Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, February 9, 2019

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Mountain Views-News Saturday, February 9, 2019 

TABLE FOR TWO by Peter Dills


First of all, let’s agree to disagree: Valentine’s Day should 
be a full week long. A single day is not long enough to 
fully express one’s love. What do you say about having an 
evening at home with a bottle of bubbly and a candlelight 
table for dinner? You may wonder why a critic would 
dare such treason. In all truth, it’s an impossible night for 
restaurants, so let’s find three bottles in price ranges you 
can live with. In the $10 price range, Ruffino Prosecco 
has been produced from grapes grown in the hilly area 
of Valdobbiadene, which is the most historically active 
region for the production of prosecco. Bright straw 
yellow with fine bubbles, the bouquet is fragrant and 
intensely fruity, with clean notes of apples, pears and 
citrus. I found it crisp, clean, and yet delicate - a perfect 
wine for the budget-minded lovebird. From the $20 
range, let’s go back to Paso Robles for the San Simeon 
Petite Sirah. I enjoyed this well-bodied wine with a pre-
Valentines dinner of lobster thermidor. This wine is not 
for the “beginner” (nor is cooking lobster thermidor), 
and brings strong notes of fruit when opened with a 
well-rewarded and long finish. My $30-range selection 
is the Domaine Carneros. My opinion is that this estate-
bottled wine gets as close to a “real” French champagne 
as any California sparkler on your supermarket shelves.

This cuvee is 51% chardonnay and 49% pinot noir, with 
an alcohol content of a modest 12.1%. I got a perfect 
“pop” upon opening the bottle, which I poured into a 
lightly chilled flute and watched the bubbles rush to the 
top. The flavor was a little toasty in the beginning with 
a clean, long finish. You have my permission to drop a 
strawberry in your glass for this special occasion.

Honorable Mention:

Mia Sparkling Moscato Rose ($12)

Segura Viudas Brut ($10)

Stella Rosa 

Domaine Chandon ($16, my dad’s all time favorite)

 Join me for Dining with Dills every Morning on GO 
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