Stone Crab Wine Pairings
It’s a little chilly, but it never lasts more than a couple of days, and then the reality of South Florida heat kicks back in to remind you of where you are. But we love those cooler days and nights at least for the moment. People break out their sweaters, we cozy up on the beach in a blanket, and we open up gorgeous rose’s and chewy whites to serve with our opulent dinner and share with guests. I like to call them Spring sippers, the sorts of wine with a heavy body but floral bouquet. Strong enough to stand up to pasta, fish, pork, and veal, but delicate enough to enjoy without food as a celebration in the afternoon.
Life in Miami is exciting, hectic, and fun, but there are certain times of year when the harvest bounty arrives in the form of a hammer shattering claw, and we wait patiently for the freshest to pour off the boat. Springtime is Stone Crab season, and we love it. I’m not saying you’re not a true SFL person if you don’t like Stone Crabs, but you’d have a hard time convincing the locals and gourmands that feast relentlessly on these pricey treats.
With great food comes great wine, honestly nothing pairs better with Stone Crabs than sparkling wines like Champagne and Prosecco, but I have recently found a rose gem and a fresh white wine that I’ve been enjoying with these delicious crustaceans.
The first is Alie Rose by Frescobaldi, a medium bodied sharp rose, created from Syrah and Vermentino. The Syrah is earthy, and adds black berry and strawberry notes, while the Vermentino adds salinity and fresh acid to clean your palette while your dipping your next claw. There’s no wonder why this wine is so sophisticated, the pedigree of the Frescobaldi name goes back more than 500 years in the Tuscan region. Alie is created from estate grapes grown at their Ammiraglia Estate in Maremma Tuscana. This estate is about 1 mile from the coast, and the Vermentino grapes relate this briny characteristic perfectly. Alie is a Greek word steeped in mythology as it translates roughly to Sea Nymph, a creature bound by beauty and sensuality; which also happens to describe this wines forward bouquet of freshly picked strawberries, a direct component of the Syrah.
Our second wine of note to pair with our local harvest of crabs aptly forementioned, is the La Scolca Black Label Gavi Dei Gavi. This prestigious Gavi Dei Gavi, has been on the menus of some of the best restaurants in the country for quite some time. Every ounce in the bottle has been careful cared for, starting with the grapes used being only the vineyards best production. A limited number of barrels of this medium bodied fresh white wine are produced but I feel like most end up down here in the sunshine state as if the importer knew we needed the perfect bottle of vino to serve on our counter top with our best friends while cracking claws and dipping mustard.
This wine is produced from the grape varietal Cortese, found on higher elevations overlooking the blue Ligurian. This wine, first produced approx. 90 years ago, has developed a cult like following amongst the most hip trend setters from around the world. Both of these wines can be found locally here in Miami, and would make the most wonderful addition to your springtime menus. Both are affordable, expertly crafted, and deserve to be in the conversation of great wines to enjoy when the weather is perfect enough to open your balcony doors, turn off the AC and live a little in the most amazing outdoors that we come to know and love during these precious 3-5 months when the humidity goes down, and the cooler temps kick in. We wait all year for these days, these claws and these wines won’t disappoint at your next wine tasting claw cracking party.