Tag - California

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Sterling Vintners Collection Meritage 2012
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Souverain Cabernet Sauvignon 2011
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The Pinot Project 2013
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Coppola Rosso 2012
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Dashe Zinfandel 2010
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Ravenswood Zinfandel 2012
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The Crusher Viognier 2012
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Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc + Viognier 2013
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Purple Cowboy Red Blend 2012
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The Path Pinot Noir 2012

Sterling Vintners Collection Meritage 2012

California, Central Coast
$7.99
And here I thought that Meritage was a fancy way of saying the wine was a blend. It’s actually so much more. Turns out there’s an alliance even!

The list of shit I don’t know seems to grow exponentially with every year that my wine-soaked liver allows me to live.

The Meritage labeling convention was born out of the frustrations of California wine vintner’s feeling strapped by laws stipulating that wines contain at least 75% of a specific grape be labeled as that varietal. Interest grew in producing Bordeaux-style wine, which are themselves a blend. And so a bunch of wino’s in Cali got together and made up a word by smashing together two other words and an alliance was born. Now, if you want to call a blend of wine a Meritage you just fork over some cash and voila! You have a Meritage wine.

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The Pinot Project 2013

Pinot Noir (duh)
California (kinda also duh!)
$10.99
Lightly Splurge-y
Lots of exciting, big, life decision type stuff going down at Casa Hood Somm. This means there has been less time for writing blogs. Notice that I did not say there was less time for drinking wine, just less time for writing about it. #lush

Reaching the end of the week is tough. Stress is high and the grocery supply is low. But as long as I have a new bottle to open up by Thursday all is good.

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Coppola Rosso 2012

California
Red blend
$8.99
I prepared a simple meal while listening to Liszt, From the Years of Pilgramage and Thelonius Monk, drawing inspiration from the latest Haruki Murakami novel that I’m reading. His stories are always full of delicious meals, drinking, music and long late night conversations. He sounds like one cool cat I’d love to hang with.

Very oaky to start, the wine mellowed with time. The medium body was smooth but still a little tangy with alcohol on the finish and bright around the edges with minerality. Grounded and earthy but not heavy, a nice lightness kept it from dragging too much.

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Dashe Zinfandel 2010

Dry Creek Valley California
BIG Splurge
$25
Sniffing it I closed my eyes and became lost in the layered folds of the olfactory experience. Big, bold but tempered.

Listening to the album Ella in Japan, eating baguette and Bucheron cheese, sipping on wine. Moments like this you feel it’s a world filled with beauty and simplicity. You want to stay in it forever.

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Ravenswood Zinfandel 2012

California
$8.99
Not like other Zins I’ve had that clobber you over the head with obvious heavy-handedness.

Make no mistake, Ravenwood Zinfandel packs a punch of dark fruity goodness but there’s a more nuanced brightness that rises out of the finish. I never understood what exactly it meant when a wine was described as “spicy.” I forget that the language used to describe wines is to be evocative, not literal.

In this Ravenswood Zin I came to better understand “spicy” as a tasting note — it’s more the sensation you feel in your mouth, it’s similar to when you eat spicy or peppery foods.

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The Crusher Viognier 2012

Wilson Vineyards, The Clarksburg; California
Splurge-y
$10.99
What an unexpected surprise! After that somewhat iffy blend with the Chenin Blanc I was not sure what to expect from this Viognier. Especially throwing me off was the first whiff upon uncorking this bottle.

It reminded me of Fruit Stripe gum from my childhood. Remember that shit? Fruit flavored gum with a zebra for a mascot? Initially I was scurred. But the first sip pushed that fear aside. tumblr_liuia119Wb1qdgmhm
fruit_stripe-www.colourlovers.com

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Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc + Viognier 2013

California
Splurge-y
$9.99
This blend reminded me of that friend we all have, you know the one. That one person that you meet up with after a long absence and you wonder why it’s been so long. You’re first happy by the reunion and have a swell ol’ time catching up, but then you have the crashing realization why it is you don’t spend more time together — this person is just too much. Over-the-top and bursting with an excess of, um, personality, for days and days — they just won’t shut up — a one-way conversationalist. You just sit there being talked at and every attempt to interject and contribute is met by an impenetrable wall of their own voice, and so you give up and look for an exit plan. It’s that friend you can only see every once in a while, and in small doses.

Peachy sweet with an effervescent lift and an interesting coppery, rusty coloring. Slightly and pleasantly sparkling on my tongue; smelled and tasted of overripe fruit. There were even tiny little bubbles that clung to the inside of the glass.

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Purple Cowboy Red Blend 2012

Paso Robles, California
Splurge-y
$9.99
Ride ’em cowboy!! Dark and juicy, the finish on this one lingers nearly as long as those lumbering scenes in Brokeback Mountain — speaking of cowboys.

But maybe this Cowboy was more like the bastard Stark son in Game of Thrones, clad in leather, wielding a sword and reminding you that “winter is coming.”

The first few un-inhibiting glasses of Cowboy may have been the reason I finally succumbed to all the hoopla being made over this damn HBO fantasy drama (I’m hooked and only four episodes into the series AND trying to avoid too many spoilers, so shhhhh).

I’m glad I rode with the Purple Cowboy. By the end of the first episode my purple stained mouth formed a perfect circle in a gasp that nearly sucked in the fluffy tail of my nearby slumbering direwolf — I mean dog.

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The Path Pinot Noir 2012

California
$6.99
I‘ve been trying to write more about the emotional experience of drinking wine and less about the subjective tasting notes, which although helpful and valid, I find a little less interesting.

I’ve noticed that the mood I’m in influences the experience I have with the wine I drink. I find it also true of art, films and music. There are times I don’t get into a film or a new album at first, but upon a second viewing or listening I’m blown away by it. Sometimes my mind needs time to adjust to something new, but other times it’s the state I find myself in that informs my experience.

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