Slim chance of victory results in tremendous glory upon success. This may seem like strange inspiration for a winery, but if you are a wine rebel like Matthew Rorick it is exactly what you are seeking. This is a food and wine pairing article inspired by an outstanding wine I found buried in my cellar. I truly hidden gem I received almost a year ago in a wine club shipment from Le Metro Wine through Protocol Wine Studio.
The Wine: For tonight’s wine, something totally unique, different, a bit wild yet totally legal.
2014 Forlorn Hope ‘Suspiro del Moro’ Silvaspoons Vineyard Alvarelhao, Alta Mesa, USA: This wine was crafted of 100% Alvarelhão, a grape originating in the Duoro Valley of Portugal and grown in Alta Mesa, California; it poured a deep ruby with blackish hues; dazzling aromas of black cherries, black raspberries, dried crushed rose petals, savory herbal notes of lavender and mint, anise, hint of nutmeg and orange peel; the nose and palate was a wild ride of funk, violets, fruit, earthiness; very complex on the palate with layers of flavors and a great textural feel, beautifully balanced like an iron fist in a velvet glove, mouth-coating finish; completely unique, every wine should be this good! SRP $24; click here to find near you.
The Food Pairing: To be honest, I really did not know what to pair with this wine. I have only had Alvarelhão at a Portuguese wine master class and it was from Portugal. Knowing that these grapes were from Lodi and Matthew Rorick likes to push the envelope I knew I would like the wine but I was not sure how much or what would work with it. When in doubt, go beef?
My Choice: In an effort to play it safe I decided upon teriyaki beef kabobs, grilled corn with smoked paprika, and a caprese salad of green and red heirloom tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil, EVOO and balsamic vinegar. An easy dinner to pair with an uncertain wine.
The Results: I am a firm believer that wine and food go together. Most wines crafted in old world countries are made specifically to pair with food. It is more common for wines in the US to be made to drink alone because Americans don’t drink wine the same way Europeans drink wine. All that being said, the pairing was absolutely delicious. The wine was great with the meal across the board! Moreover, the Forlorn Hope Suspiro Del Moro Alvarelhão 2014 was absolutely delicious alone. The wine continued to evolve for a couple of hours. My glass with dinner was great; but the glass I had after dinner was even better. Time, air, and the uniqueness of the wine allowed it to shine beautifully with and without food. I certainly want more of this wine!
More about Forlorn Hope from their web site:
Rare Creatures from appellations unknown and varieties uncommon, these wines are our brave advance party, our pride and joy — our Forlorn Hope.”
At Matthew Rorick Wines, we love the longshots. We love the outsiders, the lost causes, the people/projects/ideas abandoned as not having a chance in the world. We love the longshots because we’re all about tenacity, we relish a challenge, and – we admit it – we love us a good tussle.
Hans Brinker, the Dutch boy who stuck his finger in the dike? We’re big fans of his. Penelope – weaving all day and ripping it out all night? She’s with us. Henry V’s speech at the Battle of Agincourt? Pretty much our theme song. These bottles, the first produced by Matthew Rorick Wines, were our headlong rush into the breach. Rare creatures from appellations unknown and varieties uncommon, these wines are our brave advance party, our pride and joy – our Forlorn Hope.
My Song Selection: This wine leads itself to an easy song pairing. Matthew Rorick is a rebel. A winemaker who seeks the “rare creature” in the bottle. Is he a winemaker before his time? Probably not but he is in an elite class that pushes the envelope and does it successfully. I have chosen a song by two of my all-time favorite rock artists. They are both rebels, trailblazer, and true musical geniuses. Sadly they are both gone, but at least they made one song together!
Have you had any Forlorn Hope wines? What is your favorite unique wine?
Get your own bottle of Forlorn Hope Suspiro Del Moro Alvarelhão 2014 and let me know what song you pair with it. Cheers!