Saint Martin started out as a Roman soldier, grew up in Pavia, Italy and as an adult was baptized and became a monk. He was known as a kind man that led a quiet and simple life. The most well known legend of Saint Martin is that he once cut his cloak in half to share with a beggar during a snowstorm, to save the beggar from dying of the cold. Saint Martin gives us many reasons to celebrate, especially with food and wine.
Saint Martin from the late 4th century CE to the late Middle Ages, much of Western Europe engaged in a period of fasting beginning on the day after St. Martin’s Day, November 11. This fast period lasted 40 days and was called “Quadragesima Sancti Martini”, which in Latin means “the forty days of St. Martin.” At St. Martin’s eve, people ate and drank very heartily for a last time before they started to fast.
Saint Martin is now credited with a prominent role in spreading wine-making throughout the Touraine region of France and facilitating the planting of many vines. The Greek myth that Aristaeus first discovered the concept of pruning the vines after watching a goat eat some of the foliage has been appropriated to Martin. Martin is also credited with introducing the Chenin Blanc grape varietal, from which most of the white wine of western Touraine and Anjou is made.
So, once a year, we get together and celebrate with a winemaker that we respect and admire. This year we have chosen Ron Lachini of Lachini Vineyards in the Willamette Valley in Oregon. For those of you diehard Italian wine fans, you may be wondering why we chose a local winemaker rather than a traditional Italian producer. First of all, Ron is Italian! Also, we love and respect his work and are very excited about his wines. The Lachini Portfolio includes amazing selections from Oregon including Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir that you may have already tasted and admired at Serafina. The Lachinis have another trick up their sleeve: the Washington Bordeaux styles that you will not find anywhere else. These are exciting and much sought after wines! It is rare to find an individual who can create wines that perform and deliver so well in two very different and distinct styles. If I had to sum up the Lachini style, I would say that, across the board, the wines are all very true, sophisticated and delicious. The Lachini portfolio is rated very highly in all of the major wine publications; scores are posted on the Lachini Vineyards website at http://lachinivineyards.com/.
Our 10th annual St. Martin’s celebration will take place at Serafina on Thursday, November 11th at 6:30. Wine and food pairings will be offered for $85, exclusive of tax and gratuity. You can view the menu here. Please call us at 206.323.0807 to reserve your spot for our favorite event of the year!