Monday, October 24, 2011
They also have weekly wine tastings and jelly bean wine kits. Want to know what you're going to drink before you buy? shell out a couple of bucks for a little packet of jelly beans that replicate the flavors. Believe it or not, it really works.
I mention Red White and Bleu because drinking local is more than just supporting Virginia wineries. It's also shopping at local wine shops where the owners are also neighbors and really care about the customer experience and the wines they sell. Red White and Bleu is one of those shops, and every wine I have ever purchased from them has been well worth the trip.
Owl House Red is just the most recent example. A red blend that is on Red White and Bleu's $9.99 rack, it's a dry and complex wine that is a steal at the price and goes just as well with appetizers and junk food as it does with steak or lamb. As a blend of Rhone varietals and Bordeaux varietals, it is also one of those wines that a local shop is happy to carry but a grocery, chain or big box store might not - it just doesn't fit into their classifications and can't be produced in large enough quantities to meet the demand.
While drinking local and eating local is great - and I really do believe that Virginia wine is making huge gains - it also means supporting local merchants who really care about their community and have a passion for their products. They are also great places to try wines that may be a bit too off the beaten path for the big stores.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
|Possibly the best part of VinItaly was its logo|
Here’s everything I knew about Italian wine before going to VinItaly at the Italian Embassy earlier this week:
- Italian wine is considered very “food friendly”
- Hannibal Lecter enjoys a nice Chianti when feasting on fava beans and human liver
- The Italian wine classification system is so screwed up that some of the finest wines being made have to be classified as “table wine” because they don’t fall into the rigidly defined quality wine categories
- After the popes returned to Rome from Avignon, they insisted on drinking French rather than Italian wine
- There’s a lot the I don’t know about Italian wine
- There’s still a lot I don’t know about Italian wine
|Look! A non-Chianti!|
|There is a big push to reintroduce Soave to the American market. This was the best of the bunch at VinItaly, though it was still rather unremarkable|
|People being all Italian and wine-snobby at VinItaly|
Saturday, October 1, 2011
True, there's a lot going on in October - what with Halloween, baseball's post-season, college and pro football both well underway, hockey getting underway, Columbus Day, and a certain wine blogger's birthday, but don't ignore your local winemakers.
While there is a lot going on in October, the great thing about wine is it enhances - and improves - just about any situation. So sit back, take in all October has to offer and raise a glass of Virginia wine to celebrate how far the industry has come in a relatively short time.