Tag Archives: J Vineyards

2012 Thanksgiving Day Wine Picks!

6 Nov

Here it is! Our Annual Thanksgiving/Shopping Spree wines {previous post} that are ‘musts’ this year (plus a few extras)!  As you will notice sparklings and reds fill the list but that won’t stop us from finding the perfect whites for your Thanksgiving Day table!

So take a peek while you wait for the outcome of the Presidential Election… It might make time go by faster!

Apéritif/Sparkling

  • J Vineyards ‘Cuvée 20’: Spotted, the last 25th Anniversary bottle of J Cuvée sold to and sipped by 4 wonderfully shopped out ladies at Glenmere Mansion. After our trip to Woodbury it was so refreshing to see J Vineyards on the menu in the tavern at Glenmere.  Anything J is truly a must serve as an aperitif while enjoying your homemade hors d’oeuvres before the turkey carving.  This Cuvée has a rustic mouth feel all around with its toasty almond like hints then ventures over to the honeysuckle and grapefruit flavors which give it life and zest!  Buy online now to enjoy in time for Thanksgiving! {here} 

 

  • Freixenet Cordon Negro Cava Sipped and tried a few months ago {here}.  Had to pick a full bottle up to taste while the ‘hostess with the mostest’ prepared!  Not to mention it was her birthday celebration and this of course did the trick for that as well! Surprise!

Red Wine

  • Bonterra 2010 Merlot, Mendocino County : This spectacular Merlot is crafted from certified organically grown grapes and it is one of the better Merlot’s I have tried.  I received this wine for a twitter tasting with Thirsty Girl and Bonterra Organic Vineyards and we were all blown away by the wine’s dark berry flavors of cherry and plum and it’s smoothness in it’s finish filled with lovely tannins.  We are calling it a “Merlot for non-merlot lovers” and we are sticking to it! I highly recommend this wine with your main dish this Thanksgiving as it’s pleasant balance will put a smile on everyone’s faces! {still interested}?
  • Swanson Vineyards, 101 Points Red Wine; Add a little fun to the Thanksgiving day table with this predominately Syrah with Cabernet Sauvignon blend.  A very rich and sweet wine with hints of exotic spice, raspberry and black cherry makes this a great match with your juicier dark meat of the turkey. Not to mention, this wine adds a delicate yet elegant red color to your Tgiving table; $25 per bottle online.
  • Mark West Pinot Noir: Makes the list again as it is a staple on the Thanksgiving day table! Everyone loves it! {more Mark West and last year’s wine picks}

I will be trying more holiday wines and reporting back from the Food Network Magazine’s Holiday Tasting in NYC next week so stay tuned on more fun holiday wines! Hopefully I’ll have luck finding some more white wines for all of you white lovers!

Stay tuned and happy prepping!

Off-Roading in Sonoma

7 Jul

I had the great pleasure of spending my Memorial Day Weekend tasting wine at some of the most beautiful and tucked away vineyards in Sonoma (aside from one special pit stop on our way home in Napa Valley, but I’ll get to that later).  With a map in hand and no real itinerary, aside from our few favorites, we set out and crafted our own wine adventure to some of the most hidden treasures on and off the map.  With characters met along the way and enjoyable experiences, here is our road map to our “off-roading in Sonoma” or ‘off the beatin’’ as some like to call it.  Not to overwhelm you, I divided everything by day so you will have to check back for Day 2 of “Off-Roading in Sonoma”.  Beware, do not drive while reading…..

Friday, May 27th 2011

10:30AM – Premeditated first stop in the Russian River Valley; Chalk Hill Estate Vineyards & Winery.  The beautiful and diverse terrain started our trip off in a magical way. We were the first ones to enter and were treated like kings! They make a 2007 Estate Red which evokes a wonderful red wine that is true to Chalk Hill.

  • Fav Tasting: 2007 Estate Red (51% Cab, 24% Malbec, 13% Merlot, 11% Petit Verdot, 1% Carmenere)
  • Bought: 2007 Estate Red and 2008 Estate Sauv. Blanc (great price)
  • Fun Fact: They do their vineyard tours in a hummer and you should ask for Rich S. when you get there!
 
11:43AMJ Vineyards stop for some morning bubbly
  • Fav Tasting: Brut Rose (what they are known for) and the entire champagne tasting we did there. Highly recommend!
  • Bought: Brut Rose (there is no way I was leaving without a bottle)
  • Fun Fact: Really cool looking bottles and you can’t help but stop and gaze at the exquisite entrance with bridge running over a lily pad filled pond.
  
1:20PM: Pit stop in Healdsburg Burger Bar and Grill (best burger in town) washed down with Damnations Russian River beer (Belgian Strong Pale Ale) brewed in Santa Rosa, CA.  TRY: GET A BURGER, IT’S WORTH IT!

2:30PM: Returned to car and found a stranded cell phone by the car, it rang, we answered, and we received a free bottle of wine for returning the lost phone! Pays off to be nice! 🙂

3:39PM: Entered Dry Creek Valley

4PM– Looked up on yelp “wineries that serve chocolate with their tastings”, Truett-Hurst Winery came up, we went and were disappointed that they didn’t have free chocolates.  They did however have the spiciest and highest in alcohol wines of the day… TRY: RED ROOSTER & DARK HORSE GPS.. Some of the most unique tastes I’ve had.  EXTREMELY INTENSE WINES!

4:45PMBella Vineyards and Wine Caves was the next stop down the road that added a nice change of atmosphere. Great cave tasting experience with top-tier Zins and Syrah’s (their specialty). This is a must stop for a nontraditional experience and tasting

  • Bought: 2009 Zin – rich, rustic and the perfect ‘all-purpose Zin’!
  • Fun Fact: They have the most amazing cheesy breadsticks to clean your pallet with and great Adirondack chairs outside on the grass to chill out in!
    
6:15PMLongboard Vineyards, the last stop that we randomly stumbled upon and had them reopen the tasting room for us which was an interesting concept of WINE and SURF!  Not only (as you can imagine) do they have surfboards hanging from the walls, t-shirts, glasses, basically everything branded with a surfboard, they also have a ‘Surf Speak’ glossary somewhere around their tasting room.  Drink up and surf’s up BRO!
  • Bought: 2007 Syrah (complex wine with dark berries and coffee notes.)
  • Fun Fact: “Stay loose, trust your own palate, get wet often and spread more time surfing and sharing life with friends and family and less time reading the back copy of wine bottle” – as I’m reading the back of the wine label… SURF’S UP!”

Day one completed and survived… Stay tuned for what’s to come for Day 2 (SPOILER: chocolate shots, olive oil tastings, and fire pits ahead!!!)

Celebrate Champagne and You!

4 Jun

Celebration usually equals limitless amounts of bubbly, but why deprive ourselves of drinking the stuff that makes us feel so good and giddy inside to a few times a year (graduations, bdays, holidays, wedding etc…). Why not indulge and seize the moment when we have this craving for the ‘good stuff’ and treat ourselves to a glass or two!

Of course I love the pinots, roses, zins, but sometimes (well a lot of the times) when I go out especially with the girls, I want (we all want) a nice refreshing glass to get us in the mood through it’s tornado of bubbles and crisp taste.  Many a nights we have champagne night where we just sip on champagne all night long vs. wine, beer or mixed drinks – something about those bubbles after a long work week just make everything so much better!! I have yet to see a champagne drinker with a frown on their face. It’s truely a “happy” drink!

So instead of creating an excuse to drink it, as Nike would say, just do it and cheers to life! Because that is what champagne is really about the celebration of YOU and that’s everyday!!

Champagne Reco’s From Across The Spectrum!

2007 Brut Rose from Gloria Ferrer Caves and Vineyards (~$28) – This sparkling wine with a beautiful golden/rose color from Sonoma Valley has an elegant blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that makes it a special treat with an outdoor breakfast or goes well with a fabulous picnic in the park!  Enjoy with strawberries, Italian bread and fine cheese!  Enjoy!

Brut Rose NV from J Vineyards (~$30) – From the Russian River Valley, this sparkling rose is a delicious pink color that tastes as good as it looks!  Lots of fresh fruits in this sparkling along with a balanced long lasting finish.  Another great rose to take with you to the pool and soak in the bubbles!

Prosecco di Conegliano, Brut, Zardetto, NV. (~$11) – 95% Prosecco, 5% Chardonnay, this light crisp wine is full of bubbles and is sure to wake you up and get you in the mood for some fun!  Hints of apple and a residual sweetness, great served before dinner with melon and prosciutto!

Paringa Sparkling Shiraz ’08 (~$21) – From Southern Australia this is an extremely refreshing sparkling drink with lots of dark cherry and plums!  Many people don’t know about this rarity and it’s a great conversation starter.  Share this great summertime drink at BBQ’s, and any sort of salty nuts and apps!

%d bloggers like this: