Saturday, May 20, 2017

Exploring Rose Wine

Rose wine offers such an amazing variety and styles. The Wine Folly offers A Guide to 10 Different Styles of Rose 
Other resources related to Rose wines

Below are my tasting notes from the ones I am sampling in preparation for summer.

2016 Conde Valdemar Rose from Rioja, Spain 12.5% abv. $13.00
DOC 75% Granacha and 25% Viura (Macabeo, a white varietal common in this region of Spain.  Grows in hot dry climates.)

Appearance: clear, pale pink/salmon in color
Nose: clean, light strawberry and a bit of mint
Palate: medium acidity, dry, delicate apricot. The finish was medium with a bit of bitter almond.

I would like a little bolder and more complex flavor profile.
It was refreshing but not hugely interesting.  The slight bitter after taste was not my favorite but didn't stop me from drinking it slowly.

The Rose wines we will taste on May 23rd.

One of my favorite Rose wines.  I like the cab Franc grape.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

How to Pair Wine and Chocolate

The wine study group me on May 2nd.  We puzzled and tried some new wines as we watch the snow flurries.  Dennis Kohl help me pick out these wines. I wanted aromatic wines so we could smell floral notes from the wine in anticipation of someday smelling real flowers. I also wanted wines we could pair with 3 different types of chocolates from Cathy Bosacki's Chocolate & More shop.

2 related articles:

How to Pair Wine and Chocolate from WikiHow 

Hey, I saw this on VinePair and thought of you: Does Your Wine Smell Like Spring? Here’s Why:

Amazing appetizers compliments of Jan and Dianne:

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Week 5 WSET

Decoding Spirit Label Assignment

Find 2-3 example  labels for the spirit styles we have looked at in this week's activities and containing terms covered in Chapter 20 of the textbook.
Create at least 2 discussion topics and reply to at least 5 other posts explaining what the terms listed on the label tell you about the spirit in the bottle, and based on this week's reading.

Jim Beam Black Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Aged 8 years

Bourbon whiskey can be made throughout the United States but Kentucky is the most important state for Bourbon whiskies. A Bourbon whiskey must be 51% corn. The corn will produce a spirit that seems sweeter than other grain-based spirits. This bottle has been aged for 8 years in heavily charred new American oak. This is 4 years longer that the original Jim Beam so I would expect a fuller body and a little more caramel and a smoother oak flavors like sweet coconut, vanilla and spice.  It is amber in color from the oak. It is 43% abv.

Tequila Oro Jose Cuervo Especial, 40% alc

This is a Joven/gold/oro tequila so it is unaged and colored with caramel.  It will be at least 51% blue agave, I would expect flavors of grass, citrus, earth and pepper with sharp alcohol.  Because this is an unaged Tequila the flavors will be sharper without aromas of vanilla and spice. The quality will not be as good as a tequila labeled with 100% agave. Resposado and Anejo will be a much higher quality Tequila.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Week 4 WSET Sparkling, Sweet & Fortified Wines

SWines for Wednesday, April 12, 2017

We are all bringing a tapa:
  • Garlic Shrimp, (Beth)
  • Chickpeas and Chorizo (Jan) The recommended pairing was. Spanish Rioja, Jumilla or Priot made from Tempranillo, Monasrell or Granacha. This wine has deep red and black fruit flavors with. Hint of balsamic, curry and fennel.
  • Chicken kabobs from southern Spain (Dianne)
  • Olives
  • Various cheeses
  • Dark Chocolate and nut bark
The wine study group liked the Beaujolais and Vouvray with the tapas that were spicy. The sweeter wine didn't kill the taste. The sherry was good with the chocolate.
We will be conducting a tasting activity:
  • 2 uncooked mushrooms
  • A slice of lemon
  • Table salt
  • A light bodied red wine e.g. Beaujolais or Valpolicella (if you don't have this wine style, try with any wine you have available).
I tasted a 2016 Beaujolais Nouveau from George Dubuef.
Take one of your mushrooms and cook it for around 30 seconds in the microwave (if you do not have access to a microwave, you may roast it in the oven or under the grill instead).  Taste the raw mushroom against the cooked one.  What do you notice?
By itself, the raw mushroom tasted rather bland and earthy with some mineral taste.  The texture was rubbery
The cooked mushroom tasted sweeter and creamy and richer. Very juicy.
Have a taste of the red wine by itself.  Experiment with how the salt and lemon effect the flavor of the red wine.  e.g. try a pinch of salt before tasting the wine or a drop of the lemon juice or both.  What do you notice?
Tasting the lemon and then the wine made the lemon less acidic and the wine more fruity.
Tasting the salt and then the wine made the wine taste sweeter and my mouth less salty.


There was much more joy in finishing this puzzle than illustrated in the picture.

Tasting Notes - any other 2 wines from those listed in the specification

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

WSET Week 3: Black Grapes

Tasting 3
In your tasting this week you should try:
  • Full bodied high tannin red (e.g. Barolo or Chianti Classico - Chianti Classico should preferably be Riserva)
  • New world Pinot Noir

If we want to go beyond the assignment here are some fun options:
  • Taste the New World Pinot Noir from Chili against the Old World Pinot from France.
  • Taste a New World and Older World Merlot
  • Compare a Caberbet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Noit
  • Plus a new Muscot for Jan from Spain
For food our focus is on pasta.