Taste Cava in the Kitchen with Ray Isle

To know me is to know I love bubbles. So how could I refuse an offer to participate in and promote the virtual event, Cava in the Kitchen with Ray Isle? Read on to learn more.

About Cava

First of all, a bit about Cava. This is Spain’s answer to Champagne. In other words, it’s a sparkling wine crafted in the traditional method like Champagne, but made in the Cava DO region of Spain. Although the method for these sparkling wines is similar, the grapes used are not. Cava relies primarily on the Spanish varieties Macabeo, Parellada, and Xarello. Nevertheless, these are wines made with care, yet available at a fraction of the price.

In fact, should you choose to fully participate in this tasting, the bundle of five wines is available from Gary’s Marketplace for a mere $86.95. Purchased individually, the wines range from $12.99 to $22.99 a bottle. If you’re into sparkling wine at all, you know that’s an incredible deal. When the wine samples arrived at my door, I was so excited to taste them!

Cava in the Kitchen Event Details

Cava, the longtime darling of sommeliers and bartenders around the world, is positioning itself internationally as the quality-driven wine that offers a glass of sparkling for every occasion.
This virtual tasting led by Ray Isle, executive wine editor of Food & Wine Magazine, will focus on the versatility of Cava—this traditional method sparkling wine offers a perfect pairing to a myriad of dishes that enhance every occasion, from everyday cuisine to celebratory meals. This tasting will explore the wide array of styles with distinct flavor profiles of Cava … whether you’re a novice or expert, this session is sure to unveil something new about why this Spanish sparkling wine is so in demand around the world. Featured wines include:

• Alta Alella Mirgin Rosé Reserva
• Bodegas Langa Reyes de Aragón ‘El Castro’ Reserva Brut
• Canals & Munné Dionysus Reserva Brut Nature
• Naveran Brut Vintage
• Roger Goulart Gran Reserva 2015
• Segura Viudas Brut Reserva

Don’t miss your chance to taste these wines along with Ray!

Jun 10, 2021
1:00 PM Pacific

Join live or register for the Zoom webinar.

Secure your wine selections at Gary’s Wine & Marketplace.

Exposé on Rosé with Seattle Urban Wineries

If you’re ready to discover where to find your ideal rosé in Seattle, you’re in luck! Next week Seattle Urban Wineries has a fun FREE virtual chat featuring the folks behind the wine, moderated by yours truly. Join this “Exposé on Rosé” and meet six producers crafting six very different pink beverages, including sparkling wine and mead.

Exposé on Rosé

Wednesday, June 9
4-5pm Pacific
Register for the link and be entered in a drawing.

It would be a bit much if all of the 24 member wineries participated, so the following six will showcase their refreshing wines during this event.

John Patterson of Patterson Cellars spills the juice on his Sparkling Rosé of Pinot Noir. ($42)

Nina Depiesse of Nine Hats Wines will make us blush over the 2020 vintage of Julia’s Dazzle, crafted of Pinot Gris. ($18)

Todd and Anne, proprietors of T2 Cellar reveal all about their Rosé of Counoise. ($18)

Brandon of Mr. B’s Mead sweetens the conversation over his Rosé Mead made with raspberry honey. ($20 per 375ml or $30 per 750ml)

Bradley Sherman of Michael Florentino Cellars unveils his 2020 Rosé of Barbera. ($20)

Tim Narby of Nota Bene Cellars / MCM Wine Company gives the lowdown on his Divinia Rosé. ($22)

This is the perfect online event for those who want to virtually meet the makers and discover where to seek out favorite varieties and styles of wines for patio sipping. Invite friends to join the fun! Sign up today and you’ll be entered to win a fun drawing.

Toast and Taste with Karen MacNeil Flavor First Wine Glasses

Have you ever wondered if the shape of a glass influences the tasting experience? Read on to learn about how Karen MacNeil Flavor First™ wine glasses impact the wines consumed from them.

Personally, I am convinced that the shape of a glass can amplify a wine’s aromas and affect where the wine lands on the tongue. That’s before we even get into how the aesthetics of a beautiful wine glass can elevate the overall encounter with a precious beverage.

Accordingly, I was elated when my work as a Washington Wine Ambassador for the Auction of Washington Wines presented an opportunity to take part in a special tasting for the AWW’s Private Reserve Club. The event was led by wine expert Karen MacNeil, of whom I am a big fan! She’s the AWW Honorary Chair, author of the award-winning book The Wine Bible, creator of Flavor First™ stemware, as well as a brilliant wine educator. For about an hour we experimented with the three signature tasting glasses in the set, along with three accompanying wines, and chatted with the premier winemakers who provided the bottles for our pleasure.

Karen MacNeil Flavor First Wine Glass Development

Continue reading “Toast and Taste with Karen MacNeil Flavor First Wine Glasses”

Celebrate Walla Walla Valley Wine Month

When I posted about Walla Walla Valley Wine Month on Instagram, a friend commented that she wasn’t even aware that such a month had been declared. So, here’s some insight as to why you may not have heard about it, a run-down on what to know about the month, and recommended bottles to open.

First, let’s solve the mystery of why this vinous month is less than well known. Consider that April 2020 was the first Walla Walla Valley Wine Month. Well, the pandemic unexpectedly threw a monkey wrench into the inaugural event. It was a fine idea when originally planned, however, born from the notion that the vineyards come back to life in April. It’s also tied to Spring Kick-Off Weekend. That’s the special time of year when many wineries open their doors to showcase their latest releases. The hubby and I have certainly enjoyed our share of winery visits during April. I mean, it’s our duty as Washingtonians, right?

Photos courtesy of Richard Duval Images

 

2nd Annual Event Offerings

“Walla Walla Valley Wine Month is an unparalleled opportunity to experience Walla Walla Valley Wine, whether you are near or far,” says Robert Hansen, Executive Director of Walla Walla Valley Wine. If nothing else, simply follow along on social media to learn about the Walla Walla Valley AVA.

For those interested in a visit to the region, wineries have special offers for intimate experiences including elevated tasting options. If you plan to visit a winery in person, be sure to make a reservation due to limited capacity.

Alternatively, those who prefer a virtual visit at this time may explore the Walla Walla Wine Alliance website buying guide for special packages and discounted shipping while available.

Celebrate at Home

At VinoSocial we’ve been celebrating Walla Walla Valley Wine Month while simultaneously tackling the Washington Syrah Challenge! First, with a Gramercy Cellars 2010 Walla Walla Valley Estate Syrah. The 2010 vintage was a cooler one. The result is a wine that is still vibrant and loaded with mouth-watering, spicy goodness. If I had to use one word to describe this wine it would be, “Mmmmmm!”

A bottle of 2018 Proper Walla Walla Valley Estate Syrah was our next selection. With less age, this one needed to decant several hours before dinner. Plum, baked blackberry, and cinnamon were part of the intensely colored wine’s beguiling profile.If you’re a Syrah fan, Walla Walla has numerous delectable options that are worthy of a celebration.

Next up, we’ll open a bottle of Northstar Red Blend received as a gift from the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance.

With over 120 wineries in the Walla Walla Valley, there are a lot of exciting Walla Walla wines to get to know.

Are you thirsty for more? Explore more exciting Walla Walla wines. Or check out the Walla Walla Valley Wine website to plan your next wine country trip.

20 Fun Red Washington Wine Varieties You Need to Try

Have you ever tasted Tempranillo from Washington State? How about Nebbiolo? Or Lemberger? Or perhaps you didn’t even know such a diverse range of wine grapes grow in Washington State. After all, these grapes are typically associated with Spain, Italy, and Austria respectively. However, if you’d like to go beyond the typical Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Syrah here are 20 fun red Washington wine varieties to explore.

Give yourself one point for each Washington grown variety you’ve tasted in a blend or two points for each variety you’ve experienced in its untainted glory.

Fun Red Washington Wine Varieties

 

Aglianico

More closely associated with southern Italy, Walla Walla’s first family Leonetti Cellars crafts a bottling of this variety. I hope to experience it myself someday!

Alicante Bouschet

Last fall, Chelan based Cairdeas Winery released their first Alicante Boushet, and it quickly sold out. I’ve joined their Wine Club with the hope that I’ll soon get my hands on a bottle. Continue reading “20 Fun Red Washington Wine Varieties You Need to Try”