Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Girls with Good Glasses

Hey everyone. Here's an interesting article on wine glasses from Salon. Savor it while I work on the post for the most recent wine club -- it's full of pictures and links!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

CHUNK #1: Good 'ol U-S-of-A wines

California/Washington - oops, it seems that we missed the New England wineries....

Mendocino Wine Co. - tasted the 2006 Parducci Sustainable Red ($12), the 2008 Parducci Sustainable White ($12) and the 2006 Paul Dolan Pinot Noir ($20). Personally, the only one I wrote anything about was the Pinot Noir, which I've had before. Bummer, I was hoping that the "sustainable" would somehow mean "awesome".

** note: the Sustainable Red pairs nicely with Upper Crust's Vegetable Pizza**

Vantage Point - 2007 Stonecap Riesling ($10) and the 2007 Layer Cake Primitivo ($16). Really like both of these wines oddly, especially since they are on completely opposite sides of the wine spectrum. The Riesling was not too sweet (yay) and the Primitivo might be my new favorite wine varietal. Very big, dry and smokey... just how I love 'em!

Inman Family Wines - these people were very fun to talk with, i.e. the girl pouring my wine was the daughter of the woman who runs/owns the winery. Girl Power! Tried the 2007 Inman Family Pinot Noir ($30)... liked it, didn't love it.

Triumvir - WOW... wow... unexpectedly delicious.  They were unique in that they only poured 2 varietals (Syrah and Pinot Noir) but from 2 different years (2006 & 2007).  I liked this because you could really tell the difference between, say, Pinot from 2006 versus 2007.  I liked the 2006 Triumvir Syrah ($38) and 2007 Triumvir Pinot Noir ($44) best.

Underdog Wine Merchants - Reed really like the 2007 Brophy Clark GSM ($20) and the 2007 Brophy Clark Pinot Noir ($32). 

Hess Group - LOVED the Hess table.  All of their wines were so so good and the guy working the booth was incredibly knowledgable.  He'd been working for Hess for like 15 years.  It was a nice change from some of the other tables where they just had volunteers working the booths who had never even tasted any of the wines that they were pouring.  My favorites from Hess were the 2008 Bodega colome Amalaya ($15), the 2006 Hess Collection Cabernet ($45) and the 2007 Sequana Vineyards Dutton Ranch Pinot Noir ($45). 

** also important to note: the 2007 Hess Mt. Veeder Chardonnay pairs excellently with New England Clam Chowder (Legal Seafood was there).**

Gilbert Distributors - I inherently don't trust wines with catchy names and labels.  It's like they're trying to trick you or something...  These guys had bottles with names like, "Vivacious Vicky White" and "Women of the Vine Cabernet".  I refused to go over there.  Reed tried the 2008 Vivacious Vicky Rose (obviously)... the look on his face was clearly, "meh".  The look on mine was, "I told you so" :)

Wine Nose at Vineyard Road - These guys win for the most awesome labels (I know, I know, refer to what I wrote above).  But they were all Edgar Allen Poe-type references... very dark and noir.  We tried the 2007 Corvidae "Lenore" Syrah ($15), and 2008 O'Reilly's Pinot Gris ($15) and the 2008 Owen Roe Sinister Hand Grenache/Syrah ($30).  They were ok... I preferred the labels to the wines.

Charles Smith - Really liked the 2007 Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon ($20), but at this point I'm pretty sure I was starting to max out on West-Coast reds.

OK, that's all for now folks!  My next post will be on "Wine Riot Chunk 2: Australia, New Zealand, and Japan"

we came, we saw, we RIOTED!

We tasted so much wine on Saturday, it was amazing!  Flipping through my notes indicates at least 41 glasses (tastes) of wine between the 2 of us.  And who knows how many I just forgot to write down....

Since there is a ridiculous amount of information to report on the Riot, I'm going to break this up into chunks and cover it all in a few days.

Also, I took a video but have NO IDEA how to possibly embed it into the blog (read: cry for help from my blogger friends).

Friday, April 16, 2010

New Blog

Check out my new food blog!  http://www.lauras-apicius.blogspot.com/

Food and wine!

Wine and food!

We do it all here folks! :)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

How to Sabrage a Champagne Bottle

Step 1:
*Remove the foil and muselet covering the cork.
*Align the blunt end of a moderately heavy knife with teh seam of the bottle.

Step 2:
*Forcefully slide the knife along the seam, striking the lip of the bottle (the weakest point)
*Make sure to follow through while yelling loudly


~from the back of the Wine Riot's business card

Monday, April 12, 2010

"Anything But Chardonnay"

I found it! I found my tasting list and notes from the Bin Ends tasting on Sunday! One very important note - all of these wines are under $15!

Martinshof Gruner Veltliner (Austria) 2008
- tasty, light, a little spicy and easy to drink... best yet, it comes in a 1L bottle with a beer-style cap instead of a cork!

Indaba Chenin Blanc (South Africa) 2009
- floral, tropical fruits and citrus, good acidity and structure

Woop Woop Verdelho (Australia) 2007
- fresh and fruit-driven, crisp, nicely fragrant

I Stefanini "Il Selese" Soave (Veneto, Italy) 2008
- so apparently Soave used to be Italy's crap wine that only the locals drank. Good thing they started revamping it because it turns out to be a seriously tasty summer wine. Soft, medium bodied with melon, faint citrus fruits, and a distinctly fruity aroma.

Chateau Campuget, Rose' of Syrah/Grenache (Costieres de Nimes, France) 2009
- this was an early Rose' (just harvested Sept '09), and I got a clearly "watermelon Jolly Rancher" taste - not in an unpleasant way... just... yeah... let's just say Rose' and I have some work to do in our relationship

Callia Alta Torrontes (Argentina) 2009
- suprisingly good! Oranges and richly floral (not in the awful perfume-y way), well-balanced on the tounge with moderate acidity. Interestingly, it had a slightly greenish-tint....

McManis Family Vineyards Viognier (California) 2008
- Viognier used to be one of my favorite white wines (Horton Vineyards Viognier in C'ville, VA to be exact). Honey and apricot mix with serious minerality and grapefruit. Long, rich finish... mmmm.

and last but not least...

Lanzos Blanco Sauvignon Blanc/Viura (Spain) 2008
- dry, fresh white wine, with grapefruit, nectarine, and tropical fruit. I'd guess it to be a great salad/appetizers wine.

Now that summer is peeking her head around the corner, it's time to try something other than the usual Sauvignon Blanc! I plan to do some Soave testing in the upcoming months :)

Got Tickets to Wine Riot!!

I'm proud to admit that I am the new owner of 2 tickets to this weekend's Wine Riot brought to us by The Second Glass. They will be pouring over 250 wines, have a DJ, a photo booth, crash course seminars, and food pairings. I'M SO EXCITED! I'm forcing Reed to go with me (yeah, I really had to twist his arm on this one...) So, between the two of us I think we should be able to taste all 250 wines.... CHALLENGE!!

we might not remember any of them... but that's neither here nor there

Check out this video from last year's Wine Riot.
I promise we'll take lots of pics and maybe I'll try my hand at a video of our own!

And how did I get these tickets, you may ask? I went to a pre-Riot tasting down at Bin Ends in Braintree on Sunday and got 'em there. Let me tell you... that place is AMAZING!! Great selection, low prices, and really knowledgeable, friendly staff. I was able to pick up an exciting Chilean Syrah for G&G on Thursday while I was there, too (3 birds - 1 stone!). More on that in the days to come.

** Oh, and remember that whole "I lost my camera" thing... yeah, one week after the new one comes in the mail I FIND IT! Where? In my golf bag of all places!! Now I have a "party" camera and a "real" camera :)

Friday, April 9, 2010


Sorry I haven't updated the blog in a thousand years, but I lost my camera and for some reason felt like "no pictures = no blog post"


I just got my new camera in the mail so expect updates soon.... yes, that's right... I saved a lot of the bottles that we've been drinking (what a dork!)

I'll also try to scrounge up the details from the March G&G meeting (theme: Savvy Sauves). I had to miss it unfortunately but I heard it was a LOT of fun.

So, the moral of the story is: Check back soon!