On Christmas Eve morning while strolling through Trader Joe’s picking up some last minute items, I noticed an end-cap touting Lambrusco. For those unfamiliar with Lambrusco (as I was prior to purchasing this fantastic wine and reading the details on the end-cap), it is a slightly sparkling Italian dry red wine made from (you guessed it) Lambrusco grapes. Being that it was an Italian wine and I was serving Cioppino for dinner, I thought for $4.99 why not give it a whirl.
Admittedly, I am terrible at wine pairings with meals, mainly because I hate white wine (sorry for those that like/love it), so I tend to stay away from it at all costs and always try to go with some red wine instead. Since Cioppino is slightly light seafood stew, I thought the Lambrusco might go nicely with it. My instincts were right. Served chilled, it was a perfect compliment to the Cioppino. My parents loved it too and remarked that it brought them back to the 70s, apparently when they drank it in barrelfulls.
Since Christmas Eve, I have restocked the Lambrusco, and find myself going to it when I want something light and crisp (that’s not beer or white wine). If you’re having pizza, it makes a nice alternative to beer and I can’t wait for summer because it seems like it would be perfect with barbeque too.
I bought Le Grotte Regianno Lambrusco Rosso Dolce at Trader Joe’s for $4.99, but if you don’t have a Trader Joe’s near you, your local liquor store should stock some variety of Lambrusco.