Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sleepy Time

Stars are scattered, twinking across the black dome up there.  My breath makes the only clouds tonight.  Just a single light shines from up the valley.  Even the coyotes have gone to sleep.  I have to linger, 'til the chill makes me shudder.  The snapshot is saved inside me and I can go to sleep.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Walla Walla Winter

How can the sun be shining brightly and it still be so cold? Sunny winter days must be meant for riding bikes and hot chocolate. The Blues are white, the wine is red, the nights are long. Board games. Puttering and being pleased not to get too much accomplished. Bringing out stationary and writing an actual letter or two. Phoning old friends. My cheeks get instantly chilled from going outside, then so deliciously warm coming in again. It is nesting time. Soon enough, nature will be inviting again.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Barrel tasting the '09s

Yipee! It's far too early to be sure, with the syrah especially, but my oh my. Right now, the two-yeast cab is my favorite, with so many elements and power to spare. Surprising that it is not overwhelming, just BIG on flavor. Hope the mouth feel will be matching glyceral piece yet, but still mid-malolactic so that may come around soon. As much as I am enjoying these youngsters, it does seem wrong somehow to be doing this as an amateur. This deserves professional focus under the tutelage of a master. I have so much to learn. There really are no short-cuts; the vines need to grow, the wine needs to age, the wine maker has to learn how to listen to the grapes and the wine. Endless possible combinations, constant response to each growing season, experiments that succeed and more that fail. I will not be surprised to get dazzling wines, but I will not deserve much praise should we be so fortunate. Unknowns have won the World Series of Poker plenty of times, but they don't win twice.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Tasting Walla Walla syrahs-

Dinner with Stephen and Ann & friends on Sunday night. Three syrahs. K Vintners 2003 Lucky 7, 2002 Morrison Lane, and 2001 Cayuse Coccinelle. Lucky 7 was dark and brooding, still tight and young. Morrison Lane was brighter with more fruit...much more ready, although Lucky 7 was the better wine. And then there was the Coccinelle. Talk about a lesson in barnyard funk! Smelled like silage and pickle vinegar. Flavor across the map, from dark liquor to sour cherries and pencil lead. This was wine for the daring-do, not for the faint of heart.

I keep reading about the new trend away from the huge Parker wines toward higher acids and lower alcohol; more subtle and sophisticated flavors that are less fruit-driven and more nuanced. Wine has fashion trends, too.