Archive for the ‘Rose / Blush’ Category
A hot day in San Francisco & I’m running low on white wine! No time to panic or to get something else.
I’m on my way to the Sausalito Ferry which sails from the San Francisco Ferry Building at 5:30.
I’ve got a bottle I picked up at Target out of curiosity, I’ll take that and pack it in a FedEx Padded Envelope with some blue ice! This bottle is Berringer White Zinfandel 2010 . . . Berrigner is a respectable brand by under $5 at Target and Safeway makes me skittish.
I quickly pack this and some cups and off I go.
When I arrive at ferry boat and we’re seated I open the bottle. We pass it around and all remark on the brand . . . I haven’t told them it’s provenance (where I bought it). It’s nicely chilled in the Padded FedEx Envelope (free and fairly good insulation!).
We open and pour. Definitely okay! It’s a little sweet but it does have flavor and goes down easy right after opening! We sit and enjoy the highly unusual warmth as the ferry crosses the San Francisco Bay and the tourists enjoy themselves.
Life is Good!
Bought at Target, also available at Safeway and Ralph’s.
Wine Re-characterization – What is it & Why do I care?
Psst! Wanna buy some great wine at a HUGE discount? This can be the REAL DEAL!
Now is the time to visit the wine shops! This includes your local wine shop and liquidators such as BevMo and trader Joe’s!
The reason is that wonderfully magic thing wine makers do . . . Re-Characterization!
Every year at this time wineries run into TROUBLE! They have too much wine! The new grapes are crushed and fermented and the wine is going into storage (aging). HOWEVER, they likely too much have wine from last year! Every year there is tax due on wine in storage and the storage costs money!
Some of the wine is mediocre or even bad and some of it is GREAT and everything in between. The winery generally does what is called RE-CLASSIFICATION . . . a fancy word for SELL CHEAP! Some of it goes to brokers who bottle it as a weird label (2 Buck Chuck, Benefactor, etc.).
Another is they aging barrels and tanks . . . the bottom and top have grape debris and taste slightly different. Most wineries bottle it and sell it with strange label. I remember one major winery selling it for under $3 and it was WONDERFUL
Go to look for the small run bottles over the next month . . . and enjoy!
Life is good.
I’m Late! I’m Late! I feel like the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland!
I’ve got to get off to work and I forgot to pack a bottle for tonight for the Ferry Boat between San Francisco Ferry Building and Sausalito.
I grab the first bottle that come to hand, Black Oak White Zinfandel – 2007. I normally don’t bring this type of wine, a white made from red grapes. The Zinfandel’s skin is so dark it looks black but the inside is the slight yellow of white wine. If crushed too hard or allowed to stay in contact with skin it turns pink and if left to ferment with skins it turns red. Pinot Noir does the same.
Wineries call it various names white, blush, eye of swan, rose depending on what the marketing people recommend. Many of these wines are made sweet.
I get some ice at work and chill the bottle for the commute home.
I bring it on the boat . . . we aren’t big fans of sweet wines, many only taste sweet and nothing else. We open the bottle, many only take a small pour . . . SURPRISE! It’s dry, not sweet.
We proceed to drink the small tastes we have in our cups with the second pour MUCH larger! This wine is good and we’ll savor, savor and savor thru the voyage to Sausalito!
Life is good!
Bought at Bevmo.
There are times I walk into a store and need a bottle for something – a party, a work function, or maybe just for myself. When traveling it can particularly difficult to find a good wine, many times I don’t speak the language enough to even read the label!
Most markets and stores have 100′s (say 300) wines. Often the clerks’ only skills are limited to using a box cutter and a bar code reader.
QUESTION: How can you be reasonably sure that a wine is decent?
You can pick a good wine in under 3 minutes . . . even if everything is in a language you don’t speak!
Look for 3 things:
1.) Price! Why beat around the bush, this is IMPORTANT! Scan the selves, look for the cheapest wine and add a couple of bucks to set the range. If you want to go higher end so you don’t look cheap, double the number!
CONGRATULATIONS, you eliminated 90% of store’s selection! That leaves~ 30 wines of 300 to choose from.
2.) Next – heavy or light? – Heavy alcohol is 12%+ and light is 11% or less. If it’s cold or a young crowd go heavy, if it’s warm or older crowd go light. We’re now down to say 20 bottles (some will fall in the middle).
3.) “It Factor” – Now we’re down to the last choice. Look at the BACK of bottle. Is there an essay on the wine (maybe a picture of wine maker?) GREAT! The people making are proud of their product! Usually any of these is good.
Put them all in the cart, eyeball them and pick the one that strikes your fancy!
Open & Enjoy!
========>>> SHORTCUT! Look at people’s shopping carts, if you see several people with the same wine – that’s likely a good wine!