Saturday, June 6, 2009

Tincho, New Age, and the Substitute

The warm weather, the smell of charred meat and propane exhaust can only mean one thing: it's finally summer. Although you wouldn't know it today, because it's 50 degrees and rainy. Current weather notwithstanding, the seasons, and my palate have decidedly changed gears. Gone are the braised-for-ever-in-red-wine cuts of beef and lamb, hello grill and fish and hints of citrus and herbs. The same is true for wine. Light, slightly spicy food calls out for a wine that isn't thrown off by peppers, citrus, or char. 

As the temps rise, one of my favorite beverages for the deck and grill life is a "Tincho". The simple cocktail I first enjoyed at our local tapas joint, Over the Tapas. Made with the ever so slightly bubbly wine, New Age, is a simple beverage of wine over ice with slivers of lime -  deluxe on a hot summer day. Citrus-y Sauvignon Blanc and Malvasia somehow works with the lime and chill of the ice. Not sweet, but citrus-y, bright and refreshing...perfect.

The search for a bottle of New Age yesterday was fruitless, so a substitute was called in: Portugal's Vinho Verde. Not necessarily green as the name would suggest, but young. This wine, a bit more floral perhaps than New Age also packs a few bubbles - thus my willingness to experiment with a Tincho application. A bit more tart than New Age, we agreed that this newly concocted Tincho could use a bit more sweetness or fruit. Cranberry juice? Orange juice?

The verdict: New Age for Tincho. Vinho Verde well chilled and served by itself.


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