Posted by: lisetta | July 13, 2010

Italian Wine Happy Hour

OK, so most of the time I get the marketing emails from Tria, a local wine bar, I ignore them or curse them for the late notice of any special event they’re having. Today, however, was different. I actually had no plans after work and no desire to work out, so decided to take them up on their inbox offer:

TUESDAY AT WASH WEST   Italian Summer Happy Hour with Umbrian Wines


The vivacious Alessandra Marino from Castello delle Regine will turn you on to Italian wines off the beaten path. Taste intriguing white and red wines from Umbria for just $5 each during happy hour. Plus, a surprise summery treat from the winery.

  • Tuesday, July 13 at Tria Wash West
  • Special pricing on wines from 4 – 7 pm
  • Meet Alessandra from 5 – 6 pm
  • No reservations – just show up!

Umbria is one of my favorite Italian regions, yet I know nothing about its wines. What I tasted tonight doesn’t inspire me to learn more, sadly. Lori and I tasted both of the featured wines:

Poggio delle Regine Bianco, Castello delle Regine, ’08 (white wine produced from trebbiano, grechetto and malvasia grapes)

Poggio delle Regine Rosso, Castello delle Regine, ’07 (a young red wine from 85% Sangiovese, and 15% Syrah)

The red I found to be brassy and somewhat bitter; the white was more interesting, perhaps because it was more ‘unknown’. While I prefer to drink wine while eating a meal, this evening we ordered only a small bowl of almonds (dusted in fennel) and a bruschetta with mozzarella and tomato, so perhaps our context didn’t allow us to fully appreciate its flavors. Let it be said that I’m no wine expert!

We chatted a bit with with the distributor, who wandered around the bar looking for glasses imprinted with a diamond so that he could talk to customers drinking the featured wines. He didn’t quite know what to say when I told him I didn’t like the red, but was kind enough to chat with us a bit about how he got into the wine distribution business. We never got any surprise summery treat from the winery. Wonder what it was, if anything more than a marketing trick to get you in the door. 🙂

Tria is a Philadelphia treasure. I’ve gone on first dates, farewell drinks, and Italian conversation hours at both their Rittenhouse and Washington Square locations.  I took a class on Italian reds at their Fermentation School a few years back, and got drunker than I’d been since college. Note to others: in the $65 class, they give you eight full glasses of wine and a small plate of cheese. You sip the wine and learn about its characteristics as well as how/where it was made. Resistance is futile.  For me at least. How could I *not* drink the nebbiolo *and* the amarone?

Anyway, I was grateful for the chance to ‘visit Italy’ tonight.  I hope they bring Italy to the smaller place they’re opening in University City!



  1. Tria sounds like a fun place – and I would’ve stopped resisting after the second glass. It’s a good thing I have blogs to enjoy this stuff vicariously – Montana is far removed from city life. (sigh)

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