Saturday, March 28, 2009

About Last Night...

I knew there was trouble brewing yesterday when I was picking up wines for a tasting I was hosting in the evening, and I thought It would be a great idea to shoot a nip of Rumpleminz, at around 2 in the afternoon.

The wine tasting, hosted for some new friends in Cape Elizabeth, actually went quite well. The theme was "Obscure Varietals." 20 of us easily dispatched about 25 bottles of wine. I was impressed with the new friends...

The wines we tasted were:
2007 Domaine de Regusse Aligote, Vin de Pays (around 13.99 retail)

This was actually one of the more well-received wines, despite being one of the least expensive (just goes to show..) A great balance of creaminess and minerality make this wine extremely versatile. Fresh, crisp, and delicious.

2006 Topanga Vineyards "Celadon" Grenache Blanc, Arroyo Seco (around 22.99 retail)

Looking back I think I tasted this wine in the wrong order. The Aligote interfered with fruity characteristics of the Grenache Blanc. Usually more Rhone Valley in style, It actually was drinking more like a Chardonnay last night. A disappointing showing for a wine that is already nearly impossible to sell.

2003 Dominio de Tares "Exaltos" Mencia, Bierzo (about 28.99 retail)

Often I find Mencia to be way too oakey. Not the case with Exaltos, which has all the Spanish funk in the nose I like so much, then great cherry and licorice notes in the mouth. People got more of an appreciation for this wine once they had it with some meat (tri-tips, which were fucking amazing).

2005 Spann Vineyards Charbono, Napa Valley (About 23.99 retail)

Many think of Charbono as an Italian variety, but actually the grape originated in France's Savoie region, near the Alps. Regardless of origin, this wine tastes like a hypothetical blend of Dolcetto and Barbera from Italy's Piemonte. Black cherry fruit, very smooth and perfectly balanced with bright acids and smooth tannins. Although a fairly big wine, it's not heavy or thick in texture. Yes, I was pouring pretty heavy for these people, but this was when they really started to get excited.

2005 Zimberno Aglianico del Vulture, Campania (about 22.99 retail)

I switched gears here, but nobody seemed to mind. A little lighter than the Charbono, but more dirtiness. Plums and baking chocolate, I love this wine. One of the bottles I opened was so badly flawed that it smelled like paint thinner. At one point this bottle made it's way back over to the table of good wines. Would have been kind of funny if someone accidentally..

2006 Cambiata Tannat, Monteray (about 23.99 retail)

Everyone went bat-shit over this one. Rightfully so, it's definetely the best domestic Tannat i've ever tasted (I've tasted 2). It has a rich fragrance of violets and brush, like Santa Ana winds over a field of sage... No I didn't say that - who was that? Where am I? Holy shit that was wierd.. Anyway big monster of a red wine.

NV Cave Carod Clairette di Die, Rhone Valley (about 17.99)

A beautiful sparkler with a hint of melons. This cleanses the palette after all the big tannic reds. It also goes perfectly with that apple tart.. which was just insanely good. A blend of Muscat and Claret.

Ok. Now that i've drank a million glasses of wine, seems like a reasonable idea to go out in public, right?

After ditching my car in Cape Elizabeth, I got a ride back to one of my "places of work" where my "co-workers" were having a little wine tasting of their own. I don't remember many of the wines we tasted, I think there was a Godello and some Riesling. Maybe German Pinot Noir? My extremely helpful descriptions for the group included:

1. Play-Doh
2. Certain Human Bodily Fluids...
3. Jersey Shortcake (don't ask)
4. A lot of sniffing and babbling incoherently.
5. Wookies

Fearing that I hadn't drank enough still, I comandeered a ride home (which was also to be my ride back to my car today. Thank you Jess) and to my delight, there were people still awake at my house, and they were drinking vast amounts of Tecate and Coors Light. After several of these, I realized that there were some Pierogies in the freezer that i had gotten from a Polish market in Boston. Here's how I prepared them..and how things went down after..

1. Have Dietz boil water
2. Have Dietz brown the pierogies in a pan with butter and caramelized onions.
3. Have Dietz make a dipping sauce with smoked paprika, capers, and creme fraiche.
4. Have Dietz serve me the Pierogies.
5. Make a huge fucking mess.
6. Drunkenly call Jess at 4:07 a.m. to suggest we make lunch plans.
7. Become insistent on going to "On the Border" because you want the chips.
8. Settle for something else.
9. Fall Asleep.
10. Forget you made lunch plans and wake up wondering what it was you were supposed to do today.
11. My prediction? Do It all again tonight!


  1. Now, when you say Wookies... Are we talking the Star Wars variety or the Phishkid varietal that bares a hairy resemblance to the Star Wars variety?

  2. I guess it would be the Phishkid, since I've never been fortunate enough to meet any of the Star Wars variety...

  3. Robin Williams would be classified as hairy enough to be a Star Wars Wookie--as would other men, or even women, of such hairy proportions.

  4. Recommend any of the previous wines for a cayenne and raspberry roast duck?

  5. Cayenne and Raspberry Roast Duck? I would say a limey sauvignon blanc from South Africa. Or maybe a bone dry riesling form Germany with really high scidity. Of wines on the list, I would reccomend the Clairette di Die.


  6. I was thinking limey. I'd Better get an exceptional wine incase the duck is a crapshoot. Thanks.