Easter Wine Pairing with Good Mansion Wines
By Jeremy Morris
Good Mansion Wines has provided Wheeling with the finest in wine and food for over 15 years. Proprietor Dominick Paul Cerrone opened the wine shop in 2006, growing it into the area’s premier location for wine buying and browsing. The shop hosts wines from all 20 Italian regions and an extensive assortment of German, French, and Spanish wines in addition to a large selection of “New World” wines.
Easter meals bring various options for wine selections to accompany the traditional lamb or ham dinners that predominate the American Easter table. Cerrone says choosing the right wine depends on the preparation of the meat, particularly with the lamb dishes.
He says that Rhone reds often cohabitate with lamb in French cuisine and make an excellent choice for the Easter season and throughout the year.
“Rhone reds, the red blends from the Rhone Valley are perfect. These include syrah and grenache grapes, in addition to the Australian shiraz.”
For lamb that is being prepared and finished with charred and crispy outers, he prefers southern Rhone wines for their bouquet of dried herbs. “The herbs and flavors that come to our Easter table with lamb are often rosemary, sage, and lavender. Southern Rhone wines will often pick up a note of dried herbs to complement the dish,” says Cerrone.
While there is an assortment of labels from the region available for one’s choosing, Cerrone suggests looking for these: Vacqueyras, Gigondas, and Châteauneuf-du-Pape, all of which scale on the higher price point. For more economical choices, there is a wide-array of Côtes-du-Rhône. Specific to the Good Mansion’s shop this Easter season, Lirac and the Beaume de Venise wines are an excellent choice and likely not available elsewhere. “They are herbal and pair exceptionally well with lamb dishes of this style.”
For roasted lamb where the flavors cook over more extended periods, Cerrone suggests Northern Rhone wines as they are all syrah grape, “they are silkier and earthier and they do well with rare meats, with leg of lamb, beef filet, and other meats that are served rare.”
Wine types for ham pairing are “highly preferential,” says Cerrone, “but generally, ham wants white and typically doesn’t wish for wine that is bone dry. You want a wine that has a lot of residual sweetness.”
He suggests riesling, pinot gris, and chardonnay without pointing to any particular region. He says that pairing with ham is such a personal preference it is best to help someone navigate a perfect choice once they arrive in the shop.
In recent years Good Mansion has expanded its offerings beyond wine to include a delicatessen and bakery. Under pâtissier Olivier Thiry’s guidance, Good Mansion pumps out some of the finest pastries, desserts, and sandwiches in the tri-state region. The holidays always bring traditional treats like the ‘colomba,’ a sweet Italian delicacy.
Good Mansion brings an age-old Italian Easter tradition to Wheeling each year with the colomba bread. Deriving from the panettone tradition of the Lombardy region of Italy, colomba is a succulent, light, brioche bread with candied orange and raisin in the shape of a dove.
Similar to panettone, which is popular at Christmas, colomba is a two-dough, two-day process. On day one, the dough has a long rise process and is mixed with generous portions of egg yolk and butter to give it the rich, yellow color. On day two, additional butter, eggs, and sugar are added, and the dough proofs again before it is shaped into the Italian-imported dove frames and placed in the oven for a very low-temp long bake.
“It’s a labor of love, bakeries in Italy are making these around the clock, full-tilt this time of year. Our shop will be making them as well and this year we will have them available on the bakery floor for purchase in addition to customer pre-orders,” says Cerrone.
Pre-orders on the colomba have closed this year but mark your calendars for next year. Colomba will be available this year Easter week from the bakery floor.
Wheeling, WV 26003
Open 7 Days A Week
Lunch served daily from 11 AM-2 PM
Take-out and outdoor dining options available