So last night we hosted a wine tasting party at our place. This is the first time we’ve attempted it and had a blast. I had aspired to have template wine cards to jot notes on, but ran out of time and instead just had stationary. As each guest arrived, we covered the labels with scrapbook paper and a number so it would be more anonymous. We tasted 7 different wines, each randomly selected by a guest. We got a good mix with 4 reds and 3 whites. While taste testing we ate salad with brie and bread as well as chocolates and dessert croissants. It was very yummy and I hope everybody enjoyed themselves as much as I did (by the 4th sample I was feeling it!). After taking notes and trying all 7, we rated the wines and picked out our top 3. Our number 1s got 3 points, second place 2 points and 3rd place 1 point. And the wine with the highest score won the guest who brought it first dibs on what was left in their favorite bottle to take home. I hope that game was fair and exciting enough? I came out the real winner with 3 bottles.. haha.. well some wines were so unpopular that nobody wanted to take them home.. : 3 But I felt I learned a lot and wanted to share what we tasted and which got the best scores!
So here is the best to worst of our Wine Tasting.
Chateau St Michelle Harvest Select Sweet Riesling 2011 was our Crowd favorite with 15 points! I normally don’t like Rieslings because they are too sweet, but this one was so easy to drink and yummy. Here is the official description, “It offers beautiful crisp Washington Riesling character with rich flavors of ripe pears and peaches. The fresh fruit punch and richness is balanced with crisp acidity to keep the wine in harmony. This is a perfect patio sipping wine or would be a great match with Thai food.” Please consider buying it! At $10 a bottle it is a steal!!
Second place was my pick, Middle Sister Rebel Red with 8 points. I normally like reds and I’m a middle child – so it seemed perfect and I was happy with its fruity flavor. It is a blend, with 38% Zinfandel, 34% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Syrah, 2% mixed red varietals. The producers describe the taste as “a huge mouthful of ripe summer berries. The fruit goes on and on, ending in a luxurious finish.” and Recommend you pair it with, “Roasts, grilled meats, pizza, pasta, salmon, burgers, burritos, soups and sandwiches.” I agree that with how easy it is to drink it would go with almost any meal. They offer a fabulous club deal, where if you enroll, they ship you quarterly packages of “4 sisters” at a time. They have 12 wines total. AND ITS ONLY $33 (shipping included!!)! I actually am so excited by this deal I can’t add enough exclamation points.
We had 2 third places, both at 5 points.
Sterling Vintner’s Collection Meritage 2010 is a blend of Merlot, Malbec and Petit Verdot and describes itself as “Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot dominate the palate, providing a full-bodied backbone of juicy, concentrated fruit, cedar spices and sturdy tannins. Petit Verdot and Malbec lend depth with supporting red-fruit and spice flavors, joined by sweet mocha and vanilla notes from the oak aging.” It wasn’t bad, but I wouldn’t buy it.
Our second third place runner was one of Trader Joe’s 2 buck chucks! It had decent taste for the low low price! Again, I didn’t think it was anything special compared to our first place white, but I was glad to try it!
Our 5h place goes to Montpellier 2011 Viognier, self described as “It’s light-bodied on the palate and shows the creamy texture of Viognier with citrus accents and a pleasant crisp dryness on the finish.” I’m not a fan of white wine, or dry wine – so this fell short for me.
Our 6th place duo was the other two reds. I actually preferred them over the other two whites but its funny when you have a group of people who all like different things. Marcy likes reds, but dry. I like reds but fruity. Three preferred whites. It just goes to show that none of these wines were bad – just some were able to entice different drinkers. The Green Fin Cabernet Sauvignon was dry, but tasted great with the food we were eating. I think it could easily be paired with many meals as a low cost option. Fancy Pants was a fun option as well. I actually had another glass tonight and its easy to drink and goes well with foods.