Tag Archives: petit verdot

It’s Getting Dark, Very Dark

17 Nov

Stick a steak knife in me, I’m done. As a goth vegetarian vampire who needs somewhere to put her anger I yearn for reasons slay something, anything, so long as it doesn’t have a heartbeat or a central nervous system. Hence these cruciferous slabs.

I made fun of the cauliflower as substitute-for-everything trend. Especially when one evening, all I wanted was a head of cauliflower to gobble whole, dipped in hot sauce as I do. And the store had no whole cauliflower, only containers of pre-pulverized cauliflower rice. Ugh. And I glanced askance at the cauliflower steak trend. Until, at a couple of dinners where I had no control (as happens to us hapless wine people) over what my meal would be, I was served cauliflower steaks. And they were FANTASTIC.

Still, why bring cauliflower steak home? I thought of it as an affair best left to work dinners and such. A dish to have out.

But then! Beyond the excuse to stab things and eat cauliflower, I had gotten a wine that looked goth AF and was named Very Dark Red, and OMG some steak knives. These Laguiole steak knives were goth as the wine, so I put some Skinny Puppy and Nine Inch Nails on, cranked the oven, murdered a cauliflower, and made a night of it, pairing the knives and wine with the dish.

PS knife pairings? Here for it.

My findings?

THE WINE: Sheid Family VDR (Very Dark Red) 2020

THE STEAK: slabs of cauliflower sprayed with olive oil, sprinkled with salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika and a touch of coriander, roasted in the oven, based on this recipe.

The two together?? Purrrrrr. I mentioned that in addition to being a goth, I am also part cat, no? This may be the best pairing I’ve ever devised on my own in the wild.

I appreciated that the wine is made of two very big petites: Petit Verdot and Petite Sirah. It’s a toasty and roasty nose, full of grilled plums and stewed prunes, black pepper and green peppercorn. It smells thick, if that makes sense.

Rich on the palate with blackcurrant cordial, stewed black cherry and more plummy prune-y goodness, but also some herbal freshness, even a hint at menthol? Along with charred green peppers and smoke. It is QUITE tasty. The tannins are plump and juicy, which is one of my favorite ways for tannins to be. it finishes vanilla and smoke possibly like goth’s favorite pillow.

Meow.

Try it yourself. Also TikTok deemed a video of me eating my cauliflower with a steak knife as inappropriate and danger so let me say, use a fork, chopsticks or your fingers. But feel free to carve with a knife. Bring on the steak! The cauliflower steak.

Wine-timidation

18 Apr

Oh no so there is that friend. She has her shit together. She is smarter, cooler, more–I dunno everything-er–than you, and you love her but worry about saying the wrong thing around her until the night gets going and you realize really her presence is actually calming.

She looks super deep, and also somehow pulls off the paisley/plaid/denim look like a boss. Like this wine pulls off combining varietals from Spain (the Tempranillo), Bordeaux (Cabernet Sauvignon) and Northern Rhone (Syrah). And then this wine sports the one wacky grape like she rocks the random nonsensical jacket patches and it works! The grape in this oh-so-super metaphor is the Petit Verdot. Who the F grows that? It is a finicky and needs extra-special heat and is hardcore and normally used in tiny amounts except here where it is a full 25% of the beverage but hey! This wine has it! And makes it wicked awesome! Why does she have a wombat patch? That’s so odd! And cool now you wanna get to know some wombats even though she probably forgot she ever got that patch.

Oh right and before I forget there is hip minimalist intervention in the making of this vineyard to boot. So cool.

Also a friend of mine in the wine community sent this to me because he rocks and I do my best to give him educated wine feedback…

Here is the thing. This girl (wine) is good. And quality. And worth keeping in your wheelhouse. I might eat it with migas but don’t tell.

So this intimidating friend/wine…although at first glance too hip n cool for school, once you get to chatting (sipping) she is relatable. Do-able. Maybe even basic. Simpler than you surmised but still…upscale shall we say. Delectable.

And now I shall like a WSET advanced certified person I’ll judge for you this wine:

2012 Booker Vineyard “Remnant” 

35% Tempranillo, 25 % Petite Verdot, 23 % Syrah, 17 % Cabernet Sauvignon

Aged 24 months in French oak barrels. From Paso Robles (so near yet so far!).

Lemme give those of you who want a soundbite tasting note my thoughts: This is plush but has a bite. Fruity in a way some peeps will call sweet but really just fruity. With some spice. Balanced perfectly. If you want to know what to pair it with I would say walnuts. That’s my gut feeling. But you are not ordering that for dinner so I’d say anything with nuts. Oooooh a peanut butter and grape jelly sandwich would be flippin’ wicked with this. Now I need a sandwich. Oh my.

All of which to say this is an approachable wine with an attitude. Like that girl who is so cool you hope she likes you too. She probably will.

Details, WSET-style:

To the eye: DARK!!! Which I love. Dark ruby/purple. Opaque even poured in small amounts. Medium thick slow tears gliding down the wineglass sides.

Nose: All sorts of blackberries, plums, allspice, red pears,and ginger.

Tongue: Dry but so fruit-forward you almost wanna call it sweet. Acid is medium. Tannins medium and may be from the petit verdot but clearly there is some influence from the oak. Sorta plush yet textured like that. Alcohol is medium (13.8% abv which technically is .3 over medium but what the heck evs). Body is for a red medium…almost plus> Strawberries blackberries cherries all the -ies, allspice as heck, a hint of that sorta sweet baby spinach…rightttt? Right. Flavor intensity is medium, Finish is medium plus. There is a moment you think “this is short-ish or maybe medium” then something spicy kicks you. In a Pleasant Kicking Way. Someone is into that right??

Okay. Thank you Paul for sending this my way. It is truly a delight.

Oh heck realized I have some peanut butter cup ice cream and a cherry ice cream and that may be the ideal pairing for this wine. Test it and tell me?