Preakness Special


All of a sudden we arrive at Preakness Week.   It’s been two years since a Triple Crown winner was crowned and I still think about those amazing races.  I’ll watch clips of them, not just during this time of year, but at opportune times where I feel I need some inspiration and something to lift me up and make my day a little better.

I’ve sporadically written about wines related to horse racing season but not specifically for a wine created for this upcoming weekend’s race at Pimlico.


The Racetrack Red from Fiore Winery & Distillery is just the right wine to celebrate the occasion, and before and after isn’t so bad either.

For my taste, it’s not the kind of wine I tend to go after regularly, but the semi sweetness works for the usually warm weather, the celebration, and I think many a wine drinker and even non-wine drinker will be able to appreciate what it has to offer.

The touch of Muscato doesn’t necessarily wow me but I think folks are going to love it. I’m also not a fan of Muscato to begin with, so that’s a personal thing.

And it’s easy to drink.  Chambourcin is a grape synonymous with Maryland.  It can be used to make medium to fuller reds to the sweeter variety that we have today. Regardless, the cherry flavor is hard to ignore as well as the high level of tannins, acidity, and thick skin.  It’s a wine that’s not to be sipped quickly.  Certain ones actually may take thicker skin to finish.  That’s not a joke or a pun.

At only $12.99 this is a wine that is also inviting on the price.   But how about that label and the notes?  If this isn’t a Maryland, and more specifically, Baltimore type of wine, then I give up.  This is one where you buy, not only for the label as a keepsake and souvenir, but to celebrate what a beautiful week this is for the the city and the state.

If you’re having a Preakness Party or pre-party what better way to celebrate than with this approachable and accommodating varietal.  And it goes with simple foods like you may be eating at a party such as pizza.  And pizza is fun.


No black-eyed Susans but I hope these flowers will do.


Moving along I want to mention that Fiore has some of my favorite local wines period. I’ve been to their winery and I’m grateful that’s in a short drive from me.  Also by realizing I just said that, I don’t go there enough.  I’ve been to tastings and events at the venue and find it cozy like any good winery should.  The vibe and the energy feels like home.  Well it’s near home, but you know what I’m saying.

This is the first time I’ve written about Fiore and it won’t even be close to the last.  As I alluded to earlier, their Chambourcin and Cabernet Sauvignon are two favorites of mine that I like to use for special times of celebration with friends, family, and other awesome people in my life.  And at around $20, the price is well worth splurging here and there when it feels right.


To purchase the Racetrack Red or any of their wines click here.  The link to find a store carrying it near you is there as well.

Yet I have something even more exciting to talk about.  If that wasn’t enough, I have posted this link that I found per a conversation I had yesterday.   This is the wine and this is the grape that also is synonymous with the northeast, the southeast, Maryland, and home.   It may not be next week but I look forward to talking about this special wine soon.  I’ve yet to try it myself but if the verdict is unanimous than there’s got to be something special about it right?   I believe we’re all in for a treat.

Enjoy Preakness, Enoy this wine, and enjoy each other.

This is really an awesome week to be in Maryland and in Baltimore, so enjoy…



Wild, Wild Horses


It only took me two years, but I’m back giving all the support to 14 Hands Winery.  Why I forgot to write about them last year as we approach the heart of horse racing season is something I can’t explain.  Maybe it wasn’t meant to be.  But why that is I don’t know.  But here is my post from approximately this time two years ago, raving about two of my favorite wines, that I still drink when I feel like looking at artistic renditions of beautiful horses, and in the mood to sip affordable and pleasing to the palate wine.


That Kentucky Derby Wine is just as awesome as ever, however, this time I wanted to turn my attention to a wine that I got at a bargain price of around $9 at one of those dollar over cost events a couple of months back.  Yes I said $9.  The 2014 Stampede Red Blend is one of those wines you’re going to want to drink, not just during race season, but it’s the perfect everyday wine to share with friends over some healthy (or unhealthy) appetizers, snacks, finger foods and anything else you want to call it.

I was fortunate enough to share this with friends on a gorgeous spring afternoon, with said yummy appetizers.  First and most important of all is what’s so amazing about this wine?  Well like many, I’m a lover of labels.  Even more paramount is a love for animals. Horses are one of those creatures that evokes feelings of love, caring, bonding, and friendship.  The way I wrote that would usually be reserved for the family dog or cat, but the love stays the same.  Any chance for me to promote how awesome animals are, in this, or any universe, is a welcome opportunity.


For me the wine on its own was awesome.  It had a slight hint of oak which on this day was needed.  As the weather gets nice too much oak in a red may not fare well for some. This was just right.  And I for sure tasted a little cocoa or something resembling coffee within certain sips.    Their tasting notes mention cherry and cola, so I was kind of on the same wavelength as the experts.  But who knows.


This wine paired well with some succulent and inspiring bacon wrapped scallops and good conversation.  My pals and I saw outside for a long while talking about nothing and everything all at once.  Well mostly important things.  Good wine leads to better conversations, especially with ones you care about the most.  And when the sun is shining and the weekend is only just getting going, everything aligned perfectly.


This is a wine that went down smooth and went down easy.  Maybe too easy. It was gorgeous. I’d love a bottle right now actually.


The blend of Syrah, Merlot, Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Mourvèdre is so incredible I almost forgot to write about what an incredible blend of grapes this is.  With a combination such as that you’d expect this to be bolder and heavier. Nothing could be more opposite this fell more on the lighter medium side.  But everyone’s palate and interpretation might be different.


What I want to note is that every 14 Hands Wine I’ve sampled has meant more to me than just being a table or everyday wine.  They’ve all had a distinct presence and aura that justifies the beauty of the wine, their labels, and most important to many, the price.

I’ve seen their wines listed anywhere from $9-$15 in many a wine store I’ve visited.  And I’ll tell you as wonderful as that bargain is, I would be justified in spending upwards of $20+ on their wines.  I think what they’re charging is incredibly generous.  Their wines taste like a $20 and over to me, and I’m honored that these wines came into my life.  I don’t know remember the first time I had the privilege of sipping their wine but each time it’s created a new memory and a new reason to celebrate this journey of wine drinking.

Maybe two years was too long but this is how this thing works.  All these incredible wine’s from these equally incredible wineries always find their way of coming back into my life, usually when I’m not always looking.   If that’s the case I should relax and let ti come to me.  But however I really want to review a few more of their vintages much sooner than the alternative.  We shall see how it goes.

And for those of you wondering, their wines are easily available in wine shoppes all around my area and in different parts of the country.  To see if their inspiring and off-the-charts wines are in your area, this link should serve you well.  You can also make purchases online.  They make it so easy, here is their contact info.   Their website is so user-friendly.  My love for them continues to grow.

For more about the incredible winery itself, click here.  If I ever find myself in the state of Washington, this is a place that would be a can’t miss and I would want to visit right away.

This is an exciting time.  Races start this weekend and this is the perfect wine to add to this, and any celebration you choose.   Whatever you do, I hope your weekend and month of May and beyond is enjoyable.


Happy May to you.