

Gallo Family’s Pinot Gris (B, $11) isn’t out of this world, but it was a nice accompaniment to both foods. The honey and apricot notes are simple, and my first glass was marred by a slight weediness. Surprisingly, that faded with some time exposed to air. Its fruitiness was far more encompassing after a few hours. Very pale and crisp, this is a nice little summer wine. Might I suggest you try it with some snacks?

sonoma reserve pinot gris 2006 Gallos Gold Medal Awards

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