That is correct, call Dezel superstitious, but every time I bring along a Virginia wine to a Washington Redskins pre-game tailgate party, the Redskins cruise, well not cruise, but squeak out a victory. With the seasonal warmth of summer still lingering, a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, etc. was not what the wine doctor ordered. Instead, a good refreshing, well chilled local fruit wine was what the doctor prescribed. If you have not guessed it yet friends, Dezel is Dezel’s doctor.
Now many people, including sipping pals of mine, have this preconceived notion that fruit wines are overly sweet. That can be true; however, if it is, it is likely the crafting and preference of the winemaker. You see most fruits and berries have lower sugar percentages than ripe grapes. If a deer could talk, it would back me up on this one. As a matter of fact, pure cane sugar is sometimes added to these fruit wines to get the alcohol level to a desirable percentage during fermentation because the fruit does not have sufficient natural sugars to produce a decent wine. A good dry fruit wine in my opinion should showcase the fruit from which it is made in respect to flavor, aroma, and also maintain a good balancing act with refreshing acidity.
So let’s turn our attention to the good-luck charm - Village Winery’s Apple Wine ($12), which was enjoyed during the pre-game party. Next to owner and winemaker, Kent Marrs’ ever popular Elderberry wine, the apple wine is likely the second most popular. If I were to serve this dry fruit wine to you blind, your first, second, and third guess would be Chardonnay. The apple wine offers, what else, good delicate and crisp apple flavors with a desirable and refreshing acidity. Neutral French oak barrel aging rounds the wine out nicely and adds soft, almost undetectable toasty notes to the wine. Nothing complicated here, just a nice easy drinking, knock-it-back and enjoy sort of wine that is perfect for these warm weather weekends. For another good dry apple wine, I recommend trying Chateau O’ Brien’s fine example. For more fruit wines check out Horton Vineyards (oodles of fruit wines here), Peaks of Otter, and Loudoun County’s newest addition, Bluemont Vineyards. Bluemont is rumored to have a unique Pumpkin spice wine for the coming holiday season.
Ingleside Vineyards Blue Crab Red
For the after party, and there was something to party about. After all, the Redskins won their home opener. The Ingleside Vineyards Blue Crab Red ($11) found its way into my glass. The Blue Crab Red is a red wine blend that is featured on their Chesapeake Bay wine label. These wines are reasonably priced, unpretentious, and designed for everyday drinking, picnics, backyard grilling, etc. The Blue Crab Red is a fresh fruit, easy drinking selection with bright red fruit flavors, a pinch of spice and friendly tannins. With good upfront fruit, this selection can be served at a slight chill and enjoyed on its own or try it with pizza, a Fuddruckers burger, or spaghetti and meatballs. For more serious examples from Ingleside, try out their Black Label; that is where you will find their cellared reds and other premium selections.
In closing, Sunday was not a bad outing for the local wines and local football team, right? Stay tuned, as Dezel will put his New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc on hold and bring along two more tasty local selections to another home game. Hopefully, I can deliver good news about 2 winning locals again!
Patriots Skins, Go Virginia Wine !!!
- Stay tuned friends, more to come!
Happy Sipping Friends - Thanks for your support and kind emails !
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