Signs of the Zodiac
A few weeks ago I got a call from the folks at Schooner Zodiac; complications at Legoe Bay Winery created a need for a new wine tasting venue on Lummi Island to fit into their established San Juan Islands wine cruise, with its planned stop on Lummi Island TODAY (Thursday, June 28 as I write this). Heeding the call, we swung (swang?…swinged?) into action! I arranged with Bill and Jennifer Kimmerly of Masquerade Winery in Bellingham to come out and pour their wines for the event.Wines included their exceptional sparkling wine Effercescent Elephant, expertly blended in the traditional French style. a lovely Gewürztraminer, a Viognier, a rose, three cabs from different vintages and vineyards, and their popular syrah.
In order to get here, of course, all the guests had to ferry in from Zodiac in an inflatable, and then be ferried to the wine shop in a van brought over for the purpose. That took several trips. Despite some wet feet on the part of some of the crew (those of you who have ever landed a small boat on the beach in front of Earl’s know that at low tide your dinghy runs aground several feet from the shore, and Someone has to get their feet wet to bring the boat onto the shore!) all the guests were in good spirits, and a good time was had by all.
However, all you need to know is that we are continuing the Masquerade tasting on Friday, June 29, during our regular hours from 4-7. After a long absence for the French wine tour, Ryan will be back to pour these lovely wines, so come by, say hi, and enjoy the Masquerade. (Friday only: wear a mask, get a free Masquerade tasting!)
The Italians are back!
Twice a year we get a shipment of special order wines from importer Small Vineyards. The summer shipment has just arrived, bringing some new wines and several old favorites. Among them are two we will be tasting on Saturday, from one of our favorite Italian producers, Perazzeta. They include the new rosado and the new Erio super-tuscan blend of sangiovese, cab, and syrah. We also received a case of their new (2011 harvest) olive oil, which we will also be sampling. Many of you fell under the spell of their 2010 harvest during the past year…come try the new vintage. This is true Tuscan olive oil, fresh and tangy.
This week’s wines:
Riveraerie Gewürztraminer ’09 Washington 91pts $15
Intensely perfumed, with heady pear, rose petal and spice aromas that lead to generous flavors, classically balanced with rich texture, finishing mostly dry.
Perazzeta Rosado di Montalcino ’11 Italy $14
It’s back! From the same grape as Brunello (sangiovese grosso), this beautiful rosado has it all: rich, bold, flinty, and summery.
Perazzeta Erio ’10 Italy $14
Another local favorite returns! Sangiovese, cab, syrah blend (”Super-Tuscan”)– this vintage is even more balanced, with even bigger flavor than last year– totally yummy!
Les Aphillanthes Cairanne l’Ancestrale ’09 France 93pts $23
From 100-year-old vines, this unfiltered blend of 90% Grenache and 10% Mourvedre is an extremely supple, full-bodied, opulent, irresistible wine that fills the olfactory senses with copious aromas of black cherries, black currants, forest floor, pepper, lavender and garrigue. It is a compellingly sexy, full-throttle, ancient vine Cotes du Rhone the likes of which are impossible to find anywhere else in the world.