We hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving… we did! While Scott and Amy celebrated with their family last week, Janet and Lenny had most of the family over for Thanksgiving dinner.
There was an article in the Trib by the NY Times wine critic, Eric Asimov. He asked several friends who are somehow in the wine business to recommend a white and a red for Thanksgiving dinner. There were several suggestions but his favorites were given by a friend who is also a sommelier. Here are the two wines.
Villa Brici 2018, is a nice crisp white from Slovenia. It was very refreshing with a nice acidity to it. You would be hard pressed to find a wine drinker who did not like this wine.
The red is a 2017 Breca Garnacha from Spain. Here is another wine with just the right amount of acidity to go well with Thanksgiving dinner or any dinner for that matter. Not too dry, not too sweet, it was very well balanced and will, no doubt, be a crowd pleaser.
We will be back next week with some exciting Chapter news!
Because of busy weekend schedules, Amy suggested to Janet that a Special “Thursday Night” Edition of FEWC was in order. After a brief consultation, the Executive Committee unanimously approved and … voila!
Scott started us off with a red from the area of Bordeaux that we visited while on our trip, St Julien, Chateaux Teynac 2006. Even though it had been decanted for an hour before the first glass was poured, both Scott and Lenny were not impressed with the taste. However, as we have found time and time again, patience is a virtue when it comes to wine. By the time we were having our last glass from this bottle, the wine had made a complete transformation from a wine that we would just as soon pass up, to a wine that was quite appealing.
The 2nd bottle was a 2014 Malbec from Washington State’s Milbrandt Vineyards.. Since we are all big fans of Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina (especially vineyards that are at least 3000 ft elevation – such wine snobs!) that Lenny thought it would be interesting to see what the USA had to offer in this grape. Everyone liked it a lot but did not feel it was as fruit forward as typical Mendoza Malbecs. Kind of a toned down version of what we are used to. Still, it was very enjoyable and the girls liked it better than the Bordeaux.
The last bottle was an old stand by, Leese – Fitch Cabernet Sauvignon. This is a very nice crowd pleasing Cab for a great price. It used to have a very unique cork made of black plastic (almost rubber-like) that made it easy to recap an unused bottle (a rare thing at FEWC). Check out the blurb that Scott sent on how handy that cork can be!
After a week off from FEWC, we finally got back together for some wine drinking… it would have been bad luck not to meet on Friday the 13th.
Those of you who are familiar with FEWC will know that Merlot is our favorite maligned wine variety. Bad publicity from the movie, Sideways, has given this delicious wine a bad rap. We rarely find a Merlot that we don’t like (imagine that). We started with a 2013 Merlot from Rutherford Ranch in Napa Valley. We all loved it. Rutherford ranch has proven to be one of our favorite Vineyards.
Next up was a Bordeaux that Scott brought over.
This was a special treat from the area of Bordeaux that we visited in September, St Julien. It was a 2003 Sarget de Gruaud-Larose. A stunning wine that we all agreed had very little to offer on the nose but… the flavor was outstanding! It was the kind of wine that you can barely stop yourself from taking a second sip as soon as you have swallowed the first. We don’t often get an opportunity to taste a wine that is 17 years old so this was quite a treat. Thanks Scott.
While Janet brought out some tasty Charcuterie for us to enjoy, I opened the third bottle of the night. I decided to take a chance on a 2013 Pinot Noir from Averaen in the Willamette Valley, Oregon, that I had tried at a Binny’s tasting, and liked. Over the years, us snobby FEWC members have typically turned up our noses at Pinot Noir (except French Burgundy – Oooh la la) because we have found the nose to be rather offensive. The term forest floor translates to musty mildew to us. We recently have tried a few Pinots from Oregon and found them to be much more to our liking. Everyone thought this one was very good and did not have the “Pinot” smell that we don’t like.
With plenty of excellent wine and food, fun conversation and of course great music selections by Scott and Lenny, this week’s FEWC meeting was terrific!
This past Friday (9/22/17) was very hot outside. We started the evening with a cold bottle of 2016 Mas de Gourgonnier, a Rose from Provence. Even though we did not visit the Provence region in France, this was one of the bottles we enjoyed during a past New York Times Wine Dinner featuring Rose’s from Provence. A nice refreshing wine to start the evening off right.
Scott then opened a Bordeaux from St Julien, which is the area we visited in France, followed by a Cabernet Sauvignon (I think from California).
Amy treated everyone to cheese and crackers which could have been right from the streets of Paris!
We had a lovely time reminiscing and sharing stories with Scott’s mother, who was visiting for the weekend.
This Friday 9/1/17, we enjoyed 1 white and 2 reds.
The first was a white, Crios Torrontes, by Susana Balbo (one of Lenny’s favorites) from Argentina. It was a wonderfully aromatic, dry, crisp wine. Amy commented that it was one of the most aromatic wines she has ever had. It was cold and refreshing. At $10 a bottle you can’t go wrong sipping this on the patio on a warm night.
Scott and Amy brought a Pinot Noir from Burgundy, Bouchard Pere & Fils, Bourgogne Reserve, 2014. It was absolutely delightful! If you are not a fan of California Pinot’s, you need to try a Pinot Noir from Burgundy. It is like night and day!
Janet then brought out some BLT’s for a snack, made with some of Lenny’s homemade bacon. The perfect pairing for our next bottle.
The third bottle was a recommendation from our Binny’s wine guy, Tom. He raved about this wine. It was a 2015 Pinotage from Groot Constantia, a legendary winery from South Africa. It was quite impressive. Tom’s description of this wine: “This is the reason we drink wine.” He may be right!