GrapeWeekendFridayGrenacheDay!

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When I parked in front of my massage appointment on Friday, I should have guessed my weekend would start with grapes and end with grapes!

Literally, the whole wall was bursting with ripe grapes! I picked a bunch and nibbled on them after my appointment. 😉 No, they weren’t part of a winery, someone just planted a vine that thrives there yearly!

That afternoon, my friend and I were on the fence between riding our mountain bikes or simply jumping to the post-ride wine libations! The day was coming close to an end (because I had to get a bachelorette outfit and fairy wings for a party Saturday) so we opted for just drinks! We drove to our wine tasting area in town and were really surprised by the full parking lots and crowds of people. Crush is happening, too, so grapes were on the ground behind the winery and the employees were hosing off debris. This blocked the normally through access for cars, but that was fine.

Caveat: My mistake on Friday was that I uploaded the new iOS6 and somehow all the photos I took of the Grenache Day event at Bonny Doon Winery disappeared! That was annoying because I photographed every label I drank so I wouldn’t forget. They ran out of tasting menus so my friend and I had to share.

So, all I have are the few leaflets and handouts from vintners but no pics of the labels, or master list of poured wines, which was how I remember what I like! I am never very serious when it comes to taking tasting notes, but in hindsight, I’m not really doing myself any favors by being lazy!

Martella Winesalso had a memorable tasty, tasty Grenache and The winemaker Michael Martella was pouring 😉 He apparently just opened a tasting room in Seratoga Village as well! How fun!

Big Basin Winery had 2 offerings and I really enjoyed them both. 2010 Homestead and 2010 Paderewski (Grenache, Syrah/ Mourvèdre). The former garnered 90pts and the latter 95pts from The Wine Advocate. Apparently, their vineyard is only minutes from my house, but their tasting room is in the city of Serratoga.

Grenache is interesting: subtle and fruity and a definitely interesting alternative to a Pinot for a lighter red. They are typically blended and there are “blanc” versions, but today was definitely a red day! I like when the focus is a particular grape. I could drink it while cooking AND pour it for dinner! Go Grenache!!

My other fav for the evening were the offerings from Ridge and Clos LaChance. Ridge had 3 bottles of different years, I can’t recall what the dates were, but 05?, 09, 11 seem to be in my memory banks.. That was the last pour of our evening since everyone could flitter around the tastings as room opened. The Clos LaChancewas a nice fruity introduction to the grape! As a first tasting, it provided a mellow appetizer to the entire event.

I guess we were lucky to get in at all. My friend and I literally stumbled into the event as places around California were holding the same “Grenache Day” and most were sold out. The Rhone Rangers is an American organization that promotes American style Rhone grape varietals. Many vineyards are based in California. To learn more, click the link above. All in all, the dozen tastings I had really promoted the grape. I think I definitely got my brain around the flavor and can try some the next time I see one at a restaurant or store. 😉

So, after a relaxing evening, I went home to have dinner with my husband and proceeded to sleep early since we had things to do the next morning; he had lunch plans with his parents and I wanted to ride my bike in the morning so I could eat and drink all Saturday!

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