Wine Tasting Note Comedy

Sorry ya’ll, but I am laughing out loud at some old tasting notes and thought is appropriate to share. I will not share my photo or the winery name, but I know I do not want to try this wine again. LOL!!!

I will, however, share that this was a 2009 Mendocino Coast Chardonnay, from not going to tell you anyway. Tasting note reads:

“This chardonnay tasted pungent & acidic…funky nose. Not the good kind of funky. Aromas of asparagus pee & lemons turning past prime. Besides turning my stomach with the unpleasant lingering on my palate, this could be a headache creator for sure. Kindly, it just may be past prime. After letting this one breath…gasp, it needs some air damn it! The aromas open up to delicious lemon curd. Still overall unpleasant flavors. Two days later this wine had opened up with hints of caramel & lemon. Still not my style, but more palatable. As it opens up to a cool room temperature the palate balances out.”

I think that was a wine style #fail for me!

Cocktail Creation – Take 1!

Sonoma County Wine Country Weekend took part earlier this month. This is a wonderful chance to explore the food & wine located in this area, yet it is also exhilarating for me to stumble across new local finds sourced in the county I’ve chosen to call home.

This seasons find of choice was Sisters Switchel, something I could not wait to get into the kitchen & play with!  Hopefully, I will do an interview later to dig into their story behind the delicious creation. I’m a fan of apple cider vinegar, kombucha & other liquid delights that are effective enhancers of body vitality. When I spotted this booth I needed to try this unique local libation that is a blend of apple cider vinegar, raw honey & fresh pressed organic ginger. The flavor is in between an apple cider vinegar and a ginger beer that is rounded out with a touch of honey.

Now normally you would read of a libation such as this & think health drink option, but I’m wired slightly differently. I couldn’t wait to create a cocktail with this after the very first sip. Most people close to me know about my seasonal essential oil cocktail parties & I am always on the lookout for items that may play well with oils & spirits. So between this tonic & other local finds around my house became the birth of another delicious cocktail enhanced by oils.

This cocktail tastes like the ending of summers refreshing flavors as it embraces the full palate of autumns ginger notes. So welcome to my first cocktail post!

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Falls First Kiss:

2 oz. Spirit Works Distillery Barrel Gin – http://www.spiritworksdistillery.com/

2 oz. Sisters Switchel – http://sistersswitchel.com/

2 oz. Stolen Fruit Cocktail Mixer, Lemongrass Ginger Sauvignon Blanc – https://www.stolenfruit.com/

1 drop of Grapefruit Young Living Essential Oil (I would suggest using the vitality line) – https://www.youngliving.com/en_US (Utilize my member #2532690 to start your essential oil journey & I’ll send more great recipes!)

Add the above ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice & shake until well blended. Pour into your favorite martini glass & enjoy with a fresh tarragon leaf garnish.

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Cheers to great discoveries!

Tomić Prošek Hektorović – another wine bar find from Croatia

This lovely little gem for the husband was from the island of Havar, mid & southern Dalmatia, Croatia.
This was a sweet wine produced from plavac mali grapes.

Rich dark colors of honey that appear as fresh melted gold. Sweetened golden raisin aromas with caramel brulee rising from the glass, then carry on that conversation to the palate. 

Should you have a chance to travel to Croatia this is worth hunting down for your sweet tooth needs!

If you want to read more about the lovely little wine bar in Split, Croatia read: http://gotchabythegrapes.com/?p=516

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Cheers!

Sonoma Wine Country Weekend

With a quickening of the pulse & the lingered memories that cause hunger to creep in, I am reminded that it is almost time for the culmination of bounty in my county, Sonoma Wine Country Weekend. I have a long time affair with this event. When I originally heard about it, in the space of tender beginnings of full food & wine appreciation, I put it to the side as a someday happening. As the years continued I moved it lovingly to the shelf I label bucket list due to the culmination of colliding obligations with the unchanging event weekend timing.

As a natural helper & hard working lady that is often lured to do things in the name of charity or assisting a friend, I did what is second nature. My first view was from behind the curtains of volunteering for all 3 events including helping to set them up. Work wise, the views of Fridays, Sonoma Starlight event held at the scenic Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville where top notch. There was a decadent bounty of warm evenings, pool views, lights, music, fabulous food & wine gems from the best wineries. After a long & sweaty day of work I folded myself home, but I couldn’t stop talking to my husband about how lovely the event was laid out, how fun the music was & how amazed I remained by the fabulous guests dressed to the nines.

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The next day, was a little more difficult to pull myself together to work, but as I parked in the vineyard at MacMurray Ranch in Healdsburg I was ready to get a long day started. I checked into the volunteer center quickly & observed the layout of this event. Brilliant tents separated by AVA (American Viticultural Areas), so you could fully plan your day exploring. Wineries representing the libations made with world class fruit by talented winemakers tucked alongside beautiful foods prepared by passionate chefs, was mind blowing. The day was long, tending to the needs in the tent I was assigned too & after a day surrounded by look, but don’t touch I was ready to say a quick hello to friends while trying to find my car so I could beat the crowd home. I knew that I would have to put down the helper hat one day & attend this event, but sometimes that hat is just hard to take off.

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I don’t know how I awoke so early on Sunday to set up the auction, but when I got there I felt blessed that I could be a part of a team that put so much work behind the scenes to raise money for local charities. I was asked to stay for the auction, but after 3 days of work, between my regular crazy normal work schedule, I explained kindly that I would like to leave before guests arrived knowing that the linens where lovely & I would see photos later. I read later of the fundraising accomplishments, quietly smiling that I could offer my services to assist in whatever small way I could. In future years I never pulled the 3 days together again, opting for Friday & Sunday service so that I could enjoy a day of boring household duties that somehow nurture peace & puppy play time.

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I skipped a few years due to other obligations, choosing to partake in online bidding. I donated & received some great auction lots. Last year was the first time I bought tickets to the Saturday event, because I wanted to see from the other side of the table. It did not disappoint. By this time, I knew quite a few more people & luckily attended with a dear friend. I love taking photos for memories & sharing, but it appeared the vision of real camera shocked a few people leading to laughter a plenty. It felt wonderful to peruse the various tents dappled with wine & food that is not just visually stunning, but palate pleasing! Other than seeing winemakers & chefs while enjoying their talents, this event is so well put together it appears to have a sparkling bow on it. If you could desire a flavor, from comfort to decadent, you will find it here.

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Trying to summarize why this is an event you can’t miss is difficult because there are so many words on various pieces of this puzzle. The only way I can think to explain it, is to consider what would I tell a person that asked, “What did you do this weekend?”. Have you heard about Sonoma Wine Country Weekend? It is a beautifully thought out event that showcases the very best food & wine from the county while raising money to assist is great local charities. I discovered new wines to fall in love with while enjoying lovely plated food. I even stumbles upon delicious breweries & other local delights. I would continue to describe in detail some of my favorite finds encouraging people to adventure to the winery or restaurant of delightful memory.

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There is an array of events this coming Labor Day weekend that have your name all over it! So check out the link: http://sonomawinecountryweekend.com/event-schedule/to see if you can take part in a piece of greatness while adding other sections possibly to your bucket list. I’m looking forward to attending the Saturday event again this year & hope to see you there.

Cheers to another great piece of Sonoma County magic!

Rose that is too cool for my summer!

I have some usual suspects of the pink persuasion that I consider my go to summer sipping pinks, but I always leave room to try new flavors. I love a flirty rose of pinot noir just as much as I enjoy the adventure across the many other varietals that show a sassy lighter side in pink. Due to changes, timing & the sadness that surrounds sell outs of the favorites here are the rose wines that I’ve been sipping on for the summer (Koda not included).

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2015 Moshin Vineyards Rosé of Pinot Noir has aromas of watermelon kissed strawberries that dance onto your palate with silken scarves that caress ever so gently. This wine has a perfect amount of acidity showing it to be friendly as the crowd stopping smile that genuinely laughs at all your best jokes. This is the wine friend you can introduce to everyone & know it will be a pleasure. Easy drinking all year long!

Moshin Vineyards is located at 10295 Westside Road, Healdsburg CA 95448 if you need to stop by for a visit or check out the website for all their amazing flavors: http://www.moshinvineyards.com/

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2015 La Pitchoune Vin Gris of Pinot Noir quickly lured me in with the aromas of sun kissed blood orange juice with bountiful red berries. Strawberries & blood orange peel on the palate linger for the lovely intrigue of vacation. There is a refreshing brightness of young strawberries that changed from an adorable flower to the promise of a delicious treat. Perfect lip smack sound hits the mid palate offering a beautiful dryness that is dreamy on a warm evening.

La Pitchoune Winery offers their lovely wines or where they can be found on the website: http://www.lapitchounewinery.com/ Grab up some of this rose while it lasts & before the summer is gone. I know ya’ll need sips after work or after the school shuffle.

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2015 Passaggio Merlot Rosé is an adventure worthy glass with a cornucopia of flavorsUpon first sip it was a symphony of watermelon, sweet pie cherries & raspberries. Like balanced notes on your favorite songs chords, this wine seemed held together with a whispered hint of salinity from a breezy ocean vacation day. As the glass opens up into the warming temperatures a beautiful pomegranate note appears.

The last wine is also a discovery from Passaggio Wines…side bar moment. I have found it to be a true joy wondering what rose game the lovely winemaker will dive into each year. Last year I enjoyed the Mourvedre Rose as well as the stunning Barbera Rose. Can’t wait to discover what will appear for me in 2017…(note to self: slow down, you’re way ahead of yourself here).

Lastly the ever playful take on a favorite red varietal of mine, 2015 Passaggio Tempranillo Rose aka “Rose Colored Glasses”. This wine dazzles with bright light cherry notes that play with lovely red current through a savory hint in the aromatic entertainment. I found flavors of guava & strawberry hinting through the glass as it opened. There is a savory side to this glass that would play well with light garlic white wine sauces of summer seafood dishes. For me this wine screams for a relaxing wine country summer picnic with a simple charcuterie plate & neighboring cheeses, such as manchego, as well. So good, it deserves a double take. I’m salivating at the thought!

Passaggio Wines has a wonderful tasting room located at 25 E Napa Street, Sonoma that would allow you the opportunity to enjoy fabulously crafted wines. These wines taste just as you could imagine love in the bottle would be like. Explore here: http://www.passaggiowines.com/

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Cheers to all end of summer sipping!!!