With good people and delicious appetizers to accompany 6 different and very tasteful wines the retirement party for Kevin and Karin’s mother went without a hitch. Taking place at Kevin’s beautiful house in Oak Park California, you could not have asked for more perfect weather. With summer here it’s now the perfect time to have your own wine tasting party. Here is the menu of appetizers and wine that where served. Hopefully this will give you some inspiration!
pepper crusted seared tuna with wasabi aioli and sesame seed
saffron scented shrimp
fig, prosciutto, arugula crostini
moroccan olive tapenade
smoked apricot chicken skewers
artisan cheese platter
petit tarragon chicken gougers
chimichuri baby Lamb chops
warm hazelnut soup shooters
chocolate fudge brownies
chocolate and vanilla mousse cheesecake
2010 Brooks Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
Over the years, the quality of this wine has been growing from strength to strength. I believe the 2010 is the best vintage they have produced. A perfect balance of fruit, structure and acidity. Red fruit, cinnamon, mushroom, sassafras, cedar all wrapped perfectly together in a light, refreshing package. Pretty close to perfection. (Mike Jordan, K&L Wine Merchants)
2009 Cambria “Julia’s Vineyard” Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir
The 2009 Pinot Noir “Julia’s Vineyard” with its light tannins and transparency flows from the glass with layers of sweet candied fruit, raspberries, flowers and spices. The Julia’s is impressive for its expressive varietal character and excellent balance, both quite an achievement for a wine with a 60,000 case production. This was fermented in oak barrels (27% new) and aged on its lees with batonnage for seven months. Anticipated maturity.
2010 Lucien Crochet Sancerre
A classic Sancerre from one of the region’s most esteemed producers, vintage after vintage. This cuvée is made with grapes from the estate’s vineyards in Bué, Vinon and Crézancy. This always deftly expresses Sancerre’s terroir and has textbook mineral and white grapefruit notes on the nose and palate. A great value.
2011 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough
The 2011 Sauvignon Blanc offers intense notes of gooseberries, passion fruit, grapefruit zest and grass with a hint of fresh herbs. Crisp, dry and medium bodied with a good concentration of grapefruit and herb flavors, it gives a long tropical fruit laced finish. Sourced from a combination of estate and grower vineyards Rapaura and Renwick subdistricts of the Wairau Valley (alluvial stony soils) as well as the Fairhall, and Brancott subdistricts (aged alluvial loam and clay soils) and fermented in 100% stainless steel, this is classic Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc at its best: clean, crisp, and refreshing, with a Sancerre-like complexity in the nose and elegant structure. It makes a great partner to oysters in the half shell and would complement the tart, tangy, and herbal flavors and texture of an herbed goat cheese salad.
2009 Barber Cellars ‘Lazarie’ Dry Creek Sauvignon Blanc
Always one of our favorite domestic Sauvignon Blancs, this small prodution gem comes from a single block of the sustainably farmed Handley Ranch Vineyard. Sancerre inspired, it showcases California’s 2009 vintage well with sharp acidity and a lean, crisp body. The palate is full of melon, grapefruit, flowers, and green apple with noticeable minerality (both from the Sauvignon Musque vines scattered in the vineyard and the six months the wine spent on the lees). Fermented and aged in stainless steel and bottled unfined, the wine is crisp, dry, and very sharp – perfect for asian cuisine, seafood and anything with spice.
Ariston Aspasie “Carte Blanche” Brut Champagne
Now with the Aspasie label. It is made of 40% chardonnay, 30% pinot noir and 30% meunier. A balanced cuvee in every way, this Champagne is clean and powerful at once. The length of this little bottle of bubbles proves to me the class of its origin, the small commune of Brouillet in Champagne.