Friday, April 17, 2015

Malbec Facts on World Malbec Day

World Malbec Day is celebrated on April 17, to commemorate the day when president Domingo Faustino Sarmiento of Argentina officially made it his mission to transform Argentina's wine industry. On that day, back in 1853, he tasked Michel Aimé Pouget, a French soil expert, to bring over new vines. Among the vines he brought was Malbec.  Today Argentina is known for their Malbec.

Malbec 101
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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Wine Word Wednesday: Velvety

Monday, April 13, 2015

7 Facts Everyone Should Know About Carinena Garancha

If you like Garnacha then you will like reading my posts during the next 4 weeks as I participate in April's #winestudio wine education focusing the D.O.P Carinena region of Spain. Let's get started with a brief overview of the region

  • Established in 50BC
  • Located in the Ebro Valley, just west of Priorat 
  • D.O.P Carinena has more old vine Garnacha than any other region in Spain
  • 3 Co-ops make the majority of D.O.P Carinena Garnacha from 50-100 year old vines.
  • 1863 while Phylloxera began destroying 90% of European vineyards, Carinena was unaffected.
  • D.O.P Carinena ancient stone soils and high altitude makes it ideal for growing Granacha
  • Wines made from the lower altitude plantings will be fruitier, while wines made from higher altitude will be more complex.
The next few weeks I will be introducing you to the Co-ops that produce the wine from this region.  You will be glad to know that the wines are very affordable.  Prices range between $9.99 and $27

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Discover the Wineries of Lake Erie

Having gone to college in Western New York I never did get to discover the wines.  It could be that I wasn't a wine drinker back then and also the wineries didn't exist.

During NY Drinks NY I visited with two Western New York wineries whose wines really stood out!

Only 3 1/2 years old 21 Brix is young winery with a tremendous future ahead. It's really great to see the younger generation (boy am I dating myself) have such a passion for winemaking.  While in college, majoring in Biology/Pre-Med and working on the family farm during summers and school breaks, he caught the wine bug.  His dream of becoming a chiropractor was replaced by his passion of working in the vineyards.  September 2011 21 Brix opened it's doors.

Truth be known I am not a big red hybrid fan.  I was a little hesitant to try their 2013 Noiret.  They talked me into it and I was very surprised at myself.  I liked it.  There is 5% Cabernet Franc blended in and I believe that both those grapes compliment each other.  SRP $20

The Noiret was aged in American oak for 7 months.  It was full of pepper and cherry.  I enjoyed the nice lingering pepper finish.

They also talked me into trying their 2013 Raspberry wine. I am not really a dessert wine person, but I opened my palate to it along with a piece of milk chocolate and I was sold.  Nothing like the flavor of chocolate raspberry truffles in your mouth.  It wasn't overly sweet or syrupy. SRP $17

The next Western New York find was Johnson Estate Winery.  I don't know why I have never tried their wines before, because I see them at the Hudson Valley Wine Fest every year.

Their 2011 Freelings Creek Sparkling Traminette was outstanding!  This Sparkling wine celebrates their 50th anniversary.  Made in the Methode Champenoise, it had a beautiful soft lychee aromas on the nose followed by a slight hint of guava and roses.   Even though it has 3% residual sugar, there is enough acidity to balance it out.  The palate is crisp with a nice clean finish. I put my order in for delivery in September at the wine festival. SRP $20

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Happy Birthday Paul!

Today is my hubby Paul's birthday!  He will absolutely shoot me if he knew I was writing about him. I'm glad he's not on any of these platforms.

If it wasn't for Paul I am not quite sure I'd be the Wine Goddess that I am today.  Paul and I were spirits drinkers way back when.  My drink of choice was vodka and tonic and Paul's scotch. Then one day the doctor called.  Seems some tests showed high numbers (for the life of me I couldn't tell you what was high) and it was suggested that Paul switch to beer or wine.  Wine it was!

Off to the liquor store I went, not having a clue and I came home with a bottle of Rioja. (It wasn't even a label buy)  To this day I remember it.  Red label and dark bottle.  Brand, have no idea.  We enjoyed that bottle so much in the upcoming weeks we cleared the liquor store out of their inventory for that wine. That was the beginning.

From then on we spent our free time learning about wine.  Trips out to Napa, Sonoma, Paso Robles, Santa Barbara.  I even took a girls trip to Tuscany. I'm hoping there are more trips to wine regions through out the world in our future.

Today we will celebrate Paul's birthday, not with a bottle of Dewar's but with a nice bottle of  Pinot Noir from Burgundy, his favorite.  Happy Birthday Paul!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

4 Must Taste Hudson Valley Wines for 2015

I recently had the opportunity to attend NY Drinks NY, an event in New York City featuring wines from all over New York State.  I'll begin with my home town region the Hudson Valley.

There were 4 wines that stood out during the event that I feel you must try when out wine tasting for the day or weekend in the Hudson Valley.

Benmarl Winery's 2014 Sauvignon Blanc.  The grapes come from Long Island and Matt has done a wonderful job at crafting this wine.  Yes I am a big Sauvignon Blanc drinker and really enjoyed this wine.  It's a light wine with floral and citrus aromas. The grapefruit on the palate is delicate and not overpowering with hints of lemongrass.  This wine will go great with your shellfish! SRP $20
Benmarl's 2012 Cabernet Franc was planted on the Ridge Road Estate in 2007.  This Cab Fran is a bit on the light side, was aged for 8 months in French oak and 15% in new Hungarian oak.  The wine had nice red cherry and red fruit aromas and black cherry on the palate with a hint of vanilla. SRP $25

One of my favorite white hybrid wines is Traminette and Whitecliff makes a good one (unfortunately it's the green bottle that I cut off) The jasmine and lychee nose gives way to hints of tropical fruits and jasmine with some spice on the finish.  The wine has 1.1 RS but balances out nicely with the acidity.  This will pair nicely with the spice of asian food.  I can see it already with my Thai Red Curry. SRP $17

I got to taste Whitecliff's 2014 Rose which is 50% DeChaunac and 50% Cayuga.  I was pleasantly surprised how nice and crisp this wine was.  I am not a big Cayuga, for me it tends to be grapy, but the Cayuga brings a nice fruity element to the wine.  The wine is nice and crisp.  The aromas are soft and Tristan was telling me there is milk chocolate on the nose.  I didn't get it the first time, but when I swirled and sniffed the second time, there was a faint aroma of milk chocolate.  SRP $13