Springtime means wines for warmer weather! Then, just like that… last Friday afternoon, Spring literally arrived to my front door! My friendly FedEx representative pleasantly greeted me with some new wine samples from Lucas & Lewellen Estate Vineyards, of Santa Barbara County, California. In the package: Rosé and Sauvignon Blanc — perfect for casual get-togethers. So, I made it a Lucas & Lewellen weekend having some neighbors over Saturday for lunch, and pairing these wines with Spring-inspired dishes.
Mind your peas & carrots… we’re having herb baked chicken breast seasoned with fresh coriander, lemon-thyme, and marjoram!
Lucas & Lewellen 2017 Rosé of Pinot Noir, comprised of 94% Pinot Noir and 6% Viognier. Those citrus blossoms with the essence of fresh raspberries, strawberries, and pear, plus crisp acidity, complimented my baked chicken breast, peas and carrots, and saffron rice.
Lucas & Lewellen 2017 Sauvignon-Blanc, made up of 90% Sauvignon-Blanc and 10% Viognier. Boy, those tropical aromas on the nose and peachy palate paired perfectly with my crab-cake in mango salsa made with fresh cilantro, and Hatch New Mexico mild green chiles.
These wines were so refreshing and fun! My neighbors loved them, and the food. Salud!
Mango salsa, cilantro, mild green chile with my crab cake!
Yesterday, August 31st, was #CabernetDay and for Conconnan Vineyard the celebration of Cabernet Sauvignon continues through September!
Last year in August at the Wine Bloggers Conference, I had first-hand experience of a special excursion trip hosted by the Livermore Valley Wine Country to Concannon Vineyard for an elegant dinner, unique conversation with winemakers, and lovely visit with the Concannon family. The featured picture of Concannon Cabernet Sauvignon was a gift from the winery thanking all the wine bloggers who came out to visit that evening. The experience at Concanoon was so memorable, I saved my gift for a very special occasion — a birthday dinner for a dear friend. On the menu, for my dinner party: filet mignon. And, yes, it was incredibly heartwarming to hear my guests enthusiastically comment, “What a stellar wine!” “What is this?” And, “Where can I get this? I love it!”
My thoughts: wine paired for special occasions should be chosen based on an experience, feelings and memories. Happy Cabernet Day, and thank you, Concannon Vineyards!
The dinner table is set at Concannon!
Sunset over Concannon Vineyard!
Concannon Vineyard House in evening!
August 1st is International Albariño Day! Traditionally, the Albariño grape is grown in Rias Baixas, a wine region in Galicia, Spain. However, Lodi, California, is knocking out some pretty outstanding Albariño, too! So, today I’m high-lighting my favorite Klinker Brick Winery Albariño from Lodi, CA.
I first tasted this particular wine at the Wine Bloggers Conference last August in Lodi. Those peach and apricot aromas on the nose, along with the high acidity on the palate, paired nicely with the tossed kale salad we had at dinner.
With the Klinker Brick family (pictures featured above and below), I also had the unique opportunity to taste a variety of other Klinker Brick wines, which are all exceptional.
There is so much happening this week internationally with Albariño, stay tuned with #AlbarinoFiesta and Lodi tour of Albariño! Wow, wish I could be there this week in Lodi, and try that delicious Klinker Brick Albariño sorbet!!
Dinner with Klinker Brick Winery in Lodi, CA. #WBC16
The Klinker Brick family, Father and daughter Farrah
Spicy robust berry notes like cranberry, red current, and plum complement this Oak Ridge Winery 2015 Lodi Pinot Noir (@OakRidgeWinery/OakRidegeWinery). Found this gem at Total Wine for $13.50. I paired this Pinot Noir with a Turkey burger spiced with Berbere Seasoning purchased from Penzeys Spices. I get all my spices at Penzeys. Berbere Seasoning is an awesome blend of cayenne pepper, garlic, ginger, cardamom, cumin, black pepper, all spice, turmeric, cloves, cinnamon, and coriander. Let me tell you–while cooking with Berbere, incredible spicy aromas filled the kitchen more intoxicating than the wine! At any rate, there is no other way to have a spicy turkey burger, melted Havarti cheese, home potato fries (fried in avocado oil), and a Pinot Noir from Lodi!!
Berbere Seasoning from my favorite place, Penzeys.