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He had me at Seasoning the Glasses....

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Lunch at del Posto in NYC today. Sommelier appeared out of nowhere as I drooled over the beautiful, wide and deep list. We had a nice discussion over what to enjoy with a garganelli wtih ragu bolognese - a chewy, country sangiovese for $75. On the low end of the list though it has many approachable wines.

But when he rolled over the cart with two big riedel bordeaux glasses, a decanter and a small glass for his tasting, I knew what was about to go down. He seasoned the glasses! SIGH... I have to say, I dine out a lot in this city and haven't seen seasoning for quite some time, and not for a $75 wine.

I swoon....

BTW it was a Rosso di Montalcino Gianni Brunelli 07.

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  1. OK, you got me! I will ask the question - what the heck is meant by "seasoning the glasses"?

    8 Replies
    1. re: JohnnyT

      Pouring a little wine into the glass, swirling it around to get out any impurities/odors from washing and polishing the glass. So seldom done for relatively inexpensive wines, (in fact seldom done at all any more at any level.)

      Good price for the Gianni Brunelli btw from a list. And the '07 was a wonderful wine.

      1. re: dinwiddie

        At this level of price and service, shouldn't one assume that the glasses already be free of odors or residue? Just asking.

        1. re: bob96

          Sounds like a waste of wine to me.

          1. re: jlbwendt

            It is . . . and it isn't.

            A clean wine glass should be completely free of any scent whatsoever. With any luck, this should be the case, but isn't always. So, this will eliminate that possibility.

            Secondly, I suggest that you try it at home. Use a good-but-not-great wine. Take two identical glasses. Pour a healthy taste into the glass -- that is, the amount a server might pour into your glass at a restaurant. In the second glass, pour a very small amount into the glass -- just enough to swirl around and dump / pour out / gulp (without really tasting).

            Now, swirl and smell the first glass. Then swirl and smell the second one. You *should* notice a definite difference.

            1. re: zin1953

              AND... the chicks love it!

              Seriously, it makes me swoon. Don't even get me started with candle decanting an old Bordeaux....

              1. re: thegforceny

                Is there any other way to decant???

        2. re: dinwiddie

          Tell me more about this wine. What other vintages are good?

          1. re: omotosando

            The Rossos are intended to be drunk young, so look for the '07s or '08s. They tend to have berry and floral character, medium-bodied, easy to drink. They make some very good Burnellos, look for the 1997, 1999, 2001, and 2004s. Of course, the '04s are too young to drink.

      2. Maybe some useful comments here:

        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/804983

        Enjoy,

        Hunt

        1. Here's an old thread that discusses the practice of avvinare and used NY's Babbo as an example of wine service.
          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/302071