Chef Mavro restaurant
Wine News from our Sommelier
Jordan Nova
New Summer Wine Pairings at Chef Mavro
July 2012

     As Chef Mavro was enjoying Parisian markets, I was backpacking through Thailand and Cambodia - truly an eye-opening experience! But as next month will mark my one-year anniversary of moving to Hawaii, I must say that it's astounding how quickly I've found this place to be home. I may never leave!


Friendly baby elephant
Thailand - a friendly baby elephant in the middle of nowhere.


     There is one moment I must share with you. While I lived in jungle tribes, rode elephants and explored temples thousands of years old, from time to time I was still working on our Chef Mavro wine program! My favorite moment during my trip, though, was when my assistant sommelier got in contact to ask me for pairings with the Naked Cow Dairy cheeses. In the jungle of northern Thailand, about a 3-hour drive outside of Chiang Mai, at 5:00am while sleeping in a hut next to the elephant I had been riding for two days - I was pairing wine and cheese via e-mail! Evidently you can take the sommelier away from the restaurant, but not the restaurant away from the sommelier!  


Ancient temple in Cambodia
Ancient temple in Cambodia
La Sirena - great synergy with Honeydew-Pineapple Dessert

Heidi Peterson Barrett winemaker
La Sirena Winemaker 
 Heidi Peterson Barrett 
     La Sirena, 2010 Dry Muscat Canelli "Moscato Canelli," Napa Valley from Heidi Barrett, the winemaker of Screaming Eagle & Paradigm. "Ripe, moderately sweet & full of tropical fruit."

     This is the epitome of a summer wine. Heidi is an icon in U.S.winemaking and this is her own private label. She was portrayed in the wine movie, Bottle Shock. She made wine at Chateau Montelena, Screaming Eagle and Paradigm.

     It smells of all the tropical fruitiness Honeydew - Frankie's Nursery Pineappleyou'd expect from a muscat  grape, but is pretty close to dry.

     The way this wine interacts with our Pastry Chef Lynette's dessert is nothing short of magical: Honeydew - Pineapple, almond honeydew melon froth, frankie's nursery meli kalima pineapple jelly sweet tea shave ice, popping ginger sand, fresh coconut sorbet.

The wine and food have such a great synergy. I couldn't be happier.      
Lilikoi - Urfer Biber pairs with Malvira Birbet
Lilikoi Malasadas reinvented 
     Chef Lynette has also reinvented the restaurant's signature dessert with an inspiring Malasada Trio of Lilikoi - Urfer Biber "déclinaison" (read more about this on our blog). The flavors are so bright and beautiful that all I wanted to do was set a sound foundation to highlight and showcase those flavors.

For that, Malvira's Birbet is perfect. It's made from a red grape called, Brachetto, that has just a bit
of spritz to it, frizzante. It's full of fresh berry flavors, easy-drinking and delicious.  
Malvira Birbet
New wine pairings for the Summer Menu

Wines Summer Menu 2012
left to right: pairings for Cheese Trio; Lobster-Basil; Pork-Apricot and Duck-Mango

     I also added a new wine to an existing dish. For our Duck and Mango dish I've added a new rare wine selection: Antinori, 2008 Tignanello, Tuscany "classic tuscany - full bodied & not overly tannic, lots of dried spices, cocoa powder & nutmeg." This is a Super Tuscan that seldom requires introduction; a blend of sangiovese, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc. With our rare wine selections I relish getting to open things to share by the glass that many restaurants only get to add to their wine bottle lists and their museum of wines in the cellar. This is definitely not one to be missed!


     Last, but far, far, far from least, is our wine paired with our cheese plate.  Auguste Clape, 2010 St. Peray, Rhone Valley, "nearly entirely marsanne with only 100 cases made annually; medium to full bodied, orchard fruit, apricot & peach." This is incredible. St. Peray is a region in the Rhone Valley of France that can only grow marsanne and roussanne grapes. Clape's St. Peray is 100% marsanne and the perfect accompaniment to cheese - nutty, apricoty, slightly honeyed, floral and even smells a bit of cheese rind. Only half an acre of land is used to produce this wine, so they only make about 90 cases of this per year. This is a wine that still surprises me every time I taste it I'll be immensely sad when we finish our allocation of this one.


     I could keep you all here for hours telling you the stories behind these wines - just ask our servers who have to learn all about them! But I do hope that when you taste them, you'll find the same enjoyment and excitement that I do. 


     Like I tell everyone, it's not about "knowing" wine. There's a glass in your hand, not a dictionary, so drink and enjoy!




Jordan Nova


Sommelier Jordan Nova by David Murphy
Photo Credit: David Murphy 



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