I decided I would be adventurous; I decided I would try a subscription* to Wine Awesomeness, which I wrote about not too long ago. The first shipment arrived, really quickly, and I was impressed. The wine was packaged very well, and it came in an attractive blue box. Upon opening the box, I found a selection of three wines (including the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro I talk about here), chocolate, and a recipe book for making pizzas that pair with the wines.
I was super excited to try out the wines, but I decided that to do so properly for the purpose of reviewing them, I would make the suggested pizza recipes to accompany them. So, I whipped up some pizza dough almost as instructed to by the recipe book, and I put together the first sauce and topping for the pizza. The sauce recipe for the first pizza I made, “Paulie Gee’s ‘Feels Like Bacon Love'” makes 3-4 12-inch pizzas, depending upon how much sauce you like. This is perfect since the dough recipe makes four pizza crusts. A word to the wise, the recipe is missing the addition of water. I have included my modifications in the recipe, which I will share in a minute.
About the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro
First, let’s talk about the wine. The first wine we tried was the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro. The book of recipes also includes information about each of the wines. This wine is from Toro, Spain, and is 85% Tinta de Toro and 15% Garnacha. I learned from reading the description that Tinta de Toro grapes are more commonly known as Tempranillo.
The Dominos de Castilla region
The Castilla region of Spain is also known as “the Land of Castles.” The wine is described as a big wine with a lot of elegant dark fruit flavors and as a great peairing with smoked meats and cheeses. The winery’s profile on Winesellers, Ltd says of the region:
“D.O. Rueda stands 2,200 to 2,600 feet above sea-level and is located in the central area of the basin formed by the river Duero. The different grape varieties frown are irregularly scattered over the several municipal districts comprising Rueda Appelation but is known primarily for its fine white wines based on the Verdejo grape. There is only one D.O. in the region of Rueda which is “Rueda D.O.”.
“D.O. Toro is situated west of the Spanish Duero river valley near the Portuguese border. Toro appelation covers approximately 5,600 ha of vineyards at an altitude of 600 meters above sea level. At the end of the 19th century great quantities of wines were exposed to France during the phylloxera crisis, which did not affect the local vines as they were protected by the sandy soil. For this reason, the vines of other regions of Spain were replaced by vines from Toro. Today, Toro still has a number of very old vineyards with pre-phyloxera Tinta de Toro.”
Tasting the wine
The first thing I noticed about the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro was that it had a really nice nose. I got anise, vanilla, and plum. When I then tasted the wine, I found it tart, acidic with some good degree of tanins, and that it was very young in flavor. Despite being young, it was well-balanced. It also had notes of dark and bittersweet chocolate.
I found the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro and pizza pairing spot-on. The pizza really brought out the wine’s pepper and green – maybe even ancho – pepper finish and it really highlighted the tannins in a good way. On the whole, I was really impressed with this wine and its quality.
Subscribe to Wine Awesomeness, and get your first month free
Trying the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro made me excited to try the next wine in the box. I will share my notes on that one soon. For now, I can recommend this wine as well as the box. At $45 a month, it is a really great value. These are not your typical $15 wines. They have quality, and I’m sure if you wanted to cellar them, they would stand up well and develop complexity over time. With that in mind, you can do what I did and Become a member today and get your first month FREE at Wine Awesomeness! (Affiliate Link)
Meanwhile, enjoy this modified version of the pizza recipe that accompanies the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro.
*I took advantage of the free month offer in order to provide my readers with a review of this monthly subscription box service.
Smoky Bacon and Black Pepper Pizza
This delicious pizza is the perfect accompaniment for the 2013 Dominos de Castilla Tinta de Toro. It has a great smoky flavor.
- 5 cups organic unbleached bread flour
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 tsps table salt
- 1 package yeast
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup water
- 8 oz fresh mozzarella
- olive oil
- 1 can (28 oz) Italian peeled tomatoes
- 1 large Vidalia onion
- 5-6 cloves of garlic
- 1 lb Applewood smoked bacon
- 2 sticks salted (yes, I know, but trust me, it's good)
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- Ground pepper to taste
- 1. Sprinkle yeast over 1 cup of lukewarm water and the sugar. Let sit for about 10 minutes. It will be ready when the yeast is all bubbly and the area smells kind of like a brewery.
- 2. Add flour, salt, and olive oil to the bowl. Mix with your hands until smooth. You may need to add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, to get the right consistency for your dough. If your dough is too sticky, add flour one tablespoon at a time.
- 3. Turn dough out and divide into 4 equal pieces. Put dough into zipper lock bags and let sit out for fifteen minutes. Next, you'll want to refrigerate them overnight. You can also freeze dough pieces you won't be using.
- 4. Take the dough out of the refrigerator 2 hours before you plan to roll it out.
- 1. Preheat your oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
- 2. On your stove, in one pan, melt the butter. To the butter, add 3 tablespoons of flour. Once it starts to brown, add the chopped onion. In the other pan, fry up the bacon (you can also bake it). Drain the fat from the bacon.
- 3. When the onion is translucent, add the garlic, basil, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Sauté until fragrant.
- 4. Add the tomatoes to the saucepan. Bring to a slight simmer. Using an immersion blender, blend the sauce until mostly smooth. Bring to boil and add crumbled bacon.
- 5. Shred the mozzarella. I used my food processor, so it was super-easy.
- 6. Put flour down on your counter or a large cutting board. Roll out pizza crust to desired thickness (12"-14").
- 7. Brush crust with olive oil - I used oil that was marinating the mozzarella for this.
- 8. Scoop sauce onto crust and spread around.
- 9. Add cheese.
- 10. Bake 10-13 minutes or until cheese starts to brown slightly. Grind black pepper on top, slice, and serve.
- To avoid killing the yeast, make sure that the water you use feels the same temperature as your pinky finger.
Adapted from Paulie Gee's "Feel Like Bacon Love"
Wining Wife® http://www.winingwife.com/