I HAD TO

21 Feb


Oh hey this is both ten times worse and better than I thought it would be.

Goya Refresco Cola Champagne

This is nowhere near true Champagne. 

Nor is it like a French Cremant, made in, say Saumur, Vouvray, Limoux, or so on in the same way Champagne (and Cava from Spain and Cap Classique in South Africa or other traditional method wines) are.

This is fucking cream soda. Is cream soda tasty?

Fuck yes.

I may need more. It’s totes refresco. And totes full of sugar and happiness.

No, wait, stop Clifford, resist! It’s probably a one-way ticket to diabetes so I’ll keep it to a once a year if it is on sale item. 

Like I try to do with Diet Coke because I had one heck of a DC habit I fear sliding into again.

Although I wish Champagne Cola came in diet. Basically this is cream soda. And if you are disappointed because you wanted a champagne flavor you are gonna be sad because obvi this is not gonna be like that. But it still could suck.

But it does not. So get into it. If you dare.

Considering…

14 Feb


I felt good about Theory but no matter how well you do with that if you don’t pass Tasting you at least have to re-take that part to pass on to the next level.

WSET level three y’all. That’s the Wine and Spirit Educational Trust.

As it turns out I passed Theory “with distinction” (highest honor), and the Tasting “with merit” (still an honor). And my all over score added up to “with merit”. I’ll take it!

I had passed level two with distinction but considering I was worried I might not pass level 3 at all I’m pretty damn pleased with myself.

WSET level three is the Advanced level. It is tough. It’s the level before the diploma program which is divided into 6 parts over two years. But it is still a rough haul with a hell of a lot to learn.

I’m still not sure if I’ll go on and do the diploma but have some time before the first unit is offered. In the meantime WSET 3 with Merit is feeling pretty good.

Lovely

7 Feb


Oh hey chatty wine! This wine has a lot to say and I was up for listening. And reading. The winery sent me oodles of info on this lil’ sample from Columbia Valley:

Mullan Road Cellars 2013 Red Wine Blend

It’s a Bordeaux blend: 57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 1% Malbec 

Oh okay okay let us talk about the taste. That’s what y’all are here for no?

Oh okay okay okay I am going to go WSET with the tasting notes but I’ll attempt to spice them up. If you want to skip all that I’ll just say this is a sexy blackberry jam of a wine with some delightful vanilla from its 16 months in oak (some new French, some American).

Here we go!

On ze Eye: Easy. Easy on the eyes. Ahem. Technically it is clear, medium ruby with slow thick tears.

In yer Nose: clean, medium, blackberry, vanilla, and allspice to put it simply. Youthful.

On ye olde Tongue: dry, medium plus acid and alcohol, so a thoroughly serious wine. But like fun serious. Like…I’m not sure things in the world have been unfun serious recently so… 

Body and flavor intensity: medium plus, both of them. Tannins are the medium. But all the acid and alcohol (14.3% abv) make me think this could be aged for some time. 6 years, say?

Flavours (with a u bc why not British): blackberries!!!!!! And as the French and cool people like you and I say: cassis. As in currants: mostly red. Boatloads of vanilla. And allspice! That’s the stuff! And probably some more spices like cloves and nutmeg but they are elegantly woven in so you don’t get the impression you’re eating a Christmas cookie although that sounds good right now…

Oh no now I want another bottle so I can pair it with gingerbread. Not that I have gingerbread right now. Or another bottle so all this will remain a fantasy. For now…

Into every life…

26 Jan


…some health must fall. And being as today is National Green Juice Day it seemed like an appropriate time for a break from wine. As opposed to a wine break.

I was wondering if absinthe counted as green juice since it does come from botanicals but before that nefarious plot could be carried out Evolution Fresh and Postmates were kind enough to save me from myself.

They sent me some of their Smooth Greens and Kale juice. I mean it is actually friggin’ delicious. I don’t particularly like kale and this is tasty. It has fiber and protein and happy happy green things that have been cold-pressed into delicious healthy submission. I would love to turn my nose up at the juice trend except I can’t because my nose is buried in the glass I’m slugging this tasty stuff down from. What doooo you know?

Do it y’all. Have a glass of health even if only for today.

Cheers!!

Pussy drinks Barolo. Kitty likes the tar and roses

21 Jan


I’d saved this bottle. I mean, 2011 Barolo…I could have hung on. But given the state of the union I cracked it open. As I write this I’m getting ready to go to the Los Angeles women’s march tomorrow morn. 

Hence pussy ears. 

Wuss wine can back the hell off.

This is a modern Barolo. Ready to sip now. Or…at least ready to sip six years post-vintage. I dare say earlier may have been too early.

2011 Damilano Lecinquevigne Barolo

You know how you make and new friend, and once you have both shared the stories of your messed up lives, think “I’m glad I met you now because we would have HATED each other but now we are gonna be besties”? 

I mean maybe you never thought that but with Nebbiolo you are generally glad you met it once it had gone through it’s rough stage. 

And modern Barolo, rife with the vanilla oak of the modern makers, went through its “rough stage” more quickly than classic Barolo.

This one is friendly. It says:

Roses! Berries! Tar! Tannins so mellow and lilting you take them in and decide to give them a hug!

As a wine person I embrace tannins fyi if you are not necessarily a wine person you may wait another few years to drink this.

But then. Oh then. 

We have flowers and I swoon. Roses.

And we have tar.

And hell if nothing else moves me it is prehistoric gook that bubbles out of the ground in our own La Brea tar pits, it is VIOLETS in a glass. 

Dang, drink this modern shit. Classic Barolo is brilliant and I love it for what it is but Damilano is On Point. 

Now that I’m fortified I’m getting some zzz’s then am off to grab back.

WINTER comes Rosé

9 Jan


My main fear is that my multitude of smart, educated, impassioned musings on rosé still cannot get people to give pink wine a fair shot.

That’s not actually my main fear. My main fears are not fare for blogging here. ANYWAY.

Rosé is NOT JUST FOR SUMMER!!!!

HOPEFULLY ALL CAPS CONVINCE YOU!!!!

Rosé is a wine for all seasons. Don’t you give me lip. This is what you want. I promise. It will warm you up, cool your tongue and light up your soul. 

Before we get to today’s pick let us revisit rosés of the past. This Rosé is still my fave American pink. This One is still my SECOND fave french. 

But right now this is truly my latest hardcore Give Me pink vino love:
2015 Chateau de Trinquevedel Rosé

A full deep wine that offers as much on the tongue as it does to the eye.

ME-fucking-OW.

You are thirsty. You want something pretty badass and PRETTY to look at too. You want something that makes the woman in you roar. Or maybe the secure male in you knows that true men drink pink…you want that part to make some noise.

So this. It is full and vibrant pink that verges on salmon but is HOT DAMN deep pink.

45% Grenache, 24% Cinsault, 15% Clairette, 10% Mourvedre, 6% Syrah

It smells of pink grapefruit, limes, cranberries, and holy fuck fabric? Like crisp ironed fabric. Linens.

And some white roses. Picture a bouquet of white roses on Ophelia’s chest floating away from the shore. It is romantic and delicious.

It is those holiday napkins you starch and iron for special occasions. But you folded them into cornucopias holding strawberries and limes and maybe a pretty smooth river stone.

Like the stiffness of a starched napkin it is robust–a plate full of cranberry sauce and bread hearty stuff. But it is elegant. The starched napkin, unfolded into the lap of a woman in silk changes that dynamic.

It is good. Dang.

So that OUGHT to be enough but if you are a wine nerd here are my WSET 3 notes:

EYES: Clear, medium plus, salmon pink 

NOSE: clean, medium intensity grapefruit, wet stones, nectarines and starch. Youthful.

TONGUE: dry, medium plus acid, medium alcohol+ (thank you Grenache for that 13.5%abv), medium plus body for a rosé, flavor intensity medium, then the grapefruits, cranberries, linens, white peach, white flower and honey perhaps? And just fucking delicious. Finish is medium. Not complex but mellow and stony. Picture the feeling you get turning a cool stone over and over in your palm and that is this. Delish.

Quality: GREAT. That’s not WSET just me. I’d think at least twenty but holy duckbills it is like 18. Drink now don’t age. Get next year’s when it is there. Andddddd YES. THIS IS A YES WINE JUST DRINK IT EVEN IN WINTER ESPECIALLY IN WINTER

Let Us Stay: Beaujolais

13 Dec


Okay so I swear my ten-part series on cru Beaujolais is coming. I am in the midst of amassing a wine from each cru. St-Amour is hard to find, y’all. But I’m on it.

IN THE MEANTIME PINNNNNNNK! Pink as in Rosé.

From a winemaker who you may just see resurface in the ten-part series but HOLY HECK I love this producer:

2015 Pierre-Marie Chermette Vissoux “Les Griottes” Beaujolais Rosé

While generally I claim this as THE BEST I’d say on another note this may be at least one of the best. Shit, you guys. I have enough love in my heart for A LOT of rosés out there.

YAS Gamay rosé from the Chermette’s YAS.

I don’t know if the grammar was correct for Chermette’s. Are Pierre and Marie one or two people? Should I have said “Chermettes'”? These things matter.

But not as much as my tasting notes. Sweet babies.

Okay I lie I paused and did some research: Pierre-Marie and Martine Chermette were the upstarts of sustainable viticulture in Beaujolais. So Pierre-Marie is one person. This is a natural wine. Like it waits for the natural yeast to do it’s duty.

That yeast knew what was up!

This wine. Okay I’ll get to my tasting notes. At last:

Gorgeous salmon color. Peach melba on the nose. Dry. HIGH acid. Medium alcohol. Medium plus body as far as a rosé goes! There is some viscousity. More peach melba in the mouth. When I say peach melba I mean peaches plus acidic raspberries plus vanilla n cream. There is a hint of minerality but it is very smooth. Sanded stones. The finish LINGERS! ON! FURTHER THAN YOU’D EXPECT FOR A ROSÉ!

THIS IS THE MAGIC. FRENCH BEAUJOLAIS MAGIC.

This Gamay is my true love.

For now. I’m a fickle beast.

Meow.