Posts Tagged ‘wine with lisa’

Stop by 1808 Grille to Experience the Eclectic Wines By The Glass List Created by Sommelier Lou Vargo to Satisfy Every Palate

For seven consecutive years, 1808 Grille has recieved the Award of Excellence by Wine Spectator! 

Their impressive wine program includes the eclectic Wines By-The-Glass Menu that will satisfy every palate!


Tell me, have you wined and dined at a restaurant that has a great food menu but a very boring and limited wines by the glass list?

Well I have, once too many times!

Lou Vargo, Sommelier and Beverage Manager at 1808 Grille sat down with me one lovely afternoon for a Wines-By-The-Glass tasting experience like no other.

Lou says “Life’s too long to drink bad wine!”

And, I agree.

We both have had our fair share of ho-hum wine tasting experiences through the years and he believes that he can change the way everyone is drinking wine one palate at at time.

Lou is somewhat of a Wine Evangelist!

He believes that he can introduce and convert those guarded wine drinkers to a higher level and help create a perfect pairing of food and wine for a divine experience!

1808 Grille was awarded the Wine Spectator’s 2015 “Award of Excellence” for the seventh consecutive year for the varied and unique selections, the years selected and for the vertical and horizontal list of the fine and vintage wines by the bottle.


Here are some of the wines that we tasted: Sileni Pinot Noir, Pali Huntington Pinot Noir, Trefethen Dry Riesling, St.Urbans-Hof Riesling, Frei Brothers Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Arcadia Westerly Vineyard Syrah and Y3 Jax Chardonnay

Visiting with Lou was a very comfortable and friendly experience filled with passion for food and wine. He has immense knowledge of wine and management that creates a harmonious work environment with the staff and they all work together to give the best dining experience possible.

Lou is a force of nature, he is a gentleman with a big personality and passionate about his growing family life and his job.

Lou told me he has the best job in the world!

Giving someone the best food and wine pairing experience for a night is not work, it is an exciting and fun mission. If his mission was successful, he knows that for a slice of time (regardless of whether they are frequent customer or the first time diner for a celebration or night out with friends) he has given someone a happy dining experience and great memories of the wine and food all coordinated by Lou and the 1808 service team.

11 reasons why you will be impressed with the list!

1) A lot of thought was put into the menu reaching the varied palates of the guests without being stuffy and intimidating by names that are hard to pronounce which sometimes make customers afraid to order a wine.

2) The menu gives a great selection of light reds for those who prefer a red wine with seafood and dishes traditionally paired with white. For the Pinot Noir lovers, there are two different Pinot Noir with completely different styles of Pinot Noir from different areas of the world.

3) It is evident that Lou pairs up with team of Chef Jake Strang’s team and they all work together to create a harmonious menu.

4) He selects wines to complement the food menu with unique wines that no one else has on the menu.

5) About every 6 months, he changes some selections with new wines in our market from quality regions carefully selecting wines that are food and guest friendly.

6) You won’t find a thin and tasteless Pinot Grigio on his menu! He believes that Veneto is to Pinot Grigio as Nashville is to songwriters. Some of the greatest songs in the world have come out of Nashville just as some of the most complex flavored Pinot Grigio’s from the Veneto region with balanced weight and flavors of apricot, aromas of honeysuckle and white flowers. We are lucky to find these beautiful wines on the list by the glass.

7) The menu is filled with wines to fit a variety of palates with nice complexity which reflect a “sense of place” from vineyards all around the world.

8)  I always begin with a sparkling and there are three different styles of sparkling wines by the glass to enjoy!

9) The menu features two different and delightful styles of Rieslings to pair with the daily seafood offerings and Lou or the staff that will gladly help you select the wine that pairs best with your meal.

10) Would you like to discover your Chardonnay style? Do you enjoy a full-bodied, oak fermented creamy style or a crisper, more fruit forward unoaked chardonnay without that buttery mouth feel? The staff will be happy to help!

11) Ahhh. The controversial Merlot. Merlot is a fabulous food pairing wine but has met with some resistance. Due to the Sideways movie and overproduced mediocre quality wines, everyone seems to have an opinion about drinking Merlot. He likes to change the nay-sayers opinion by introducing the Indian Wells Chateau St Michelle. Lou describes this wine as a beautiful expression of the Merlot grape creating believers from those who were once non-believers.


Taittinger Lafrancais Champagne  and Poema Cava


Breakfast from 6:30 to 10:30 a.m.

Lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday

Brunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday and Sunday.

Bar is open 10:30 a.m. to midnight, Sunday through Thursday

10:30 a.m. to 1 a.m., Friday and Saturday with Happy Hour from 4 to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday.
1808 West End Ave Nashville,TN 37203 | P.615.340.0012


08 2015

Finally Friday Wine Pick! Rosso dei Monti, Italian Wine from Umbria that is an Unforgettable Blend of Italian Grapes with Intense Flavors and Spice!


It’s finally Friday!

Grab a rustic pizza from your favorite Pizzeria and a bottle of Rosso dei Monti and let the weekend begin!


Rosso dei Monti 2010 by the Napolini family of Umbria

Around $13

Immerse yourself into a glass of a harmoniously fragrant and juicy blend of Sangiovese, Sagrantino, Ciliegiolo, Merlot and Montepulciano di Abruzzo grapes that emerged from the vines planted in clay soils on the sunny hills in the Montfalco area of Umbria that has produced high quality grapes for centuries. Once picked and pressed, this beautiful blend is fermented and aged in stainless steel and concrete tanks and French and Slavonian oak casks and allowed to rest so that you can enjoy this wine at its absolute fullest potential.

From centuries of producing the highest quality grapes and then hand-harvesting at its perfect ripeness, a beautiful ruby red wine emerges with aromas and flavors of cherry and warm spices on the palate and nose finishing with a pleasant earthy pepperiness.

Italian Wines are meant to be enjoyed with food!

Just in time for the pleasant weather of spring, you will enjoy every drop of this wine with a rustic pizza with fresh tomatoes and basil or a selection your favorite Italian hard cheeses such as Parmigano-Reggiano, Asiago and Pecorino Toscano. Make a big bowl of Spicy Sausage and Rigatoni, pour a glass for you friends and they will love you even more!

In the mood for grilling? Pair this wine with a highly seasoned grilled steak or lamb chops as well as richly flavored Tennessee BBQ!  A match made in heaven!

Drink up and get ready for next Friday!




03 2015

Lisa’s Thirsty Thursday Wine Pick: Barahonda Barrica 2011 – A Full-Bodied and Sexy Spanish Wine Pairing with Your Weekend!

Hey Nashville! What are you drinking this weekend?

Barahonda Barrica 2011 is a sexy, full-bodied and complex Spanish Wine that is just perfect for sharing with friends or pairing with your favorite meal!

75% Monastrell 25% Syrah,  Priced around $20


Let Ed, Ernie and Gordon help you select a wine! Find Your Wine at 12th and Pine in the Gulch!

“LIKE” 12th & Pine on Facebook

Barahonda 2011 is synergy: the creation of a whole that is greater than the simple sum of its parts. 

The Yecla region in southeastern Spain has hot, dry summers that are ideal for the late-ripening Monastrell grape. Low rainfall and the temperature variation between night and day contribute to slow ripening, intense color, flavor and aroma concentration.

Monastrell is a rich, dark, fruit-driven red wine with meaty, herby and distinctive aromas and with strong tannins.  Blending Monastrell with another Spanish favorite varietal, robust black grape Syrah, with flavors and aromas of blackcurrant, licorice with strong tannins and distinctive black pepper on the palate creates a mouthwatering, balanced wine with all of your favorite aromas and flavors that you love in Spanish wine.

 The synergy of this blend is truly a gift for the palate! This is a sexy wine!

It is quite floral, spicy and muscular with a well-developed full body you can see in the glass and taste on the palate. Fragrances of dark, ripe blackberries rich with spiciness and a generous touch of licorice and minerality from the limestone,clay and sandy soils. A sturdy backbone of tannins with a hint of smokiness creates a wine that is big, bold, aromatic and luscious all at the same time!

A Pairing for You!

Here is a leisurely meal for the weekend with Spanish Paella filled with chicken, shrimp and mussels with bold spices including smoked paprika and saffron.  Home-smoked briny olives (ask me how!) served with Spanish cheeses are the perfect tapas to complete this wine pairing dream!

PaellaOlivesPicMonkey Collage




12th and Pine

315 12th Ave S
Nashville, Tennessee