Friday Night Wine…and Contest Winners

File Aug 28, 9 13 25 PMGuys, I won a contest! I love winning contests! This one was sponsored by Julianna Glass, a specialty crystal retailer featuring beautiful glassware. I entered a few times by tweeting and liking some of their social media posts, then I promptly forgot about it. Imagine my surprise when I got an email telling me that I’d won. A pair of red wine glasses arrived this afternoon, so of course I had to test them out and give them a try.

Not sure if it was the excitement that I’d won something or the fact that it was Friday and my brain was fried, but drinking out of these glasses was a dream! Extremely delicate and dainty, you can tell they are high quality. They’re also beautiful, with elegant swirls running across the glass with a smattering of crystals throughout. A lovely addition to my collection of wine vessels!

Speaking of contests, you may recall that I did my own contest during the wine buying marathon for a free bottle of wine. All you had to do was sign up for Last Bottle, the company running the marathon. If you haven’t signed up yet, you should. The wine deals are amazing. I had quite a few entries[1] and the trusty random number generator spit out the number 14, which was The Bob Barron[2]! Congrats Bob! Last Bottle still hasn’t gotten the wine shipments together, but when they do I’ll be sending over a bottle that I ordered during the marathon. Not sure I remember what I bought because the adrenaline was pumping, the fingers were clicking and the wallet was getting lighter, but I’m pretty sure I got some good stuff! Can’t wait for that box to arrive!

I needed some wine after this crazy marathon week[3] and this bottle didn’t disappoint.
_________________________________________
To:                   Alleged Blog Readers
From:              WineEsquire
Date:               August 28, 2015
Wine:              2011 Bogle Phantom Proprietary Blend
_________________________________________
File Aug 28, 9 16 25 PMThis was one of those wines where I forgot to stop and taste it until after I was done scarfing nibbling my pepperoni pizza[4]. When I stopped to take a sniff, a smile spread across my face. This had a rich, deep scent that transcended into a rich, deep mouthful of spicy, delicious wine. Seriously spicy with notes of leather and a hint of oakiness.  Medium bodied and a touch on the dry side. Paired well with our Friday night feast and was excellent on its own after the pizza disappeared.

A perfect way to start the weekend! Cheers!

Wine Dossier
I found it interesting that the label on the bottle calls this a “proprietary blend” without a listing of the varietals used. The Bogle website, however, tells you the exact breakdown of the blend: 46% Petite Sirah; 40% Zinfandel; 11% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Mourvèdre[5]. I thought there would have been a lot more cab in there, but I can definitely see the Petite Sirah and the Zinfandel.

I totally nailed it in my tasting notes. The official description on the website refer to the wine’s “relentless spice” and tells me that it was “aged for over 24 months in 1 and 2 year old American oak.” #WineEsquireforthewin.

Another wine from Clarksburg, an area I’d not heard about before my last blog post. This confirms that there is some seriously good wine being made there and it is definitely still on my wine bucket list.

This bottle was a gift[6], so I don’t know how much they paid for it. It retails online for between $15 and $22. At this price point, you should get a bottle as a gift and give it to someone you want to impress. Then you should try and drink it with them so you both win.

Cheers!

Lawyer Footnotes
[1] Thanks to all who participated!
[2] He’s one of my wine friends. Check him out on Twitter and Instagram.
[3] Unfortunately there wasn’t another wine buying marathon, just a work marathon. #lawyerlife
[4] I didn’t have pizza this week (though I may have had a bagel or two…), so I’m doing pretty good. #theregoesthatdiet
[5] According to Dr. Vinny, this is pronounced more-VEH-drha. Per Wikipedia it’s a widely grown grape used mostly in blends. It’s also known as Mataró or Monastrell.
[6] At least I think it was a gift since I don’t remember buying it.

I’m Not a Player I Just Crush A Lot[1]

I know, I know, it’s been awhile.[2] I’ve been busy, you’ve been busy, we’ve all been busy. I had that marathon last week[3], which really took a lot out of me[4], Middle Sissy’s birthday celebration in Saratoga[5] and lots and lots of work.[6]

IMG_8386Tonight, we drank a great wine. Husband whipped up some dinner[7] and now we’re sitting out on the front porch. The night has cooled from the ridiculously, oppressively humid day[8], and the cricket chorus is in full swing. Come winter we’ll be complaining about this New England weather, but nights like this are special, and it’s important to take the time to enjoy it.

______________________________________________________
To:                  Alleged Blog Readers
From:             WineEsquire
Date:               August 24, 2015
Wine:             2012 The Crusher Grower’s Selection Petite Sirah
______________________________________________________
I forgot to smell the wine before I tasted[9], and my immediate reaction was “Wow, figs.” Delicious fig balsamic vinegar. Not too sweet, not too thick, but just right. Definitely medium bodied with enough going on to appreciate the flavors and textures, but not so much that it was overwhelming. The color on this is beautiful, a crimson that fades to a deep pink around the edges. I smell leather and dark berries. The finish is slightly sweet and a bit on the dry side. A truly delicious wine.

Wine Dossier
The Crusher hails from Clarksburg, California, not far from Sacramento. The Clarksburg AVA is relatively new, and according to The Wikipedia, only a few wineries release wines with this distinction. Described as “uncrowded and unspoiled” by the Clarksburg Wine Growers & Vintners Association, I’m reminded of Umbria, Tuscany’s uncrowded and unspoiled neighbor, with wines that will knock your socks off. Clarksburg is officially on my Wine To Do List. The area seems to be regularly compared to its famous counterpart, Napa, with similar weather patterns and its aquatic connection with its nearness to the Sacramento River.

The Crusher utilizes all natural yeast fermentation techniques, using yeasts found within the vineyards.[10] Yeast is the magical ingredient that transforms grape juice into wine[11]. It converts the sugar within the juice to alcohol during the fermentation process[12].

At $11.89 I’m going to pat myself on the back and say good job. I ordered online and used a coupon code, but you can find this for even less throughout the country. Go grab a bottle and give it a try, I don’t think you’ll regret it! Make some pasta, grill some steak or enjoy on its own!

Cheers!

Lawyer Footnotes
IMG_8367[1] The 90s R&B playing while we ate dinner and I started this post was #clutch. #BigPun
[2] #socialcalendar #lawyerlife
[3] Winner of the free bottle of wine to be announced soon!
[4] And my wallet.
[5] Complete with some boxed wine.
[6] #lawyerlife
[7] Our favorite pasta Rana tagliatelle with some chopped garlic, basil (fresh from the garden) with an olive tapenade, rounded out with a side of fresh California figs. Delish.IMG_8391
[8] My paralegal came in this morning and asked whether I had brushed my hair or not. WTF
[9] It’s Monday, what can I say?
[10] Apparently natural or “wild” yeast is found in every vineyard on the grapes themselves. You can read more about this here.
[11] Yeast and Jesus have similar transformative abilities. #waterintowine
[12] Read more here.

Breaking News – Wine Marathon – Wine Giveaway

Contest Breakdown

  1. Sign up for Last Bottle
  2. Email confirmation to WineEsquire@gmail.com that you’ve signed up
  3. Optional: Partake in the wine buying marathon madness
  4. Optional: Drink some Wine

IMG_8317Dear Alleged Blog Readers,

Well, it’s marathon day! If you’ve been reading my blog, you know I’m not talking about a running marathon. This kind of marathon is right up Wine Esquire’s alley. It’s a wine marathon! A wine buying marathon to be exact. Working at The Firm has its benefits, and one of them came in the form of a new associate about two months ago. During one of my first encounters with New Associate, she told me about a magical website called Last Bottle. It’s a Napa Valley daily wine “auction” website where exceptional wines are sold at great prices. Obviously I’ve made a few purchases already. Each day you get a new email with the wine deal of the day. If you wait too long, the wine is gone and you have to wait for the next auction to be posted. It’s exciting and fun and you end up getting great wines at great prices.

Yesterday’s email was a special one. It spoke of the Harvest Marathon. A 2 day period of crazy non-stop wine buying. No emails, no reminders. When the wine is gone, it’s gone, and it’s onto the next. And best of all free shipping! My adrenaline is pumping just thinking about it!

This marathon event seems too good to keep to myself, so that’s why I’m telling you about it. Not only should you sign up and participate in this wine marathon magic with me, but if you do, then you’ll be entered to win one of the magical wine bottles that I purchase during the marathon madness! All you have to do is sign up for Last Bottle using this link and email me confirmation that you signed up. You’ll get $5.00 toward your first purchase as an added bonus! It wouldn’t be a bad idea sign up for blog updates from Wine Esquire as well! I’ll be Instagraming and Live Tweeting as I go. Do you think The Firm will notice if I have my Do Not Disturb button on for the next 24 hours? We shall see!

Cheers!

Contest Breakdown

  1. Sign up for Last Bottle
  2. Email confirmation to WineEsquire@gmail.com that you’ve signed up
  3. Optional: Partake in the wine buying marathon madness
  4. Optional: Drink some Wine

Sign up and Email confirmation must be received by 11:59 p.m. ET on August 20, 2015. Once you sign up, you’ll be entered to win one of the bottles I buy today. Contest open to U.S. shipping addresses only, subject to applicable shipping laws #lawyerlife.

Friday Filing

Well, this was quite a week, jam packed with lots of events, client meetings, my Stella & Dot wineIMG_8180 and jewelry party and three real estate closings today alone! No time for blogging! This weekend should be full of fun wine adventures as I venture to one of the most amazing restaurants I’ve ever been to, Cav in Providence, as part of my annual girl’s weekend getaway. Super excited! Monday afternoon I’m speaking as a lawyer lady/wine guru at an Extracurricular at a local winery, so look for a post[1] on that.

I realized I never posted my thoughts on the excellent Merlot[2] Husband and I had last weekend, so here you go!

What are you drinking this weekend??
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To:                  Alleged Blog Readers
From:             WineEsquire
Date:               August 9, 2015
Wine:              2010 Burgess Merlot
_________________________________________
The scintillating aroma of this wine greeted me immediately when I extracted the cork. I leaned into it took a sniff and said “This is going to be good.” I was right. The nose has a musty sweetness, almost like a whisky, full of rich flavors. The first sip is soft and silky. The sweet nose transcends into a spicy mouthful, pairing perfectly with our gourmet feast of pepperoni pizza[3]. I’d say this was IMG_8184medium-bodied, on the lighter side for a Merlot, though if you read my blog, you know I rarely drink them.[4] I get a deep fruitiness, almost like a rich raspberry jam, though it’s definitely not fruit forward. As it’s been open for about an hour now, the spicy notes are almost gone and the soft silky jam lingers deliciously in my mouth. I’m a very happy camper. What more could you ask for on a lazy Sunday besides good pizza and great wine?

Wine Dossier
This is the only signed bottle of wine I’ve ever had. While I don’t think the signature added anything to the character of the wine, it’s pretty cool to think that the winemaker not only had a hand in designing what’s inside, but he also signed the bottle. I bought two bottles back in March and gave one to my Father for his birthday.[5] It came recommended by my trusty Wine Friend who told me IMG_8186that the owner had recently been in from California and signed a case of bottles for the store.

Burgess Cellars has been operating since 1972, growing wine in three distinct vineyards in Napa Valley. This bottle came from Merlot grapes grown on their Triere Estate Vineyard in the Oak Knoll District AVA. Wine Enthusiast rated this vintage 90 points and says the going rate is $30 a bottle. I can tell you I did not pay that much or else I wouldn’t have bought two. I think they were running a special for $18 a bottle, but my memory could be wrong.

A very enjoyable bottle of wine, I would not hesitate to recommend you try this with your next pepperoni pizza[6].

Cheers!

Lawyer Footnotes
[1] Or at least a good Instagram.
[2] For the geeks and nerds who care about this stuff, I did some Googling research about whether varietal names should be capitalized. At first I had merlot all lowercase but it didn’t sit right with me. Here’s some information from someone who did a lot more research than me. The New York Times apparently doesn’t capitalize them, though there are exceptions, but I’m going to make my own rules because I think it looks better when they’re capitalized. #nerdIMG_8185
[3] Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, this was the first of five days in the last seven that I had pepperoni pizza. #DietstartsMonday #yearight
[4] When Husband and I first got into wine a few years ago, Merlot was our go to, but then I discovered Cab and I haven’t looked back.
[5] He’s a big Merlot fan and is convinced that Cabernet gives him a headache. I had someone yesterday telling me that Merlot gives them a headache so they only drink Cab. #itsallinyourhead
[6] It would also go well with a more sophisticated meal, like a nice steak or pasta with a good red sauce.