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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Back to Domku, and a small trip into Georgian wine


set back to return to a familiar place.  Domku is a restaurant in the Petworth neighborhood of DC that I had often visited back in the day.  I found a perfect imbibing excuse to drop in again,  as they were hosting a wine and diner pairing, for of all things Georgian wine.

Georgian wine is not something I run into too often and I was eager to partake.  Here I usually grab some good Eastern European food and drink (check out the meatballs, and the aquavit here), but this created a good opportunity to kill two birds with one stone.  I have never had Georgian wine before and more importantly was very eager to see what it was like.  While really not that commonly mentioned or thought of as a place to enjoy wine, Georgia's wine making history is extremely vast and extensive.  I really wanted to get an idea of what it was all about and this seemed like a good opportunity.  Our first course was to be served a simple sparkling brut type wine named or perhaps from Bagratoioni.

This was paired with probably the best part of the meal, a nice lemon and egg soup called Chickhirtma.  The brut's nose was typically spritzy but also with a green floral chlorophyl sense.  Body was extremely light, crisp, and had a very club soda like palate.  Sort of a sparkling wine club soda mix and floral air.  Very unique and interesting.

Things were starting off well, as the next course arrived.  I went for a Khinkali which was very much like a stuffed perogi, while my dining companion chose the spiced lamb meatballs.  Wine paired was a Chateau Mukharani Goruli Mtsvane Dry White.

The Mukharani had a nose of a mild sweet green grape bouquet, very faint honey in the palate mixing again with some soft florals.  Finish was mellow as to be expected, but once again extremely light.

I was beginning to wonder if there was a character emerging in the wines.  Many of them felt incredibly light bodied compared to just about every other wine I have had.  I was eyeing the back of the bar where a Bell's beer tap handle exclaimed Two Hearted and tried to stay focused.  I was hoping that as a mostly red wine drinker that the next wine would be a bit different change of pace.

Served with a simple piece of lamb and rice pilaf was Mukuzani Dry Red.  Dry was quite apt, however, the nose exhibit some cherry jam, almost pectin, with the palate also extremely light as well, with mild tannins and a faint hint of plum.

I was beginning to wonder if it was just me who was thinking the wines all felt quite light bodied and sort of "nearly thin", but they were quite unique and distinct but still managed to have enjoyable qualities.

In the end no dessert was served, except our last drink, which was described as "like a grappa" by our waitress.  
The drink was called Chacha and was very much like a digestif grappa drink.  It did have a distinction of tasting very much resembling a unique faint powdery cocoa on the finish.  This was probably the most interesting drink of the night, and I've never had anything like it.

I am not sure if I have exactly been converted, or transformed into a huge fan of Georgian wine, but just having a few nice bites in a familiar fond place, has sparked my curiosity.