Some Wine News…

This is a first for me, so I’ve been sitting on the news for a day to ruminate on how to approach it.

Ehler’s Estate – the winery that made my epiphany wine – just announced they have a new winemaker. Such things happen, but it was a surprise nonetheless, as the previous winemaker Kevin Morrisey was very much the heart of the operation. No mention of him or why he left was given in the email.

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2017 Kirkland Signature Ti Point Sauvignon Blanc

It’s 2018, and we’re in a renaissance for wine. And Costco is pulling the curtain back on the whole industry.

Let me set the scene:  June in Texas, not officially summer yet but the heat index is already 100+ daily.  The only wine I’m wanting is a crisp white wine.

Enter the 2017 Kirkland Signature Ti Point Sauvignon Blanc. I’m a big sauvignon blanc fan, and this is one that knocks it out of the park. And not only is this wine fantastic, I found myself at Costco this weekend looking at it for $6/bottle.

SIX DOLLARS.

Typically I’ll look a wine up on CellarTracker, but this time I didn’t even blink. Nor did I listen to the voice in my head telling me to buy a case.

Tonight I opened it up. Nose was clean, floral, fruity, inviting. Color was bright, faint straw. The taste was heavy on the back palette, tangy, fruity, pear/apple, and faint honeysuckle. Overall – this was stellar. Exactly what I want in the summer heat.

12.5% ABV. Both bottles gone.

I’ll be returning to Costco to buy a case or two, this summer is calling for it.

$6 fucking dollars!

Some Recent Winery Visits…

Catching up on some recent visits to the Sparkling Houses of Napa with my thoughts:

  • Domaine Carneros – the Napa HQ for Tattinger’s U.S. endeavors. What a bustling location, tons of visitors. We were able to sit in the cafeteria style lounge and have some food along with a tasting of some of the latest offerings. The caviar was a treat. I’m still honing my sparkling wine critique’s, but I enjoyed everything. Nothing was too cloying for my palate. I ended up taking home two of the Late Disgorged La Reve’s and two of the Vermeil Demi-Sec’s. 4/5
  • Mumm Napa – the Napa location for G.H. Mumm & Cie. Nice location, and the outdoor seating was very pleasant on the spring day. I especially liked the flexibility of the tasting setup – three of their highly regarded labels, and a fourth of your choice. Some interesting wines in the tasting, but opted to not purchase any. If I were, I would like to start collecting the DVX label. 3.5/5
  •  Domaine Chandon – the LVMH conglomerate’s sparkling house for Napa. The setup here was more for accommodating large parties and not for a serious tasting. I will have to revisit with an appointment for that, I think. The “workflow” here needs improvement – as they expect you to hang out in a line at the bar top to get your glass, and go elsewhere for tasting that glass. Again, it felt as if you were at a bar and not a winery tasting. The wines were okay. 2/5

I Passed!

So….. it’s been a while. With the end of the year activities, I’ve been busy. Nonetheless, here’s the update:

I took the Guild of Sommelier’s Introduction to Master Sommelier course and exam at the beginning of November and passed. All in all, I felt with the two day cram it was a pretty easy exam. I left learning that I need to work on my deductive tasting — fortunately the GoS offers a Deductive Tasting Workshop to help students hone that skill. I wanted to take the Intro course and exam before deciding if I would proceed to the second level, and I determined it will be a goal I will work towards. I’m just in waiting mode until the workshop comes back to my region.