Sunday School | Rittenhouse + Wash West

Learn about and enjoy a different not-so-common wine, cheese, and beer every Sunday at incredibly low prices. School was never this delicious. Limit one each per guest at the Sunday School price, and please, no returns: if you try it, you buy it (and we think you’ll like it!)

WINE Marcillac “Cuvée Pierres Rouges,” Domaine Laurens, ’16
(South West, France)

Red wine from red soil: this Marcillac is a reliable harbinger of fall, perfect as we wait for the leaves to turn similarly scarlet. The iron-rich soils of South West, France are the source of this gorgeous ruby-colored autumn wine, smartly balanced between bright fruit and supple tannins. The grapes are hand-harvested by family vintners with a careful eye for quality, then gently pressed and vinted with respect. The Domaine began with just 1.5 hectares; today, through extensive reclamation of old vineyards and terraces, it comprises 22, and the vines average at least 20 years of age, bearing mature fruit that yields top-notch wines. This example comes from the October harvest, with black currant and spice notes characteristic of Marcillac – and quintessentially fall.

$10½ glass  ·  $5½ glass

CHEESE Caciocavallo
(Lombardy, Italy  ·  Cow-P)

Time for an Italian lesson. (Hey, we told you it was Sunday School.) Caciocavallo is pronounced “KAH-chee-oh-kah-VAH-loh,” and translates literally to “horse cheese.” While rumor has it that it was first made with mare’s milk, we’ve never found any truth to that claim. What we do know is that typically, two unwieldy “bulbs” of Caciocavallo are tied together with a length of string, perhaps to sling across a horse’s back en route to the mercato (or, more commonly today, to dangle from the ceiling of your favorite Italian specialty store). The five-pound bulbs come from the pasta filata family of cheese, which means that their curd is stretched and pulled while still warm – like mozzarella. Unlike mozzarella, Caciocavallo is aged for six to eight months, developing a firm texture and a salty, spicy finish that we like to think of as grown-up string cheese. Italians have different names for each shape of Caciocavallo: Napolitano refers to spindle-shaped cheeses; Melonessa to large, round bulbs (think: melon); Provetta to small rounds; and Montonino to pear-shaped cheeses. We like it as an accompaniment to an Italian Meat Plate for an upscale, Mediterranean take on a classic deli platter.

$7  ·  $3½

BEER Dogfish Head Punkin Ale 
(Milton, DE  ·  7.0%)

This one’s an oldie but a very goodie: meet founder Sam Calagione’s first Dogfish Head beer! Punkin Ale was first brewed in 1994 as a competitor in Delaware’s Punkin Chunkin Festival, wherein pumpkins are hurtled long distances (and typically shatter into “chunks” on impact; hence the name.) The festival also invites would-be pumpkin chefs to submit their wares, and six months before Dogfish Head opened their doors, Sam entered Punkin Ale – and claimed first prize. The Punkin Chunkin Festival was recently cancelled for 2017, apparently stemming from litigation related to the previous year’s festival, but Punkin Ale lives on. Get some while you can, because while it’s brewed each year, it’s typically gone by Thanksgiving –  not unlike the pumpkins, which were known to fly as many as 4,000 feet at the dearly departed festival. Today, we throw back a bottle of Punkin Ale in solidarity.

$6½ / 12 oz  ·  $4 / 12 oz DRAFT