Even though September is almost here, we are still experiencing hot days and cool nights, the sun shines every day and no rain is on the horizon. Summers are truly paradise here in the Pacific Northwest. I planted a garden this year and am harvesting more zucchini, squash and cucumbers than I can keep up with. I’ve given so much away to friends and neighbors. I keep looking for new recipes to fix all the zucchini and squash. Pinterest has become a bit of an obsession.
To go along with the summer vegetables and grilling, I’ve found a wonderful Rosé wine. It’s a Washington, Rosé from Columbia Valley called Soaring Rooster, from Tagaris Winery. It’s a young wine, vintage 2016 with an alcohol content of 12%. I found it quite by accident. I had gone to our local wine and liquor store in search of a particular German beer and there right by the carts was a display with this wine. The bottle looked interesting and the wine inside was a dark reddish pink, darker than most rosés I have seen and tasted. It was reasonably priced at $12 a bottle, so I grabbed a bottle.
I opened it to go with grilled pork chops, roasted zucchini and a Greek cucumber salad. I chilled the bottle to about 45° in my wine cooler. The wine is off-dry, fresh and crisp tasting like strawberries and a hint of lemon. There was a subtle mineral after taste and a hint of jam. It was a great complement to the grilled meat and vegetables.
This wine would also be delightful all by itself, just sitting and sipping on the patio enjoying the last of summer and on into the mild fall days. I will be going back and buying quite a few more bottles.
My apologies, I haven’t written about any wines or dishes I’ve made. It’s not that I haven’t been drinking or eating, I’ve just not been writing it down. Because our work schedules have been polar opposites, Mitch working nights and me working days, I’ve fallen in a sort of rut, making dishes that are quick and easy or a huge crock pot meal that we will eat on for days. (Boring) The good news, a new shift bid came out and our schedules will be closer together, not exactly the same, but at least we will be on the same sleep schedule. I am already planning some new menu ideas.
Last night for dinner, I grilled boneless pork ribs and a mixture of bell peppers and onions. I opened a bottle of the Limited Release Apothic Rosé for a light wine to accompany the dish. A California wine from Modesto, vintage 2016 was a pale peachy color in the glass. I could smell a whiff of alcohol and strawberries. The wine had 12.5% alcohol by volume. The wine tasted of strawberries and watermelon, but not a sweet wine, more of a soft smooth wine with no bite at the end. It had a light soft finish that encouraged you to drink more and refill your glass.
This is a wine that went well with the pork ribs and can be drunk all by itself, sitting on the deck enjoying the afternoon.
Spring is in full swing in the Northwest. I can’t believe all of the beautiful blooming bushes and plants here. There are so many new and different plants here that I’ve never seen before. There’s one that has white blooms that are multiple tiny flowers growing in the shape of spikes and smell like cotton candy. And lucky me, I live behind a Master Gardener so I can sit on my deck and soak up all of her beautiful garden. Of course I’m sitting there with a glass of wine in my hand too.
My latest wine I’ve tried is a Rosé from Oregon. Acrobat Winery is an Oregon winery in Eugene, which is south of Portland on 5 Highway, just down the road a ways from us. Acrobat Rosé is made from Pinot Noir grapes. It was a light pink almost peach hue in the glass. The wine had light floral notes in the glass and a hint of citrus. The wine tasted light and clean with a dry finish. The wine, vintage 2014 had an alcohol content of 13.5% and is very affordable. I paid under $15 a bottle. You can find Acrobat on the internet at http://www.acrobatwinery.com.
This is another one of the types of wine I drink when I’m home alone. When I am home all by myself I tend to drink lighter wines, Moscato, Riesling or Rosé. For some dumb reason I feel like I’m cheating on Mitch if I drink a big red wine without him. Dumb huh? I need to work on my guilt feelings. Maybe I should buy 2 bottles of the same wine, then he’ll never know.
December is here and the holiday rush has me running around on the hunt for the perfect Christmas presents for my family and friends. With almost all of our friends and all of our family in the Midwest, I will be making the UPS man very tired. All this rushing around and stressing over the hunt for the perfect gifts, means I will be drinking more wine. I know, it’s a rough job, but somebody has to do it.
Speaking of drinking more wine, I opened a bottle of Rosé for dinner. I have to say I was very surprised with this wine. The wine was a Washington Rosé called Forbidden Rosé, from Columbia Valley, bottled and produced by Patterson Cellars, who are in Woodinville, Washington, just down the road from us. The wine was very affordable, under $15 a bottle and quite tasty. It had 13.5% alcohol content, not bad for a Rosé. In fact, the blend was the real surprise. The wine was a blend of 35% Merlot, 30% Syrah, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc, 4% Sangiovese and 3% Petit Verdot, quite a mixture wouldn’t you say?
The wine was a bright pinkish red in the glass, more red than pink. My first sip tasted like tart cherries almost like cherry pie. The wine was light and soft but had enough alcohol to give it a nice bite at the end. This was not a sweet wine and definitely had enough body to go well with the chicken I had cooked. I think this wine would go well with a spicier dish too. Something a bit hot and spicy, like fajitas or tacos for that matter.
You can find them at http://www.Pattersoncellars.com. I can tell you that this is a bottle I will definitely be buying again and since Patterson Cellars is just a short drive I think a road trip is in order. Who knows, maybe someone on my Christmas list may get a nice bottle of wine or two on their doorstep.
Summer is in full swing and here in the Midwest, Summer means heat and humidity. And what makes heat and humidity more palatable? Something cold to drink. It’s a perfect time to drink the lighter wines out there. On my last wine stock up run, I bought eight bottles of white wine, three red and one rosé. I wanted more rosé but I had a difficult time finding any that sounded appealing.
I have to admit that the one I did buy, I bought because of the label. Once again I got sucked in by those marketing wizards. It was a French rosé called AIX Vin De Provence vintage 2013 and was a very pale blush color, not as pink as some I’ve tasted. It was reasonably priced at <$15 so I thought I would give it a try.
It didn’t taste at all as it was described on the label. The label described “bright fruit flavors” and “delicate floral notes”. Well to my uneducated nose, the first thing I smelled was alcohol and at 13% there was plenty to go around. I was expecting pears or strawberries, but what I tasted was more like a dry Sauvignon Blanc with a drop of red food coloring. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the wine, but it was as though someone had switched labels on the bottles. This wine had all the mineral notes of a Sauvignon Blanc and was almost paper dry.
Another rosé I tasted was from our trip to Texas in May I bought a very nice rosé from Pedernales Cellars, from the Texas Hill Country. It was a dry rosé vintage 2013 and was a bright pink color. The first thing I smelled was strawberries and the alcohol second. It is a very refreshing wine that is so drinkable. I found myself refilling my glass more than normal.
I’m on the hunt for more rosé wines. I’ve had a few that are very tasty and some that I wish I’d never opened the bottle. I know it’s a dirty job but somebody has to do it and it might as well be me.