Safe and Sane Sparklers

Mother Liberty turns 242 years old this week and what better way to salute her than with a Safe & Sane Sparkler.  While she probably deserves the expensive stuff, I prefer to go the route of Prosecco.

Mother Nature’s final retort to wine cooler, lite beer, alco-pops and other fizzy, cold, but ultimately unsatisfying industrial crap, Prosecco just plain rules.

It is not about being super dry and toasty and yeasty and all those things we love in great fizz from la Champagne. Prosecco chooses to forgo the cerebral path and heads straight for the pleasure center of your brain.

It is lighter and zestier and more aromatic, but never actually sweet with a crisp, refreshing acidity to take on anything from traditional antipasti platters to chicken salad, Ballpark franks, ceviche, Asian inspired cuisine or even some serious BBQ!

Prosecco hails from the Veneto region in northern Italy about 15 miles north of Venice and it isn’t any wonder why Venetians consume Prosecco like water or in their National drink, The Bellini.

The Bellini was created in the late 1930s to early 1940s by Guiseppe Cipriani at the legendary Harry’s Bar in Venice, a favorite hangout for expats including Ernest Hemingway, Sinclair Lewis, and Orson Welles.

The fruity cocktail owes its name and color to Cipriani’s fascination with Giovanni Bellini, a 15th-century Venetian artist. Originally prepared with Prosecco and white peach puree, it’s perfectly acceptable to use yellow peach puree or prepared peach nectar and/or peach schnapps.

It’s like going to Venice without the airfare.

 Dr. Vino (Rory Olson) is the proprietor of Portland Wine Merchant at 1430 SE 35th just off Hawthorne Blvd.