This month’s Wine Education Series from Cain’s Piggly Wiggly featured Advanced Sommelier Stephen Clark, owner of A&G Beverages, who gave us advice on how to select the perfect wine for our holiday meals. The first lesson we learned was wine is 98% subjective and everyone’s palette is different, so don’t worry if you don’t agree with everyone else (the pressure was off!).
Stephen is actually one of two Advanced Sommeliers in the entire state of Alabama. He explained the lengthy and intense process of obtaining that distinction, and it sounds as complicated as getting into medical school to me!
The classes are held once a month at each of the Cain’s stores in Spanish Fort, Fairhope and Foley.
The class is limited to 20 people and you have to be quick to get on the list. Notices on upcoming topics and presenters are posted on Piggly Wiggly’s Facebook page and sent out to those on their email list, which you can sign up for on their web site. (HERE).
We sampled five different types of wine during our class, and they were wines I would have never even considered trying. It was interesting that when we sipped the wine by itself, it tasted totally different when paired with a specific food.
And by the way, there’s no charge for this class!
Stephen gave us a large hand-out that had interesting facts about acidity levels, tannins, and vintages.
We were also reminded about Winesdays at the Pig, (that translates to Wednesdays for those who don’t speak swine-wine) where one wine is selected, and tastings are provided along with a deep discount on that particular wine. The chosen wine is revealed early that day on their Facebook page.
Piggly Wiggly deli supplied a delicious tasting plate full of holiday flavors, like turkey, ham, heavy cheese, spicy Wickles relish and dark chocolate. My table of ladies loved the chocolate course . . . what a surprise! Of course, our fun crowd wanted to stump Stephen and tried to get him to make recommendations on wine pairings for the local favorites of boiled peanuts and moon pies!
Cain’s Piggly Wiggly is the largest wine supplier in our area, with their new Spanish Fort location now edging out the Fairhope store! If you are in the area, make sure you sign up for the wine education series. You’ll love the nice people at The Pig, and you’ll learn something as well.
Here are some of the food pairings we learned about:Â
OystersÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Chablis or Muscadet
Fresh Goat CheeseÂ Â Sancerre or Pouilly-Fume
Prime SteakÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Great Cabernet Sauvignon
Grilled LambÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Rioja Red
CrÃ¨me BruleeÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Aged Tawney Port
If you don’t live in this area, do you have something like this where you live?Â
Hi Little Bitty Pretty One! You do find the most fun things to do! I miss Piggly Wiggly. We shopped at one in Ft. Payne when I was little. When we lived in New Mexico there was a PG! I don’t remember one in Texas. I love hearing about your adventures. Oh, didn’t you love the movie ‘Frozen’? Carter can sing all of the songs and I even bought her the double CD so she could listen to them in the car! Let it go…let it go…! Thanks for popping in to see me and Happy Halloween! I’m sure you’ll have fun.
Be a sweetie,
Hi Sheila! I didn’t realize there were Piggly Wiggly stores in New Mexico. Very cool. They are all locally owned, so the style varies from city to city. We love our Pig here in Baldwin Co.!
As far as Frozen goes, I know I was the last person in the world to see it, and although I’m always a fan of a good princess movie, I think in this case, the song was better than the story. But the photos of your little Carter are so cute, it totally makes up for a a weak story line! That dress you made was AMAZING!
I love the title of your post. Sadly, myexperience with wine would not be that of a connoisseur, rather I am a gal who finds a good box makes an excellent container. The little appetizers looked yummy! Have a great weekend!
We were actually laughing at our table during the class and talking about how in Italy, they have really good wines in boxes! And you are right, the food was very tasty with the Wickles being SPICY!
I love the Pig too..ours closed down and I miss it so. Growing up Baptist, I never developed a taste for alcohol but as an adult I have tried a few things and it really does not appeal to me. We went to Biltmore last Christmas and we did a wine tasting there for fun. I will stick with the house wine of the south…sweet tea!
I think a sweet tea tasting would be fun and very competitive with the brewers!
Sounds like fun!
It really was a load of fun. Several people brought a friend with them, but by the end of class, everyone was making new friends.
Just one more reason for me to move to Fairhope!!! Have a wonderful treat filled restaurant, Leslie Anne!!
Yes, it’s a shame they have no wine in Boston!