Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Club Proposal

It seems like we've all taken a little break from drinking/reviewing.

So, unless someone objects -- we'll leave October's assignment up for November too.


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Sofia Sparkling Wine

The other night I was looking for a good wine to go with the baby back ribs I slow cooked in a ginger-y Asian sauce. Though I normally don't drink a lot of white wines, I was thinking I wanted something a little fun and fruity. So for just a shade over $15, I grabbed a bottle of Niebaum Coppola's Sofia Blanc de Blancs.

Billed as a wine that pairs well with chicken or pork, it had smooth citrus and melon notes that were a perfect complement for the hoisin sauce-based marinade I had slathered all over the ribs. What's more, for someone who has been slacking since joining this esteemed collection of drinkers, I am proud to report that it counted for three-in-one research: It's a California wine, it's a sparkling wine and it's a wine I'd give as a gift or serve during the holidays.

And just look at this packaging (captured poorly with my cell phone's camera):

Cute pink plastic! A delicate floral label! You know you want to grab a few bottles of this and get the girls together for a mani-pedi (and drinking a ton of this) night! You'll also find this sold in smart red cans (each of them with their own straw), a perfect solution for serving guests at holiday parties. Check it out and let me know what you think!

Monday, October 29, 2007


Hello fellow wine enthusiasts! My name is Joe and I am a stay at home dad. Along with rearing my 3 daughters I enjoy wine and have worked in the wine industry either for retailers or importers for a number of years. I have also worked in fine dining restaurants as a server through my college years where I learned the impact of wine on food choices. I am pleased to give my first of surely several (hundred?) reviews with my latest and greatest find.

I was fortunate enough to pick up a bottle of Zind-Humbrect Zind this weekend and I was very thankful that I did so. Ok, lets start from the top. First, this wine is from is from Alsace. For all of you in the "know" you will recognize that region of France as a large producer of intense and highly acidic (see freaking awesome) Rieslings, Gewurtztraminers, and Pinot Gris's. The climate of this region is cold and the most northern of all the growing regions in France. It is renown for producing wines, generally known for their hint of sweetness, in a bone dry and intense fashion. Because the growing season in Alsace is often cut short due to preemptive winters some of the wines are chaptilized. This is the process where sugar is added to the juice so that during fermentation there will be enough sugar to produce enough alcohol in return or you would have an out of balance wack job of a wine. That being said, one grape that is often overlooked or not included in the "Alsace hype" per say is Chardonnay. Taking that a step further, another grape overlooked is "Auxerrois." For all of you who don't know, Auxerrois is a close cousin of Chardonnay and recent DNA tests have proven that both grapes hale from the same lineage. Auxerrois is not to be confused with another name for the Malbec grape which is used in other regions of France. This grape is white, full-bodied and full of character.

"Auxerrois is a close cousin
of Chardonnay
and recent DNA tests have proven
that both grapes hale from the same lineage."

Ok, wow, where am I? Let's see. Who I am. Check. The region. Check. Ok, the wine. HOLY CRAP! This wine was through the roof! I enjoy new tastes sensations as much as the next wine nerd, but this one is something special. Let me take it from the top. Ok. <----So excited! First, price point. This wine retails around $25 a bottle. Not your everyday wine, but something you get for yourself instead of renting a movie and buying microwavable popcorn. Instead of having a night filled with regrettable calories or a lackluster movie and you want a treat...try this. Period! Now that I made justifying it clear, here are the details. First, like any very good wine from that region, you will notice the nose right away. As you pour the honeyed colored wine (see great sign) into your glass, you will begin to notice the aromas of petrol (slight but awesome) and some floral notes as well. The wine is 50% Auxerrois, 35% Chardonnay and 15% Pinot Blanc. For all intents and purposes the wine is a Chardonnay (Auxerrois being basically a Chardonnay and Chardonnay being Chardonnay we only have a 15% remainder of Pinot Blanc another close relative of the Chard family), however it is listed as a white table wine. The flavor of the! First, when you drink wine remember to allow your entire tongue to take part. The tip of your tongue is where you will pick up and enjoy the refreshingly crisp acidity of this wine. It has the bubbly effervescence of acidity that screams "spicy foods!" like a blackened shrimp alfredo perhaps as a paring. Second, it has the flavor profile of a typical Chard consisting of Pear, Grapefruit and Lychees, but you get some other atypical flavors like peaches/apricots and nutmeg along with a honied butter mouth feel in the prolonged finish. Overall, a wonderful wine to experience on its own or with a nice meal. Suggestions include, blackened chicken alfredo or a cajun seafood dish. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

New Contributor

Please join me in welcoming our newest contributor.