I know you would never believe this, but I uncork or unscrew a new wine adventure just about every day. Being a wine enthusiast, a wine blogger, and someone who thoroughly appreciates and enjoys the liquid expression of a place, a person’s vision, and Mother Nature’s influence, I often tell people that wine is one of the most intriguing beverages in the world. It’s a hobby where there is always something new to taste and learn as well as great people to meet in real life or via those wonderful social media portals called Facebook and Twitter. Below are a few of my recent sips accompanied by my tasting notes and a picture I snapped of each bottle. Variety, so they say, is the spice of life, so keep an open mind and an open palate and enjoy the experience. Drink well, my friends!
Rodney Strong Charlotte's Home Sauvignon Blanc
1) Rodney Strong Vineyards' Charlotte's Home 2011 Sauvignon Blanc (SRP $15): The 2011 vintage kept Sonoma grape growers on their toes with an unusually cool and damp growing season. In spite of that, Rodney Strong Vineyards produced a well-made, crisp and clean Sauvignon Blanc that's fresh and vibrant. Pale straw in color, this light-to-medium bodied wine exhibits bright fruit forward aromas and flavors of citrus fruit [namely grapefruit, but covers a pretty wide range], lemongrass, and melon with mild nuances of wild herb with nice acid structure and a medium-length, palate-cleansing finish. This is a pleasantly refreshing and tasty wine for the money that would be a good match with everything from a warm and sunny day to light seafood dishes (especially shellfish). Click here to find this wine.
Tangent Winery 2010 San Luis Obispo Viognier
2) Tangent Winery 2010 San Luis Obispo [CA] Viognier (SRP $17): Tangent Winery is part of Niven Family Wine Estates and is dedicated to producing balanced, food-friendly white wines. I initially tried this wine as part of a gift membership to The California Wine Club and since then, have enjoyed a few more bottles with friends and food (probably just as the winemaker intended). In the glass, the wine is light straw in color with honeydew melon, pear, and citrus peel/flesh aromas with a touch of stone fruit. The aromas extend to the palate with refreshing acidity, vibrant fruit flavors, and a clean refreshing finish. It was fermented and aged in 100% stainless steel and has a nice freshness and brightness about it. My favorite pairing for this wine was a plate of coconut shrimp and pineapple dipping sauce. It also drinks nicely on its own and could be enjoyed with a wide selection of foods. This wine retails for $17, but California Wine Club members can re-order it for the pocket-friendly price of $10.99 – which in my opinion is a berry good deal. Tip: This is a buy now, drink now kind of wine. Click here to find this wine.
JCB No. 21 Cremant de Bourgogne
3) JCB No. 21 (SRP $25): (non-vintage) Cremant de Bourgogne (Chardonnay and Pinot Noir) from Boisset Family Estates portfolio that I enjoyed for a #CellarPassTV virtual tasting event with Jean-Charles Boisset, the CellarPass folks, and fellow wine blogging friends. Each JCB wine is numbered, as the numbers have some significance. For this wine, 21 is the French government’s “Department” number for Burgundy’s famous Côte d'Or appellation and pays homage to Jean-Charles Boisset’s homeland. This is a medium-weight wine with initial flavors of tree fruit (namely apple) followed by creamed honey, soft brioche notes, and a hint of toasted almonds towards the back end. Medium sized bubbles that dissipate somewhat quickly in the glass, give way to brisk acidity and a refreshing, palate cleansing finish. The JCB No. 69 pictured in the background is a Rosé Brut made exclusively from Pinot Noir. It’s simple, yet satisfying -- exhibiting dominant dried strawberry fruit flavors and refreshing acidity with a touch of sweetness on the finish. Remember -- any day is a good day for bubbly! Click here to find this wine.
My backyard feathered friend: The Northern Cardinal
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