Marathon Weekend

Wine Riot made me feel old in a good way, i.e. realizing I prefer wine tastings with polite people where the mission isn’t to pound as much wine as possible in the allotted amount of time. The environment felt a little frantic, and there were lots of elbows thrown and feet stepped on as the attendees tried to shove their way to camp out at the tables so not to miss a single drop.

I normally try to avoid being overly critical of things on my blog and try to focus on the positive. In fact, just the other day someone commented on my ability to write about things that I don’t care for kindly. But I also feel the need to be honest, if only for the sake of my own credibility. The concept behind Wine Riot is pretty neat, a less formal, more fun and not stuffy wine tasting that attracts a lot of young people. But how young? This might be my curmudgeonly 30 year old self speaking, but I felt like half of the people at the event were not even legal.  It kind of felt like a frat party with wine instead of Natty Ice, and I am pretty sure that most of the boys were named Chad and were wearing pink sweaters and/or backwards baseball hats.

We only stayed at the Wine Riot for about 30 minutes. In that time I tasted maybe 5 wines because it was almost impossible to get a pour. The rep from Hess stared at us for about 10 minutes, and it was like we were invisible as he poured repeat pours for the other 4 people at the table. Really?

Anywho, there were a few highlights of the event worth mentioning.

1) The Travessia table -The husband and I have been big fans of Travessia wines and their winemaker, Marco Montez, since  last summer , and we were happy to see him and to taste the 2008 Unoaked Chardonnay, Bastard Rosé, and Vidal Blanc at the Wine Riot. As always, I loved the Rosé and Vidal Blanc the best. The Rosé is a blend of 3 different wines, whites and reds, and in my opinion it is still one of the best Rosé wines I have ever had. I have said it before, but if you are in the MA or RI areas, do check out this cool little winery in New Bedford or look for them at upcoming wine events in the area. Totally and completely worth your time.

2) The Mionetto table- Tasting Mionetto Prosecco brought back fond memories of the Newport Wine & Food Festival from last fall, sitting on the expansive lawn, overlooking the blue ocean, and drinking prosecco with friends. Mionetto makes great, very food friendly bubbly at great values and are always worth a try.

Mionetto Prosecco

3) Cabot Cheese- Cabot makes the best cheese, and I always seem to find their table at every food and wine event I attend. I might just be doing a Cabot giveaway next week. . . check back to find out for sure ;)

I didn’t encounter much beside those 3. One of the reps from 90+ Cellars sort of laughed at me for “taking photos for posterity” which would have been fine if their wine didn’t remind me of nail polish remover. Oh and I tasted possibly the worst wine I have ever had a German bubbly with bits of gold in it. I guess the gimmicky gold should have given me a clue. . . but I literally spit it back into my wine glass it was so awful, like a sharp, bubbly vinegar.

After our short stint at the Wine Riot, the husband indulged my race weekend excitement by driving me through the finish line of a lifetime.

Boston Marathon finish

Exciting. My left knee really hurts, and I am hoping that it will allow me to finish. . .

My Saturday night carbo loading took place at Prezza in Boston’s North End which was full of fellow marathoners eating pasta to gear up for the big race. The Prezza menu was full of dishes that we wanted to try.

Prezza menu

And they had a great by the glass wine list. I was excited to see Gloria Ferrer Va de vi on the list. You can read about our Gloria Ferrer winery visits here, here, and here. Love it.

Gloria Ferrer Va de vi

We started with the Crispy Shrimp with Italian Slaw and Cherry Pepper Aioli, a delicious dish with sweet jumbo shrimp and a crispy phyllo nest topped with a zesty, creamy sauce.

Crispy Shrimp with Italian Slaw and Cherry Pepper Aioli

We also had one of my favorite Italian dishes, Zucchini Flowers with Creamy Polenta, Pancetta, and Tomatoes. The polenta was probably my favorite part of the entire meal! It was so creamy and buttery.

Zucchini Flowers with Creamy Polenta, Pancetta, and Tomatoes

The hubs ordered the Paella which was full of clams, lobster, mussels, chicken, and chorizo.


And I had a half order of Gnocchi a la Bolognese which came in an incredibly rich sauce. It was delicious and very filling. Along with some bread and olives in olive oil, I think the gnocchi gave me my carbohydrate fill for the night.

Gnocchi Bolognese

The dessert menu was incredible though, and even though I wanted 4 different things, we decided on the flourless chocolate cake which was hot, molten perfection, topped with vanilla bean ice cream.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Prezza provided the PERFECT meal for a very chilly, gray April evening. Like many North End restaurants, it does not look like much from the outside, but the elegant dining room and bar stretch far back, creating a comfortable and special environment for a fine dining experience.

One more day to the Boston Marathon, and there is still time to support Team ALLY! AND to enter my Equal Exchange giveaway which ends on Tuesday!

Prezza on Urbanspoon

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Tags: Boston, Boston Marathon, Cabot, Dining out, Food, foodie, Mionetto, Prezza, Travessia, wine, Wine Riot

  1. Kelly’s avatar

    I wanted to go to wine riot but I had about 100 things to do yesterday so I didn’t and now I’m kind of glad I didn’t- I know I’m only 25 but I’ve been over any kind of frat party environment for awhile haha. Not that I necessarily like stuffy wine tastings, but I feel like there is a middle ground and thats where I want to be with my wine tasting.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say yet another Good LUCK! for tomorrow, I hope your knee is 100 % fine the entire time and that you have a ton of fun while running. I’m not going to be watching this year because I’m headed for the Cape to do wedding stuff and just take a break from all the crazyness but I will be thinking about you all day and I’ll be checking frequently for an update on how you did!


    1. traveleatlove’s avatar

      Yeah, I am all about fun events, but I think there is always room for a little etiquette, like my husband stands behind me when we are tasting wine so that other people can fit at the table. Just really little things that make life more pleasant for everyone! Have fun at the Cape! I would totally have chosen to go down there if I was you!


    2. Melissa’s avatar

      I wasn’t impressed with Wine Riot either. More or less the same sentiments as you. I tried to ask questions while I sampled wines…and often walked away without answers. It was frustrating and not the type of tasting that I prefer!


      1. traveleatlove’s avatar

        Glad we weren’t the only ones who felt that way! None of my questions were answered, and I literallly felt invisible at a lot of the tables.


      2. Kirsten’s avatar

        I went to the Riot on Friday and it wasn’t too crowded, enjoyable overall but not sure it was worth $55? GOOD LUCK TOMORROW!!!!!


        1. traveleatlove’s avatar

          Thank you! Glad to hear the riot wasn’t as bad on Friday. It just wasn’t my scene, but you live & learn! See you soon :)


        2. Simply Life’s avatar

          Sounds like the perfect pre-race meal! Good luck! I can’t wait to hear about it!


        3. Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat)’s avatar

          I’m 24 and SO sick of the frat atmosphere that many of my friends are still into. I’d rather have a couple of glasses of wine and just enjoy that. Why do we still need to do keg stands and then watch people pass out on the floor? (sorry, you hit on my personal pet peeve! ;) )


        4. Michelle’s avatar

          I am a HUGE fan of Mionetto prosecco. I tried it at a party awhile back and really fell in love with this bubbly. Also, glad to hear your review of Prezza. They are all over Twitter and I’ve been really meaning to give the place a try!


        5. Michelle’s avatar

          Also, good luck tomorow!


          1. traveleatlove’s avatar

            Thank you! I hope you are enjoying the long weekend!


          2. Holly’s avatar

            It’s always good to be honest… even when your review isn’t so great for the place/ event you’re reviewing.

            Hope you have/had a wonderful marathon day!! You’ve worked hard and suffered through some pain… you are going to feel great crossing that finish line!


          3. Daisy’s avatar

            can you believe I’ve never been to Prezza?! Its been on my eat list for-ev-er. So glad you enjoyed it. Loving the comments you got on this post. cracking UP at the “Why do we still need to do keg stands and then watch people pass out on the floor” comment. hahaha. you know i love a good drink or 5 but I seriously agree with these sentiments. ;)

            Best of Luck tomorrow. I don’t get the day off work which is such a bummer but I can’t wait to hear how you do!


          4. elizabeth’s avatar

            i can’t believe you went to wine riot days before your race-i don’t think I could have handled that!!
            BEST OF LUCK TOMORROW! I’ll be cheering you on!!!


          5. ashleigh’s avatar

            First, GOOD LUCK TOMORROW!!!!! You will be amazing!

            I find that most events in Boston that offer unlimited beer or wine tastings are generally not worth the money. Sure everything is unlimited but you have to wait in long wines and get an incredibly small amount. Plus there are too many rude people! I had interest in going to wine riot but I’m happy I didn’t now!


          6. Caroline’s avatar

            GOOD LUCK TODAY! Your gonna rock it!!!


          7. Belinda @zomppa’s avatar

            I miss Boston! I’m sure you are rockin’ it! BEST OF LUCK!


          8. Alison’s avatar

            So sorry you didn’t have a great time at Wine Riot. I volunteered with them last year and I had a great time, but maybe they’re getting a little too big?

            And how did your Marathon race go?! I’m sure you rocked it out! :)


            1. traveleatlove’s avatar

              Maybe I just hit it at a bad time? I would give it another try, but as much as I am fine with spending money to attend great events, I would not spend another $45 to see if I had a different impression a second time :(


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