Archive for October, 2010

  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups Paired with Cabernet Sauvignon

    Date: 2010.10.19 | Category: Wine & Food Pairings | Response: 0

    This past weekend I attended a beauty products demo in my girlfriend’s home.   It was fun, relaxing afternoon, with purchases of fabulous creams we knew would make us look 15 years younger.

    After everyone had left except the four of us, we started popping open bottles of wine.  After finishing up the second bottle we decided to go for port.  Well, you can’t have port without chocolate.  Piling into my car we headed to the nearest grocery store for chocolate truffles.

    Finally locating truffles we discussed which ones to buy.  Noticing the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups I said have you ever had these with Cabernet Sauvignon, it’s fantastic!  We grabbed the chocolate truffles and peanut butter

    Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

    cups and heading back to the house.

    Once back at the house we set the port aside to open a Cabernet Sauvignon.  As my friends were skeptical, I waited nervously to hear their reaction.  They are now converts to Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups with wine.

    There is something about the chocolate, peanut butter and the saltiness that seems to pair well with the Cab.  We are talking about having a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup wine party and pair with other wines to see the results.

  • Briar Rose Winery and the Cheese Highway

    Date: 2010.10.17 | Category: Winery Events | Response: 0

    Wine and Cheese lovers a like gathered for an Adventure with Briar Rose Winery and the Cheese Impresario one evening in October.  I had been looking forward to this pairing for months in hopes of enjoying some of the premium wines of Briar Rose with artisanal cheeses selected by Barrie Lynn.  I was not disappointed, as I quote the words from many of the guests as they enjoyed a sip of wine with a bite of cheese – “WOW!” 

    If you do not know Briar Rose Winery, it’s one of the ‘hidden gems’ of Temecula Wine Country, with  its fairytale setting as you walk up the court yard of this boutique winery.  Their wines are not a fairytale, but true handcrafted premium wines. 

    Barrie Lynn – ‘The Cheese Impresario’ has a love for cheese and a knack for selecting award-winning cheeses with wine.  She has become so well known for her pairings of cheese, she has been asked to find and choose the best 

    Wine & Cheese Pairing

    cheeses with sake, rum, beer and  various other beverages. 

    If you love cheese, enjoying her pairing is an experience you will not forget.  You can find Barrie Lynn at most wine or other beverage festivals teaching others about the cheese highway. 

    As Barrie Lynn says, “Emily Post has prevented us from truly enjoying wine with cheese or any other food.  Ms. Post has taught Americans to eat food separately from beverages.”  ‘The Cheese Impresario’ has given us the cheese highway; take a bit of the cheese, create a pathway of the cheese on your tongue.  Now sip the wine, letting the wine flow over your tongue.  When you have a perfect match, it’s a WOW or Ah-Ah moment. 

    On this October night over 40 people gathered to enjoy 4 Briar Rose wines with 4 artisanal cheeses, for their ah-ah moment.  Up first for everyone’s enjoyment was a 2009 Estate Viognier; with Woolwich Triple Crème Brie – Goat.  Woolwich Dairy produces natural and authentic Brie, made from fresh goat’s milk.  This Brie is lush, creamy with savory flavors; with the Viognier flowing over the cheese, my palate popped with flavors. 

    Cheese Plates

    Then we moved on to red wines, starting with Briar Rose 2005 Cabernet Franc, which is no longer on their tasting menu.   This wine is a winner of many awards, this rich, deep ruby hue, has layers of complexity with a long finish.  

    It was paired with a very unique cheese – Sartori Reserve Raspberry BellaVitano, it has been soaked in New Glarus Raspberry Tart Ale to bring out the fruity notes of the cheese.  This premium cheese features a distinctive Parmesan flavor and a creamy cheddar texture.  This is when everyone really had a WOW moment.  Video of the Cabernet Franc tasting 

    Looking for an award-winning Dry Jack cheese?  Try a Rumiano Cheese, which just won gold in its class at the American Cheese Society Conference.  This cheese is hand rubbed with pepper and cocoa that makes an amazing bridge to the Briar Rose 2004 Petit Verdot – Library Wine.  Try drizzling this cheese with a little extra virgin olive oil and then taking a sip of the Petite Verdot.  Amazing is the word.  

    Take a bite of the rin; your taste buds enjoy its smoky flavor.  With the Petit Verdot flavors of blackberry, clove and plum this cheese brings an elegance of flavors that lasts for a long finish.  This Petit Verdot has won many gold medals, a perfect pairing with this award-winning cheese.  Video of the Petit Verdot tasting 

    Pairing Hook’s 10-Year Cheddar with Briar Rose 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon – Library Wine made for a wonderful conclusion.  Winning first place in its class at the 2006 American Cheese Society Competition.  This cheese has a deep, rich, outrageously sharp cheddar taste with tiny sparks of flavor crystals.  A smooth, sensual creaminess paired with the sleek flavors of black currant with a touch of mocha of the Cabernet Sauvignon. 

    Barrie Lynn at Briar Rose winery

    The night under the stars was enjoyed by old and new friends as wine and now cheese always seems to bring people together.  Along with the enjoyment for our palates, the cheese highway technique we learned other tidbits to enjoy cheese. 

    •  When taking cheese out of the refrigerator, let sit for about 1 hour before eating.  Cheese is like red wine, it’s best at room temperature.
    • Smell the cheese to appreciate the aorma.
    • Remove the wrapper from the cheese; wrap the cheese in wax apper, not tight.  Then lightly wrap in aluminum foil to store cheese.

    If you are interested in visiting Briar Rose Winery, please note that are a reservation only winery.  In their tasting room enjoy a wine experience as you sit-down with table-side service.  Your server will pour, explain each wine, along with a wine tasting lesson. 

    Open every day from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm; call 951-308-1098 for a reservation or visit www.briarrosewinery.com

  • Lorimar Winery First Annual Grape Stomp & Harvest Festival

    Date: 2010.10.15 | Category: Winery Events | Response: 0

    Grape Stomp

    Hidden in Temecula’s wine country are the expansive vineyards of Lorimar Winery which were the perfect setting for their first Harvest Festival.  Most nights the sun sets and the vineyards darken while crickets chirp and the stars oversee the vines, but this night the vineyards played host to a crowd of jubilant wine-lovers and grape-stompers.

    The festivities began upon arrival where you were greeted and given your own keepsake Lorimar glass complete with tasting tickets to enjoy several glasses of their delicious wines.  There were tables set up as well as a tasting bar in a barrel room but the real fun was down through the vineyards at the grape-stomping.  To get there, you could walk right through the vines or for the more adventurous, hitch a ride on hay-filled tractor that was shuttling guests back and forth.

    Over at the grape-stomping event guests stepped up into barrels filled with grapes and happily dug their toes in and laughed while squishing as much juice as they could.  The resulting juice was poured into commemorative bottles that the guests could take with them.   During the grape-stomping a band kept the crowd happy with fast-paced tunes that had the ladies dancing,  glasses of Lorimar wine in hand.   Light appetizers of hummus dip and fresh vegetables held everyone over until dinner was served.  As the grape-stomping wound down, little by little the guests hopped on the hay-filled tractor for a ride back to the dinner tents.

    As everyone began to arrive and sit at the dinner tables, the band re-located to  continue to entertain the guests.  Dinner was served and the guests happily ate and enjoyed more Lorimar wine while they got caught up with old friends and met new ones.  Everyone agreed that this would be an annual tradition for them and they can’t wait for next years event.

    Lorimar Wine

    Video of the Lorimar Grape Stomp

    While the vineyards are not open to the public, you can sample some delicious Lorimar wines in their tasting room located at 42031 Main St. Suite # C which is off of Front Street just the other side of “The Bank” Mexican food restaurant.

    To see what guests had to say about Lorimar wine click here for a video.

    Lorimar Winery

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