Showing posts with label just wine talk. Show all posts
Showing posts with label just wine talk. Show all posts
Just a quick update from I've recently relocated to Huntington Beach, California and all that has to offer. In the coming days/weeks I'll start posting reviews again after a more than lengthy layoff. Life has a way of getting in the way of a good blog. I hope to find some decent wines and decent prices and share those with you. Stay tuned.

New Winery Open in Little Washington, Virginia

Just found out that a new winery has opened in our area. The Little Washington Winery in Little Washington, Virginia sounds like it will be a nice one and I plan to do a review just as soon as I can get out there. I've eaten at The Inn at Little Washington and it is truly an experience everyone should have before they die. We got a tour of the kitchen after dinner at it was just an incredible set up. It is definitely destination dining. Have a great weekend. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!

Virginia Wine Lover Party Tips

As a print and e-newsletter subscriber to Virginia Wine Lover Magazine I get a monthly edition mailed to the house as well as a newsletter that hits my inbox on occasion. This latest edition had a link to hosting a Virginia Wine Tasting Party along with a variety of forms that can be used in planning and hosting the party. A great idea that could be used with Virginia wines as well as any other regions you might want to include. #1 and I attended a wine tasting party several years ago and it was a blast. Come to think of it we really need to have another one at our house soon. Check it out and let me know if you have a party. I'd be glad to pass on what you and your guests discover. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!

October is Virginia Wine Month

Now that I'm active again I wanted to mention that October is Virginia Wine Month. It's an annual promotion that highlights the many vineyards in our state as well as restaurants and retail stores that sell and promote those wines. There are almost 200 wineries and 22 wine trails in the Commonwealth of Virginia to explore. I plan on visiting several of those wineries and posting about them in the coming weeks. We've actually got some really good wines being made in Virginia and hopefully I can bring some of those to your attention. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Try Virginia Wines! Top 200 Wine Blogs

Just a short post but I came across a site that ranks wine blogs based on a variety of criteria such as valuation, Google PageRank and monthly traffic. 365corks came in at #175 which was surprising based on the neglect I've given to the site over the last year. That's all changed as I plan on devoting as much time as I did when I first started and hope to break into the Top 50 next year. If you'd like to take a look for yourself check out . Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!

Qupe' and The Ashby Inn - Third, Fourth & Fifth Courses

As promised my review of the Qupe' Wine Dinner at The Ashby Inn, Paris, Virginia, continues. The third course of the night was a bite sized pasta filled with macadamia nut butter in a butternut squash broth with ginger and marigold. A very rich dish and the macadamia nut butter was an unusual, but tasty, filling. Not a real big portion but more a tapas style of portion. This course was accompanied by two releases of the "Bien Nacido Hillside Estate" Roussanne, the 2003 and the 2008.

Qupe' Roussanne 2003
The 2003 Roussanne, compared side-by-side to the 2008, did not have the same vibrant nose nor was its color as deep as the 2008. I picked up hints of citrus on the nose but wasn't able to pick up much of anything else. Smelled very thin if you can image that. On the palate I noted hints of citrus and maybe a little honeysuckle. Not a bad wine by any means just much more subtle than the 08. As I like more of an "In Your Face" type of white wine, this one received 3 corkscrews due to its subtleness. Don't know if you can still find this but the 2007 goes for $40 per bottle if that gives you an idea of how pricey it is.

Qupe' Roussanne 2008

The 2008 Roussanne was my favorite of the two. Bright yellow in color, the bouquet was big and bold with scents of mango, peach and other tropical fruit aromas. On the palate this wine did not disappoint. Loads of flavor, lushness and a finish that was borderline perfect! I liked the way this wine kind of clings to the palate. This would have received 5 corkscrews but only received four due to an average bottle price of around $30. Highly recommend for any special occasion or when you just want to splurge on a nice bottle of wine.

The fourth course was a sliced duck breast in cherry jus with assorted grains and oregano. Now I love a rare piece of meat and it is so easy to overcook a duck breast that I understand the need to serve it on the rare side. However, I'm afraid this course of duck breast was too rare. Still very tasty but when my plate came out the blood from the duck breast had run all over the plate and made for a less than desirable presentation. I would have thought that the chef or server would have taken the time to clean up the plate before presenting it, but unfortunately it wasn't so. This was the only course of the five that I didn't love the presentation. This course was served with the 2008 Qupe' "Sawyer-Linquist Vineyard" Grenache.

Qupe' Grenache 2008

The 2008 Sawyer-Linquist Grenache was brought to the table and served with the aforementioned duck breast. Now in full disclosure I have to admit that I hardly ever, and I mean ever, drink Grenache. I much prefer a Pinot Noir or something more full bodied than most Grenache. That being said I'll continue with my review. Once the Grenache was poured I noted that it was a light ruby red and not as full bodied looking as I like in a red wine. On the nose I picked up blackberry and raspberry tones with a little spice, maybe pepper? As I swirled the first mouthful I tasted more of a strawberry tone mixed with just a slight touch of oak. The finish was slightly tannin. I gave this one 3 corkscrews as it just didn't have the full bodied flavor that I like, to be totally honest. If you like a red that is a little less full bodied, this might be the wine for you. As it retails for about $35/bottle I probably won't be drinking it anytime in the near future.

The fifth, and final, course was a slow cooked lamb shank with melted eggplant, a cardamom yogurt with black olive puree.First off another disclosure. I hate black olives and any hint of black olives! There, I said it. The lamb shank, on its own, was nicely prepared and melted in the mouth. Melted eggplant I didn't really get and didn't think it added very much to the dish. Anything that came in contact with the black olives I automatically took a pass on. Did I mention that I really don't like black olives? This course was presented well, I can say that. The final two glasses of Qupe' were the "Bien Nacida Hillside Estate" Syrah vintages 2001 and 2006.

Qupe' Bien Nacida Hillside Estate Syrah 2001

The 2001 Syrah arrived at our table and exhibited a dark, ruby red color. After swirling I picked up hints of raspberry and chocolate on the nose. On the palate very little to note other than a little bitterness and a little more tannin than I prefer. Hate to say it but it seemed a little plain and pedestrian to me. I gave it 2 corkscrews because it wasn't terrible it just wasn't memorable. Saw this one on sale on one of the internet wine sites for $26/bottle. Overpriced.

Qupe' Bien Nacida Hillside Estate Syrah 2006

The 2006 Syrah was a little better than the 01. This one had a nice, fruit forward nose with a little hint of allspice. On the palate a somewhat one dimensional wine with mostly blueberry and a hint of oak noted. Not much to say about the finish. This one gets 2 corkscrews as well. This one retails from $30-40/bottle. Overpriced!

The evening was topped off with some "mignardises" which are basically some tiny one-bites masquerading as desserts. One was a little macaroon type of chocolate deal that wasn't too bad while the other was a coffee infused marshmallow type of thing that didn't do a whole lot for me. None the less it was a nice evening in a quaint setting with some great friends who just happen to also be our neighbors. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!


Just wanted to give a quick shout out to the store whose logo appears above. If you live within one hour, no make that within one and a half hours, you've got to pay a visit to Wegmans! This is by far the best grocery store known to man. It is like going to Vegas every time you go in there. Their prepared food section is unparalleled and they actually have a raw bar in the location I've been frequenting in Gainesville, Virginia. In fact, one of the requirements for our ongoing home search is that a Wegmans be within driving distance. As wine and cheese go together like a hand and glove, I wanted to mention a couple of cheeses I bought this weekend that were probably some of the best cheeses I've had anywhere! And I like cheese. Just ask #1 who got me started on this whole wine and cheese thing when we met some 18+ years ago. Both of these cheeses were also incredibly cheap compared to what I've been paying for cheese in Arkansas. The first was a Manchego from El Trigal of Spain. A sheep's milk cheese, this one is a harder cheese meant to be sliced and eaten by itself or on a cracker. The second, a Wegmans brand, Rich & Buttery Triple Creme Brie from France that was probably the best, spreadable brie I've ever had! I washed both down with a 2007 Gato Negro Chardonnay from, once again, Chile. A review of that wine is in the offing as it was an exceptional wine and I picked it up, at Wegmans, for $4.99. Yes, $4.99. Another great find! I will be purchasing these many times in the future. This Brie is great with Wheat Thins and spreads almost like a butter. I've gotta go have some. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine! Oh, did I mention that Wegman's also has a wine section that is as varied as any wine store I've ever been in? They do. Get there, now!


Day Two in Washington, D.C. and the weather is great. You never know how it is going to be in mid-Summer as the heat and humidity can be stifling. A morning filled with a meeting led to a rendezvous with #1 back at our hotel and then a short walk to a french bistro for lunch. We chose Bistro D'Oc across from the infamous Ford's Theater and had an acceptable lunch but nothing to write home about, or post about on a blog. Selections were mediocre and their wine was uninspired and overpriced. Our dinner choice, however, was much different. We made reservations at D.C. Coast and were promptly seated when we arrived. A great vibe at this restaurant and good food/wine to match. We had the Caesar Salad w/anchovies, the Pan Seared Hudson Valley Foie Gras, the Double Cut Pork Chop and finished it off with a delightful souffle'. All of our selections were delicious+. Of course we had to drink something with this and both ordered the 2006 Dynamite Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc. A very light, buttery wine with nice acidity and apple and grass noted on the palate. Very refreshing finish and so tasty we each had a couple of glasses. Check out this restaurant when you're in D.C., and try the Dynamite Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc, as I don't think you'll be disappointed in either. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!


Just a quick note to all my fellow wine bloggers/writers that there is going to be a Wine Bloggers Conference in Sonoma County October 24-26. Further information can be found at . Should be a good time and I'm sure a lot of good wine will be tasted by all. Wish I could attend but I'm afraid I'm going to have to pass unless some deep pocketed wine consortium wants to send me? Yeah, right! Drop me a line if you plan on attending. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!


Just a short post to share a site that I've been visiting and can highly recommend. Noble Pig is a site written by Cathy who is located in a peculiar little California town. She writes about wine but also about other topics which makes her site interesting. She also likes to photograph yummy recipes that she shares and gives step-by-step instructions along with her how-to photographs. Somewhat new to the blogosphere, she's got an interesting style of writing. Check it out when you get a chance as I think you'll find it very interesting. I've added her site to my Wine Joints I Like as I liked it that much. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine and check out Noble Pig!


Just a very short post to let you know about a really unique talent I discovered on the internet. Wine Ink is a site from an artist who paints some of his work with wine. Looks to me like he is very talented and the fact that he paints with wine is also pretty cool. Check it out! Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!