Monday, November 21, 2011

Wine-Pairing Advice From Astor Wines & Spirits and a DVD Recommendation for After the Meal Is Over

By West Village Bill

Yesterday, my squeeze Tony P. and I took a walk to the East Village to check out Astor Wines & Spirits. I loved the Match Game–style window display that offered recommendations on which kind of wine to pair with various elements of your Thanksgiving meal.

I realize it's hard to see everything because of the weird angle and the window glare, so I'll note that the pairing suggestions are: cabernet franc with herb (stuffing), pinot noir with roast (turkey), zinfandel with spice (cranberry sauce), chardonnay with butter (butternut squash), sherry with pie (it probably should have said sweet instead), and riesling with char (Brussels sprouts).

I was impressed with the breadth of the bottles inside. There were many wines I'd never heard of.

As you'd expect with any large store, there were some items that seemed like bargains and others that seemed overpriced. Tony and I have been drinking a lot of Oregon pinot noir lately, and we saw one from Benton-Lane Winery that we'd drank before that cost a couple dollars more than at stores in our neighborhood. But we spotted an enjoyable pinot gris from Montinore Estate for the cheapest price we'd ever seen it: $12.99.

Tony had decided to make a fresh cranberry sauce spiked with Cointreau and raspberry liqueur. We got a 375-milliliter bottle of Mathilde Framboise Liqueur for only $9.99—5 bucks off the regular price.

We've also been getting into wines made in New York state, and Astor had a large selection of those. We picked up two cabernet francs to try: those from Whitecliff Vineyard and Sheldrake Point Winery.

The Whitecliff CF was part of an inside display offering more Thanksgiving wine advice. Click on the photo to enlarge it.


After you've stuffed yourself on Thursday, unbutton your pants and relax on the couch with a final glass of wine or two while watching the DVD of The Life of Reilly, a 2004 recording of the final performance of Match Game star Charles Nelson Reilly's one-man show, Save It for the Stage. I loved that game show growing up, largely because of Reilly's antics.

Even though he was better known for Match Game and other TV show appearances, Reilly was an accomplished theater actor and director. The Life of Reilly is touching and hilarious. Some of the secrets about his family and the way he was treated as a gay man in Hollywood are shocking and sad. (The links I'm giving above mention revelations from TLOR that I would consider to be SPOILERS of sorts, so you may want to see the movie before reading any of those web pages. I think you'd prefer to hear the dramatic turns his story took being delivered by CNR himself.) I was disappointed that even though we learn an awful lot about CNR's fascinating and, at times, tragic childhood, we hear nothing about his adult love life. (Wikipedia says he was domestic partners with a set decorator and dresser named Patrick Hughes III.) Nonetheless, the late great Charles Nelson Reilly was a terrific story teller whose ultimately triumphant life story is well told here.

Movie poster image via Wild About Movies

1 comment:

  1. Lovely. I think we'll be adding a Riesling to the list this Thursday to go with the sprouts and roast potatoes.