OkieWineGirl

A Wine Drinker Rambling about Wine

Month: October 2017

Oklahoma Skies #7: Sunset & a 500 year-old Blogpost

There are approximately a thousand pictures on my iPhone of the Oklahoma skies. Apparently, I’m infatuated with them. Some days, they can be fairly spectacular. We might not have much here in tornado alley, but more often than not the skies are saturated in a range of glorious colors. 

 

Today marks the 500th anniversary of church reformer, Martin Luther and his ‘blog post’ of 95 Theses.

Luther nailed his post to the door of the church in Wittenberg, Germany on October 31, 1517. His ‘blog post’ would change the Christian church forever. Happy Reformation Day! 

 

Sunset – December 16, 2016

 

 

As a bonus, I wanted to share Martin Luther’s famous hymn “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” that he wrote in testament to the work of God Almighty in his life. Hope you enjoy!  

 

“One of The Best-Kept Secrets of France”: Bugey Appellation

I love this time of the year! Our local wine shop hosts an abundance of wine tastings in prep for the coming holiday season so it’s an excellent opportunity to be exposed to wines all for free! I guess it’s not totally “free”.  The tasting and learning are free. However, I usually do come home with at least a bottle or two so you get it. Plus, there’s the opportunity to chat with a wine rep who’s sole aim is to help you get to know their wines. They are always amiable and enthusiastic talkers!

Once again, we found ourselves squeezing in a tasting  on a crowded Wednesday evening but it was well worth it.  Our local wine shop was throwing a Fall Wine Tasting hosted by Kermit Lynch Wine Merchants. The wines were all from France, food-friendly and geared towards holiday gatherings.  Our favorite was the sparkling wine Bottex “La Cueille” Bugey-Cerdon Rosé. It was the last pour in the line up and the one that elicited the most smiles from everyone.  The color alone brought a great reaction and coupled with it’s very heady fragrance, the crowded back corner bar where it was being served quickly turned into a lively party.  A few of us may have circled through a second time while the rep spun stories about the Bottex family and the Bugey appellation.

Bugey-Cerdon is actually a blend of the grapes Gamay and Poulsard. The wine is low in alcohol content, vibrantly pink, bubbly, slightly sweet, and fabulously fragrant. Extremely festive. And from a region that according to Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant, “… is one of the best-kept secrets of France.”

Patrick Bottex “La Cueille” Bugey Cerdon Rosé NV

I really enjoyed doing research on this wine region. Not many of the region’s wines usually flow past their local dinner table but a few are making their way to foreign shores. The region of Bugey is tucked at the foothills of the Jura mountains between Savoie and the Rhone. It received official appellation status in 2009 but has been around since Medieval times.

“Today, Cerdon is considered one of three crus within the appellation of Bugey, and the only one whose entire production consists of sparkling wine.” ~ KermitLynch.com 

I’m thinking they’ve mastered the old adage, “Focus on one thing and do it well.”

“Le Cueille” Picture courtsey of Bottex Website

The 5 hectares of the  Bottex vineyard lies in the hamlet of Le Cueille.  According to French law, the wine has to be made in the Mèthode Ancestrale which is an ancient process that pre-dates Champenoise. Basically, the wine only goes through a single fermentation in vats and finishes up in bottle. Fairly simple. In my opinion, the results are wonderful! 

The wine tasting was so festive that just looking at the picture I snapped in haste (before getting back in queue to ask a question and maybe a drop more wine) makes me excited for the holidays. The “best kept secret” is now out but I’m confident I can get a few bottles during the wine shop’s Fall Sale this week. (Thank you,  Alexander Graham Bell

Rest assured, if you’re coming to my house anytime in the next two months, this is what I’m serving! Cheers!

Our Saturday Sips: Gnarly Head Pinot Grigio

It’s the end of the monthly budget with a few pennies to spare. So what’s a thrifty wine drinker to do? You bring home that trusted, consistent, widely distributed wine under ten dollars and you celebrate the fact there’s a decent inexpensive wine you can enjoy for under a ten-spot.

For us it’s Gnarly Head Pinot Grigio California 2016 –  Retail $8.65.

The name Gnarly Head reminds me an ’80s surf movie despite it really representing their old gnarled vines in Lodi.  The word actually means gnarled, challenging, disgusting, and gross. I couldn’t stop thinking about the word ‘Gnarly’ which led to the word ‘dude’.  And then that made me think of gnarly dudes dropping acid because the Pinot Grigio was acidic and I’m back to the 80s surfing movie again probably starring Sean Penn.  Which would be a huge letdown cause I think Nicolas Cage fits the role so much better.  Welcome to my stream of consciousness.

“BOLD. SOPHISTICATED. WITH A HINT OF GNARLY.”

The Pinot Grigio was not gross or challenging but refreshing and citrusy with some stone fruit and melons.  The Gnarly Head website states they’re part of the Delicato Family Vineyards portfolio.

The label suggested pairing with spicy Asian dishes, but in reality,  we paired it with a late night nosh of junk food and Netflix. The long week had ended with an evening  of high school football and marching band. The 8th grade band had been invited to join the high school band (they were recruiting for next year), so our youngest daughter got to perform with her older siblings on the bleachers in band heaven.

Meanwhile, my husband and I enjoyed a small taste of empty nesting. We’d sat in the upper deck  where the kids wouldn’t be able to find us (sort of) but I swear they have radar like an AWACS when they need cash. I’m half-joking. I’ll miss these years after they’ve all flown away. But seriously, how do my kids vanish when it’s time to load the dishwasher yet easily find me in a crowd of 10,000 when the trombone section is heading to IHOP and they need money? It’s just Gnarly.

Cheers to those reliable, cheap sips!

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