Wines with a V

I am typically a red wine drinker. Since this past summer though, I have been drinking a lot more whites. Even in this cold, drizzly Seattle weather, sometimes a crisp white wine just sounds tasty. Lately, I have been gravitating towards wines that start with V… Strange huh? Does a wine that begins with V ring a bell for you?

The white wines most wine novices typically gravitate towards are Chardonnay’s, Sauvignon Blanc’s and Pinot Gris/Grigio’s. But not me. Because of you, my friends, I am a risk taker who is down with the V’s. Which means you should check them out next time you are at your local wine merchant. These wines will say to your guests, host or friends that you are adventurous, daring and wine knowledgeable…. (Trust me; they will be impressed with your picks)

These are my 4 varietal, go -to favorites lately

 

Verdejo (Verdelho) – Ola! This is bright and fairly medium bodied Spanish (and Portuguese) white wine (although, I have an Australian Verdejo last night from Mollydooker and it was a lot of fun). Being this is typically a Spanish wine, it pairs well with most fish/seafood dishes, pastas (esp. with pesto) and vegetarian dishes. This is also a wine that will go nicely with an Indian dinner or something with a lot of spice. It has a well balanced flavor with many foods!

Vermentino – I have been on a Vermentino kick lately. This is another medium bodied wine that often has hints of mineral and citrus (lemon and pear in my opinion). Vermentino is typically from Sardinia and Liguria, but can often be found grown along the Mediterranean coast. Simple fish dishes are what I would pair this with. I love the flavor of Vermentino, so I wouldn’t have it with a dish that would take away from its simple, yet elegant flavor. A nice tossed salad would also pair nicely with this wine

Vinho Verde– This fun Portuguese, semi-sparkling white wine is inexpensive and goes well with spicy foods. This wine, in general, does not have a whole lot of flavor, but I feel it blends nicely with spicy foods (I had one with empanadas and it tasted brilliantly together). It would also be a fantastic wine to drink with fish tacos, seafood stews and crab cakes. You usually can find this wine under $10. What a steal!

Viognier- This is a French (WA, CA, OR, and Australia as well) dry, florally, full bodied white wine. Now, my issue with Viognier is that the floral nose and taste can be overpowering (I prefer subtle wines). However, if you find the right balanced Viognier, it is heaven in your mouth. You do have to play around with them to find your perfect Viognier though. Once you find that perfect wine, it will go nicely with Asian dishes, Chicken, dishes with cream sauces, lobster and pork. Viognier is one of those wines that will blend nicely with a variety of cheeses…

Alright, just one more V wine…

Valpolicella – This is not a white wine, but I wanted to add in as a favorite red wine of mine. Valpolicella is an Italian, light-bodied dry red wine from the Veneto region. Like with Viognier, I have had some bad Valpolicella that tasted thin and had the flavor of dried cherries and stale licorice. I am REALLY picky about my Valpolicella. Finding the right one can take work, but again high risk means high rewards. Once you find the right Valpolicella (look for Valpolicella Classico Superiore) it will be smooth, well rounded. This wine is great to start your dinner party off with. Pairs well with Italia dishes (pizza, pasta, etc), Risotto, grilled/roasted chicken and sausage.

Go ahead and show off your adventurous wine side to your friends. Bringing one of these V wines to your next party will impress your other wine novice friends. And it’s just nice to break out of the norm.

Put down that Chardonnay and pick up a Vermentino!

Cheers and Happy February friends….

 

It has been a long time….

Ok.. ok.. I know it has been months since I have talked about wine. And I really have no excuse. I have tasted amazing wines since my last blog, but have been in a funk about a writing. Really my only excuse is I have been bummed in the world of wine. As many of you know,  I was in the process of purchasing a wine shop and it fell through. I was very upset, but have decided to take my love of wine and start a different journey.

Private wine tasting parties is the direction I would like to go, with help from a party-planning pro, my dear friend Jessica. We are going to tag team this new and brilliant idea. I would like to hear from my fellow readers; if this is something that would interest you. The direction we would like to go is that of private tastings in your home. Let’s say for those mom-nights-out, where you don’t really want to go out.. we would provide tastings of new/fun wines (of course with supply in hand if anyone wants to purchase a bottle). Or you are having an after work dinner with colleagues and want to spice it up.. call on us to add a little spice (or vino) to the occasion. Our goal is to add a little something special to your evening – which of course would be wine. We would always have a small supply on hand, if you loved it and needed a bottle ASAP.  

This is just a preliminary idea – which we are in the process of researching and determining how  this could marketable…. but feel this could be a great niche and something fun . I love to socialize, I love parties and I particularly love wine.  Why not share my love with others! Give me your thoughts on this.

But fear not my friends, I am back to blogging and promise not to let you down with my tastings and advice.

Tonights Tasting:

2007 Domaine Bernard Moreau et Fils, Bourgogne Blanc ($25 West Seattle Cellars)

Chardonnay

Ooo La La…

I very rarely talk about white wines. Which is not fair to my fellow white wine lovers. Tonight, for all you white wine fans.. I focus on you!

This is a fantastic, non oak-y Chardonnay (ok, a small amount of oak,)  which is light and fresh – a bit of dancing happens on your palate. Most Chardonnay’s, in my opinion, are way to oak-y and don’t pair well with many dishes. This wine took me (and my husband) by surprise. It went lovely with our meal. We had it tonight with a risotto dish, but it would also taste fantastic with fish/seafood dishes or even on it’s own. I am not sure where else you can purchase this wine, but if you like fresh, light white wines – take this name to your local wine hang out.. and see what they have!

Thanks for baring with me my fellow wine lovers… I promise to keep up my end of the bargain, if you promise to keep reading!

Grocery Store Challenge 1

Alright, it has been a couple of months since I decided to take the “Grocery Store Wine Challenge”  and I now have my first chain grocery store finding.  This was hard for me… since I am so partial to my local stores. So as I stopped by Safeway, with a sleeping baby, I decided to use my time wisely and peruse the wine section. I went in to this, with a sour attitude,  but to my surprise the wine section  at Safeway wasn’t horrific (meaning, there was more than just Carlo Rossi boxed wine!). So, to my fellow novices who are unable to hit West Seattle Cellars, Picnic on Greenwoood, Esquin wine merchant, and/or Vino Verite on Capital Hill (or any other wine shop in your neighborhood), there are decent options at your local grocery store. Here are some of the wines I found at Safeway on Roosevelt (and 75th). I am sure that each store (especially in a different state) has different wine selections, but take a look at these wines the next time you pop by Safeway.

*** I also have a wine tasting tonight, so take a look below!

Grocery Store recommendations – Safeway

Just a little information – if you purchase 6 or more bottles, you receive a %10 discount – with their Safeway Club card

L’ecole 2006 Caberent Sauvignon  $26.94- A Walla Walla red. I have only had L’ecole once, but loved it. For the most part Walla Walla wines are smooth and full of flavor. This wine is worth the investment. You can also find this wine in local wine shops as well.

2006 Cabernet Sauvignon - Columbia Valley

Kestral – Lady in Red  $14.99 – Prosser WA – another great wine. I have been to this winery twice and have always enjoyed their wines. Great everyday drinking wine.

Gascon Malbec – Argentina  $11.49.  I have had this wine once. Not my favorite Malbec but has a nice, light flavor. Good wine to take to a party.

Red Bicyclette Syrah – France  $8.99. A can’t beat price. I purchased a glass of this wine in a restaurant once and had a nice flavor – a hint of pepper if I remember correctly.  

Powers Cabernet Sauvignon 2007  – Tri-Cities, WA $10.84. I met one of their wine makers about a year ago. Very nice gentleman and his wines do not disappoint. They also own Badger Mountain Vineyards as well. Once fact about Powers, is that all their wines are organic. Exceptional price.. pick up a bottle.

If in doubt and need a wine in a hurry – Bogle Vineyards  in CA make inexpensive wines that hold their own. Make sure to drink this wine last. Always start with your more expensive, hard to find wine first – then end with the cheap stuff. Bogle wines are around $10.00 and I have seen them at most major supermarkets.

Tonight’s Tasting:

Tre Donne – D’Arc 2006 Italy ($15.00 West Seattle Cellars):

This wine is a blend of 40% Barbera D’Alba, 30% Pinot Noir, 20% Dolcetto D’Alba, and 10% Freisa.

We opened this wine with our dinner – which was vegetarian Chili. Wow!! That is pretty much all I have to say.  A smooth, vibrant and intense wine, I was more than impressed.  I was planning on having just a glass with dinner, but I have a feeling this bottle may be gone by the end of the night. If you can find this (and it won’t be at Safeway) – please grab a bottle. They say this wine goes perfectly with pork, but I beg to differ. It goes great with a vegetarian meal. Take my suggestion, grab this wine while you can.

I hope you have a great time searching for tonight’s tasting or grabbing a Safeway wine!

Hello wine world!

As I was riding in the car with my husband tonight discussing my interest in wine (and how I could turn a career out of this interest), he brought up the idea of me blogging to start. Wow! Sometimes he comes up with the most brilliant ideas. I am always talking about wine, wondering how I could share my love of wine with the world… and just like that Ian comes up with idea of me blogging. Genius! However, I am not a writer… but I have thoughtful opinions about my journey with wines.

I am in no way a wine connoisseur. I love wine, plain and simple.I don’t have big words to describe why I enjoy (or don’t enjoy) wines.  I just love the way it tastes on my tongue, the history of how it brings people and cultures together infatuates me and I thrive on the challenge of finding that “perfect” bottle of wine (which I have found so far in my life a lot of “perfect” bottles of wine.. and not so perfect).  It doesn’t matter the cost… an $10 bottle of wine is in a way more exciting than an $80 bottle of wine. I believe you have struck gold if you find a fabulous bottle of wine for $10. 

Wine is all about personal taste. I was once asked if I thought it was funny that someone’s favorite bottle of wine was from Suttar Homes. No way! It is all a matter of personal taste… and I would never judge someone on their taste of wine. This blog is all about my opinion on what I taste.. and only how I feel about the wine. If you taste the same wine and feel differently about it, please let me know. I welcome everyone’s comments.

I am slowly learning about wines and yearn to learn more. I have been on many wine tours in Napa, Eastern Washington, Oregon and the Burgundy region of France (though, I don’t remember much about that trip) – but I am still very much a novice. I plan on taking classes and doing a little more research. I would like to share all my new found knowledge with you.  I will keep it short, simple and easy to understand (because that is how I work). Please enjoy this journey with me!

tonight’s wine:
Perrin and Fils – France (Costco $10)

2007 Cotes Du Rhone Villages : 50% Syrah 50% Grenache  – 91 points Wine Spectator

Nice everyday wine. Doesn’t have a lot of punch, but smooth and light taste. The smell has a berry scent, however when tasting not a lot of fruit flavor nor is it sweet. If you like a heavy Cab or Zinfandel you may not like this wine. For the price though, it is a nice bottle to take over to your in-laws house.