Thursday, January 10, 2008

Ahhhh.....a glass of wine

What I wouldn't give for a nice glass of vino right about now. You see....I am on Phase 1 of the South Beach diet and as I am constantly reminded by the Diet is not allowed during Phase 1. I grumble and growl in agreement and slink away to drink my Diet Coke quietly.

I would say my infatuation with wine came in the early 90's. I am ashamed to say that I have put away my share of boxed wine or "boxo", as I like to call it, during those years. In fact, I can't look a White Zinfandel in the face anymore. I slowly graduated to Chardonnay (which remains a real weakness) and to good, meaty Cabernets. Thanks to several visits to my friend in Napa I learned to stretch to Pinots, Muscatos and Port. Much to the dismay and disbelief of my friend I could never bring myself to enjoy a good Merlot. It's one that I just can't seem to get my hands and taste buds around. I think it is the dreaded tannins. Yep....its the tannins.

Our Spring vacation is leading us out to Napa this year. This will be my 3rd (4th?) visit to wine country. I am never disappointed in my trips out there. I always find another unique wine that broadens my horizons and spirit. My friend will likely be able to pinpoint some unique points of interest or kindly remind me of places that I found to be interesting the last time I was out there. One spot that I especially like is a winery called Viansa - a little bit of Tuscany in Northern California. It really is a beautiful spot. Their wines are only available at the winery or through their website and they have a fabulous gourmet food selection - hmmmm......Smokey Mozzarella spread.

Lyn and I take in the occasional wine tastings here locally and we have found some pretty good and generous ones! Our last tasting was a Port tasting. Yeah......Port is not for the faint of heart by any means. It can be quite overwhelming after a while. Ports have a sweet chocolaty thing going on so it is definitely not a "4oz pour" experience. However, it is a very nice substitution for an overwhelming dessert in the presence of the diet police.

So if anyone else shares in my infatuation with wine. I'd like to hear from you! Do you have a favorite? An old standby that never lets you down when you reach for that glass? Or maybe it is a new vintage you have tried recently?

Check out the wine blogs on this site for some great information about what is new out there!


Hahn at Home said...

I highly recommend Domaine Carneros, where you can acquire a taste for some really nice sparkling wine (champagne). I really love wine tasting in Sonoma much better - it's still down-home and they have some superb Ports I don't find in Napa. I'm only about an hour from Napa - you guys should give me a shout when you come out.

Merlots are not drinkable in my book either. I'm a HUGE Pinot Noir fan.

Rita said...

I have not been to Domaine Carneros but I have always wanted to go there! I am hesitant to say I am going to add it to my list because I can get carried away with my lists of things to do. We can definitely meet up at some point while we are out there. I know Lyn would like that as well.

Rita said...

A couple of wines that we have had recently were the Francis Coppola Director's Cut. We tried each of them at a tasting up north in October. The Cabernet and the Zinfidel were very good but you really couldn't go wrong with the whole line - Chardonnay and Pinot as well. Good stuff!

Also, one wine that we both like has a bit of an odd name but it really good. It is called Killerjuice. We have had the Cab but I have seen a Chardonnary and....a Pinot methinks. You know how wines take on a whole different meaning after they are decantered or receive a little air? This one is even better after about 15 minutes....hmmm.

I only have about 6 more days on phase 1.....

Hahn at Home said...

Very cool, I'll look forward to seeing both of you!