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Tasting Notes with Frasca Food and Wine’s Sommelier Ian Meyer

Cover Image for Tasting Notes with Frasca Food and Wine’s Sommelier Ian Meyer
By Jessica Hewett

Ian Meyer shares his expertise on uncommon varietals and unique pairings.

Photo by Casey Wilson

What wines are you drinking right now?


Meyer: It’s rosé season baby! I love trying different rosés as they are released each spring. Don’t get me wrong–you can definitely drink it year round, but there’s that excitement of trying new releases and new vintages each spring.

Then, don’t sleep on great Sangiovese either for your summer gatherings. The crisp and refreshing red out of Tuscany is delicious with all manner of summer foods.

Also, I’m always trying to drink champagne, because bubbles are delicious.


Is there an underrated or uncommon varietal that we should all be drinking?


Meyer: Nerello Mascalese based wines from Mt. Etna in Sicily are still being slept on by a lot of people—and Mencia out of NW Spain. Both of these grapes can produce crunchy, refreshing red wines. Acidity sometimes sounds scary when you talk about it in a drink, but the acidity in these wines is what makes them so refreshing and easy to drink.

What wine on Frasca’s list are you really excited about at the moment?


Meyer: A few different reds from the south of France jump out to me as exciting right now, especially for summer. Domaine de Trevallon (a 50/50 Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah blend) is so good with grilled items. Grange des Peres from the late, great, Laurent Vaillé is a Syrah/Mourvedre based blend that fills a similar niche but with more body.

Since we specialize in Italian cuisine I would be remiss not to mention the estate Le Ragnaie. They make more than one wine, and all are delicious at a myriad of price points.


“I’m always trying to drink champagne, because bubbles are delicious.”


What’s your favorite classic food and wine pairing?


Meyer: I’m not sure if this is 100% a classic but champagne and potato chips has got to be up there with the best pairings in the world. Or champagne and popcorn, or french fries, or fried chicken, or…well you get the point. Champagne with salty, crunchy, greasy foods is just heaven. The bubbles are refreshing, just like a cold beer.

Left: Agrapart & Fils, Extra Brut “7 Crus” and Domaine Nowack M.V. Extra Brut “S.A.” Champagnes, Right: French Fries at Sunday Vinyl by Katie Orlady

What unique food and wine pairing would you recommend?


Meyer: Grüner Veltliner and greens. Sometimes vegetables, especially things as bitter as asparagus or as unique as artichokes can be difficult, but Grüner helps to smooth out their edges.

Sommeliers have written about this before (Rajat Parr and Jordan Mackay come to mind right away), but a crisp Grüner of middling body and weight with these vegetables makes a great meal.

The wine brings slight herbal tones, bright citrus, and an earthy minerality that makes it a fine complement to the bitterness of greens.

Veyder-Malberg Grüner Veltliner “Liebedich”
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