Jeff’s Corner

Gobble, Gobble, Gobble

Here’s hoping everyone had a great Turkey Day yesterday and is enjoying a long, relaxing Thanksgiving weekend with friends and family. Our time together is fleeting, and should always be cherished.

Kathy and I spent a quiet day together that began with a lovely brunch of smoked salmon, bagels, cream cheese, capers, red onion and fresh fruit. This, by the way, paired wonderfully with a bottle of 2016 Heath Sparkling Adoration. The rest of the day was filled with memories, laughter, a few tears and the smell of pie baking and turkey roasting.

Okay, it’s time to talk about wine. Last week we released the new 2017 Rendezvous at the vineyard and it is truly delightful. Rendezvous occupies an important niche in our portfolio, and in my opinion is all too often overlooked.

It is a great crossover wine for folks just starting to enjoy reds, it’s very accessible in summer when it is 110*, and it appeals to all those pesky Pinot Noir drinkers with its bright, fresh fruitiness. Rendezvous is also one of our most versatile wines with food.

Although our lightest red in texture, the ’17 Rendezvous is packed with delicate complexities. It’s a quintessential Rhone-style blend of 35.6% Cinsault, 35.3% Grenache, 23.1% Mourvedre, and 6% Viognier. The ABV is 13.9%. This is quite different from the ’16, which was 44% Syrah, 27.3% Cinsault, 22.2% Mourvedre, and 6.1% Viognier.

The color is an old-world ruby/garnet with a bright rim and moderate extraction. Aromas are rich and complex with a charming rustic earthiness. Ripe raspberry, black cherry and pomegranate flirt with layers of dried rose petals, violets, cinnamon, anise, clove and dark cocoa.

Featuring near perfect balance, the palate is elegant and refined. Soft tannins and silky smooth acids create a backdrop for this extremely fruit-forward wine. Serving temperature is important, with about 55* being optimum to highlight its freshness and graceful sophistication.

I’m thinking this would be really good with a pepper-crusted burger stuffed with bleu cheese and topped with caramelized onions and sautéed mushrooms. Your choice of sides…