2009 Tempranillo

The winery:

Moonstone Cellars – a gem uncovered on the main street of Cambria during our Central Coast excursion.

The bottle:

2009 Tempranillo

As soon as my nose smelled the fruit and vanilla and pepper of this glass, I was transported back to that February day tasting this Tempranillo. I am typically a Tempranillo fan, but this one takes my “like” to a new level.

I WANT MORE! Whose idea was it to only bring home one bottle? Now the wine cellar is empty.

The winemakers notes:

Ebullient red berry, profuse plum, coriaceous quintessence dissolving river-like to molten vanilla, the “noble grape” of Spain enchants with a penchant for frivolous amusement.  Mated with a paradisiacal pepper-and-pancetta Basque stew, this is sure to be the sensation of the soiree. Serve cool after decanting.


Brag Dinner by Chef Bill

The resident chef hasn’t prepared a multi-course feast in a while, so his fingers are itching and his brain is twitching to build a menu for our weekend guests.

Primo…a onion tart with goat cheese crumbled on top
Excellent for breakfast the next day…or lunch…or snack
Paired with a bottle “Farm Girl” from Smasne Cellars
Recipe courtesy of Paley’s Place

Secondi…Ricotta gnocchi with crab in a lovely lemon sauce
Refreshing and delicious, tastes like summer
Another delightful Paley’s recipe.

And the main course…
From the private recipe collection of the Chef
Pork loin on top of a pairing of sauces, red pepper and ancho chile, pile of grilled veggies
Paired with a bottle of the fabulous “Prisoner“, another wonderful creation of Orin Swift Cellars

And we finished with dessert
A final Paley-inspired option: Huckleberry Kuchen with Cassis-Huckleberry Sauce and Creme Fraiche
Huckleberries replaced by raspberries. Yum.
Paired with whatever sip we wanted to revisit from the previous courses

As you can see, Chef Bill likes to impress my friends. Maybe he is trying to make sure if I ever complain about him to them, they will not commiserate with me.

2010 Shameless Hussy Viognier

A Christmas gift, the Shameless Hussy seemed like the appropriate bottle for a sunny, warm Mother’s Day dinner.

From Hard Row to Hoe, based in Chelan, with grapes from the Columbia Valley, this delicious white showcases all of the floral and stone fruit flavors for which Viognier is so well loved. Great with a light, lemony asparagus and chicken pasta dish.

Even better than my description is the gift wrapped brown paper bag, signed with Rudy’s hand written note: The wine was in jeopardy (long story) during the wine making process and went on to become our most decorated wine. Off dry to slightly sweet. Smooth and totally appropriate as an apertif.

Even more fun — the cork has it’s own story. It says “Rowboat Taxi Service. Serving Lucerne & Point Lovely est’d 1930. Hourly departures, friendly service. The background. First time I have seen a cork with a story!

What’s Mine is Yours

In February, I learned that what is mine is mine and what is his is mine. I didn’t even prompt this conversation. He just shared it with me (I admit we were sharing a wine tasting so maybe that prompted it).

So today he suggested that I add a blog section titled “Wine Cellar” to keep a list of what we have in storage (either in his wine cellar, or mine, or is it “ours” since what is his is mine? I’m confusing myself!). Then as we bring out a bottle, the sip becomes a blog entry. So here it goes…(at least my half of our cellar):

  • Almost a case of Graveyard Tombstone Red
  • Tolosa Winery – No Oak Chardonnay
  • Edna Valley Chardonnay
  • Laetitia Sparkling
  • Cayucos Cellars
  • Moonstone Cellars
  • Caliza
  • Le Cuvier
  • J Lohr 08 Hilltop Cabernet Sauvignon, ’05 Hilltop Cabernet Sauvignon, ’08 Carol’s Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

Graveyard Tombstone Red

On our final day in Paso Robles, we were directed to this great little winery at the end of a road by what else? A graveyard. We found several great bottles. Then later at home, we decided we should have got a case. I think the fact that we already had two cases kept us from getting a case on the spot. So I took matters into my own hands – and ordered a case (what would I do without UPS?).

And the winery says…

Guilt free pleasure! This is a fantastic wine that was designed to be enjoyed daily. A unique blend of Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Petite Sirah that was barrel aged in both French and American oak. Fully dry, with great fruit and supple tannins, and the bottom line is that it’s fun! A great example of the fine art of blending. The perfect everyday, goes well with all types of food, won’t blow the budget type of wine. Read More…

And I say…

Half a case down. Six more evenings to relax, sip and enjoy.