October 2010: WINETALK - Disguise
Author: Krissy Cantelupe
DISGUISE …the official meaning from Webster’s Dictionary is “to change the customary appearance of,” which is the subject of Wine Talk this month: the disguise of a wonderful wine behind a fun label, or humorous label, or even a label that doesn’t look like a wine label. More fabulous than seeing these unusual labels was tasting the wines. Not only would it be fun to take one of them to a party (think Halloween!), the wine inside the bottles is fantastic.
The Blonde Bombshell
Brand new to South Carolina, the Blonde Bombshell is a new white blend from the same folks who brought us Big Red Monster. The blend is Chenin Blanc, Riesling and Muscat, but surprisingly, it is not sweet. Instead the wine has fantastic floral and fruit flavors with a crisp acidity; flavors of peach nectar, tangerine and a hint of citrus gives the wine a great mouthfeel. Perfect as an aperitif or paired with shellfish, light poultry and fresh green salads.
Sokol Blosser’s Evolution
Was it luck? Was it intention? What was it? Actually it was a big hit on Top Chef this season for a chef who paired it with foie gras with black pepper and cumin. Pair it with spicy Asian or Spanish cuisine, shellfish, anything super hot or serve as an after dinner drink. It is a blend of nine grapes (it was called Evolution Number 9): Pinot Gris, Muller-Thurgau, White Riesling, Semillion, Muscat Canelli, Gewurtztraminer, Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay, and Sylvaner, all from Oregon. The wine is off-dry and full of tropical fruit flavors.
Apothic Red Blend
Disguised behind an elegant, yet mysterious label is another blend, this time a lush red blend. Named after “Apotheca,” a unique place where wine was secretly blended and stored in 13th century Europe, Apothic is a beautiful wine. The dark fruit of Syrah gives a plush, velvety mouthfeel. The spiciness of Zinfandel gives a hint of mocha, chocolate and white pepper. The elegant Merlot gives a rich blackberry and wild dark cherry finish. As the Harvest Moon arises, pair Apothic with grilled meats or rich stews, or just serve it by itself.
What is that on that gentleman’s head? A plunger? Why yes, it is! Plungerhead Zinfandel is a tribute to a new style of wine capping. If you notice the top of the wine bottle, you can remove the strand and the wine can be re-capped instead of using a cork, pushing the air out, kind of like a plunger. This Lodi Zinfandel is delicious! It has plenty of dried blueberry and black currant on the nose and big flavors of cinnamon, Dutch Berry Cobbler, and cedar on the finish. The wine would be perfect with grilled sausages, pepperoni pizza, BBQ chicken or pork and rich chocolate desserts.