Spritz your wine?


Today we’re taking on another of those topics that separates those of us who have a sense of humor about wine from those who don’t find wine a laughing matter.
Here’s the question: When summer clamps down on us like a hot, wet sponge – or even when it doesn’t – have you ever considered spritzing your wine with a shot of sparkling water, and maybe dropping a couple of ice cubes in?

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Sokol-Blosser 2016 Dundee Hills Estate Cuvée Rosé of Pinot Noir ($19.99)


Pretty, clear light rosy pink color. Red berry and subtle wildflower scent, fresh, a touch of strawberries on the palate, perhaps the one clear signal of its Pinot Noir provenance. The winery claims a small amount of residual sugar, but it appears bone-dry and faintly prickly, with 12% alcohol; an intriguing hint of “rainwater” minerality in the background. Crisp and tart, red berries and subtle lemon-lime in a very long finish.

Compare prices and fine vendors for Sokol-Blosser Dundee Hills Estate Cuvée Rosé of Pinot Noir on Wine-Searcher.com.

Buy this wine from the winery for $22/bottle. Read article.

Au Bon Climat 2016 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir ($25.99)

Au Bon Climat

Dark ruby red with scarlet glints against the light. Red berries, a hint of plum and a whiff of fennel carry over intact on the palate in a full-bodied, red-berry flavor that’s ripe but bone-dry and tart, mouth-watering and palate-cleansing. Alcohol at 13.5% is sufficient to fill it out but not so high-octane as to bring the heat. Soft, palatable tannins in a nicely balanced Pinot Noir that’s distinctly California yet reaches across the Atlantic to bring in a touch of Burgundy. Excellent wine.

FIND THIS WINE ONLINE: Check prices and find vendors for Au Bon Climat Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir on Wine-Searcher.com.

You can also buy the 2016 vintage direct from the winery for $24 at this link. Read article.

Two canned wines from Alloy Wine Works

Alloy Wine Works

Alloy Wine Works (Field Recordings) 2015 Central Coast Chardonnay ($8.99/500ml can)
Clear straw color. Fresh scents of pears and green apples and yeasty rising bread dough lead into a tart and tangy and very slightly sweet flavor highlighting lemony citrus and, yes, pie crust, with meyer lemon hanging on in a very long, acidic finish with warm 14% alcohol. I would never have expected a wine this balanced and well-made to come from a can. It’s not my favorite style of Chardonnay, but I’d score it well on points in wine judging. (June 29, 2017)

Alloy Wine Works (Field Recordings) 2016 “Hans Grüner” Edna Valley Grüner Veltliner ($8.99/375ml can)
This wine surprises me on two levels: It’s a much better wine than I would have ever expected to find in a can, and it’s a much better Grüner Veltliner than I would have ever expected to taste from a vineyard that’s far from Austria. It’s a clear, light brass-color wine, with fresh white-fruit and green herbal aromas that I expect from a good GV. The same goes for the flavor, which shows clean, crisp white fruit, snappy citrus and a distinct touch of stony minerality with a light 12.1% alcohol. Zippy lemon-lime persists in a very long finish.

Click here to review vendors and prices for all of Field Recordings’ wines including the Alloy Wine Works cans.
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Les Vignerons de Tautavel 2016 “Le Cirque” Côtes Catalanes Rosé ($13.99)

“Le Cirque”

Clear, bright salmon pink, a very pretty blend of Grenache Noir (40%), Mourvèdre (40%), and Syrah (20%). Strawberries and raspberries and fresh green herbs on the nose; red berries and a whiff of watermelon on the palate, nicely balanced by crisp, fresh acidity. It’s nearly dry, with 13% alcohol and a touch of fresh-fruit sweetness that could be a hint of sugar or just fresh, ripe fruit.

Check prices and find vendors for Le Cirque Côtes Cata;lanes Rosé on Wine-Searcher.com.
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Mulderbosch 2015 Western Cape Chenin Blanc Steen Op Hout ($14.99)


This is a clear, straw-color wine with glints of gold. Its ripe aromas center on musky melons, honeydew and ripe cantaloupe, a hint of juicy peach and a touch of tangerine. These mixed-fruit aromas carry over in a palate impression that’s medium-bodied, quite dry, and shaped by zippy fresh-fruit acidity that lingers into a very long finish. It carries its 14 percent alcohol well.

Find vendors and check prices for Mulderbosch Western Cape Chenin Blanc on Wine-Searcher.com. Read article.