This past Thursday, March 5th, was sort of my unofficial debutante ball, if you will. While there were no frilly dresses or father-daughter dances anywhere in sight, there was quite a lot of buzz, warm wishes, and plenty of good eats.
The event was the annual Vinho Verde Wine Tasting, held at the Astor Center in New York City. I was asked to speak about the marvelous ability of Vinho Verde, Portugal’s iconic wine from the Minho region, to pair with so many types of food. And to drive home the point, the uber-talented chef Jacqueline Lombard made no fewer than 19 dishes from my upcoming book, The New Portuguese Table, for the crowd of 150.
I have to admit, at first I was hugging the walls in dread. Never have I had so many guests eat my food at one time. But after watching people go back for seconds, and even thirds, I was relieved. Eventually, some nibblers figured out I was the author and suddenly a camera was stuck in my face for an interview for Portuguese TV, business cards were exchanged, a guest appearance on local TV was scheduled, and tons of advanced copies of the book were requested. Three days later, I’m still recovering.
For those unfamiliar with Vinho Verde, aka “green wine,” it wasn’t named, as many believe, in honor of the stunningly lush and green Minho region from where it hails nor for its yellow-green color (there are rose and red Vinho Verdes out there). Rather it got its moniker because the wine is meant to be drunk young, usually within a year of pressing. Read more »