WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch 08/25/10


Check out the radio show on The Ranch 107.1FM or 97.9FM in The Bitterroot Valley.  How about a live stream feed at www.107theranch.com.

The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch airs weekly on Wednesday mornings at 8:20AM MDT, come and join in on the fun you never know what we are going to talk about.  Each week we will be giving away gift certificates from our sponsors.  If your question is selected as WineGuyMike’s™ topic of discussion you will win one of the $20.00 gift certificates.  Good luck and send your questions to WineGuyMike™ on his Facebook fan page.

New places to share with you, we’re on YouTube now.  Check us out each week on YouTube our channel of course is WineGuyMike.

Sponsors

The show is sponsored by Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”.  Follow Grizzly Liquor on their Facebook fan page – Grizzly Liquor Missoula

The Lolo Creek Steak House, “Rare yet Well Done”, located in Lolo, MT.  Find them online at www.lolocreeksteakhouse.com

Our next Grizzly Liquor Wine Club tasting will be held August 26 from 6-9PM at The Lolo Creek Steak House in Lolo just a little ways up Highway 12 on the right hand side of the road.

Today’s WineGuyMike™ wine flight presented by Grizzly Liquor for you at The Lolo Creek Steak House:

  • Steele Pinot Blanc – Brie and crackers/bread
  • 14 Hands Merlot – Brie and red meats
  • 7 Deadly Zins – Bbq’d red meat
  • Subplot No 23 – Bbq’d red meat
  • Fonseco 27 – port paired with chocolate covered strawberries

This weeks winners are; Dee Dee Blaney and Corrie Sandy, thanks sharing and asking great questions.

This week’s WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Topic; Sangria

Sangria is a wine punch I love because it falls right under the WineGuyMike rules of order and you may ask what is that, there are “no rules”.  That’s right when it comes to Sangria there are regional, cultural, restaurant, and family influences that incent hostesses and hosts of parties to create their own version of Sangria, whether it’s red or white.

The other thing I like about Sangria is the very definition of this Spanish Punch; Sangría; meaning “bloodletting”.   Okay this stuff sounds dangerous so that means I’m in on this.  All kidding aside this is one of the perennial summertime favorites from around the world, and why not, it’s big on flavor, it quenches your thirst, and it’s a great drink to share with friends at any social gathering.

Spain may lay claim to this drink but upon further research I found that may not exactly be the true story.  A British East India Company traveling in India tasted a drink known as Pac.  This drink that the British discovered had five ingredients that were referred to in its name; Eau de vie, sugar, lemon, water and tea. The British group took this recipe back to the West Indies and the name of the drink evolved into punch.  The French have also laid claim to this drink historically too.

The base of Sangria is a nice table wine that is not expensive.  Typically a wine that is light to medium bodied is what is best to use in Sangria.  In Spain they will use a Tempranillo or a Grenache from the Rioja region, the French will use a Beaujolais or a Gamay, and the Italians will use a Bardolino, Dolcetto, Grignolino , Freisa, or some Lambrusco.

If you prefer a Sangria that is white you might use a Pinot Bianco(Blanc) or possibly a unoaked Chardonnay, Pinot Gris(Grigio), or a Sauvignon Blanc will do nicely as well.  In Spain this is known as Sangria Blanca. 

Next comes the fruit which is sliced or chopped; lemons, oranges, apples, peaches, pineapple, melon, berries, or mangos.  Now it’s time to sweeten things up a bit; sugar, simple syrup, honey, or the nectar from the fruit.  At this point you will add Orange Juice and a splash or two of something fortified, I prefer Brandy, or some spirits followed by ice and something carbonated, my suggestion is seltzer water.  If a person were so inclined they could use a dry sparkling wine in place of the seltzer water.

To prepare Sangria you will slice all fruit thinly and place in you large wide mouthed pitcher or punchbowl and add your other ingredients minus ice and anything that may be carbonated.  Then place in the refrigerator for the day so all the flavors will meld together.  Now before serving you will add the ice and carbonated beverages.

This drink is served in the summertime in most Latin American countries, Italy, and America.  But you can bet where it’s hot even in the wintertime they’re drinking Sangria.  Here are some great Sangria recipes for you to try.

*I would recommend a pitcher with a strainer for the top as it makes the drink easier to pour with the fruit in it.

Recipes: There are thousands on the web, here are just a few I’m sharing with you

Lemon Sangria

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup Superfine Sugar
  • 2 Lemons, sliced
  • 6 oz Lemon Juice
  • 4 oz Cognac
  • 1 liter seltzer water
  • 1 Bottle Red Wine

Directions:

Cut lemons into slices and add to the mixture of wine, 7 up and Cognac and sugar.

Peach Sangria

Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle white Wine
  • 3 ounces Brandy
  • 2 ounces Triple Sec
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 1 ounce Simple Syrup or to taste
  • 3 oz peach puree
  • Fresh sliced peaches or berries for garnish

Directions:

Combine all ingredients but garnish and chill overnight or at least 8 hours.

Raspberry Mango Sangria

Ingredients:

  • 1 Bottle Spanish Red Wine
  • 1 Mango, sliced
  • 2 cups of fresh raspberries (or thawed frozen)
  • 1 lime, sliced
  • 3 oz brandy
  • 2 tbsp of suberfine sugar if desired
  • 1 Can club soda

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a bowl or pitcher except for the club soda. Let sit in refrigerator over night or at least 8 hours.

Add club soda just before serving.

Classic Sangria

Ingredients:

  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 lime, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons superfine granulated sugar
  • 1 bottle spanish red wine
  • 1/2 cup cognac
  • 1/4 cup orange liqueur
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 cup chilled seltzer water

Directions:

Wash and slice fruit. Dissolve sugar in cognac and orange luqueur. Add sugar, cognac and orange liqueur and fruit to a pither or punch bowl. Pour in wine. Stir to mix in fruit.

Add seltzer just before serving and add ice cubes if desired.

White Sangria

Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle fruity white wine (avoid an oaky white)
  • 1 pear
  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • 1 lime
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier
  • 2 tablespoons superfine sugar ta
  • 1 cup club soda or ginger ale

Directions:

Dissolve sugar in wine and add grand marinier. Wash and thinly slice the fruit. Add to wine. Refrigerate overnight or for several hours at least. 

Add club soda or ginger ale just before serving.

Sangria de Cava

Ingredients:

  • 1 bottle of Cava (Spanish sparkling wine)
  • 1 cup orange juice (
  • 2 oranges, thinly sliced
  • 2 apples, cut in chunks
  • 1 cup of water
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 6 not cinnamon sticks
  • crushed ice
  • mint leaves

Directions:

Put sugar, water and cinnamon sticks in a sauce pan and heat until sugar is dissolved (simmer about 5 minutes).

Let mixture cool and remove cinnamon sticks

Slice fruit and prepare orange juice. Combine all ingredients except for ice and mint, and let chill several hours.

Garnish with mint and serve with ice.

Lambrusco Sangria

Ingredients:

  • 1 Peach, slived
  • 1 plum, slived
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 bottles of Lambrusco — frizzante red Italian wine
  • 1/2 cup of brandy or fruit schnapps

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a pitcher or bowl with ice and serve.

From My Table to Yours™,

WineGuyMike™

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WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch 08/18/10


Check out the radio show on The Ranch 107.1FM or 97.9FM in The Bitterroot Valley.  How about a live stream feed at www.107theranch.com.

The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch airs weekly on Wednesday mornings at 8:20AM MDT, come and join in on the fun you never know what we are going to talk about.  Each week we will be giving away gift certificates from our sponsors.  If your question is selected as WineGuyMike’s™ topic of discussion you will win one of the $20.00 gift certificates.  Good luck and send your questions to WineGuyMike™ on his Facebook fan page.

The show is sponsored by Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”.  Follow Grizzly Liquor on their Facebook fan page – Grizzly Liquor Missoula

WineguyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch has a new additional sponsor we would like to welcome today.  The Lolo Creek Steak House, “rare yet well done”, located in Lolo, MT.  Find them online at www.lolocreeksteakhouse.com

Our next Grizzly Liquor Wine Club tasting will be held August 26 from 6-9PM at The Lolo Creek Steak House in Lolo just a little ways up Highway 12 on the right hand side of the road.

Today’s WineGuyMike™ recommendations at Grizzly Liquor:

  • Adami Garbel Prosecco
  • Domaine De Pouy-$9.30
  • Inama Soave-$15.55
  • Pennywise Pinot Noir-$7.75
  • La Posta Malbec-$16.90

Whites, Reds, and Weights – order of presentation for this flight:

–     Inama Soave – Light to Medium Body White Wine

–     Domaine De Pouy – Medium to Full Body White Wine

–     Adami Garbel Prosecco – Sparkling Wine as an  aperitif or dessert wine

–     Pennywise Pinot Noir – Light to Medium Body Red Wine

–     La Posta Malbec – Medium to Full Body Red Wine

Inama Soave

One of the best examples of classic Soave we know, ripe and rich with a nice nutty/creamy element.  “Inama makes some of the richest whites in Veneto readers are likely to come across… The 2008 Soave Classico makes a great introduction to the Inama house style. Smoke, minerals, flowers and peaches come together in a mid-weight yet richly-textured style.

Inama VIN-SOAVE CLASSICO

Inama VIN-SOAVE CLASSICO

Pairing with – Scallops on Cucumbers

  • CHARACTERISTICS OF THE VINEYARD:
  • SITE: Monteforte d’Alpone and Soave
    SURFACE: selection on 17 hectars
    ALTITUDE: from 100 m to 200 m asl
    EXPOSURE: South/ South-west/ South-east
    SOIL CHARACTERISTCS: Basaltic lava
    CANOPY SYSTEM: Pergola
    DENSITY: 3000-3500 plants / hectar
    AGE OF THE VINEYARD: > 30 years
    HAND PICKED
  • Annual production: about 250,000 bottles/year.

Territory of Soave Classico

  • Each terroir is best expressed through a different variety. In the Soave Classico appellation the steep hills and the meager basalt soils are carpeted with Garganega.
  • An intensely aromatic variety, it was first planted here by the Romans and was originally known as “Grecanicum”, a reference to its Greek origins, although it arrived here from Sicily via Campania where its cousin, Greco, is still widely planted. Isolated from its family, it gradually mutated through hundreds of generations.
  • The name changed and so did the vine: its current, floral iteration gives voice to the inimitable blend of Alpine and Mediterranean influences found in Soave.
  • ENOLOGY
    Destalking and crushing. Skin contact for 4 – 8 hours followed by pressing. Cold settling for 24 -36 hours at 5°C. Fermentation in stainless steel vats, followed by malolactic fermentation.
    Racking and maturation in stainless steel for about 8 months.
  • IMPRESSIONS
    Light yellow color.  Elegant  nose of sweet field flowers: chamomile, elder flower, iris.  Pleasant on the palate with sweet almond on the finish.

    RECOMMENDED COMBINATION:

    Aperitif, delicate dishes, salads and white fish.

Domaine De Pouy

The wine has a penetrating floral green apple fragrance, and is loaded with refreshingly crisp and flavorful fruit.  Yves Grassa’s 2008 Domaine de Pouy – a blend of Ugni Blanc and Colombard – smells typically of clover, herbs, and grasses, lime, and pineapple. A delicacy; an efficacy of ripe acidity; and an invigorating intimation of peach fuzz and salt in the finish, all make this year’s cuvee especially appealing.

Domaine de Pouy

Domaine de Pouy

Pairing with – Crab Tartlette

Domaine: Domaine de Pouy
Vintage: 2008
Producer: Yves Grassa
Variety: 60% Ugni Blanc, 40% Colombard
Country: France
Region: Southwest-Armagnac

  • Yves Grassa, the proprietor of Domaine de Pouy, has invested intelligently in modern vinification equipment in order to assure that this exuberant, super aromatic, light-bodied dry white is the standard to which others are held
  • The estate is located in the foothills of Pyrénées, near the appellations of Madiran and Jurançon, about two hours southwest of Bordeaux
  • The cold fermentation of Ugni Blanc from the Bas-Armagnac region captures vibrant aromatics and guards freshness
  • The wine has a penetrating floral green apple fragrance, and is loaded with refreshingly crisp and flavorful fruit.
  • Domaine de Pouy has consistently been one of our finest values, and above all – is simply delicious!
  • 60% Ugni Blanc (this is Trebbiano in Italy) • 40% Colombard
  • The wines are made using skin contact and kept cold for four to six hours in order to extract the maximum aromatics and preserve bright fruit flavors.
  • Blended & bottled fresh around the first of February every year.
  • The wine has a penetrating floral green apple fragrance, and is loaded with refreshingly crisp and flavorful fruit.
  • Yves Grassa’s 2008 Domaine de Pouy – a blend of Ugni Blanc and Colombard – smells typically of clover, herbs, and grasses, lime, and pineapple.
  • A delicacy; an efficacy of ripe acidity; and an invigorating intimation of peach fuzz and salt in the finish, all make this year’s cuvee especially appealing.           

 Adami Prosecco

Moderately fine, persistent, and frothy mousse. Lovely, elegant scents of green apples, white wildflowers, minerals, and glazed almonds. The palate is dry but still generous with flavors of yellow cherries and tropical fruits, and a very long finish. Excellent.

Adami Garbel Prosecco

Adami Garbel Prosecco

Pairing with – Fresh fruit Kabobs

  • Prosecco is an Italian wine, generally a dry sparkling wine, usually made from grape variety Glera, which is also known as Prosecco
  • Prosecco’s are a great wine as an aperitif or dessert wine
  • The Veneto region of Italy is where Glera/ Prosecco is grown and produced, traditionally in an area near Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, in the hills north of Treviso.
  • Prosecco is an Italian wine, generally a dry sparkling wine, usually made from grape variety Glera, which is also known as Prosecco
  • Prosecco’s are a great wine as an aperitif or dessert wine
  • The Veneto region of Italy is where Glera/ Prosecco is grown and produced, traditionally in an area near Conegliano and Valdobbiadene, in the hills north of Treviso.
  • Prosecco is mainly produced as a sparkling wine in either the fully sparkling (spumante) or lightly sparkling (frizzante, gentile) styles
  • Depending on their sweetness, Proseccos are labeled “brut”, “extra dry”, or “dry”, with the brut being the driest
  • Prosecco grapes in the northern Veneto region of Italy in the foothills of the Alps
  • Prosecco is light, affordable, and fun
  • This Sparkling wine is aromatic and crisp, with nuances of yellow apple, citrus, pear, white peach, and apricot

The family’s vineyards include those in the steep Valdobbiadene hilly area, where mixed soils predominate. This clay-like, often calcareous, low-nutrient and well-drained soil is fairly shallow, particularly at higher elevations. The climate is generally moderate, with cold winters and warm, but not humid, summers.  Adami also has vineyards in the Colli Trevigiani area, which is just outside the historical DOC.  These vineyards are at a lower altitude but still enjoy a similar climate of cool nights and hot days, ideal conditions for expressing the typical fruit notes of the Prosecco grape.

  • Tasting Notes

–     Moderately fine, persistent, and mousse

–     Lovely, elegant scents of green apples, white wildflowers, minerals, and glazed almonds

–      The palate is dry but still generous with flavors of yellow cherries and tropical fruits, and a very long finish

–     Garbèl, which in ancient local dialect means a dry, crisp, pleasantly tart wine, is produced from the hilly vineyards in the Colli Trevigiani area.

–      The ample nose releases crisp-edged, complex fruit notes, and the palate is full-flavored with a crisp acidity. 

–     A wonderfully versatile sparkler, Garbèl’s 13 grams of residual sugar place it between the Brut and Extra Dry styles, making it perfect for wine bars as well as celebrations

–     I suggest enjoying Prosecco in a white wine glass – not a flute – which is not wide enough For expressing all the wine’s aromas and fruitiness

Pennywise Pinot Noir

            Our inaugural Pennywise Pinot Noir blend is ruby colored with aromas of fresh cherries with a hint of Monterey terrior and caramelized oak. The mouth of this wine explodes with cherry fruit, nuances of chocolate truffles with hints of lavender, summer sweet plums and wild strawberry. This wine finishes with a note of espresso, subtle Spanish bay leaf, and crushed blueberries wrapped around integrated French oak.

Pennywise 2008

Pennywise 2008

Pairing with – Seared Duck w/Raspberry Sauce

VARIETAL

94% Pinot Noir, 5% Syrah,

1% Merlot

APPELLATION

California, 70% Monterey,

24% Clarksburg, 5% River

Junction, 1% Paso Robles

ALCOHOL

14.0%

PH

3.81              

Notes

  • Our inaugural Pennywise Pinot Noir blend is ruby colored with aromas of fresh cherries with a hint of Monterey terrior and silky caramelized oak.
  • The mouth of this wine explodes with cherry fruit, nuances of chocolate truffles with hints of lavender, summer sweet plums and wild strawberry.
  • This wine finishes with a note of espresso, subtle Spanish bay leaf, and crushed blueberries wrapped around integrated French oak.
  • This wine was crafted from two different vineyard blocks of Monterey Pinot Noir and Clarksburg Pinot Noir.
  • Most of this fruit is a combination of Clone 4 (Pommard), 115, 667, and 777.  These appellations bring different nuances to the table.
  • The 2008 Clarksburg Pinot Noir is very fruit forward which is balanced by the terrior driven 2008 Monterey Pinot Noir.
  • The combination of the two lots lends to a blend with depth and complexity unknown to this price category.
  • A splash of Syrah and Merlot adds some additional depth and color to this blend without distracting from the true varietal characteristic of Pinot Noir.

 La Posta Malbec

            Vibrant red color with aromas of red cherries, raspberries, and blueberries wafting from the glass along with notes of soft caramel from the oak. On the palate, the fresh berry flavors mingle with spice notes in the finish. This is a creamy, full-bodied and well-structured wine that is incredibly full of life.

LA POSTA

LA POSTA

Pairing with – black pepper Carpaccio

Varietal Composition: 100% Malbec

Vineyard Location(s): Lujan de Cuyo – Ugarteche (Mendoza)

Average Vineyard Elevation: 3200 feet

Average Age of Vines: 36 years

Oak Regimen: 12 months in 20% new French and 80% second-use French barriques

Alcohol: 13.5%

Case Production: 15000

  • Tasting Notes/Food Pairing:
    Vibrant red color with aromas of red cherries, raspberries, and violets wafting from the glass along with notes of toasty oak. On the palate, the fresh berry flavors mingle with spice notes and there’s a hint of soft caramel on the finish. This is a creamy, medium-bodied and well-structured wine that is incredibly full of life. Goes great with everything from hamburgers and chicken to pasta and mild cheeses.
  • About the Grower/Vineyard
  • Angel Paulucci’s family has produced wine in Italy since the early 1800’s, and Angel arrived in Mendoza with his parents in 1953 at the age of 21.
  • In 1960, he planted his first Malbec vineyard, and in the early 70’s, he planted a special block of Malbec vines in Ugarteche at the southern limit of the Lujan de Cuyo department.
  • If you get Angel talking, plan to stay awhile—he will regale you with childhood stories of enemy soldiers firing bullets into his family’s red wine barrels so that they could quench their thirst. And of course, he will tell you about his
  • vineyard: very tight spacing, superficial irrigation, lime-laden soils, and Malbec grapes that make an old-timer smile

Mendoza Region Facts

  • Argentina is the world’s 5th largest producer of wine. 80% of Argentina’s wine comes from Mendoza, South America’s largest wine producing region.
  • Mendoza is divided into 4 distinctive grape-growing areas: Lujan du Cuyo, Maipu, Uco Valley, and Eastern Mendoza.
  • Vineyard altitudes range from 2,000-4,700 feet above sea level. The city of Mendoza rests at 2,500 feet above sea level. At these high elevations, the air temperature stays relatively cool, yet the vines receive significantly higher amounts of solar radiation than vines at sea level. This results in increased water stress and better tannin maturity at harvest. It also increases bud productivity, allowing for more selective pruning and yield management.
  • The growing areas of Mendoza receive less than 10 inches of rain per year, but irrigation water is plentiful from year-round snow melt in the Andes so that water yields are in complete control of the viticulturist. Soils vary from sandy to clay, but are predominantly loamy. Many areas also have pebble and river stone subsoil. Drainage tends to be excellent. Most soils are low in organic material due to elevation and climate, creating additional desirable vine stress
  • Vineyards here enjoy over 300 days of sun per year. Nights are usually cool, which brings a crucial day-night temperature amplitude that allows the vines to create rich flavors during the day, and to respire without losing beneficial acidity during the evenings
  • Grapes here have the longest “hang-time” in the world, which creates balanced wines with ripe fruit flavors and smooth tannins

WineGuyMike’s Wine Lingo

This week’s new wine term is; Terroir– Describes all the influences on the flavors in the wine that come from where the vines grow, especially soil, climate, slope, the aspect of the slope.  There is no exact translation in English, but ‘terroir’ is an important concept in the expression of the origin of wine

Balance – this term is one that would refer to a harmony of fruit, tannin, acid, and alcohol.  There may be a nuance of fruit in a wine but it would not be so overwhelming that it would be out of balance or harmony when considering the other characteristics of a wine.

Astringent – This refers to a drying sensation in the mouth that may make you pucker.  It is common in young full bodied red wines such as a Cabernet or a Zinfandel.  This is caused by high tannin content in the wine.  Tannin is a tactile sensation, not a taste.

Crisp – Fresh, Bright, Young, and Slightly Acidic.  Wine Types are Sauvignon Blanc, Vermentino, and Chablis

Grassy – Refers to Herbal Characteristics often associated with Sauvignon Blanc

Oaky – A reference to a nuance in a wine resulting from wooden oak barrels that wines are aged in.  This term is common to Chardonnay’s and Cabernet wines.

Velvety – This term characterizes a wines texture.  This term would be used with a wine that has a rich and supple mouth feel.

Match the words that you think make sense; these words are descriptors for wine:

Bright = Flinty an epiphany in your mouth

Rich = Subtle mellow, smooth, decadent, just easy and fulfilling

Lively = Crisp the wine is refreshing, a zing, literally comes to life in your mouth

Intense = Juicy big, bold, forward just tastes like fruit you could bite into

Velvety = Aromatic sexy, goes down like silk, fills the room with its aroma

From My Table to Yours™,

WineGuyMike™

WineGuyMike Radio Show with Scott and Paula on The Ranch 08/04/10


Check out the radio show on The Ranch 107.1FM or 97.9FM in The Bitterroot Valley.  How about a live stream feed at www.107theranch.com.

The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch airs weekly on Wednesday mornings at 8:20AM MDT, come and join in on the fun you never know what we are going to talk about.  Each week we will be giving away gift certificates from our sponsors.  If your question is selected as WineGuyMike’s™ topic of discussion you will win one of the $20.00 gift certificates.  Good luck and send your questions to WineGuyMike™ on his Facebook fan page.

The show is sponsored by Grizzly Liquor, “Missoula’s Best Choice”.  Follow Grizzly Liquor on their Facebook fan page – Grizzly Liquor Missoula

WineguyMike™ Radio Show© with Scott and Paula on The Ranch has a new additional sponsor we would like to welcome today.  The Lolo Creek Steak House, “rare yet well done”, located in Lolo, MT.  Find them online at http://www.lolocreeksteakhouse.com

Today’s WineGuyMike™ recommendations at Grizzly Liquor:

Bookwalter blend, "Subplot No 23"

Bookwalter blend, "Subplot No 23"

Subplot No 23 – 30% Cabernet 27% Merlot 14% Syrah 9% Petit Verdot 4% Barbera 3% Cab Franc.  Aromatics of currants, dark berries, black plums.  Mocha & marzipan linger as the wine enters the palate full of ripe fruit flavors, Black Forest cherries, Boysenberries, and dates layered with cola, resin, graphite and a dash of Thai spice.  A lush and full mid palate prelude a velour like finish, balanced with a touch of acidity.

Each lot of wine selected for Subplot is carefully chosen each year after they have made their final blends for their top tier wines.  Bookwalter attempts to create a flavorful, full-bodied yet approachable wine by layering vintages, vineyards and varietals in our Subplot wines.  Press wine from our oldest vineyards are aged longer in the cellar to help soften the tannins and create more mature flavors and wine from our younger vines and more recent vintages are added to the blend to bring the lush, young fruit characteristics forward in the wine.  The result is a wine that offers, fruit, structure, approachability and exceptional value.  Although these wines are meant to be consumed in their youth, the wines have showed graceful aging potential.

Maipe Malbec

Maipe Malbec

 Maipe Malbec – Smooth enough it really doesn’t even need food, and has a 90 point rating. The Mendoza region of Argentina produces amazing Malbec.  In this warm dry climate the Malbec achieves near perfect ripeness and have a silky texture with intense flavors of blackberry, peppery spice, and balsamic herbs. The cooler, well-drained slopes of the hillsides of the region are perfect terrior for the Malbec grape.

Plungerhead 2008 "Lodi" Zinfandel

Plungerhead 2008 "Lodi" Zinfandel

 Plungerhead “Lodi” Zinfandel – Dark purple in color, the 2008 Lodi Zinfandel blend boasts brambly aromas of dried blueberry, black currants and molasses with hints of cardamom and nutmeg spice.  This Zinfandel blend then erupts in your mouth with raspberry liquor, Dutch cocoa powder, blackberry cobbler, cinnamon, and cedar with hints of rosemary and roasted Poblano chilies.  The wine lingers on your palate with the combination of fruit, spice, and oak adding to its full bodied nature and mouth filling tannins.  On the finish, flavors develop into mocha latte, toasted marshmallow, sweetened cranberry, white pepper, read more…and roasted French oak.

 This week’s winners are: Ric Thomas and Janel McCormick

As we are entering into the dog days of summer I thought it might be an appropriate time to look at pairing beef and wine.  When one considers wine and food I like to think of balance.  Balancing wine and food is a good place to start when determining what wine works with what food.  Here are a few other things to think about when choosing a wine too:

  • What wine do you like?
  • Food Texture, Heavy or Light?
  • How is the food prepared, Grilled, Baked, Sauteed?
  • What about a Sauce, Crème, Tomato.

Since it is summer most of my focus is going to be on beef that is grilled.  As I mentioned earlier I’m going to consider balance and in this case I’m referring to weightiness and texture of the cut of beef and the weight and texture of the wine I would like to choose to serve with dinner.  How am I going to cook the beef, today we are going to be grilling.  I’m also not going to be using a sauce, but will most of my guests be using a steak sauce to garnish their entrée with?  Okay now this brings up a great point, steak sauce.  Steak sauce if you will notice on the list of ingredients has a great deal of some form of vinegar included in it and this is called acid.  One of the reasons these sauces include vinegar or acid is the fact that acid brings out flavors in food and helps to leave a lingering flavor on your palette.  If I were to recommend a wine with a crème or cheese sauce I would be suggesting a wine with a high acid content and would be medium to full bodied.  A red tomato based sauce such as a marinara would call for a light body red wine, but for this dinner we are grilling steaks.

Just as foods have a texture and firmness wines also have a quality of texture.  Remember we are looking for balance and a synergy between wine and the foods they are paired with.  A full bodied wine bold on texture should not be paired delicate dishes nor should they be paired with a food dish that is big on flavor.  Big wine and big flavor just don’t work well together, we are looking for harmony.  A mild food dish would do well to be paired with a medium to light body wine.

I’m going to choose some cuts of beef that I’m personally interested in grilling.  I love prime Top Sirloin; this is a bit more marbled than a non-prime grade of beef.  Rib Eyes are another great cut of beef I love, oh that’s right I love most cuts of beef.

Cuts of Beef

Cuts of Beef

The Chuck Section: Hamburger has a higher fat content and will make a tasty, juicy burger that is well suited for a nice fruit-forward Cabernet Sauvignon.  A Cabernet varietal is a big, powerful red wine that is full in body, rich, and very flavorful.  Cabernet Sauvignon is a wine that imparts flavors of fruits, berries, currants, and plums.  This wine may also exhibit slight spicy nuances.

The Rib Section: A Rib Eye steak that is well marbled is a rich and flavorful will pair well with a bold, spicy Syrah.  Syrah is a big powerful full bodied wine, also known as Shiraz in Australia.  Supple, smooth, rich with well mannered mellow tannins describes the Syrah wines.  Flavor wise a Syrah can be slightly spicy, fruity like black cherries, or some may have a deep nutty flavoring
The Short Loin Section: Filet Mignon is a lean, delicate cut that is well suited to a nice smooth wine with great body.  The wine Pinot Noir is the grape variety of red burgundian wines; it can produce wines that are incredible.  When aged in oak, it should have a sweetness reminiscent of raspberries, with undertones of vegetation and chocolate.  The wine can stand up to aging for many years.  Pinot Noir at its best will be smooth, full of flavor, and have a beautiful bouquet.
The Sirloin Section: Boneless Sirloin is a less tender but tends to be more flavorful than other cuts of meat from the loin section.  Malbec is one of Argentina’s finest!  A fruit forward, medium bodied and flamboyant red.  Spicy and tannic at its best this wine can be outstanding, especially with a nice Malbec.

The Round Section: An Eye of Round served pepper-crusted and rare is a very lean, slightly chewy cut.  This will pair well with a Red Blend that has great structure.  Subplot No 23 a blend of Cabernet 27%, Merlot 14%, Syrah 9%, Petit Verdot, 4% Barbera, 3% Cab Franc. The concentration of black berries and toasty aromas is crowned with a long, velvety mid-taste.

The Brisket Section: Brisket that is slowly cooked on the barbeque can be buttery, smoky, with flavors that call for the red fruit and fig aromas and full bodied profile of the Bonarda.  This is wine with a long finish; soft, ripe tannins, and good balance of acidity.  Wines made with the Bonarda grape are immediately drinkable and known for the light body and fruitiness. Originally from the Piedmont Italy region Bonarda is also being grown in Brazil and Argentina, in fact there is six times more Bonarda being grown in South America than in Italy.  The soft tannins of a Bonarda will pair well with the buttery and smoky flavor of the Brisket.

The Flank Section: Thin Flank Steak is best slowly grilled over a low flame.  The smoky flavors from the grill and intense beef flavor compliment a Zinfandel.   This full bodied, fruit forward, and spicy wine is one of California’s favorites, and most plentiful.  Berries, cherries, tobacco, oak, and vanilla this wine seems to have it all.

WineGuyMike’s Wine Lingo

This week’s new wine term is; Balance – this term is one that would refer to a harmony of fruit, tannin, acid, and alcohol.  There may be a nuance of fruit in a wine but it would not be so overwhelming that it would be out of balance or harmony when considering the other characteristics of a wine.

Astringent – This refers to a drying sensation in the mouth that may make you pucker.  It is common in young full bodied red wines such as a Cabernet or a Zinfandel.  This is caused by high tannin content in the wine.  Tannin is a tactile sensation, not a taste.

Crisp – Fresh, Bright, Young, and Slightly Acidic.  Wine Types are Sauvignon Blanc, Vermentino, and Chablis

Grassy – Refers to Herbal Characteristics often associated with Sauvignon Blanc

Oaky – A reference to a nuance in a wine resulting from wooden oak barrels that wines are aged in.  This term is common to Chardonnay’s and Cabernet wines.

Velvety – This term characterizes a wines texture.  This term would be used with a wine that has a rich and supple mouth feel.

Match the words that you think make sense; these words are descriptors for wine:

Bright = Flinty an epiphany in your mouth

Rich = Subtle mellow, smooth, decadent, just easy and fulfilling

Lively = Crisp the wine is refreshing, a zing, literally comes to life in your mouth

Intense = Juicy big, bold, forward just tastes like fruit you could bite into

Velvety = Aromatic sexy, goes down like silk, fills the room with its aroma

From My Table to Yours,

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike

WineGuyMike