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I drank a Scotch and I liked it

7 Aug

Oh wow! I’ve been anti-Scotch since the time we met. Which was when I was learning about “tolerance” so…just imagine why the flavor of it triggered icky feelings for some time.

But ample time had passed and while I no longer associated scotch with wacky St Louisans fetching late night White Castle and (ahem) scotch coming up…I still didn’t like it. For the same reason I don’t like a lot of mezcal: I’m not into smokey flavors.

Well, I had a pal determined to turn my head and I’m glad he did. The Glenmorangie Highlands Single Malt Scotch “Nectar D’Or” 12 year whisky with a Sauternes barrel finish is scrumptious enough for a gruel-head like me. I probably phrased the name all wrong but you can’t blame me too much I’m sipping Scotch.

This has just a whiff of smoke at the end that ballasts the honey, vanilla and marmalade that you get up front. It’s that friend who has one slightly annoying quirk but they are so delightful that the quirk becomes endearing. Or it’s the gap in the supermodels’s tooth.

Anyway. I’ll stop saying I hate scotch. Much like I tell people that if you think you hate Los Angeles you just have to find the part you like, it seems you just have to find a scotch that suits you.

I actually am a bit Scottish–me mum’s a Campbell so I feel better knowing I don’t hate a drink that runs in my veins.

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Just for fun

26 Jun

Holy heck I miss carefree rosé. So here you go.

Rosé I was gonna refuse to think about but here we are I’m giving it a brain cell. One cell. Just know my brain contains multitudes.

2016 Chateau D’Or et de Gueules Rosé

Mourvèdre, Cinsault, Syrah, Grenache

Okay skip ahead for the irreverent analysis sweet sweet content. BUT!!!!! because I’m gearing up to start WSET diploma:

Eye: light salmon, quick tears

Nose: stone, strawberry and honeydew

Tongue: dry, medium acid, medium alcohol (checked it is 12.5 abv), light body, strawberries, raspberries, dry white stones on a bleak plateau (no kidding), and someone stepped on a rose nearby. Finish is quick but no bother because this wine is for rejoicing.

Carry on BUT:

Here are your wine metaphors:

This rosé is a Carl’s Jr. order of fries. It’s not McDonalds. But it is FRIES and they are good and fill that fry bill. So it is with refreshing Provençal rosé. Night boos.

Can you dig it?

6 Jun

Latest piece is up on Delectable here!

It’s about canned wine. I tasted so much bad wine I thought I was starting to not like wine anymore. I poured so much wine down my sink. I tasted artisanal hipster bullshit in cans so chic I was sure they would taste good and declared “bullshit” as I promptly dumped them.

However! I found some winners and reported on them here.

Now I have to be honest. I have two favorites and one is a wine spritzer that may barely be wine and I don’t care because it tastes good so there you go. It’s the Barefoot Cellars Spritzer in Red Sangria. Don’t think of it as wine. Think of it as a treat.

That’s all from the (wine) battle grounds.

It finally happened

21 May

I inadvertently had a birth year wine. Sadly much like me from the womb most of this was jettisoned into the bushes on the Warner Brother lot.

Just kidding I was a C-section child. Hence my perfectly shaped head. And all my WB movie lot experience to date has been scrambling around with a headshot trying to find whatever casting office called me in. And laughing at tourists on trams who are hoping they will see a celebrity. And last time I was there doing some contortion for a horror movie. Good times.

I had dreamt of birth year wine. I didn’t plan on this. I’m not particularly fond of Gewurtz but this one was thankfully not a lychee bomb. It was pretty damn elegant.

It found its way into my glass as I was a volunteer sommelier assisting the winemakers at Winemasters, a gigantic wine and food event held on the WB lot to benefit cystic fibrosis.

I’d already had an exhilarating night as I’d met the maker of my favorite affordable buy. Joel Peterson was there pouring Ravenswood and I FANGIRLED out. And my friends from TOP were there with beautiful Roussanne and Syrah from Paso Robles. Elena and Stanley are the best. Get your hands on their vino.

The actual event was over and I was partying onnnnn with some of the patrons I knew who had actually bought tickets–admittedly being a volunteer was part me attempting philanthropy and part me finding a way to attend. But some of these ticket holders had brought their own amazing wine collections.

I’d left the table and was snapping up cheeses and water crackers leftover at the Beverly Hills Cheese shops’ station. One of the event organizers was nearby and poured the Stony Hill into my glass. I sipped, slurped, nodded in approval and propelled was was in my mouth into the nearby bushes. Not because it was bad but because it was probably the 30th thing I’d tasted and I was headed back to the table where a 1965 Wente Pinot, a 2000 Tempier Bandol, and even more treasures were being bandied about like they were wine coolers.

But I gasped when I saw the year. Finally! A birth year wine. Now to find that birth year Port I dream of…I should volunteer more though. Rising tides lift all boats.

New column! Crack the Dom Ruinart!

11 May

I’m going to be contributing to Delectable–first column here! For those of you not aware Delectable is the app arm of Antonio Galloni’s Vinous. It serves as both a way to keep track of what you drink, and a way to see what others are saying and drinking! I’ve actually made friends using it. Do take a read of what I titled:

The Big Guys V The Rest of the World

For my first column I spent the weekend at Effervescence LA, a three day celebration of bubbles, and wrote about the difference between Champagne and other traditional method sparklers. Check it out! I’ll still be putting things up on Scrumptious Gruel, and The Whine Situation podcast is coming up on a one year anniversary so there is much to celebrate. Thank you to everyone who is tuning in to any and all of my wino exploits. Someday I wish to toast with every one of you.

Nothin’ says happy like a girl and her magnum….

6 Oct


Okay so getting personal will sometimes throw you. And sometimes bring out the best! Or maybe it was just my passion for a Zin. Anyway. A friend on the Delectable app has “more wine than we could ever drink” and sent a vintage my way. A magnum no less!

Holy cow 2006 Martinelli Jackass Vineyard Russian River Valley Zinfandel !

I am over bowled by the generosity of the wine community sometimes. Really. I’ve been dwelling in heartbreak half the time of the last month. And the bolstering of the people who love wine like I do has kept me going. And my friends willing to come to my support in person…!

I mean granted I had bottles to pour but they also were willing to stop by just for hugs or to take me to a new fave wine bar where we ordered wines and pretzels with spicy mustard. What the fuck would I do without these people, both online and not?

Not sure.

Let’s talk about this wine. I think mayyyyybe it may have been a smidge past its time. But honestly. I looked. This was a garnet wine. That signifies either nebbiolo or age. I took a whiff: it was all jam and…spice and also…animal? Not being a meat eater I am never sure. But then on the tongue. Jam…but not in a cloying way. Allspice, pepper and nutmeg speak up, as does leather with a VENGEANCE once decanted. Yeah the more time I gave this baby to relax the more it said come chill on my leather sofa and I said fine since it is wine not a sofa. There is a mincemeat quality to this but it is just…RIPE enough I know it is not, say, a grenache. Plus the tannins fuck the tannins are developed and velvety as can be.

This is zin. Fresh zin is all blackberries, jam and cloves with slightly more biting acid and alcohol. This Zin is elderly in a way that has softened the bit. I am taking this zin out to play shuffleboard. I dunno.

So grateful. As were my friends that don’t delve into 11 year old wine every day, much less out of a magnum.

Wake up to this sunshine (funky but still, sunshine) in a glass

29 Aug


Oh shit I don’t even care too much what the grapes are (they are Mantonico, Guernaccia Bianca, Pecorelllo, Greco Bianco). Or where this is from (Calabria the arch and toe of the good ol’ boot of Italia). Or even year (2014).

What matters is you have some FUNK and GOLD dancing in your glass.

When you sip this your head should explode into the chorus from Groove is in the heart and you should start dancing. Deeeeeeee, deeelite! Anyone else?

Got this at originally at Covell.

2014 Chora Bianco IGP Calabria

It may not be for all. It is almost an orange wine. In terms of color.

Please excuse any grammar issues in this WSET style summation. I’m just gonna let it flow….

The eye: Deep clear gold. Medium slow tears.

Nose: Clean (yet oh so dirty meow), medium intensity, marmalade, meyer lemon, orange peel, developing.

Tongue: Dry, medium acid, medium alcohol ( crap it isn’t on the label?), medium body, medium plus intensity, flavors–fucking meyer lemon orange marmalade, funky (what is the tech term like soil)yeast (it is aged sur lies aka on the dead yeast), and a wee hint o lanolin

finish: medium plus it doesn’t evolve so much as you get a shadow of a taste that swells like a beautiful symphony. YAS