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An evening of Furlana - Zonin and Circo

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What do you do on a Thursday evening? Well.. sit back and take part in a beautifully orchestrated dance sequence, of course! And, one where you are part of the show is even better. On the playbill was a mesmerizing performance by the lovely couple, Zonin and Circo; teasing, flirting and courting in a perfect display of Italian dancing.

So it was to be... An evening of Italian gastronomy paired with the delectable wines from the Fruili region.

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Casa Vinicola Zonin wines is an esteemed wine family that have been producing wines for nearly 200 years. Their estates are located in seven of the finest wine-producing regions in Italy, Veneto, Friuli, Piedmont, Lombardy, Tuscany, Sicily and Puglia, and one in USA (Virginia). I was invited to an inspiring tasting dinner of Zonin wines paired with the the very Italian creations of chef Alfio Longo of Circoand regaled with splendid stroy telling by Marco Maccioni. What an evening it was!

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The Zonin family is best known, in the US, for their Prosecco. The Zonin Prosecco is a uniquely crafted bubbly with the perfect balance of fruity and dry, making it extremely drinkable, perhaps, even, too much! They like to start their evenings with a glass and end with it and I shall not mention how many more are entirely unavoidable in between. That is how we began.

Over the course of the dinner, I was introduced to some of the best reds and whites I have tasted from the country! Being paired with genuine, rustic Italian dishes presented with unruffled sophistication showcased the versatility of both the cuisine and the wine.

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As we were being entertained by nuggets of family stories by Marco Maccioni, Chef Longo prepared some of his signature dishes in perfect tandem to the wines being poured generously. We sat down to a place setting of five different glasses of wine and, over the tasting session, understood how each shape brought out the best in flavor of a particular wine.

Zonin wines is a family tradition and a family held company. It was an apt pairing with Circo, which, is itself a jewel in another family owned establishment, by the Maccioni family. The wines for the evening were chosed by Francesco Rabellinin who has been associated with the Zonin family for a long time and manages US operations. He carried the Zonin flag with flair; the wines were well-chosen and perfectly paired with each dish; from the subtle Maremmo with the Vitello Tonnato to the Chianti accompanying the Trippa Classica (which was my favorite dish of the evening) to the grappa sharing the spotlight with the luscious tiramisu that was the perfect end to a fabulous meal!

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I came away from the evening wanting to enjoy more and much more of the Zonin wines. At the moment, they are actively distributed only through restaurant partners, such as the Maccioni restaurants, SD26 among others. For me, that isn't really a problem. It is just another excuse to dine at these restaurants and discover more under the excuse of seeking out the wine. However, I really hope that the wines become available for retail purchase soon as I genuinely believe that they are brilliant representation of what wine can be - a nectar to the gods and men alike! ;-)

Thank you Zonins, Maccionis and Alfio for a brilliant evening!

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{Disclaimer: I have not in anyway been compensated for this post. I am writing this because I truly enjoyed both the wines and the food during the invitation only tasting dinner organized by Zonin wines in New York. I whole-heartedly recommend seeking out the wines and enjoying them!}
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