2009 Johan Chardonnay Reserve

Up last for the white and rose portion of speed dating we have the Johan 2009 Chardonnay Reserve. Yay for more OR wine to round out this tasting! This chardonnay retails for $33. On the nose I am getting some toast and butter from the oak treatment and some yellow apple. In the mouth I am getting more apple, a buttery finish. pear, and yellow apple.  They add the lees back to the bottle on this, interesting.

Another one I’d pair with grilled white fish.

Almost all the OR wines make me think of seafood. Must be that Pacific Northwest thing!

Coincidence?

I wonder if the wine writer over at the Washington Post reads wine blogs? An article appeared this week in the Food and Dining section of the Post about biodynamically produced wine. Considering we recently had WBW 29 which featured biodynamically produced wine, you just have to wonder. The article echoes many of the questions and concerns posed by all the wine bloggers when reveiwing the wines tasted for WBW. It also has a hefty dose of skepticism mixed in with its information, also a theme I noticed in that particular WBW. Who knows.

It may be Wacky….(WBW #29)

But I’m all for good wine, even when I’m not totally convinced of the biodynamic process behind it. I’ll also be the first to admit that I don’t totally “get” the whole biodynamic thing. I’ve read about it over the past month to see if I could educate myself, but I’m still not sure I’m totally on the same page with what is going on. Protecting the environment and trying to use the land with the least harmful impact is great in my book, I’m just not sure I buy into all the swirling of things in a certain way and burying items at proper times in the skulls of animals. Nonetheless, what I drank tonight was a fabulous bottle of wine.

This bottle of Zind Humbrecht 2004 Pinot D’Alsace came highly recommended as a biodynamically produced wine from the associate at the Curious Grape after she kindly check in their computer for me to make sure that it was indeed biodynamically produced. It ran $23, had a real cork closure and is 13% alcohol by volume.

This is a blend of two different grapes, in 2004 it was made of 70% Auxerrois and 30% Pinot Blanc. On the nose of this wine I get honeysuckle, tons of minerals and exotic spices. There’s also a hint of citrus and I almost want to say that it’s a clementine orange. In the mouth there is citrus, with a hint of the honey I got on the nose. It is crisp and biting and has a long mineral filled finish.

I paired this with the last of Roz’s Zuppa Toscano recipe and it actually wasn’t a half bad match. The soup is both spicy (with the Italian sausage) and creamy (with the whipping cream) and the tart acidity and excellent structure of the Zind held up well to the flavors.

Given the opportunity I would buy this wine again. It’s a bottle right up my alley with the crip citrus flavors and the lasting minerals. I’m also a sucker for an aromatic nose that follows through in the mouth. Even Matt proclaimed this a “tasty wine” and he’s usually not one for a wine that is mostly tart and crisp on the flavors.

Thanks to Fork and Bottle for hosting this month’s WBW and for making me step out of my normal zone to search for a new wine.

A Trip to the Wine Shop

I spent a good part of the afternoon nosing around the Curious Grape today. Although it’s winter and the more likely choice for wine is a nice heart-warming red, we still like to drink the occassional white, especially on nights where I serve light seafood dishes. And, sadly, we have almost run the course of white wines purchased on our Sonoma trip. I ended up purchasing seven bottles for around $78, not a bad deal. They range from $6.99 to $21.99 and all but one were purchased in my pursuit of everyday wine.

Additionally, I was searching for my entry for WBW #29. Keeping in mind my indecisiveness over which bottle of sparkling wine to review for the previous WBW, I didn’t want to get caught in the same trap this time. So I figured I would poke around the wine shop and see if I could find anything on my own before asking the salespeople for a recommendation. Sadly, it appears that vineyards don’t seem to proclaim on their bottles that they are biodynamically produced, at least none of the bottles I looked at did. I found myself cursing the fact that I hadn’t thought to print out the list of producers over at Fork and Bottle. If you have yet to purchase your bottle and you are unfamiliar with biodynamic wine like me, I definetly suggest bringing a list!

When I asked the clerk for help, she couldn’t immediately point me to one. She showed me a few she thought were biodynamic wines, but couldn’t confirm for sure. Even though she was incredibly busy (they were setting up for a champagne tasting in light of the impending arrival of New Year’s Eve) she took the time to look at their inventory log on the computer and point me to some that most definetly were biodynamic wines. And so I am now the owner of what I think is my first ever bottle of biodynamic wine.

I must admit I am still a little skeptical. Plus, it was a little pricier than I am normally willing to spend on something I haven’t tested. But, I’ll try anything once. So come January 17th, we shall see!

WBW #29-Biodynamic Wine

Ack, it’s here already! I feel like I just finished WBW #28. This month will be hosted by Fork and Bottle and we are being asked to drink a biodynamically (can I make that a word please?) produced wine. Now, I don’t know much about biodynamic wines. I’m about 99% positive that I have never had one. From what I do understand, it has to do with harvest cycles and the moon and all aspects of the environment working in harmony or some such thing. So I guess this week will find me visiting old haunts again to hunt down a biodynamic bottle. And reading a bit more so that I have a better understanding of what exactly I’m drinking. I can only hope that it doesn’t take me as long to find one I’m happy with reviewing as it did for WBW #28. Pick a wine, drink it and send a review in by January 17 if you want to participate.

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