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Jul 14

Wine Speed Tasting: Whites and Pinks

Every year at the Wine Blogger’s Conference, we partake in Live Wine Blogging. Basically, winemakers move from table to table, telling us about their wine in 5 minutes or less. We get to make a snap judgement and blog about it. It’s sort of like speed dating for wine and it’s equally as exhausting.

This year the Live Blogging sessions were split into two: Whites & Rosés on Friday and Reds on Saturday.  Because we had so little time to learn, ask questions, and type, the notes aren’t the best. They should, however, give you a general idea of how we felt about the wine.

Whites & Rosés

Wine #1: Pithy Little Wine Company, Sangiovese Rosé with 2% Syrah
Jeff and Felicia, San Luis Obispo, CA, with grapes from all over the state. Nice melon and spice characteristics. Blood orange was mentioned as possible characteristic as well. Finishes quick but has the acid on the finish. Watermelony, summery, some spice on the finish. Flat rate wine shipping.
Our rating:

Wine #2: Ortman Family Wines 2007 Edna Valley Chardonnay
Pasadena / Paso Robles
Family owned winery. Well-balanced chardonnay with a little butteriness. 25% New French Oak, 20-40% malolactic fermentation. A little too much oak for Michelle’s taste. 1500 cases.
Our rating:

Wine #3: Pepperwood Grove California Chardonnay in a box, non vintage
Pepperwood Grove is a familiar label by Sebastiani that added box wines just a few months ago. It’s not too oaky, which was surprising. 88% chardonnay, 10% chenin blanc,  splash of viognier. Clarksburg and Interior valley grapes and  6 months oak staving.
Cost is ~$19 for 3L.
Michelle: Kevin

Wine #4: Desert Wind Winery 2009 Viognier
Prosser, WA
Viognier is my favorite grape and this one was a standout during the speed tasting. In fact, I decided I really enjoy Washington state Viognier in general. This was flowery, fruit loopy (as it should be) and light, with spices on the finish. Slightly oily mouthfeel (in a good way).  ~$15
Our rating:

Wine #5: Long Shadows Poets Leap Riesling, 2009 Columbia Valley
German winemaker comes to walla walla to get grapes and sticks around. Full of slate, with a little bit of sweetness. Acidic.
Our rating:

Wine #6: Octavin Big House White in a box
Familiar brand – also available by the bottle.  ~21.99 for the box. Fairly enjoyable. A crazy mix of grapes: 51% Malvasia Bianca, 14% Muscat Canelli, 13% Viognier, 10% Gruner Veltliner, 5% Pinot Gris, and 4% Riesling. Kevin judged this assuming it was a Chardonnay and gave it a low score. However, since it’s not a Chardonnay, I actually gave it a decent rating. I tend to prefer boxed reds, and this is the first boxed white I’ve tried that I think I could sit around and enjoy periodically. Is it an award winner? No. But it’s fun for a hot day after you’ve mowed the yard.
Michelle’s rating:

Wine #7: Maryhill Winery 2008 Viognier
Winery in Walla Walla.
Oaky and creamy at first, cotton candy on the finish. Used 1 barrel of neutral oak to bring in oak flavoring.
Our rating:

Wine #8: Hogue 2008 Genesis Chardonnay, Washington
Hogue was the 19th winery in Washington state – now there are a lot more. Unoaked chardonnay. From sunny side in Yakima valley. 13.9% ABV. Chablis style with nice, crisp flavors. Good light summer wine. $16.00/bottle, but look for specials. Nationally available.
Our rating:

Wine #9: Buty Winery 2008 White Blend: muscadelle, semillon, sauvignon blanc
I tend to shy away from muscadelle – it’s just not one of my favorite grapes. That said, this wasn’t bad. Used oak. High acid. Goal is to be distinctive in Washington.  $23 retail.
Our rating:

Wine #10: Dusted Valley Ramblin’ Rosé
This was my second favorite wine of the speed tasting (after the Desert Wind Viognier).  The wine is made up of 52% mourvedre, 29% counoise, 16% syrah, and 2%viognier. 273 cases produced. Spends 16 hours on skins. No malolactic fermentation – all stainless to get life and crispness. . ~$18 retail. This is all younger fruit farmed specifically for use in the rosé. Has a lot of heft.
Our rating:

Wine #11: DeLille Cellars 2008 Chaleur Estate Blanc: blend of 62% Sauvignon Blanc, 38% Semillon
White Bordouex style inspired wines. Old world traditionalist in the new world. Whole berry press grapes. Will be racked in barrels. Acid does help balance the wood but too oaky for Michelle.  60% new french oak. $34.
Michelle: Kevin: 

Wine #12: Duck Pond Cellars 2008 Pinot Gris
Dundee, Oregon
Vanilla and spice, Stainless steel and  2% barrel fermentation. Made dry to keep alcohol content low. Nice standard Pinot Gris. Fresh flavors and light acid. ~$15
Our rating:

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Posted by Michelle at 8:00 am in Tastings, Wine Misc, Wine Notes | Permalink | Comments ()
Jul 13

Wine, Women, and Wowing Fashion

We’re all about special events this month at Wine-Girl. Our next event is a special evening that we’re honored to co-host with the lovely ladies at Cincy Chic. This is the perfect night out with your girlfriends.

Wine, Women, and Wowing Fashion takes place at Eddie Merlot’s on Thursday, July 22, 6-9 pm. And you know what? It’s free!
Take a good glass of wine, mix in mingling, garnish with girlfriend time, and add a dash of delicious shopping deals. Spoil your senses as you enjoy wine tastings, delectable dishes and scrumptious shopping with the following fabulous vendors: JennaClaire Handbag StudioShout! BoutiqueElysium OriginalsHeaven EssencePure Romance by Leslie, Jewels by Park Lane with Pat Hemmings, and Anna Weinel with Tastefully Simple.

You can enter to win a free weekend Lexus lease and a beautiful silver bracelet from Richter and Phillips.

We do encourage you to register (for free) ahead of time at Eventbrite, so head on over and claim your spot.

To recap:
Wine and Fashion
Eddie Merlot’s
10808 Montgomery Road
Cincinnati, OH 45242
6-9 pm, Thursday, July 22

Wine Women Wowing Fashion

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Posted by Michelle at 10:26 am in Cincinnati, Special Events, Wine Misc | Permalink | Comments (1)
Jul 09

Wine and Beer Event – brought to you by Wine-Girl and Hoperatives

We’re having all sorts of events in July. The first one I want to tell you about is a wine and beer event at the Dilly Cafè. That’s right – it’s beer and wine lovers. You simply cannot go wrong.

We here at Wine-Girl are collaborating with our good friends the Hoperatives to bring you a beer-wine-cheese tasting at Dilly Cafè on Tuesday, July 27th at 6:30 pm. The tasting will be led by the Goose Girl herself, Lindsey Shafer of Goose Island Brewery. The cost is only $20.00 and the number of participants is limited to 30. There will be a waiting list if necessary. Call Dilly to make your reservations (513.561.5233).  We were planning today and already people were calling – so give a call to Dilly ASAP.

Working with Chuck and Chef Eric at Dilly and Lindsay from Goose Island, we’ve managed to put together a tentative list of pairings, although keep in mind that it is subject to a little bit of change.

  1. Welcome drink: Sparkling wine
  2. Cheese: Chevre  Beer: Goose Island 312 Wine Type: Sancerre
  3. Cheese: Triple Creme Brie Beer: Goose Island Sofie Wine Type: Champagne
  4. Cheese: Feta Beer: Goose Island Demolition Wine Type: Alsatian Reisling
  5. Cheese: Washed Rind  Beer: Goose Island Matilda Wine Type: Grenache Rosè
  6. Chocolate: Bitter, dark (80-85% cacao)  Beer: Goose Island Pere Jacques Wine: Southern Bell Shiraz

Just to recap:

Tuesday, July 27th
6:30 pm
Dilly Cafè, 6818 Wooster Pike, Mariemont, OH 45227
only $20.00
RSVP (please!) ASAP at 513.561.5233

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Jul 06

Guest Post: Fun with Tasting Notes

Here’s a fun post from guest contributor Nancy Bentley of Kinkead Ridge Vineyard in Ripley, OH.


Wine labels. As I wrote the wine label text for the 2008 Kinkead Ridge reds and 2009 Kinkead Ridge whites, I found this hilarious web site to generate silly tasting notes.

Go visit the Silly Tasting Note Generator and scroll to the bottom of the page. Select Make a New Note and generate tasting notes like these.

“Rounded but equally over-oaked Merlot. Forcefully bites you with hair-spray, morally superior slim jims and traces of orange jello. Drink now through 2011.”

“Ready to drink and overdone Syrah. Essences of prune, acidic monster carrot and scant clay. Drink now through whenever the cows come home.”

“Intense but lackluster Cabernet. Reminiscent of peach-pit, arcane seedless watermelon and dainty beef. Drink now through 2012.”
“Creepy and whimsical Rose. Starts with pear, limp bourbon and semi-weak toast. Drink now through April.”

“Rich and smokey almost unripe Gamay. Detectable toast, middle-aged lime and corpulent juniper. Drink now through never.”

Have fun!

– Nancy Bentley

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Posted by Michelle at 8:01 am in Games, Guest Writers, Wine Misc | Permalink | Comments (1)
Jul 01

Looking for a Great Can Beer

Photo by Steve Snodgrass

As we enter the heat of summer here in Cincinnati, my thoughts turn to heading outside and cooling off. Sadly most of the local pools, lakes, and rivers have a negative view of bottles, even those filled with craft beers. This has led me to my summer project of finding a canned beer to last through the pool parties and canoe trips. Cans have gotten a bad name due to people associating a metallic taste with the beer. As times have changed, so has the assumption that the can is the only reason for poor quality beer. I let none of that deter me from my quest for a great beer in can form.

Up first is the Summer Solstice Cerveza from Anderson Valley Brewing Company. This light cream ale has a lemon meringue quality that makes it nice and light after a hot muggy day of yard work. The overall flavor is sharp and leaves the palate with the hint of lemon that fades to a nice creaminess. Overall, the flavor and mouth feel make this a beer to recommend. The price tag is a touch high ($8.50 for a 6-pack on the Kentucky side of the river) but the quality makes this a great first entry into my attempt to find a nice, well crafted, micro-brewed beer in a can.

Any suggestions for other cans to try that might be difficult to find? Let me know in the comments along with suggestion on where to find them. I’ll be searching for canned beer during our travels as well.

My review:

– Kevin

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Posted by Kevin at 8:01 am in Beer, Beer-Guy.net | Permalink | Comments (6)

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