This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Author of Daily Decadence The Art of Sensual Living


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s full unedited podcast with author Sherri Dobay; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/09/01/wine-guy-mike-for-september-2nd/

Recent Podcast with Halter Ranch head winemaker, Kevin Sass; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/19/wine-guy-mike-for-august-19/

Recent podcast with Author Becky Sue Epstein; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/08/12/wine-guy-mike-for-august-12/

YouTube preview of this week’s show with Sherri Dobay; http://youtu.be/qgWNP1_fGZs

Recent Podcast with head winemaker of Balletto Vineyards & Winery, Mr. Anthony Beckman; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/29/wine-guy-mike-for-july-29/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment; Perfect Patio Wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/Mike-Tornatore-8-7-12/-/14594602/15999458/-/67a5ri/-/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana

Author Sherri Dobay joined me in the studio this week on the WineGuyMike Radio Show to talk about her book Daily Decadence The Art of Sensual Living.  Dobay is a women of wit, wisdom, humor, and experience which she shares with the reader in her book. 

As I read Dobay’s book I was struck by the transparency of her vignettes. Her stories of trysts are scintillating and take you on a contemplative journey that is like a retrospective vacation.  Dobay then takes you a step closer to her soul by sharing a recipe and wine pairing that was deeply meaningful to the story. 

Daily Decadence The Art of Sensual Living exceeded my expectations and I have really enjoyed reading this book, I find it very soothing almost as if I have taken a long weekend trip.  Dobay’s objective in writing her book was to encourage the reader to enjoy the moment, appreciate that which is simple, stop and smell the roses.  It is my opinion that she has more than accomplished this and she has insightful experience to share as well.

Readers will really enjoy this book of beautiful and sometimes sensually scandalous tales that Dobay has to share, but make no mistake this author is not one dimensional by any means.  Dobay takes time to indulge just as she recommends the reader too do.  Sherri Dobay is an accomplished artist, Chef du Jour, and loves to ride horses.  If you need a bit of Daily Decadence in your life get a copy of Dobay’s book and infuse a little art of sensual living into your life, Sherri will show you how.

Foodies and wine lover won’t be disappointed either, Dobay’s wine and food pairings are elegant.  Remember the inspiration for the pairings are stirred by her soul as she shares the intimate experiences of her life in such an authentic way.  Not sure what’s on your table tonight, Dobay inspires the Chef du Jour within.

I want to thank Sherri Dobay for joining me in the studio this week.  I would like to congratulate and wish she and Mark well as they tie the knot and marry this month.  It makes one wonder what wine and food will be served at this not so daily but decadent event….Learn more about Sherri Dobay on her website at http://www.daily-decadence.com/

Today’s unedited podcast with author Sherri Dobay, http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/09/01/wine-guy-mike-for-september-2nd/

This week WineGuyMike™ has two wonderful wines to share with you for a little dose of Daily Decadence.  Both are available especially priced at Liquid Planet, Missoula’s “Best of Beverage”, located in the Heart of Downtown Missoula.

The wines reviewed today receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

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This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Paul Hobbs CrossBarn Winery


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and U 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s podcast; Paul Hobbs CrossBarn Winery head winemaker Scott Morrison is this week’s featured guest, http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/22/wine-guy-mike-for-july-22nd/

Last week’s podcast; What You Need To Know About Wine  http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/15/wine-guy-mike-for-july-15/

Last week’s podcast; Perfect Patio Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/07/01/wine-guy-mike-for-july-1/

Recent podcast; (full length conversation) with Maximilian Riedel, CEO Riedel Crystal of America http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/24/wine-guy-mike-for-june-24/

Father’s Day podcast, Special Father’s and Special Wines http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/06/17/wine-guy-mike-for-june-17/

Recent Podcast with John Balletto of Balletto Vineyards & Winery http://bit.ly/WineGuyMike2

NBC Montana Today TV Segment on Easter wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30847522/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to WineGuyMike show wines for the lowest price.  Located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

Paul Hobbs and his eleven siblings were raised on a one hundred fifty year old farm in upstate New York.  If you placed an X in the very center of that farm you would be standing at the barn the Hobbs children knew as wondrous and magical place.  That barn is now referred to by Paul as the CrossBarn.

Hobbs is arguably one of the top winemakers in America; he is also respected as one of the top wine consultant’s worldwide, producing world-class wines in California and Argentina. Producing wines of distinct character require sourcing grapes from only the finest vineyards, a task and talent Hobbs excels at. 

Scott Morrison’s career in wine began in a very practical way, interning at a winery in the Napa Valley.  Having discovered his passion he embarked on an academic track, studying viticulture and enology at the University of California at Davis.  After finishing school Morrison traveled to New Zealand, a country whose focus is growing cool weather varietal grapes, it was there he honed his white winemaking skills.  Once back in California Morrison worked with The Hess Collection and Rudd Winery, and most recently Paul Hobbs Winery.  Morrison is now head winemaker at Paul Hobbs CrossBarn Winery. 

CrossBarn Winery produces elegant wine offering true consumer value, thanks to the collaboration of Hobbs and Morrison.  The grapes used in CrossBarn wines are carefully hand harvested striving to preserve the core integrity of the fruit.  All three current wines are from the 2009 vintage.

The wines I’m recommending are great wines, food friendly and available at Liquid Planet. 

This wine pairs well with shellfish and will be on sale for $24.99 until Friday 7/29.

This wine pairs well with Lamb and Chops and will be on sale for $28.99 until Friday 7/29.

This wine pairs well with grilled meats with ample marbling and will be on sale for $33.99 until Friday 7/29.

Pair this wine with; Oysters on the half shell, Salmon, Tuna, Tenderloin of Pork.

Sale Price until 7/29/2012  $13.99

The wines reviewed today all receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

The wine selections from today’s show are available today, all especially priced until 7/29, at Liquid Planet, in the heart of Downtown Missoula, Missoula’s ultimate wine shopping experience and the very best of beverage.

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Frank Sterns of Aurielle Vineyards in the Napa Valley


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and Fresh 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast Frank Sterns of Aurielle Vineyards http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/05/06/wine-guy-mike-for-may-6th/

Last week’s podcast with Justin Wylie and Va Piano Vineyards; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/04/22/wine-guy-mike-for-april-22/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment on Easter wines and food pairing; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30847522/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

Featuring guests such as Frank Sterns is why I love doing what I do, all things wine media.  Frank is a modern day example of what this country is founded on, hard work, dreams, and tenacity, an entrepreneurial success story.

A native Californian who now resides in Florida Sterns career focus was the Audio/Video Industry.  He built a very successful sound business that not only required hard work but entertaining his clients also.  As Sterns recalled during our conversation good wine while dining with clients had a true impact on the success of his business.

Sterns passion for wine grew throughout his career and in 2005 when he sold his sound company.   His exit strategy involved a new dream and a new plan, to build a winery in the Napa Valley.  It was while dining at the renowned French Laundry restaurant that Sterns focused in on the wines that he loved and the type of wine he was determined he was going to make at his winery.

Sterns business acumen and wisdom led him to UC Davis where he studied various wine courses he knew would be crucial in building and running a successful winery operation.  This also provided Sterns the background he would need to partner with a likeminded winemaker.

Aurielle Vineyards grapes are grown in three premium vineyards in the mountain appellations of Mt. Veeder and Howell Mountain.  The Mt. Veeder vineyards are located at the northern edge of the appellation providing lush, dark, earthy fruit.  The soils of Mt. Veeder consist of pushed up sea bed that lend to that style of fruit.

The Howell Mountain vineyard is located at high altitude producing big concentrated red fruits.  Howell Mountain was formed from volcanic eruptions producing very different fruit from Mt. Veeder.  These contrasting styles of fruit brought together in the hands of a great winemaker can become amazing wine.

Enter Chad Alexander who grew up in this area and really has a sixth sense of the land, the fruits it produces, and what to do with it from vintage to vintage.  Chad is a former head winemaker for Robert Craig and produces a style of wine, Napa Valley mountain cabernets, that Frank Sterns sought to produce.

Aurielle Vineyards produces distinctive world-class wines utilizing the science of grape growing and winemaking combined with skillful winemaking that is unencumbered by constraints of production costs or quotas.

Sterns has formed relationships with premium grape growers that only work with the finest of winemakers and winery’s committed to producing the very best wine.  That is exactly what Sterns and Alexander have produced in their 2008 vintage of Aurielle Cabernet Sauvignon.  Not only is the 2008 Aurielle Cabernet a world-class wine of distinct character and typicity, it is also very unique.  The winemaking blend of Howell Mountain and Mt. Veeder fruit is rare but Alexander has done an artful job in making this wine.

The Aurielle 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon has depth of color, elegant in the glass, nearly purple, beautifully vicious.

A floral, spicy nose, red fruit, black fruit, and enticing aroma that is big yet complex, smooth and silky.  A few descriptions usually reserved for the palate yet were appropriate comments for the aroma of this sophisticated wine.

Pumice like tannin great the palate coating the sides of the mouth with velvet silk. Plum, spice, earthen leather, and a hint of vanilla from the judicious use of oak, and then a lingering nuance of berry is memorable, a treat for anyone’s palate, even the most sophisticated of wine drinkers.

I enjoyed this wine so much I shared it with Missoula proprietor Ed Wells of The Depot restaurant last night as I enjoyed this superb wine with my dinner.  My main course was beef, I had to pair this wine with a medium-rare New York cut that was peppered and dressed with Maytag Blue cheese.  I want more of each right now as I think about this very memorable pairing.

Frank Sterns and Chad Alexander have made an exceptional wine in their Aurielle 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon and I thank them both for sharing it with me.  This impeccable wine receives the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™.

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Features the Capstone Dinner Event in Missoula


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and Fresh 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast  and full length conversation with Culinary Arts student Kacey Swanson http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/04/15/wine-guy-mike-for-april-15/

NBC Montana Today TV Easter wines with food pairing suggestions; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30847522/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

I had the opportunity this week to feature an event many are unaware of.  Once you attend the Capstone Dinner Event you will make a point to never miss one.

This week I invited a representative from The University of Montana College of Technology Culinary Arts Department to join me on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show©.  Kacey Swanson who is a student in the program and I discussed the upcoming Capstone Dinner Event.

The Capstone Dinner will take place at The Holiday Inn Downtown in Missoula on Saturday April 28, 2012 from 5-10PM.  The Holiday Inn is located at 200 South Pattee, Missoula, Montana.  Ticket prices for this event are $85.00 each.  For information on how to obtain tickets please call 406-243-7870.

I became familiar with the culinary program at a local event that I attend each year where I met the Director of the COT Culinary Arts Program, Tom Campbell.  I sought Tom out at this event on purpose to let him know just how inspired I was as a result of my interaction with his students.  The presentation of the food from this culinary program was beautiful; the passion shared by the students who prepared the courses of food was contagious.  Oh yeah, the food it was amazing too.  I was introduced to an instructor, Chef Suzanne Noyd who also owns The Butler’s Pantry.  The Butler’s Pantry is a catering company providing exquisite fine food for special events.

With my interest piqued I sought out to learn more about this wonderful program located in Missoula and respected regionally throughout the Northwest.  The Capstone Dinner Event is a combination of fine dining, fine wine, and a silent auction in which all proceeds support the College of Technology Culinary Student Education Fund.  This fund also supports competitions, exhibits, and field trips for the students, conferences and the Capstone Dinner Event.

This years event theme presented by the students; “SAUSSURE” (saw-sure), Explore the Alps in Montana – A Culinary Tour of Alpine Cuisine. Horace-Benedict de Saussure led the first expedition through the Alpine Range, believed to have founded Alpinism or Mountaineering.  Translating cuisine from Lyon, France to Vienna, Austria to the shores of the Adriatic Sea and infusing these dishes with Montana seasonal ingredients.  The culinary students are proud to show their unity by showcasing the talents and knowledge they have acquired over the past two years.  Don’t miss this opportunity for a great night out to experience a multi-coursed fine dining experience paired with exceptional wines.  There will be an assortment of delectable silent auction items presented and available for your bid.

For more information about this event and how to get on the mailing list, please e-mail Chef Tom Campbell at Thomas.campbell@umontana.edu or Kacey Swanson at kacey.swanson@umontana.edu

Capstone Dinner Menu

SAUSSURE

Menu

Hor D’ Oeuvres – An Expedition through The Alps Buffet Assortment

Western Platter

Roasted Vegetable & Goat Cheese Terrine

Smoked Local Trout Mousse in Dill Barquette Garnished with Cavier

Caprese Salad featuring House-made Mozzarella & White Balsamic Reduction

Duck & Sage Sausage Links

Red Onion & Rhubarb Tartlet

Risotto Croquettes with Fontina & Red Pepper Coulis 

Central Platter

Beef Liver Pate

Venison Kielbasa, Ginger Sauerkraut and Hot Mustard on Pumpernickel Canape

Weisswurst Links & Headcheese

Beet & Carrot Latkes, House-made Quark and Pickled Red Onion Canape

Pastrami Cured Salmon on Rye Point with Beet Pesto

Eastern Platter

Mediterranean Style Seafood Terrine

Marinated Sardine Crostini with Salsa Verde & Fresh Fennel

Chevre Balls Rolled in Turkish Spices

Spring Porcini paired with House-made Ricotta & Braised Garlic Scapes

Croatian Flatbread crowned with Dry Cured Bacon, Fresh Cow Cheese and Assorted Vegetables

Turkish Sausage Links

Hot Cheese Fondue with Pretzels

Soup

House-brewed Schwauzbier Cheese in Bread Bowl 

Fish Entrée

Grilled Local Trout adorned with Eggplant, Cherry Compote on a bed of Angel Hair Pasta 

Intermezzo

Lemon Sorbet

Meat Entrée

Montana Bauernschmaus

Braised Venison, Montana Beef Bacon and Kielbasa accompanied with Fresh Cabbage Salad, Caramelized Root Vegetable Trio and Crostini 

*Paired with House-brewed Hefeweizen 

Dessert Assortment

OPERA – French Chocolate Coffee Cake made of Layered Dark Chocolate, Coffee Buttercream and Almond Sponge Cake

Huckleberry, Lavender and Apple Tarts

Spice Cookies

Cupavci – Croatian Sponge Cake filled with Pastry Cream

Chocolate Fondue accompanied by Gingerbread & Fruit

Bread Basket

Rye, Pumpernickel, Italian Crostini, Grissini, Pretzels

You can listen to the WineGuyMike Radio Show live each week on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

Liquid Planet in the heart of Downtown Missoula features wines I have specially selected for you.  Be sure to stop by the very best of beverage and   Missoula’s premier wine shopping experience, Liquid Planet.

From my table to yours,

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Donald Ziraldo the world authority of Ice-wines Part 2


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and Fresh 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast and full length conversation with the “Iceman” Donald Ziraldo

Part 1 Podcast  and full length conversation with the “Iceman” Donald Ziraldo http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/04/01/wine-guy-mike-for-april-1st/

NBC Montana Today TV Easter wines with food pairing suggestions; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30847522/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

This week the Iceman Donald Ziraldo joins WineGuyMike for week two for the final show in this series on Ice-wine.  Last week we tasted the Equifera Riesling Ice Wine and this week I’ll taste the Equifera Vidal Ice Wine with Donald.

If you missed last week’s show with Donald and I be sure to listen to it, the podcast link is; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/04/01/wine-guy-mike-for-april-1st/  Talking with Ziraldo is like sitting in on an intimate wine education course.

The Equifera Ice Wine was a treat for me to taste.  Tasting wine with Donald Ziraldo was a pleasure and an education, one of my stand-out featured guests I have had the opportunity to have on my show.  In addition to last week’s following blog post I have included my review from this week’s tasting of the Equifera Vidal Ice Wine.

Ice-wine is a wine of extremes. Donald Ziraldo who produces Equifera Icewine is a man of extreme passion.  This week on the WineGuyMike radio show I had the pleasure and opportunity to talk with Donald and learn about him, his life’s body of work, and the Ice-wine he is so passionate about.

Ice wine is a form of extreme winemaking that takes the excruciating circumstances of Mother Nature to an entirely new level.  Ice-wine or “liquid gold” as it is referred to by wine aficionados is a dessert, or aperitif wine.

The practice of making Eiswein in Germany dates back to the early 1700’s.  But it is in Canada where it has become a modern day art.  Canada is now recognized as the finest Ice-wine producing area in the world.  This is mainly due to the Herculean efforts of one man, Donald Ziraldo.

Ziraldo is known as the “Godfather” of Ice-wine throughout the world.  He is also readily acknowledged as the world’s foremost authority on Ice-wine’s.  Ziraldo is the son of Italian immigrants who settled in the Canadian province of Ontario.  This is just across from Lake Ontario, one of the best known wine regions in the United States, the Finger Lakes region.

Ice-wine is a winemaking style wherein grapes are naturally frozen on the vine, harvested during the middle of the night and pressed in the extreme cold to separate the juice from the ice crystals. 

If the freeze does not come soon enough, the entire crop can be lost to rotting and if the freeze is too severe, it can prevent any juice from being extracted when the grapes are pressed.  The results produce very special wines that express aromatic flavors of white and tropical fruits such as mango, peach, and lychee.

Donald Ziraldo has a long and storied history of producing fine quality wines with winemaker Karl Kaiser.  Ziraldo and Kaiser are the forefathers of Canadian Ice-wine, together they founded Inniskillin Winery.  The Ice-wines of Inniskillin put Canadian Ice-wine of the map of the wine scene internationally.  Inniskillin produced many internationally renowned wines.

In 2006 Ziraldo and Kaiser left Inniskillin, although Kaiser remains as an emeritus consultant to Inniskillin.  Ziraldo has a new wine project in the Equifera Ice winery. 

The Equifera Ice Wines are grown and produced in Short Hills, a sub-appellation of the Niagara Peninsula.  The Equifera Estate Winery is the former home to champion race horses in the 1950’s and 60’s.

 Equifera produces Riesling, Vidal, and red Cabernet Franc Ice-wines. This week WineGuyMike had the opportunity to talk with Donald about the beautiful Equifera Ice-wines, we tasted them too.

The award winning Equifera Ice Wine is a special occasion in a glass.  When I taste great wine it occurs to me that you can taste the personality on the person behind the wine.  This is true of the Equifera Ice Wine, perhaps the best of Donald Ziraldo’s entire body of work in the world of wine.

The first wine that Donald and I tasted was the Riesling Ice-wine.  The Equifera Ice Wines strike the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity.  The Riesling is lighter in body and texture than the Equifera Vidal Ice Wine that Donald and I will taste next week on the show.  The structure and complexity of this magnificent ice-wine go hand-in-hand.  You would be hard pressed to find more complex wines in the world than the Equifera Ice Wines.  You could think of the Equifera wines as having multiple personalities as there are some many layers to them, you must try them.

Visually this Riesling ice-wine has a deep golden straw color that dances in your glass.  You are then greeted with the aroma of tropical fruit and a wonderful essence of stone fruit, and the nectar of honey.  On the mid-palate combine a wonderful tug of war between sweetness and acidity. The complexity of this wine is so deep that of the finish your palate is cleansed from the perfect acidity of the wine, but it does not end there.  The finish is an eternity of joyful bliss, just like a world class Sauterne you are left with the flavor of tart raisin.  This is one of the premier dessert or aperitif wines you will ever taste.

Week Two wine tasting:

The Equifera Vidal Ice Wine is every bit as complex as the Riesling, the Equifera Ice Wines are tantalizing.  The quality of Donald’s wines is exceptional.  The Vidal varietal is a hybrid of Trebbiano and Ugni Blanc grapes.  The Vidal varietal is hardy and more resistant to the extreme cold than the Riesling.

The Vidal that Donald and I tasted this week is fuller in body than the Riesling Ice-wine.  The nose of the Vidal is beautifully aromatic with tropical fruits of pineapple, mangos, lychee and then notes of grapefruit.  When this wine hits the palate it just explodes filling your mouth with lush texture that clings to sides of you mouth.  The Vidal, like the Riesling from Equifera is so well structured and balanced with acidity that it cleanses the palate on the finish, but not without a lingering memory of rich tropical fruit and honey. Truly incredible wines from Ziraldo.

View this Cocktail Mixology video with Equifer Ice Wine with Donald; www.youtube.com/watch?v=KeJV_arD8P4

I would like to thank Donald for taking time to share his Equifera Ice Wine with the WineGuyMike audience; it was a memorable experience for all.

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

Liquid Planet in the heart of Downtown Missoula features the wines I have tasted today.  Be sure to stop by the very best of beverage and see the Ice-wine I have selected for you.  Missoula’s premier wine shopping experience, Liquid Planet.

"from my table to yours"

Wines for Easter with WineGuyMike™ on KECI NBC Montana Today


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and Fresh 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Current week’s Podcast  and full length conversation with the “Iceman” Donald Ziraldo http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/04/01/wine-guy-mike-for-april-1st/

Part Three; Grand Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot tasting with Winemaster Randy Ullom and WineGuyMike; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/03/25/wine-guy-mike-for-march-25/

Part Two, Vintners Reserve Chardonnay and Riesling tasting with Randy and WineGuyMike; http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/03/18/wine-guy-mike-for-march-18/

Part One Avant Chardonnay

 http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/03/11/wine-guy-mike-for-march-11/

NBC Montana Today Show TV with Easter wines; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30847522/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

It’s Good Friday and Easter Sunday is coming quickly.  You may be having guests for dinner or you might be a guest for Easter dinner, in any case you need a great wine to serve or share.  Here are a few wine and main entre pairing suggestions for you.  Happy Easter from WineGuyMike, from my table to yours.

L’Ecole N° 41  2010 Chenin Blanc – Columbia Valley ($10.99)

This second generation, family-owned artisan winery located in the historic Frenchtown School depicted on our label.   Founded in 1983, they are the third oldest winery in the Walla Walla Valley.  As a traditional brick and mortar winery they grow and make 100% of their wine.  The focus is on terroir-driven, distinctive, and expressive wines.  All of L’Ecole’s Walla Walla Valley wines are made from grapes which are certified sustainable.

This fresh, tart and delightfully fruity Chenin Blanc shows Asian pear, perfumed honeysuckle and orange blossom aromas with flavors of apple, apricot, and grapefruit on a crisp mineral, lightly sweet finish.

L’Ecole Nº 41 has produced this old vine, Vouvray style Chenin Blanc since 1987. Jean Ferguson, L’Ecole Nº 41’s founding winemaker, loved this wine and crafted her version of Vouvray through cold fermentation to enhance the fruity and floral esters.  This wine offers great value.

Food pairing; Ham, Cornish Hens, white variety of fish, shellfish.

Kendall-Jackson Avant Chardonnay ($14.99)

The Avant Chardonnay is a beautifully crafted wine that is a great wine to start of the evening with.  There are three things that I share with you about the entire portfolio of Kendall-Jackson wines; the wines are made with finesse, the wines are elegant, and the wines are always consistent.

The Avant Chardonnay is pale yellow in the glass; it looks refreshing in your glass as it begs to be tasted.  It was fun to taste this new wine from Kendall-Jackson against the Vintners Reserve Chardonnay that has long been one of America’s favorite wines.

The Avant has only a slight nuance of oak, the fruit is bright on the nose and the palate.  What I found intriguing about this wine is that on the palate it was both light yet rich with fruit.  This wine has a perfect balance of fruit and acid, featuring mild tropical fruit of pineapple, tart apple, and my favorite Meyer lemon, the K-J Avant will pair nicely with shellfish, or any white variety of fish.  The K-J Avant really comes to life on the mid-palate as it is crisp, and delivers light fruit with nice gentle acidity.  The finish is delightfully crisp with subtle tropical fruit that lingers long, this is a very nice wine.

Food Pairing; Roast Chicken, Cornish Game Hen, white fish varieties, Salmon, shellfish

Equifera Ice Wine ($70.00)

The Equifera Ice Wines are grown and produced in Short Hills, a sub-appellation of the Niagara Peninsula.  The Equifera Estate Winery is the former home to champion race horses in the 1950’s and 60’s.

Equifera produces Riesling, Vidal, and red Cabernet Franc Ice-wines. This week WineGuyMike had the opportunity to talk with Donald about the beautiful Equifera Ice-wines, we tasted them too.

The award winning Equifera Ice Wine is a special occasion in a glass.  When I taste great wine it occurs to me that you can taste the personality on the person behind the wine.  This is true of the Equifera Ice Wine, perhaps the best of Donald Ziraldo’s entire body of work in the world of wine.

The first wine that Donald and I tasted was the Riesling Ice-wine.  The Equifera Ice Wines strike the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity.  The Riesling is lighter in body and texture than the Equifera Vidal Ice Wine that Donald and I will taste next week on the show.  The structure and complexity of this magnificent ice-wine go hand-in-hand.  You would be hard pressed to find more complex wines in the world than the Equifera Ice Wines.  You could think of the Equifera wines as having multiple personalities as there are so many layers to them, you must try them.

Visually this Riesling ice-wine has a deep golden straw color that dances in your glass.  You are then greeted with the aroma of tropical fruit and a wonderful essence of stone fruit, and the nectar of honey.  On the mid-palate combine a wonderful tug of war between sweetness and acidity. The complexity of this wine is so deep that of the finish your palate is cleansed from the perfect acidity of the wine, but it does not end there.  The finish is an eternity of joyful bliss, just like a world class Sauterne you are left with the flavor of tart raisin.  This is one of the premier dessert or aperitif wines you will ever taste.

Food Pairings; Stilton or Rogue Creamery Blue Cheese, Baked goods, fresh fruit, Creme Brulee, it is also dessert in a glass and needs no accompaniment. 

Inniskillin Riesling Ice-wine ($70.00)

Riesling

One of the world’s greatest “noble” varieties, this cool weather grape with high acidy is a natural for the making of Icewine.  Classic Riesling qualities include elegant citrus flavors, ripe orchard fruit tones and a slight mineral edge.

Tasting Notes

This Riesling Icewine shows the elegance of tropical aromas and flavors of lemon and lime. The good acidity of Riesling allows for a refreshing mouth feel amid the many layers of flavors that unfold.

Food Pairing Suggestions

Great with lemon based desserts or tarts along with fresh fruit based desserts; rich cheeses accompanied by fresh or dried fruit or your favorite fruit compote. Delightful all on its own!

Icewine and Cheeses

The major difference between Icewine and other dessert wines is acidity.  While all dessert wines are sweet, only the best ones have balanced acidity as well.  This crucial element not only adds to the enjoyment of Icewine, but also to its natural compatibility with cheese.  Most of the cheese universe pairs brilliantly with Icewine because each cheese’s richness begs for that crucial acidity.  Cheeses are inherently savory and sometimes salty and when prepared with the honeyed sweetness of Icewine, it creates a lovely balance that makes for a perfect match.

Riesling based Icewine is renowned for its acidity and mineral notes.  Its vivid orange and citrus tones will combine with a rich range of creamy and decadent food textures and tastes, from foie gras to crème brulée.

2009 Russian River Pinot Noir ($28.99)

This dark, garnet colored Pinot Noir exhibits floral aromas of rose petals intertwined with spice components of ginger, dusty earth and a hint of vanilla. Fruit aromas of raspberry and cassis form the core of the wine, and in the mouth, create a long, delicious finish that can be tasted for several minutes.

The wine is showy with a seamless viscosity that is balanced with a healthy bit of tartness to keep the wine fresh and lively.  It’s full in the palate with fine, coco-powder like tannins and a nice dose of astringency that lend additional grip and structure to this wine.  Overall, the wine has struck the fine balance between delicate and structured, and will improve with bottle aging during the next five years (or more).

With the Russian River Valley Pinot Noir, they ferment each lot of grapes separately in three to six ton batches.  They do not add commercial yeast to the tanks and instead rely on the natural yeasts found on the grapes and throughout the winery to ferment the juice.  This process tends to increase the length of the fermentation and add an additional layer of complexity to the finished wine.  During fermentation and barrel aging, they treat the new wine as gently as possible in an effort to preserve its aroma.

Food Pairings; Leaner beef roasts, ham, pork roasts, Salmon, roasted chicken, Lamb dishes.

Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Merlot ($25.99)

All the wines that go into the Kendall-Jackson Bordeaux portfolio are treated with care and attention to detail; however, with Grand Reserve level fruit, they employ additional artisan techniques like hand sorting, small-batch fermentation and additional cold-soaking to coax the finest expression out of our fruit.

The wines are selected based on the potential they showed in the vineyard and during the final stages before draining off the skins. The wines are barrel-aged in French oak, usually seeing 35-40% new oak.  When the final selections are made the wines from each individual barrel are tasted to make sure it belongs in the blend. The result are fabulous Grand Reserve wines.

The Grand Reserve Merlot is rich with dark fruits of black plum, boysenberry and cherry.  The nose of this wine is beautifully subtle with notes of violet and rich dark fruit.  Silky tannins and nice firm structure greet your palate and the great balance of this wine makes it a superb food friendly wine. The palate delivers dark plum and berries followed with nice cherry.  The finish is an ever so subtle chocolate and cedar followed with a sense of light cleansing mineral, a real delight.

Food Pairings; Grilled meats, Beef roasts, Ham

2009 Viña Cobos Felino Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.99)

Paul Hobbs has always been committed to crafting unfiltered and unfined wines and utilizing native yeasts in the fermenting process.  His commitment to winemaking technique results in exceptional wines that are well structured. Paul’s wines are a product of classic old world technique.

The Felino wines express great balance of pure, concentrated fruit that is lively with acidity and smooth, fine, tannins.  The Viña Cobos Felino label offers Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Chardonnay that is vibrant, lush, mouth-filling wine with beautiful texture that pairs exceptionally well with food.  Did I mention these wines sell for under $16.00.  These wines offer incredible value as many of Paul’s California wine offerings are far north of $100.00.

The 2009 Viña Cobos Felino Cabernet Sauvignon is 88% cabernet sauvignon, 8 % syrah, 4% petit verdot.  The grapes get a 3 to 4 day cold soak; 15 to 18 days total maceration and are fermented with selected and native yeasts.  This wine receives second native malolactic fermentation in barrel for 5 months and is then aged 9 months in American and French oak barrels, 20% of these are new oak.

This is a big wine, 14.5% alcohol, yet very refined in a way that it has not been over manipulated.  A deep ruby hue paves the way for a nose that is ripe with aromas of saddle leather, subtle sweet tobacco, minerality, and earthiness. The palate is lush with a rich well rounded mouth-feel that is complex.  There is a great balance of dark fruit, black currant and boysenberry, mineral, sweet tobacco, and acid. This wine is both rich yet remains lively and well structured with perfect tannin.

Food Pairings; Lamb dishes, Beef Roasts(especially heavier marbled roasts), Prime Rib would be an exceptional pairing.

The wines reviewed today all receive the WineGuyMike™ Seal of Approval™

To learn more about Kendall-Jackson and Equifera Ice wine you can visit http://www.corridormag.com/home/grapevine too read recent articles I’ve written on these topics and more.

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

Liquid Planet in the heart of Downtown Missoula features most of the wines I have shared today.  Missoula’s premier wine shopping experience, Liquid Planet.

"from my table to yours"

This Week on the WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© Donald Ziraldo the world authority of Ice-wines Part 1


Check out the radio show on The Trail 103.3FM and Fresh 104.5FM.  The live stream feed is online at http://www.trail1033.com where you can click on “Listen Live”.  The WineGuyMike™ Radio Show© airs on both radio stations Sunday mornings at 10:00AM MST.

Social Media links;

Today’s Podcast  and full length conversation with the “Iceman” Donald Ziraldo http://trail1033.podbean.com/2012/04/01/wine-guy-mike-for-april-1st/

NBC Montana Today TV Segment with Christmas wines; http://www.nbcmontana.com/video/30063511/index.html

YouTube; My YouTube channel of course is WineGuyMike™ or the actual URL link: http://www.youtube.com/user/WineGuyMike?feature=mhum

Facebook; WineGuyMike please “like”

Twitter; @WineGuyMike please follow me

Ciao Mambo, “Eat Like You Mean It”, located in Missoula on The Hip Strip.  Find them online at www.CiaoMambo.com

Sleep City Missoula  www.SleepCity.com

Liquid Planet “Best of Beverage” and a great place to find your holiday wine located in the heart of downtown Missoula.

Georges Distributing in Helena, Montana.

Ice-wine is a wine of extremes. Donald Ziraldo who produces Equifera Icewine is a man of extreme passion.  This week on the WineGuyMike radio show I had the pleasure and opportunity to with Donald and learn about him, his life’s body of work, and the Ice-wine he is so passionate about.

Ice wine is a form of extreme winemaking that takes the excruciating circumstances of Mother Nature to an entirely new level.  Ice-wine or “liquid gold” as it is referred to by wine aficionados is a dessert, or aperitif wine.

The practice of making Eiswein in Germany dates back to the early 1700’s.  But it is in Canada where it has become a modern day art.  Canada is now recognized as the finest Ice-wine producing area in the world.  This is mainly due to the Herculean efforts of one man, Donald Ziraldo.

Ziraldo is known as the “Godfather” of Ice-wine throughout the world.  He is also readily acknowledged as the world’s foremost authority on Ice-wine’s.  Ziraldo is the son of Italian immigrants who settled in the Canadian province of Ontario.  This is just across from Lake Ontario, one of the best known wine regions in the United States, the Finger Lakes region.

Ice-wine is a winemaking style wherein grapes are naturally frozen on the vine, harvested during the middle of the night and pressed in the extreme cold to separate the juice from the ice crystals. 

If the freeze does not come soon enough, the entire crop can be lost to rotting and if the freeze is too severe, it can prevent any juice from being extracted when the grapes are pressed.  The results produce very special wines that express aromatic flavors of white and tropical fruits such as mango, peach, and lychee.

Donald Ziraldo has a long and storied history of producing fine quality wines with winemaker Karl Kaiser.  Ziraldo and Kaiser are the forefathers of Canadian Ice-wine, together they founded Inniskillin Winery.  The Ice-wines of Inniskillin put Canadian Ice-wine of the map of the wine scene internationally.  Inniskillin produced many internationally renowned wines.

In 2006 Ziraldo and Kaiser left Inniskillin, although Kaiser remains as an emeritus consultant to Inniskillin.  Ziraldo has a new wine project in the Equifera Ice winery. 

The Equifera Ice Wines are grown and produced in Short Hills, a sub-appellation of the Niagara Peninsula.  The Equifera Estate Winery is the former home to champion race horses in the 1950’s and 60’s.

 Equifera produces Riesling, Vidal, and red Cabernet Franc Ice-wines. This week WineGuyMike had the opportunity to talk with Donald about the beautiful Equifera Ice-wines, we tasted them too.

The award winning Equifera Ice Wine is a special occasion in a glass.  When I taste great wine it occurs to me that you can taste the personality on the person behind the wine.  This is true of the Equifera Ice Wine, perhaps the best of Donald Ziraldo’s entire body of work in the world of wine.

The first wine that Donald and I tasted was the Riesling Ice-wine.  The Equifera Ice Wines strike the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity.  The Riesling is lighter in body and texture than the Equifera Vidal Ice Wine that Donald and I will taste next week on the show.  The structure and complexity of this magnificent ice-wine go hand-in-hand.  You would be hard pressed to find more complex wines in the world than the Equifera Ice Wines.  You could think of the Equifera wines as having multiple personalities as there are some many layers to them, you must try them.

Visually this Riesling ice-wine has a deep golden straw color that dances in your glass.  You are then greeted with the aroma of tropical fruit and a wonderful essence of stone fruit, and the nectar of honey.  On the mid-palate combine a wonderful tug of war between sweetness and acidity. The complexity of this wine is so deep that of the finish your palate is cleansed from the perfect acidity of the wine, but it does not end there.  The finish is an eternity of joyful bliss, just like a world class Sauterne you are left with the flavor of tart raisin.  This is one of the premier dessert or aperitif wines you will ever taste.

You can listen to the show live on the Trail 103.3FM or U 104.5FM.  These shows are podcast for your convenience and available on my blog at; www.WineGuyMike.wordpress.com

Liquid Planet in the heart of Downtown Missoula features the wines I have tasted today.  Be sure to stop by the very best of beverage and see the Ice-wine I have selected for you.  Missoula’s premier wine shopping experience, Liquid Planet.

"from my table to yours"