#SundayFunday With Tormaresca Calafuria Rosé #ItalianFWT

Sometimes, your day doesn’t go as planned.   And that can be a good thing.  A very good thing.

Last Sunday was a good example.  My wife and I have been hiking on a weekly basis this summer at various nearby regional parks.   I’d dressed for the hike and was downstairs grabbing a bit of sustenance.  My wife was getting dressed upstairs.

She sent me a text that read “We should go to San Francisco instead”   It’s been a while since we hung out in the City.   The next thing you know we were on our way to “The City” via BART.

Our first stop? The always fun Ferry Building Marketplace on the Embarcadero.  If you haven’t been it’s a great place to spend a few hours, especially if you’re a foodie.

We grabbed lunch at Hog Island Oysters…

#SundayFunday With Tormaresca Calafuria Rosé
Clockwise from the top: Hog Island Sweetwater Oysters; Shrimp and Grits; Seafood Gumbo

For dessert, I grabbed a scoop of “Harvey Milk & Honey Graham” ice cream from Humphrey Slocombe, which has one of the Top 5 Ice Creams In America according to the Food Network.  

Then we set out to explore the marvelous Marketplace.  Thereafter, we took the Ferry over to Jack London Square in Oakland and wine tasting before heading home.

With the 2015 Tormaresca “Calafuria” Rosato from Italy chilling in my refrigerator on my mind, I began prospecting for dinner.

Since we were just letting the day unfold before us, I had no idea when we would be getting home.   Taking a cue from Sunday morning, I decided to take it easy.

I stopped at the Golden Gate Meat Company and picked up Merguez Spicy Lamb Sausage and Duck and Prosciutto Sausage with Fresh Fig sausages.  Then with the help of a cheese-monger at  Cowgirl Creamery, I picked up a nice chunk of Pantaleo cheese from Sardinia.  We also picked up a nice assortment of heirloom tomatoes for our vegetable.

On My Plate

I opened the wine.  As I grilled up the sausages, I noshed on the delicious Pantaleo goat cheese.  Goat cheese and rose is a winning pairing in my book. And this was no exception.   As the sausages rested, I sliced and seasoned the tomatoes with salt and pepper and sliced up some of the cheese.

Ba da bing ba da boom! Dinner was on the table in 20 minutes!

#SundayFunday With Tormaresca Calafuria Rosé
Sausages, sliced heirloom tomatoes, and Pantaleo cheese with Tormaresca Calafuria Rosé

In my glass

The 2015 Tormaresca “Calafuria” Rosato hails from the Salento IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica).  It is located within the Puglia region of Italy, in the southeastern section of the “heel” of the boot.    I think it’s important to note  wines classified as IGT are not necessarily of lower quality.  The designation was created in 1992 to allow some freedom for Italy’s winemakers to craft wines from grape varieties (or blends) not sanctioned under DOC/G laws.
The wine is crafted from 100% Negroamaro, which has been cultivated in the Puglia region for at least 1,500 years!
There are two schools of thought on where Negroamaro’s name comes from. The first is that it is a modern Italian translation (where negro means “black” and amaro means “bitter”) referring to the variety’s dark coloring and savory flavors. However, the hot southern extremity of Italy is known to produce ripe red wines with high sugar levels, so “bitter” should not be taken too literally. The second school of thought employs a Latin-Greek interpretation and says it means “dark black”, a reference to Negroamaro’s intense color. – Winesearcher.com
I’ve really enjoyed a few red wines of Negroamaro from the Salice Salentino DOC.   So when I saw this rosato of Negroamaro, I jumped on the opportunity.
#SundayFunday With Tormaresca Calafuria Rosé
Image courtesy of Tormaresca
Tormaresca sourced the hand-harvested grapes from the Maime estate in San Pietro Vernotico. The grapes were softly pressed and fermented at a low, controlled temperature before settling for several months in stainless steel.
My tasting notes follow:
The wine pours a pale pink color with a salmon hue with strawberry, peach, watermelon rind, and a kiss of floral aromas. On the palate its light-bodied, dry and very fresh with strawberry, and baked sour cherry flavors with an appealing combination of savory and mineral elements  This is a rose I would buy again in a heartbeat.  And it offers wonderful value at $15!

The Pairing

The thing I enjoy about rose is that it is one of the most food friendly wines.  Since wine is a considered to be a  food group in Italy, I suspected an Italian rosato  would be all  the more food friendly.

I was right.  The wine’s acidity combined with its subtle savory and mineral character made for a great pairing with our dinner.  The wine paired especially well with the Duck and Proscuitto Sausage, and the Pantaleo cheese.   The spiciness of the Merguez sausage of more challenging for the wine, but the two found peaceful co-existence.  friendly at the table since it seems wine is a food.

If you’re reading this early enough, please join our Twitter chat Saturday, August 6th at 8am PT using the #ItalianFWT hashtag to chat about Italian Rosé


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  1. Your post, the first I’ve read this morning, has inspired me. Go with the flow and see how things come together. Thanks!

  2. Vino Travels says:

    Ive had other Tormaresca wines but not their rose. Isnt the versatility of rose perfect?!

  3. Jill BARTH says:

    Such a lovely memory! Sharing this day with your bride…food + wine + The City. This is a “life is good” post.

    Inspired by Italy…. (makes sense!). Cheers!

  4. I love it when a non-plan comes together! Sounds like a fun day, and I share your love of the Ferry Terminal marketplace. Just watch out, I had my cowgirl creamery grilled cheese sandwich stolen right out of my hand by one of those huge seagulls!

  5. Cooking Chat says:

    Wow! Love the sound of the pairing, and what a wonderful day! Been awhile since we have let one serendipitously unfold like that.

  6. The Ferry Building is always a must! Now you have me longing for a day in the City, too.

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