Tuesday, July 29, 2014

More Pink to Drink This Summer!

When a wine isn't quite red, it's pink! Rose's are most often made in the same way as red, but the black grape skins are removed after only 12-36 hours. Blush wines-also pink, are made from black grapes that have been processed as if to make white wine. The two methods produce medium-dry and light, everyday wines which are at their best drunk young and chilled, 50-55 degrees.

Rose's have grown in popularity, which gives the consumer more options to choose from than ever. Here are some that I've tried in the recent months.

2012 Chateau de Berne Impatience ($19) From the South of France, this  dry, not sweet wine, is fresh with spring flowers with notes of strawberries and raspberries. 

Domaine Le Galantin Bandol 2012 ($19) This is the gem of Bandol near the Mediterranean Sea. It's bright pink color with white peach and wet stone minerality give this a balance and bright acidity. 

2013 De Morgenzon Cabernet Rose' ($12) is a South African winery located in the Western Cape. This is a Northern style dry rose'.

2013 Sacha Lichine Single Blend Rose' ($10)  from the South of France. It is a bright blush color with an elegant strawberry and grape nose. It is full, balanced and fresh.

2011 Domaine Listel Pink Flamingo 'Gris de Gris' Rose' ($10) The link takes you to a review of the 2012. All I can say since it's been awhile is that we liked it. It's a pale pink color, so it's worth the try. This is a unique wine in that the grapes grow in the Sands, a protected flora and fauna. This wine is made exclusively from Grenache. 

2012 J.L. Quinson Cotes de Provence Rose' ($6) can be found at Trader Joe's I here! The link takes you to a blog that pretty cool! This wine is very dry, with a nice acidity and fruit forward. From the South of France, what's not to love!

The last rose' is a 2012 Sbragia Amici E. Famiglia Gemma Rose' of Pinot Noir ($25). Ripe strawberries and rhubarb with a touch of spice and rose petals make this wine one to enjoy!

That's it for the rose's! Find your favorite! There are many to choose from!

Friday, July 25, 2014

It's Still Time to Drink Rose'!

My oldest daughter's go-to wine is always a light Rose' of some sort. She is willing to try any that look pale in color no matter where it's produced. I was recently in Missouri helping her move, for the fifth time in a year and a half, to their new, forever home in St. Louis. Of course there was always time for wine amidst all the unpacking and placing things where they needed to be.

Here are the first four Roses' we tried and loved each one! What I love about all these wines is that they are all under $20! Score!

2013 Vin de Pays Vaucluse Rose' ($9) from France. This wine is a beautiful, tender pink color with blue highlights. The nose is dominated by small fresh red  fruits. The mouth is creamy with lots of pulp and sweetness with a silky finish. It is 70% Grenache and 30% Carignan. 

2013 Triennes Rose' ($16) This pale pink wine has a bouquet of strawberries and white flowers with a hint of vanilla. It's mainly Cinsault, blended with Grenache, Syrah, and Merlot. This was the one that was repeatedly purchased while I was in Missouri.

2013 Chateau de Campuget Costieres de Nimes ($15) Another product of France, this wine is an intense peony pink, very aromatic with hints of small red fruits such as black currants or raspberries. It's perfectly balanced and leaves a delicate fruitiness on the finish.

2013 Chateau Montaud Cotes de Provence Rose' ($12) This wine exhibits fruity and floral notes, good structure, acidity, and marries nicely with food.

2013 Armas de Guerra Rosado Mencia ($10) This is a beautiful, pale Spanish Rose' wine made of 100% Mencia, not commonly used for making a rose'. This wine sees no oak, so its purity comes through very clear. Medium bodied, bright, clean and fresh. Drink now.

Our last Rose' we tried was a 2013 Laporte Le Bouquet Rose' de Pinot Noir ($15)   This wine is a real bouquet of red fruit enhanced by hints of spice. A pleasure in the mouth reveals the beauty of the hills in the Loire Valley in France.

Well, there you have it. I shall look for these in Dallas and enjoy one (or all) of these wonderful Roses'!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Can You Believe the Weather We've Had? #WallaWalla #leonetticellars

No one can believe the weather in Dallas this past week. It's been the perfect weather to be on a patio somewhere! All over the city people were taking advantage of the cool temperatures. My hubby and I are some of those that took the opportunity to dine outside Saturday night at the DCC. We weren't alone out back on the patios. We took advantage of the cool winds, the beautiful scenery, watching the golfers on the course, people playing croquet, and the delicious foods they served. 

We sat right under an orange umbrella above the brown door.

 Aaron Benson, the sommelier on staff, always comes to our table when we are there. He knows we are always willing to try out a new wine we've never tasted. So he introduced us to a wine from Walla Walla, Washington and was it ever worth it. 

 This is a 2008 Leonetti Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon ($85) from the Figgins Family Wine Estate, which was planted in 1974. The nose of this Cabernet Sauvignon captures what makes the world's finest wine grapes. "It is an erotic array of spices, dried herbs, charcuterie, cassis, vanilla, and red and black ripe fruits with a distant hint of mint. Very dense tannins and an ultra long and pleasant finish." It's the reason Walla Walla is becoming an "international focal point for Cabernet."

I took this picture after the bottle had been decanted. Don usually writes on the cork some prophetic words, but neither one of us had a pen. So I typed his words in my phone.

"Best play in the wine glass, not in the sand trap!" Honey, you are so poetic!

Thanks for a wonderful evening and an excellent bottle of wine!

Friday, July 18, 2014

#ChMontelena Wines

Although Don and I travel to Sonoma for wine, he did take me to Napa to taste wine in that part of the wine country. We didn't go to Chateau Montelena, but we hope to someday! This winery has been in existence since 1882, and the chateau was built in 1886, still standing today. Jim Barrett took over leadership and outfitted the old chateau with modern winemaking equipment. 1972 was the first year for wine to be produced and is now under the direction of Bo Barrett. 

He brought his wines to Salum Restaurant in May for a very nice wine dinner. We had several wines that I want to share with you below. All of my photos are very dark because the restaurant is dimly lit, a very romantic touch.

Chateau Montelena Sauvignon Blanc 2013 $35 "Pale gold, fresh and clean, not tart, with loads of citrus starfruit flavors with a slight spicy finish with a touch of Meyer lemon custard."

Chateau Montelena Chardonnay 2011 $26.50 "A bright straw color with aromas of pear and green apple. It has a wonderful creaminess but not heavy. A rich display of nectarine and white peach, with a finish of pear tart and oak integrated throughout."

Our bottles were signed by Bo Barrett!

Chateau Montelena Calistoga Cabernet 2011 $50 "Expressive dark fruit, very good to drink now and 7-10 years from now. Floral and spicy notes are woven throughout." 

Chateau Montelena Zinfandel 2011 $44 "A ruby red color, nose is rich with barrel and toast notes, bright but soft palate with juicy fruits, with a lovely finish of black licorice and dried fruit."

Chateau Montelena Estate Cabernet 2006 $165 (yep)! It's good! "A deep garnet red color, on the nose complex notes of blackberry tart, clove cinnamon and cocoa. The mouth has a soft supple entry, youthful crisp acidity, juicy plum and rich red fruits."

 Chateau Montelena Estate Cabernet 2009 $120 (Large format bottle 1.5L)
"The nose opens with big black cherry, currants, and plum spice cake. The palate is soft and round, but builds quickly with loads of fine velvety tannin, huge black cherry with red fruits to a rich finish layered with spice.

And last we tasted a Quinta do Noval, Black Port of which I have no information or photo. 

The dinner was fabulous! Thank you sweetheart! It was like a Mother's Day dinner for me!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Chateau Montelena Wine Dinner at Salum! #salumrestaurant #ChMontelena

My sweet husband forked out the big bucks to take us out mid May to Salum Restaurant on Cole Ave. for a special wine dinner with Bo Barrett! Now, since Don has taught me all I know about wine, he also introduced me to the movie Bottle Shock that came out in 2008. I had never heard of it, but Don loves it to this day! So you ask, who is Bo Barrett? And what is this movie Bottle Shock about?

Well to answer both of those questions, let's start with the movie. This film was a comedy-drama film based on the 1976 wine competition termed the "Judgement of Paris" when California wine defeated the French wine in a blind taste test. It's a very good movie and has given Don some awesome quotes to use in his paper business. He's even used clips from the movie in presentations.

Bo Barrett was the guest  vintner at Salum the night of the wine dinner, along with his wine. He mingled with the guests, dining with us for a major part of the evening. He is the son that was depicted in the movie and is the current vintner of Chateau Montelena. It was his father Jim, that the 1973 Chardonnay vintage won first place among the white wines at the 1976 competition mentioned above. This movie is a must see if you love wine. 

Another movie Don introduced me to was Sideways that came out in 2004. Check out the You Tube video on the link. In this movie, two guys in their forties take a week long road trip to Santa Barbara wine country. (That's where Don and I honeymooned-sweet!) These two guys don't have much to show but disappointment in life and one is about to take a walk down the isle of marriage. Check this movie out!

The next post I will share all the Chateau Montelena wines that we tasted at the Salum wine dinner.

Bo Barrett

Thank you honey for taking us there to meet an icon in the wine industry!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

I Promise! This is the Last Post About Bakersfield! #PresquileWine #gunbunwine #kanzlervineyard #WallStreetCafe1 #_ArrogantFrog_

Since the post before this one was becoming a mile long, I decided to divide it into two posts.

Another day we stopped in at Imbibe Wine and Spirits Merchant, a local place to hang out, drink wine, store wine, or take it and go. Natalie had two drinking cards left from another trip there with her friend Misty. So we used these up before she moved to Missouri the next weekend.

We had this 2013 Presqu'ile Pinot Noir Rose', a wine dedicated to the memory of a family home on the Gulf Coast destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. This wine is a crisp, fresh and fruity wine. So good!

I tried a 2008 Gundlach Bundschu Cabernet Sauvignon ($32). It's a Cab that is soft, smooth and silky. You'll finish it quickly! These wines are in a glass case at Imbibe and you put the wine glass up to a spigot and a certain amount is dispensed depending on the value of the wine. This bottle was messy! Sorry about that!

This is a 2012 Kanzler Pinot Noir from the Sonoma Coast ($52). This wine is in high demand and is only allocated to their wine club members. If you want it, go to their website and email them. You might get some! It's delicious! Read the tasting notes by clicking on the name.

We found this really cool, hip wine bar in downtown Bakersfield named Wall St. Cafe and frequented it twice before leaving for Missouri. Bakersfield so needed this place. Good job guys! Hope your days are long and easy!

 Just a glimpse of what it looks like and what they serve! We had four different wines during the two times we stopped in.

This is a 2012 Saved Magic Maker out of Oakville , CA. This rose' is delicate and very dry. It's known as "a pink wine for tough guys".  Notice the very artistic label by Scott Campbell, a internationally known tattoo artist. He has expanded to other mediums such as graphite, watercolor paint, gold, eggshells and currency. His work is exhibited in private and public collections worldwide. Check out their website. It's small, sweet, and simple. Love the story line that Clay said, "If you love what you do, you never have to go to work"! Awesome wine guys!

The next wine we tried at Wall St. Cafe was a 2012 Arrogant Frog Sauvignon Blanc ($10). You have to go to their website. It is so darn cute! Turn up the speakers! This wine is from Penezas, France. It's typically French, but leaps out of the glass with New World attitude! And it's easy to open the screw-top bottle!

This is a 2012 Rob Murray Force of Nature Chardonnay ($22.50) from the Santa Maria Valley. I would purchase this again. Love the label too!

 Last is this bottle and I don't know why I didn't take a picture of the front! So here is one from the internet!

This is a 2011 Bolgheri Vermentino ($22), a white wine from Italy! It was given wonderful reviews online and I agree totally. Floral and refreshing, smooth texture with lemon and a hint of white peach.

So that's Bakersfield! I miss Natalie's friends! Hope to see you again someday (possibly in Newport Beach for a vacay)!