Summer is the time for chilled whites, light reds, and of course bubbles. You all know I like variety and mixing it up, but Dry Creek Vineyard’s Chenin Blanc is one I keep going back to. I always have a bottle or six of this one handy. It’s perfect for sipping on the beach, on the porch, in your air conditioning, or in your hot as hades non-air-conditioned space.
It would go well with a handful of nuts, or with an exquisitely prepared Chicken Piccata, with fresh lemons, a handful of capers, garnished with a sprinkle of garden-grown parsley.
“If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Dry Creek Vineyard extends praise to our original source of inspiration in the small French village of Vouvray in the Loire Valley. It was in Vouvray, that our love affair with Chenin Blanc began.”
I get notes of floral and stone fruit, peaches perhaps, with a touch of minerality behind the scenes. The mouthfeel is perfection; great body with a silky swirl finish. At $12.99 a bottle, you seriously can’t go wrong.
AND let’s not forget that summer doesn’t end until September 22 this year. That’s FOUR MORE DAYS OF SUMMER PEOPLE! Savor your favorite summer staple while you still can. I know I will be.
As I’m getting’ back in the swing of things, one glass at a time, I participated in last week’s #WiningHourChat. If you don’t know about the Wining Hour Chat, it’s a lot of fun. A fab trio of ladies hosts every Tuesday at 9 EST. Sometimes a specific wine is on the menu, other times it’s just about what’s in your glass. The featured winery last week was Pedroncelli Winery out of Geyserville, California in Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Valley.
This family operation began in 1927 when Giovanni and Julia Pedroncelli purchased a small vineyard of approximately 25 acres in Dry Creek Valley. They were one of the few wineries to survive Prohibition, staying afloat by selling grapes to home winemakers. Lawyer Fact: Prohibition’s Vosltead Act provided a loophole allowing wine to be made at home. An October 1920 Treasury Department memo instructed federal agents not to pursue individuals making their own wine. The memo stated that “the head of a family who has properly registered may make 200 gallons exclusively for family use without payment of tax thereon.”
Now, in its 90th year, the fourth generation of Pedroncelli’s continue the family business with more than 100 acres of vines. From Sauvignon Blanc to Chardonnay, Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon, their impressive lineup is available online and quite reasonably priced from $17 to $36 a bottle.
I sampled their Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel and both were excellent. The Cabernet Sauvignon had a big, bright, fruity Cab nose. Notes of leather and dark berry, perhaps black courant. A nice light mouthfeel but with fairly big tannins. The finish was smooth and silky. The Zinfandel was full of spice on the nose and black pepper on the finish. A perfect pairing with my quick meal of leftover chicken kebabs.
This 2015 Zin came from Pedroncelli’s Mother Clone vineyard which has been planted with Zinfandel vines since 1904. The majority of the grapes used in this vintage come from the vines re-planted in the 1980s from the clone of the original “Mother” vines, but a bit of the grapes from the remaining 100+ year old vines made their way into the bottle as well.
I hope you join in for this week’s #WiningHourChat, tonight (Tuesday) at 9 EST. The lovely Wining Hour ladies will be chatting about whatever’s in your glass this evening. My plan is to be there, perhaps with a glass of Rosé. We’ll see if Baby Wine Esquire likes that plan or not J
Lawyer Footnotes  During pregnancy this was WAY past my bedtime, so I couldn’t even pretend to participate. Last week’s was a bit dicey as Baby Wine Esquire decided to wake up and want to feed PRECISELY at 9 p.m. But we made it work. Dry Creek Valley, which is apparently not dry at all, is an approximately 9,000 acre AVA known primarily for its Zinfandel grapes.  I guess I have to get back into the swing of lawyering soon too … #everydayissaturdayonmaternityleave  200 gallons equates to 757,082 milliliters, which yields approximately 1,009 standard 750 ml bottles (according to the smart people at Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences). That gives you about 2.7 bottles per household, per day. Not too shabby, considering it was Prohibition. Interestingly, the 200 gallon limitation is still the law, but it only applies to a household of two or more adults. If you’re single you can only make 100 gallons per year. #SinglismIsReal  Baby Wine Esquire got a bit fussy, so the Chardonnay will have to wait for another day.  You know the kind I mean.  My love of leftovers has increased tenfold since Baby arrived. #feedmequick  #OldVineZin  Because it’s still #RoséSeason ya’ll!  Ta Ta For Now.
As I mentioned in my previous post, and perhaps you’ve noticed, I’ve been MIA for a while. Approximately nine months I’d say, give or take a few weeks. It was the fastest nine months of my life, and I was pretty damn busy. Or at least my body was. Can you guess what I did during those nine months? You guessed it, I had a baby!
Now during said nine months, I obviously wasn’t drinking wine. I thought that this would be difficult for me, but it turns out that it wasn’t. At all. For a brief period even the smell of Husband’s wine made me a bit ill. In fact, I got to the point where I thought I’d just give up wine for good, even after Baby came. The wine FOMO could have been bad, so me not being interested was probably internal self-preservation. Which explains why I’ve been MIA.
Baby Wine Esquire joined us on July 5, 2017. Ten days overdue, he was 8 pounds, one ounce and 21 inches of pure love and joy.
Getting used to life with Baby has been incredible; we are forever changed, but we’re getting back into our daily routine, and that includes the re-emergence of Wine Esquire. Albeit, on a smaller scale, for now. At this point, the thing Husband and I yearn for most is a delectable foodie experience in a small, quiet restaurant where Baby isn’t welcome. We’ll get there. Someday. Hopefully sooner rather than later for our sake.
I’m still limited in the amount of wine I can enjoy for now, which makes each glass even more precious. So send me some recommendations! What have I missed in the past 41 weeks? What are your favorite go-to’s of the moment? I’m truly looking forward to reconnecting with everyone again!
Lawyer Footnotes  I’ll spare you the photographic evidence of my epically swollen feet. Thankfully they’ve returned to normal. #hadtobuynewshoes  The whole “nine months” thing is actually a big lie. Babies take 40 weeks to develop and in my case, 41. That’s 10.25 months, not 9. #TheBigLie  Well, at least I wasn’t drinking a LOT of wine. A sip here and there wasn’t gonna hurt nobody. #dontjudge  Because obviously Husband did not give up wine in solidarity with me. He just drank my share too!  Thankfully this cockamamie idea did not stick.  About six months ago I had to Google FOMO. It means “fear of missing out” in case you didn’t know. I also just discovered Despacito. Apparently it’s been THE song of the summer. I’ve been living under a rock, clearly. I continue to play it on repeat as much as possible. I’m also trying to learn the lyrics. Baby loves Despacito. And in case you’re wondering, I prefer the REAL version, not the Beiber overlay. My inner 21 year old REALLY wants to go the club and rock out to this. #wheremygirlsat  Or at least I’m trying very hard to be!  Time is precious, especially when Baby wants to eat ALL. THE. TIME.  No offense, Baby.  Mommy gets hungry too! #hangry
You may have noticed I’ve been MIA over the past few months. There’s a good reason for that. But don’t worry, I’m gettin’ back in the wine game, one glass at a time. And what better way to welcome me back then for Last Bottle Wines to host a Harvest Marathon!
Don’t know about Last Bottle? It’s a Napa Valley daily wine “auction” website where exceptional wines are sold at great prices. I’ve been a regular for several years now, and I’ve still yet to have a dud bottle.
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.
The Harvest Marathon comes along every August; it’s a 48 hour frenzy of 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 on all orders! My friends at Last Bottle are claiming that tomorrow’s marathon will feature their biggest selection in 5 years. I’m super pumped.
Sign up for Last Bottle by clicking here and get $10 off your first order (hello, free wine!)
So there’s my Public Service Announcement; I’ve done my civic duty for the day. You’re welcome.
Looking forward to catching up with you all again!
 I’ll get back to that soon. Promise.  Thanks guys, it was so sweet of you!