another wine-ish weekend

Passover is built around wine, right?

We needed to pick up our wine club shipment from Ardiri and they were having a trivia night, so we went there Friday night. Yes, the first night of Passover – we took some cheese and sausage and had some (store-bought, and unfortunately not very good) matzo ball soup when we got home. This club shipment includes their 2015 Pink Tractor rose and their 2012 Select Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. I’m not that fond of the Rose, at least not yet, but of course it may always mellow. After our tasting we ended up buying a bottle of a 2012 Pinot Noir, but I’m I think it was their usual Oregon Pinot, not the same Select as in the club shipment. I’m not completely sure because Ted bought it, and though we brought half the wine home and finished it later, it’s already gone out to the recycle bin. The one we bought was smooth and spicy, as usual – I say it’s the Oregon wine, because Ardiri generally has one wine from thhis part of Oregon, one from their California vineyard in Carneros, and one blend of the two. We did do fairly well in the trivia contest; I think most of the teams had more than our two people, but we were third or so. Trivia games always make me wish to have my family with me!

On Saturday, we went out to Gran Moraine for the release party for their 2014 Pinot Noir. It was a bit upscale, as their events tend to be. They were serving a Chardonnay and four Pinots Noir – their regular Pinot and their Estate Reserve, each in 2013 and 2014 incarnations. With these, they had several amuse-bouche-style pairings – things like a burrata cheese, lamb with a thing like an unfilled cream puff on top, a morsel of duck folded around a tiny mushroom with a strawberry on top, and so on. We bought a bottle of the 2014 (regular, not Reserve) to bring home for our not-quite-a-Seder roast chicken dinner. Ted’s still not sure, but I preferred the 2014 version to the 2013; it’s got a stronger fruit note and lacks an odd stone flavor that was very noticeable in the 2013. They’re both fairly young, though, so it will be interesting to see how they mature. Last year we really liked Gran Moraine’s Rose of Pinot Noir, but unfortunately that won’t be out until Memorial Day.

4/23/2014
Gran Moraine
2014 Pinot Noir
Yamhill-Carlton, Oregon
bought at the vineyard
With roast chicken ad a roast potato/tomato salad with a mustard vinaigrette dressing. The wine has warm spice notes at the beginning that linger throughout, atop definite berry notes. Tannins build toward the finish. Ted thinks aging may improve the wine.
Paula: 4.0 – I think this was worth $25, though maybe not the $45 it actually cost
Ted: 3.0 at $20

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