The Unexpected Guest…

Dinner With Friends

A cooling wind picks up just as we sit down to dinner in the back yard of our close friends’ house. It’s a welcome respite from the mid-summer sun and the busy work week. The smell of charcoal smoke and grilling steak fills the air along with the intoxicating aroma of Maria’s fresh-from-the-oven zucchini gratin. There is nothing better than sitting with friends and sharing a good meal. It is the reason we “wine people” are in this business. It’s not just about the wine; it’s about food, friends, family and conviviality.

My father used to jokingly say that good wine makes good company better and bad company tolerable. Well, I will expand upon that misguided sentiment with: bringing the right wine to a party makes everyone happier. The challenge with most backyard BBQ’s is the mix of flavors, smokey meats, sweet and salty sauces, vinegary salads… it’s why many prefer to pop a beer or mix a cocktail.

There is an alternative in an obscure aromatic white wine that will work with all the flavors and textures assaulting your palate… Muscat á Petits Grains. You’re not going to find this wine at your usual wine shop but you, a Glutton and Gourmand*, have connections and a rare bottle in your wine fridge. Don’t expect everyone to “ooh and aah” when you pull it out at the party. A matter of fact, you might get more of a “WTF” reaction! That is, until you pull the cork and pour everyone a glass. Then you will get more of a “What is that…it’s delicious!” and “I didn’t know a Muscat could be dry and so yummy!”… and then my favorite: “This wine is perfect with Maria’s Zucchini Gratin!” – there is nothing better for a perfect evening than the perfectly unexpected wine.

Rob Sinskey

*If, by chance, you are not a Glutton & Gourmand or a Seasonal Glutton… CLICK HERE