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Emme with Baystate Wines & Spirits

A little bit of everything this Friday evening. Let's start out with one of my favorite and super simple cocktails, an "Aperol" spritz, only we're substituting the Aperol with the new-to-us Mezzodi liqueur. Let's move to the pure bubbles - an organic Prosecco and an epic grower Champagne - along with some Napa action. 

Gruppo Caffo, Mezzodi Liqueur – Calabria, Italy ($28)
I remember having this spirit with my Calabrian relatives at the Ionian seaside beach with a bit of club soda and an orange slice. From Caffo distillery in Calabria, on the toe of the motherland south of Naples, Mezzodi delivers as Campari-like substitute, brimming with juicy Italian citrus and a slight bitterness. It’s less sweet than Aperol and lighter than Campari and it makes the ultimate spritz cocktail, Americano, or a Negroni. Negronis are my JAM so I’m not kidding when I say the Mezzodi is seriously amazing. Tonic water gives it an extra dose of bitter or adding Prosecco, which we’ll do on Friday, also makes a fantatic Mezzodi Spritz alla Cheese Shop of Salem.
 
2015 Terre di Marca Millesimato, Prosecco Bio DOC – Veneto, Italy ($12)
Without the addition of Mezzodi Liqueur, this 100% Glera is basically straight-up organic lemonade with notes of pears and green apple skin. It’s refreshing, light but maintains sharp acidity and a touch of honey on the finish. We love the bottle shape. It has a sloped-shoulder top with a big bottom reminiscent of a port bottle. We only wish it were clear to show off its pretty lemon-lime hue, but hey, it’s what’s inside that counts!
 
NV Paul Goerg Brut Reserve – Champagne, France ($44)
Paul Goerg is one of the leading independent Champagne growers located in the famous Côte des Blancs. His cuvées have been such a pretty addition to our sparkling section at the shop. Paul Goerg likes to let his Champagnes sit for more than three years on its lees, which means that the liquid rests in bottle upside- down before being disgorged. The finished wine is straw-yellow in color with hints of gold. Delicate and lasting mousse with fine and continuous bubbles. A subtle nose of acacia flowers and notes of citrus, ending with the rich flavor of yellow fruits and fried bananas. Pair with anything, including take-out sushi, like I did last night!
 
2014 Aviary Chardonnay – Napa Valley, California ($18)
Your go-to Californian Chardonnay aged in neutral oak barrels for just five months. Fresh aromas of tropical fruit, Bartlett Pear, honeysuckle, and vanilla. The palate is balanced and round, with nice natural acidity on the finish. It covers a wide range of cheese pairing from Manchego to Brie Fermier.
 
2013 Aviary Red Blend – Napa Valley, California ($18)
Grapes sourced from eleven vineyards throughout Napa Valley with around just as many grapes in it! This is the kitchen sink of grapes, but a really good kitchen sink. It’s rock star blend: mostly Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon with the addition of Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc, Petite Verdot, Malbec. The Merlot softens the wine, Petite Verdot adds ripe fruit and a hint of spice, and the Cabernet Sauvignon brings on the dark chocolate notes with pomegranate seed tannins. If you like big, juicy Californian reds this is the one for you.

Earlier Event: October 8
Spanish Wine Tasting with Cafe Europa
Later Event: October 15
Oktoberfest Beer Tasting!