Perfect pairings at Trokay


2009 E. Guigal Gigondas and the 2011 Chardonnay from Sequoia Grove  ·

An unforgettable wine-food pairing experience waits for you at Trokay in downtown Truckee. I’m hoping to raid my piggy-bank so I can go back and enjoy the exquisite food and perfectly paired wines presented by John and Nyna Weatherson at this classy restaurant. A word to the wise: allow plenty of time for the experience.

We began with the Italian Prosecco from Sorelle Bronca di Valdobbiadene Superior D.O.C. This extra-dry bubbly had apricot, pear and apple as its predominant flavors, an aroma of pear and apple, and the sweetness and fresh acidity make it delicious by itself or as an appetizer wine. 11 percent alcohol. $12 for the glass, $38 by the bottle.

Grunerveltliner is a food-friendly wine, and Trokay makes it a practice to always have one on the wine list. The one we tasted was from Austria, the 2011 Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Hinter der Burg. The name Hinter der Burg, which has not been changed since the 13th century, according to wine importer WineBow, means behind the old castle Weissenkirchen. Coaxed out of a 7-acre vineyard, this wine has aroma of citrus, spice and green apple, and a taste of citrus with a pleasant herbal note and a good minerality. 12.5 percent alcohol. $67 for the bottle.

Fans of Japanese sake, too, the Weatherson’s presented the Rihaku (Dreamy Clouds) Junmai Tokubetsu Nigori Sake. “Aromas of rice and ripe red plums. Bright, mouthwatering acidity leads to a soft and chewy texture from the unfiltered rice particles. The rice flavor is joined by gentle nutty and slightly fruity flavors in the long finish,” notes the distiller. 15.5 percent alcohol.

The 2010 Sauvignon Blanc from Gamble Family Vineyards in Napa has an aroma that is fresh and inviting, with notes of apricot, green apple and musky melon. The flavor follows on with taste of mango, honeysuckle and candied orange, and layers of citrus and minerality. 13.5 percent alcohol. $10 for the glass, $35 by the bottle.

One of my favorite wines are those from the Languedoc region of France, and at Trokay, I tasted the 2012 Domaine de Nizas Rose blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre. Delicious. It is lush and lively, with aromas of strawberry, raspberry and spice. Additional flavors of melon and orange zest, and a crisp and medium body. 14 percent alcohol. $10 for the glass, $37 by the bottle.

The tasting and food pairing went on and on … as it should in a fine dining restaurant. Other wines we tasted were the 2009 E. Guigal Gigondas, a Rhone blend of a blend of 65 percent Grenache, 25 percent Mourvèdre and 5 percent Syrah; the 2011 Chardonnay from Sequoia Grove, Napa; and the final touch was the 2010 Donnafugata Ben Rye Passito di Pantelleria, a sweet wine from Sicily.

Restaurant Trokay is located at 10046 Donner Pass Road, Truckee. No reservations are required at the bar, but for the full dining and wine pairing experience, reservations are suggested and may be made at (530) 582-1040.

Search past columns at, or contact Barbara at [email protected]


Previous articleResort at Squaw Creek
Next articleThe jewel of the West Shore
Barbara Keck
Barbara started writing for newspapers when she was 14 and continues to write, most recently the “Wineries of the Sierra Foothills” book published by Range of Light Media, parent company of The Tahoe Weekly. Barbara wrote the wine column for the Weekly for many years, and contributes occasional tidbits on tourism and entertainment topics. A long marketing consulting career that included extensive international travel led her to conclude that Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful places on earth. Almost 20 years of enjoying the seasons on the West Shore of Lake Tahoe has confirmed her belief.