Friday, November 20, 2009

A WineShop at Home tasting...

Did a WineShop at Home tasting last Saturday. Drove south to Buena Park in Saturday afternoon rush hour traffic using Google Maps instructions. Got a bit lost. The map left out an important left turn. This is the second time Google's done that to me. Not amused.

Got to my hostess's home. She was partially set up, so we worked together. I asked what was the final count for the tasting. She said there would be 8. It got to the hour of the tasting. No one had arrived...sigh...

Now this is not unusual these days. It's odd to me because I was raised to believe that on time was late - you were supposed to be a bit early for an appointment. But these days, the response to the question, "Where is everybody?" is always, "Oh, you know, it's L.A.," as if this excuses the inconsiderateness. This excuse refers to the supposedly laid-back, everyone waiting for a better offer, flakiness of those who live here in SoCal. And it definitely exists. I just think it's not just confined to California these days.

Anyway, eventually guests started to arrive. And arrive. And arrive. We started almost an hour late, and more people arrived. I think the final count - of drinking guests - was 12. There were at least 5 other adults plus several kids (who went into another room).

We went around the table and introduced ourselves. Everybody talked about how much they loved sweet wines. Of course, I didn't have any in the sampler, but we went forward. I didn't have JD with me to pour (he was off running 2 shows at The Eclectic Company), so my hostess did the honors - and very well, I should add.

We tasted the wines:
Lumiere de Vie 2008 Sauvignon Blanc - North Coast (Sonoma) - Brilliant fruit aromas balanced with a gentle grassiness common to Sauvignon Blanc. The flavor is silky smooth and a wonderful complement to the aroma. I really like this SB. $16.00

Sun Fish 2008 Chardonnay - Mendocino - Fresh ripe aromas of apple and peach with hints of citrus and golden raspberry. Medium acidity, fruity flavors and nice round mouth-feel. The finish is fruity and mellow with hints of acidity. No oak, pristine, elegant. $17.50

Talmage T 2008 Chardonnay - Monterey - Lovely apple and fresh green pear with hints of butter and oak in the nose. Smooth and silky mid-palate with just the right amount of acid. The finish is a medium length mix of fruit and acidity. Folks who didn't like the Sun Fish loved this! $17.50

Pied Violet Reserve 2007 Merlot - Aromas of ripe blackberry and cranberry with hints of toasty oak and cinnamon. This wine is layered with complex flavors. There is just a hint of oak under all of that fruit balanced with pleasing spice. The flavors are big and smooth with a long soft-tannin finish. I LOVE this Merlot! Keep it on its side for another 3 years - it will only get better! $19.50

Sun Fish 2008 Pinot Noir - Sonoma Coast - Layers of vanilla, raspberry and earth with delicate hints of leather, licorice and spice. The finish is medium in length with the fruit flavors and acidity up front and a soft tannic undertone. This Pinot was a big surprise to me! I really like it and bought a bunch for myself, because I am my own best customer! $21.00

De Beaumont 2007 Red Meritage - Alexander Valley - The nose is full of plum, vanilla, licorice and sandalwood with hints of clove and cinnamon. The flavors are a balanced with a pleasing medium weight mouth-feel. Long finish, a mix of fruit and smooth tannin. Delicious! $23.00

I was gratified that several folks who said they didn't like dry wines really liked what we poured. They were a really fun group of folks - although several of them literally fled before I could even thank them for attending, let alone talk to them about hosting or buying.

So, it's almost Thanksgiving. Several of these wines would pair exceptionally well with roasted turkey, especially the Sun Fish Pinot Noir. I highly recommend it.

Who wants to host a tasting? Great wines abound!

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