I'll eat just about anything while drinking wine, but I hadn't ever really thought about the value of actually pairing wine with the snacks I enjoy. Laura Burgess of Laura Uncorked introduced us to Dare to Pair wine tasting in Lake Tahoe and now my mind and senses are racing.
Swirl, Sniff, Swish
Wine tasting in Lake Tahoe is one of my favorite things to do in the basin. It's a classy way to spend a weekend and fill up your rack, refrigerator, or cellar with wines that you curated yourself. I never learned how to taste wine. I swirl it in my glass, look at the color, sniff it a bit, and then sip it down. If I like it, I have more, if not I move on to the next.
During Dare to Pair wine tasting in Lake Tahoe Laura gives a brief, but comprehensive introduction to actually tasting wine. Afterward, you will never taste it in the same way. She guides you as you smell, savor, and explore the flavors of each wine. Note taking is encouraged. After tasting all of the samples I struggled to remember exactly what made the first two or three unique.
We all know what potato chips taste like, right? Or do we? After exploring the flavors of wine so deeply we transitioned over to foods. This first Dare to Pair included potato chips. Plain, Sour Cream & Onion, and Barbeque. Have you ever actually tasted these foods, like really tasted them?
In a similar fashion to the wine tasting we explored the flavor of each chip. Being that these were more familiar we didn't spend quite as much time exploring the flavors. It was fun to hear how each hit our palettes. Not everyone tasted the same things while sampling the chips.
Dependent upon how technical you want to get, the next step is to explore the various combinations of wine and food. Of course, there were those of us who took a bite, took a sip, and took another bite. Some of us tried one flavor and went through all the wines with it.
Discussions began, arguments and disagreements occurred. Some found a match immediately. There were lots of "Hmms," and "Ewws," and even some, "No's." Most interesting was that not everyone agreed on the flavor pairings. There were some unanimous votes, though.
Curated or Customized
The great thing about being in charge is that I get special treatment. When asked what I wanted as a "twist" in the experience I suggested salt and vinegar chips. Adding in this flavor surprised us all! If you want to choose the twist, or the foods you can book a private Dare to Pair for your group and request your favorites for the event. Laura will know exactly what wine to pair.
We've curated a series of Dare to Pair events that are open for all. You can reserve your space for Grilled Cheese, Barbeque, and Tomatoes. Space is limited, so book early.
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Jenay Aiksnoras, Experience Curator