Thursday, April 24, 2008

Vino Las Vegas visits Fiamma Trattoria in the MGM to attend the Pinot Noir Mini Camp featuring Oregon wines

Fiamma Trattoria is located inside the world famous MGM Grand Resort and Casino. Actually, Fiamma is famous in its own right. Coming from SoHo in New York city it earned a well deserved three star
designation from the New York Times.

We took a look at the menu and were intrigued by Executive Chef Carlos Buscagila take on traditional Italian cuisine in a very modern , sleek atmosphere.

When you first walk in, you notice the long bar that runs
the length of the restaurant. Then you can't help but be drawn to the

couches and plush chairs near the fireplace. This is a perfect place for a

cocktail before dinner or a glass of wine and great conversation.

On this visit we were there to enjoy some of the best Pinot Noirs from
Oregon paired with a seven course dinner. Karen and Jim Bergstrom were there from Bergstrom Wines. Actually, to quote Sommelier Julia Moretti, " This all started with a glass of Bergstrom Pinot Noir a few years a go ". It was well worth the wait. Jim featured the Bergstrom "Cumberland Ranch" Pinot Noir 2006 and his Bergstrom " Dr Bergstrom " Riesling 2006 during the dinner.

Laurent Montalieu winemaker/ proprietor of Solena Cellars was also in attendance and the dinner featured his Solena , Pinot Gris, 2006 and the Solena Pinot Noir 2006.

Showing off her wines was Debra Hatcher, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing for A to Z and Rex Hill Vineyards and Winery. She was featuring her A to Z Pinot Gris 2006, A to Z Pinot Noir 2006 and for one of the most interesting pairings of the night the Rex Hill "Unwooded"
Chardonnay 2006 and the Rex Hill " Dundee Hills" Pinot Noir 2006.

Winemaker Laurent Montalieu of Solena Cellars
paired his Solena Pinot Gris 2006 and Solena Pinot Noir 2006 with
some great food created and paired by Executive Chef Carlos Buscaglia
and Sommelier Julia Moretti.

The first course was Cheese and Charcuterie paired with the A to Z
Pinot Gris 2006. This pairing was right on with the wine pairing nicely with the Salami, Proscuitto and all the Traditional Accompaniments.

Next we enjoyed the Solena Pinot Gris 2006 with a Tuna Belly Crudo with Cremini Mushrooms. We were just getting started when we had the first Pinot Noir of the night with a Beet salad. The A to Z Pinot Noir 2006 blended nicely with the beets and drunken goat cheese.

We spotted the next pairing when we first saw the menu a few days prior to the event. We looked forward with anticipation to the pairing of Rex Hill " Unwooded" Chardonnay 2006 and Rex Hill " Dundee Hills " Pinot Noir 2006 with Seared Diver Scallop and Braised Short Ribs. As we suspected, it was a memorable pairing with this dish. Both wines paired well with the Scallop and the Braised Short Ribs and they changed on the nose and palate to compliment each dish.

Ravioloni , a short rib raviloi with barbara wine reduction, was combined with a spectacular Pinot Noir from Solena 2006 vintage. We were just past the half way point and each of the winemakers took turns with Chef Carlos in explaining the pairings.

Veal and Foie Gras was next with a Bergstrom "Cumberland Ranch" Pinot Noir reduction. What
a better wine to pair with this dish than the Bergstrom "Cumberlin Ranch" Pinot Noir 2006. And
we were not disappointed.

We were finally ready for the last course, a wonderful Panna Cotta with strawberry and mango and a Riesling reduction prepared by Pastry Chef Nika Yazdani. Bergstrom " Dr Bergstrom" Riesling 2006 was a nice contrast to the very sweet desert.

We have been to many winemaker dinners in many venues. This event was very special in many respects. Fiamma is a beautiful restaurant and provided a very classy and sophisticated back drop. The work of Chef Carlos and Chef Nika along with Sommelier Julia Moretti is commended. All of these pairings were excellent and some of the best we have had. General Manager Tim Ryan has put together a world class staff at Fiamma and we plan to return often for dinner, a drink and future winemaker dinners that are in the works. Great Job to Fiamma and thank you to the Oregon winemakers that traveled to our great culinary city of Las Vegas

Fiamma Trattoria (MGM Grand) on Urbanspoon

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Elaine and Scott

Elaine and Scott
Elaine and Scott