Well, maybe the previous post wasn't 100% accurate...
It turns out that Asheville is a really special place and sometimes it's worth giving up a promotion to live where you are happy. After a year in Nashville, we got homesick and came back.
Our first Blind Tasting League after my return was September 19th. We had better wines, new tasting sheets and my jokes have gotten even worse! I wish I could say that I scored as well this time as my last one.
The Wine: Trimbach Riesling, Alsace, France, 2016
What we Tasted: Pear, crisp apple, mango, petite peach, wet-stone, "like smelling the outside of a balloon," lime-zest, "Musty-melon," spicy fruit, mineral.
What we Guessed: "Cheap," Italian Pinot Grigio, French Pinot Blanc, Alsatian Chenin-Blanc
What Andy Guessed: Alsatian Riesling - Nailed it!
What we Thought: Overall this one was a hit with our crowd, especially for a Riesling! “Nice” said one taster, “It’s easy drinking” said another. One taster commented that it would be “perfect for sitting on the deck watching bears.” One tasted mentioned that it’s crisp acidity “needs food,” but otherwise a strong showing.
The Wine: Thevenet & Fils Macon Pierreclos, Burgundy, France, 2017
What we Tasted: Honeysuckle, “Golden delicious apple,” Floral, Orange Blossom, Limestone, Honeydew Melon.
What we Guessed: Oregon Pinot Gris, French Viognier, California Chardonnay
What Andy Guessed: “California Chardonnay made my a French person.” I blame global warming for this richer and fruitier vintage.
What we Thought: We enjoyed this wine as well. “I like it” said one taster, “good with or without food” said another. Overall a strong showing.
The Wine: Brolio Chianti Classico, Tuscany, Italy, 2015
What we Tasted: Cedar, Tobacco, “Old club leather chair,” Cherry, Chocolate, Forest floor, “Drywall,” Sour Cherry.
What we Guessed: Italian Malbec, Italian Sangiovese, Spanish Tempranillo, Piemontese Barbera.
What Andy Guessed: Barbera from Piedmont. I over-thought this one, but at least I got the country right…
What we Thought: This was a big hit! “Yummy” was one comment, “Something we all want to keep drinking” was another. We enjoyed the mix of ripe red fruit flavor and earth in this one.
The Wine: Jason Stephens Merlot, Santa Clara, California, 2014
What we Tasted: Stewed plums, “Like an Old-Fashioned,” Tobacco/cigar, pepper, jammy fruit, spice, “coconut sunscreen,” blueberry, mushroom, orange zest, cardamom, pomegranate, ginger.
What we Guessed: Red Bordeaux, California Cabernet Sauvignon.
What Andy Guessed: I saw the cap on this one as we were setting up and recognized the wine immediately. It’s one of my favorites. I didn’t guess since I knew what it was. I hate when that happens!
What we Thought: Many of our tasters thought this one was a Cabernet, not the dreaded Merlot that Sideways taught us we weren’t supposed to like. As a result, it was very popular. “Rich and complex” said one taster, “Smooth” said another. One taster didn’t like the nose on it. “Drink it, don’t smell it” he said.