Here are the tasting notes for the OH Bloggers Association Meeting. (These are so much better than meeting notes, don’t you think?)
The white wines we tasted are a bit of a study in malolactic fermentation. This is the secondary fermentation wines go through. The tart malic acid from the first fermentation is converted to softer-tasting lactic acid. Remember, wine is a bit like laws and sausage… you probably don’t want to know what goes into it, but you know it tastes lovely when its done! You may be familiar with this process if you drink Chardonnay.The malo is what brings out the butter or butterscotch flavors of Chard.
2010 Monmousseau Champagne (FR) $14.99
Brut Etoile – “methode champenoise” – secondary fermentation in the bottle.
Bubbles are refined and persistent and acidity is well-balanced on the palate. Ever so slight sweetness on the finish of this beautiful and inexpensive champagne.
2010 Argiolas Vermintino (IT) $14.99
Vermintino grape from Sardenia. This wine is fermented in stainless steel, and then put through partial malolactic fermentation in the tank which gives this wine a fuller body.You will find orange and vanilla flavors and a zesty acidity (making it a crisp wine). This one is great with Asian food.
2010 Burgáns Albariño (SP) $14.99
Rias Baixas, Spain
Bodegas Martín Códax – a cooperative of 270 growers and the winery.
This wine has good minerality with lemon, peach, tropical fruit flavors and full malolactic fermentation, smoothing the edges of this wine and providing a full mouthfeel.
Our reds are in the theme of “Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark” – these are some of the darker red wines with a lighter body, in varietals many people are really unfamiliar with, but are priced well for the budget. Each of them runs $12.99.
2010 Domaine Aime Cabernet Franc (FR) $12.99
Languedoc-Roussillon – Minervois appellation
No oak aging – dark cherry and cassis fruit flavors, slightly spicy and a bit of cocoa.
This is one of my favorite “middle of the road” reds – warm climate doesn’t create the vegetative or green pepper notes that Cab Franc can be known for. Pair it with anything from chicken to pork to vegetarian dishes.
2005 Crianza Camparron (SP) $12.99
The tinta de toro or tempranillo grape. Cherry notes and light oak aging. This is a fruit forward wine with well-integrated wood flavors.
6 months on American oak, 24 months in the bottle before release.
We put this with spanish dishes, of course…although we pair this one with chili and spaghetti quite a bit.
2010 Stella Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (IT) $12.99
Eastern coast of Italy. Montepulciano grapes have also been introduced to Australia, so you may be finding this varietal from there as well.
Aromas of black cherries and herbs. Dry and mellow with concentrated structure.
Best enjoyed young, in order to fully appreciate its fruity character.
Enjoyed with typical Italian dishes, red meats, pizza, and cheese.
The recipe for the Cleveland Crostini is here.
Many thanks to Greg at Wine and Design for letting the bloggers invade your beautiful space. To Southside in Tremont for the rock star hummus – and to the Ohio Blogging Association for inviting me to put this tasting together for them. It was a lot of fun to meet some of the bloggers who’s work I read regularly, and to see some friends!