"Wine for lunch?" It was just a simple, Cal-Provencal chicken breast and salad with feta, but the early summer day quietly demanded a lazy, unpretentious quaff. "But, we have nothing chilled", she may have said. No problem. Just grab a bottle of light bodied, high acid juice from the dark, cool space below and prepare it for the quick chill. Ten minutes is all that it will take, because we are going to crisp-change the temperature of a cellar-ed bottle, a cool survivor that is still found in the 60+/- degree range even on this summer day. A Portuguese vino verde gets wrapped in wet paper towel, slipped into a plastic bag(so it doesn't attach to anything else), and laid in the freezer. As the wet paper quickly chills, it directly transfers cold to the bottles liquid, and within a few minutes it's near perfection for this particular lazy day dejeuner. It could have been any bottle(sparkling demands even cooler temps), but chilling improved the presentation, focused the physical properties and the bright character of this particular modest bottle of imported white wine. We could almost imagine the warm and gentile breezes of a Lisbon seaside cafe.
|A sea of familiar brands or a wine adventure?|
Distinguished brands that are pillars of the state's Napa wine history, Beaulieu Vineyards, Beringer, Chateau St. Jean, and Stags' Leap Winery are today all Treasury Wine Estates of Australia properties. And that popular Meiomi Pinot Noir, as well as iconic, Robert Mondavi Winery are currently part of the largest imported beer company in the U.S., Constellation Brands. Bottles such as these and countless others are effectively commodity brands, guided by investors who may have never touched its soil or fruit. Mostly, they can generate standardized industrial products, striving for consistency and market-share that's utilizing a shrinking distributor(wholesale) market. But, another thing they may share today is that at one time in the not too distant past, just about all of these brands were a single artisan's dream; regularly producing a genuine and honest reflection of a unique place and time(it was a good year!).
|Cheers to another great story!|
Raising a glass here for more than a decade;