Sign up for our weeky email blast here and dont miss our weekly specials, events. and information about our our Friday theme nights. It may be a visiting winemaker, a fun wine tasting (Girl Scout cookie pairing anyone?) or maybe a blind tasting. Whatever the event, there will be wine involved!
So you think you know wine? Here's your chance to test your tastebuds, prove your palate! It's educational! It's Fun! And hey...there's wine! We'll offer up 5 wines with clues as to their origin and the varietal. It's multiple choice. How hard can it be?
Expanded hours (11-11)! Join us and over 100 local businesses in celebrating St. Patricks Day Hermosa Style! Join us for wine AND beer tasting.
-"All the world's a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed." - Sean O'Casey
Savannah Smiles and Sancerre? Do-Si-Dos and a California Zinfandel? We'll be pairing your favorite girl scout cookies with some tasty wines. Join us for one of our most popular wine tastings!
Rough day? Boss yell at you? Was the foam on your double macchiato this morning not up to snuff? We've got the antidiote! Monday-Thursday from 4-6pm we do $10 tastings.
Walla Walla. The Wahluke Slope, Rattlesnake Hills. Williamette, Dammit. Yakima Valley. Dundee HIlls. What? Yup, there all wine regions in the Northwest. This Friday we'll be sampling some awesome wines from our neighbors to the North.
Meet the winemakers, Owners, and Importers of these limited production wines and taste over 20 wines... Barolo, Brunello, Chateauneuf du Pape, Bordeaux, Pinot Noir, Port, Malbec and much more. A rare chance to taste some of Napa's top Cabernet Producers!
B-Wise - Massimo Monticelli, Winemaker
David Milligan French Wines - Kevin Metivier, Director of Sales
Loscano - High Altitude Wines from Argentina -Grant Jennings, National Sales Manager
Tradizione Imports - Callie Chardonnay, Italian wine expert
Monte Mar Wines - Steve Arrowwood, Winemaker and South Bay resident.
Switchback Ridge, Robert Foley Wines...Carla King, Wine Rep pouring ($80+ wines!)
Posted in Staff Picks By Uncorked Hermosa
Sparkling wine is wine that has significant levels of carbon dioxide to make it fizzy. The most well known example of sparkling wine is Champagne, a sparkling wine that is made in the Champagne region of France (wine made in France, as well as many other countries in Europe is more about the region than the particular grape used to make the wine). Sparkling wine not made in France is referred to as… well, Sparkling Wine.
Some sparkling wines from other regions have made a name for themselves and have become know by other names: Asti (Spumante- Near the town of Asti in Italy), Cava (Spain), Prosecco (Italy), Sekt (Czechoslovakia, Germany, Austria), and Cap Classique (South Africa).
Champagne is made primarily from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and the lesser know Pinot Meunier. Sparkling wines from other countries can be made with a variety of different grapes, typically a grape indigenous to that country.
One thing that differentiates all Champagnes and Sparkling wines is how the secondary fermentation takes place. This usually contributes to both the taste, and the cost of the wine. These two methods are:
- Methode Champenoise or Metodo Classico: the secondary fermentation takes place in the bottle.
- Charmat method: the secondary fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks.
What you Need to Know:
Types of Champagne:
- Prestige Cuvee (cuvee de prestige): Usually designates the top of the line for a producer: Louis Roederer’s Cristal, Moet & Chandon’s Dom Perignon.
- Blanc de Noirs: A white wine made from the pinot noir and/or pinot Meunier grapes (the skins are removed from the process early on, hence the white juice)
- Blanc de blanc: A white wine made from Chardonnay grapes.
- Rose': aka "Pink Champagne", typically, a small amount of Pinot Noir red wine is added during blending.
Sweetness is determined by the amount of sugar added after the second fermentation (called dosage). From driest to sweetest, Sparkling wines use the following to designate how sweet their bubbly is:
- Brut Zero (no sugar added)
- Extra Brut
- Extra Dry
- Doux (sweetest).
In my next post I’ll delve into some of the more popular types of sparkling wines mentioned above.
Posted in Blog By Uncorked Hermosa
Most champagne is blended, coming from several vineyards, and varying vintages. Champagnes are generally made from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and/or Pinot Meunier. In my previous post, I described the types of champagne, and the names used to describe the relative sweetness/dryness of them. In general, champagnes can smell and taste of apple, pear, citrus, strawberry, cream and vanilla (typically on the finish). The limestone/chalk soil produces grapes that have a certain balance of acidity and richness that you don’t find in most other sparklers from other parts of the world. One of the main flavors that differentiate champagne (and other sparklers that utilize “methode champenoise”-secondary fermentation in bottle) is yeast and nutty flavors.
Essentially Champagne, these sparkling wines were named (cremant, or creamy) because they originally had a more creamy texture when compared to Champagnes. Cremants are made outside of the Champagne region, mainly in France, and must be aged for at least a year. Several more grapes are allowed (the French have their rules!) to be used in the production of Cremant, among them Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc. Cremant wines are made using the “methode champenoise”.
Cava is a white or pink sparkling wine from Spain and is made according to the “methode champenoise. Cava is typically made from a variety of grapes, some French (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir), some indigenous to Spain (Macabeu, Parellada). They also vary in sweetness from brut (extra dry) to seco (dry) to dulce (sweet).
The Portuguese version of sparkling wine is produced throughout Portugal, the best coming from Bairrada, just south of Vinho Verde one of Portugal’s best known wine producing regions. Spain has one regulating body (rules again!)- DOC Cava. Look for wine labeled “VEQPRD” if you’re looking for a quality Espumante (and you should be, you’re purchasing it for a celebration, right?) from Bairrada. These are made in the traditional method used in the Champagne region of France and will indicate the vintage.
Asti, Lambrusco, Prosecco
These are three different sparkling wines, all from different regions in Italy. Asti is typically slightly sweet and made from the Moscato grape, near the town of Asti. Lambrusco is a slightly sparkling red wine usually from north/central Italy between Florence and Milan. It varies in sweetness from secco (very dry) to amabile (off dry/sweet) to dolce (sweet). The wine is acidic and often tastes of berries and is usually made in the Charmat method, where the 2nd fermentation takes place in a pressurized tank. Prosecco is typically dry or extra-dry, and is made from the Glera grape, usually in northern Italy around Venice, and in the Friuli region. It’s often served up alone, or used as a less expensive option to champagne in spritzers and the like.
American sparkling wines
Sparklers made in the US can be made using either of the traditional French methods (method champenoise, or charmat). The first sparklers in the US came from Korbel, out of Sonoma Valley in the late 1800’s. Subsequently, some of Champagnes most noted wine makers have come to produce Champagne from California: Moet et Chandon Domaine Chandon, Louis Roederer’s, and Taittinger. US wine laws don’t regulate sugar levels/ sweetness of wines (not as many rules in the states!) but most producers follow European standards, with Brut wine being dry, and Doux, sweet. There are also no laws governing aging length, which can be as little as 8 months. A few interesting sparkling wine makers in the U.S: Winemakers in the Finger Lakes region (New York) are making interesting sparkling wine from Riesling, and Gruet (New Mexico) makes several nice sparkling wines (Blanc de Blanc, Blanc de Noir, Brut, Extra Dry, Rose).
Posted in Jeffs Blog By Uncorked Hermosa