Well wine lovers, the calendar rolled over to May this weekend and our stay at home order in Minnesota was also subsequently extended through May 18th, so it doesn’t look like those mid-spring cookouts with friends are going to be firing up just yet.
That being said, on days that the weather is nice, Josh and I have taken great comfort in our backyard patio, grilling out when we can, and having backyard fires in the fire bowl. Now that the house is in the wood flooring phase, we have lots of wood end cutoffs and floor planks with flaws that can’t be used. In other words, a fresh supply of kindling and firewood.
And you know what goes well with patio sitting, grilling out, and bonfires? A good bottle of wine!
One of my favorite wine trends in spring/summer is a red wine that can stand to be chilled a bit. My absolute favorite summer red is from the Minnesota winery ‘Four Daughters,’ and is a pinot noir that is both sparkling and should be served chilled. It’s everything that you want from a traditional red wine, with some pizazz for your summer special occasions.
In researching this week’s wine pick, I was surprised to find many reviews and tasting notes suggested that this wine was excellent slightly chilled. We didn’t drink it that way during virtual game night with my family this week, but with that recommendation in mind, I could definitely see us going back to this one as a summer patio staple.
Guenoc Petite Sirah was a wine I initially grabbed as an Easter dinner pick earlier this spring, but ended up passing it over for something else. Nevertheless, it was recommended as a good pick with ham or other smoked meats for having high tannins to cut through the richness of the meat.
Indeed, upon opening the bottle, the nose was almost “tight,” and I expected an exceptionally dry, high tannin, and high acidity wine. So I was pleasantly surprised that, after letting the wine decant for about 20 minutes, the first sips were incredibly fruit forward with strong berry flavors. My first impression was almost that the wine was sweet, but in fact the finish was pretty short, dry, and tannic more like I expected.
The balance, however, was really nice, and both Josh and I took our first sips, looked at each other and went, “Wow! That’s good!” I’m not sure we expected it to be bad, but we were definitely pleasantly surprised at the balance we found.
We enjoyed the 2017 vintage, though if you can find an earlier varietal, 2013-2015 appear the vintage of choice, and coming into their own! If you can snag it at $6.99, great deal!
Stay safe. Stay home. Cheers!