Posts Tagged ‘gift’

Stay Rad Wine Blog TV Episode 182: Alright

February 4, 2018

A friend of ours recently gifted us this bottle of Sanglier 2012 Right Tusque Merlot, and wanted to know what I thought about it.

Who am I to deny a request like that…

Wine tasted:

Sanglier 2012 Right Tusque Merlot

Stay Rad,


Wine was provided as a gift for review by an old friend.  Be sure to listen to Jeff each and every week on the We Like Drinking Podcast (available now on your favorite podcast app).


What I’m Reading: Gifts for Wine (and food) Lovers

December 9, 2012

I read.

I read a lot.

This may come as a huge shock to my parents, but it’s true.

I spend a lot of time reading books, magazines, and blogs about my favorite subject…


If you have a wine (or food) loving friend on your holiday shopping list, you may want to skip the wacky wine gadgets (considering that most of them stink), and pick them up a book.

With that in mind, here’s what I’m reading right now…

This is a really fun book that follows wine writer, and natural wine advocate, Alice Feiring, as she attempts to make her own fermented grape juice.  If you’ve ever been curious about natural wine, or how wine in general is made, you’ll get a kick out of this one.

Speaking of all things natural…

I first came across this book, while crashing at a friend’s house after a concert.  I woke up pretty early that morning, and was having trouble going back to sleep.  I saw this book laying on his table, so I decided to crack it open.

I’ve never come across another writer who can make the most simple of foods sound as delicious as he does.  I was drooling after reading his description an apple.

There are a butt load of great recipes, as well as some fantastic stories behind them.  This is a book about food for wine lovers to obsess over.

Back to the wine…


The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson

Not really a front to back type of read.  This is an encyclopedia of all things wine.  Entries are anywhere from a couple of sentences to a couple of pages.  From abboccato to zymase, this book will tell you anything you ever wanted to know about wine.

Recently, I had someone ask me how I knew so much about wine.  I had trouble answering.  The reality is that I don’t feel like I know much at all about wine.  I’m always in the process of learning.  The more I learn, the more I realize I don’t know anything.

That being said, if I were to recommend one book that could really help the world of wine seem a lot more accessible, this is the one I would push in your direction.  Zraly does a fantastic job of breaking wines down style by style, and region by region.  Do yourself a favor…  Pick this book up, and taste along with Kevin Zraly.


I love me the Wine Spectator magazine!

Each issue contains a ridiculous amount of tasting notes.  I really enjoy reading the tasting reports for different regions.  It’s just a really good mag.

Getting a subscription to this bad boy was one of the best presents I’ve ever received.

Happy shopping y’all!

Stay Rad,


PS – What wine related gift are you expecting under your tree this year?

Two wines. Two days. Can you dig it?

July 11, 2011

Sometimes, you decant a Trader Joe’s 2010 Grower’s Reserve Zinfandel for 3 hours.

Sometimes, that’s a bad idea.

Sometimes, you use the word “sometimes” at the beginning of a sentence, to set a mood.

Trader Joe's 2010 Grower's Reserve Zinfandel. Sometimes, you just gotta.

Look.  We got this Paso Robles zinfandel on Sunday afternoon for $4.99.  Kara asked if she should decant it.  I was like, “Sure”.  She popped it and poured it into the decanter.  Then I looked at my watch.

It was 2 o’clock.

We weren’t planning on having dinner until 5 at the earliest.

Listen.  I know that it never hurts to decant a wine.  It always helps.  Many times I’ll leave a bottle open overnight, and see improvement the next day.

But if you don’t know the wine…  It’s structure…  How it changes….  If you’re not sure about how it will last…  I would never go longer than an hour.

Eventually, all wines will fall apart.  The better the wine, the longer it takes for that to happen.

Do you feel me?

After making a T-Joe’s type of dinner, I sat down to try the wine.

BBQ pulled chicken w/ dijon broccoli slaw. Montel Jordan would be all, "Shadadada dap dabadahhhh. This is how we do it!"

Color:  This wine was straight purple.  When pouring it into the glass, I noticed that it was almost a light pink.

Nose:  Dusty strawberries and wood.  Hmmmmm.

Taste:  Jammy fruit.  There were these mouth-coating smooth tannins, a sharp cranberry, and a touch of cherry fruit roll-up.  Not bad.

But then…

I started diving into the food…

The dish I made was quite sweat in nature.  A Texas style, if you will.  After going back to the wine, the sweetness of the BBQ wiped out the jammy fruit.  What was left of the wine was this unpleasant acidity.  I figured that maybe it was just a bad food pairing, but after the meal, I went back to the wine and all I could taste was that same hollow gross acidity.

Score:  I was gonna give it an 86, but had to change it to an 84.

Sometimes, decanting is a good thing.

Sometimes, food and wine go together.

Sometimes, a wine falls apart on you.

Sometimes, food reveals flaws.

Shall we move on?

Today, Kara whipped together a really neat looking and tasting dinner…

Tabouleh cucumber romaine split and a simple salad w/ goat cheese. Pee Wee Herman would be all, "Mmmmmmm. Vegetably."

With it, she served up the Bruzzone 2009 Estate Chardonnay from the Santa Cruz Mountains.  This wine was a gift from Thevegetarians for Kara’s birthday, so I didn’t bother looking up the price (that’s rude).  I’m sure you can find out how much it was by clicking the link on the wine.

Bruzzone 2009 Estate Chardonnay next to some balls.

Color:  Light gold.  This wine looks like chardonnay.

Nose:  Pear.  Apple.  Petrol.  Toast.  Not bad.

Taste:  The first thing I noticed was the mouthfeel.  This wine is THICK!  Very viscous.  It’s almost oily.  Also… this wine is a spicy oak bomb.  There are nice notes of apple and peach.  Like the zin from yesterday, I’m also noticing a fruit roll-up flavor in there.  There is a little custard on this wine.

This is a BIG chardonnay.  Almost too big, but not.

It did not pair well with the tabouleh.  I would love to try it with some vanilla ice cream.

Score:  I’m not going to give this wine a score, since it was a gift.  I did like it, however.  If I were going to score it, I’d give it an 87.

So there you have it.

Two wines in two days.

Sometimes, that’s how I roll.

Stay Rad,


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