Pumpkin Paradise

PumpkinWine

I had all the intentions of writing about pumpkin wine this week.  I knew the name of the winery, the name of the wine itself, and had some bullet points I was all ready to research.  That will be put on hold a week or two.

I stopped by my one of my favorite wine shoppes, Wine World of Abingdon, MD.  The store is minutes from me and has been mentioned several times in previous posts.   The wine I was searching for was surprisingly not available.   However, there was no need to be sad or I may have never discovered this gem that was about to presented to me.

It went over my head that they also have beer (and now wine) on tap.  It’s hidden in plain sight near the back of the store.  I’ve walked by there so many times and overlooked what gems may be coming from these pours.

The very friendly staff member they’ve only recently started doing this since August of this year, so maybe I’m not completely clueless to what’s going on.

They had two wines to two try on tap. First was the Not Your Mother’s Merlot, which is a Root Beer Merlot.  I thought it was ok but root beer has never been a favorite of mine.   I think a lot of people will love it.  And it’s fitting for the fall season.

The other sample was their exclusive Pumpkin Spice.   With 12.0% alcohol content is deceptively light and easy to drink.  The sample was glorious and I gladly purchased a growler to go.  The wine itself was barely over $10.00 and there’s a small one-time fee of under $5.00 to purchase said growler.  And it can be re-used to buy future wines on tap at no extra cost, except for the wine itself.  I love the  deal and I adore the concept.

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The tint of the wine is picturesque.

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The wines on tap phenomenon is growing and I’m seeing the increase in popularity at many restaurants and wine bars.   That’s a post or two at a later date.

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The pumpkin spice wine was a hit at home too.  We had a wonderful dinner planned that included pumpkin ravioli and fresh-baked rolls.  This felt like a triumph.  This seems like such an obvious pairing but it worked.   It may seem like overkill but we’re in the season and the wine and pasta really complemented one another well.

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PumpkinRavioli

An important fact that my friends and I did agree on is, too much of this wine may not be a good thing.  An overdoing could lead to a headache.  If that’s what you’re looking for then by all means indulge!

This is meant to be drank slowly and reveled in a relaxed pace.   This is something that can be paired with so many autumn meals and sweet treats.  And we know that time is quickly approaching.   Nevertheless, the wine was very enjoyable and is recommended for any fall feast or party.

Upon finishing this bottle I could easily see a replenishing in the offing.

Thanks so much.

Best,

Ideen

Dinner Party Pals

Sometimes you just need a great dinner with friends to get the week going.  And when that means a good steak, of course you need to pair with it something stellar.

Considering the dinner party host, I knew the food was going to be good.  So my hope was to find a bottle that would complement a hearty meat and vegetable dish.

My search led me back to Wine World and its massive collection of everything.   The staff here is tremendous.  They know right away when anyone as a question, and is always quick to give a great suggestion or two, or more!

The question about a selecting a wine with a hearty meat, has been going on forever.  And while I have a few grapes in mind, I love hearing other people’s opinions.    They pointed out some new ones to me the ranged from $16 to upwards of $40.   Now like most folks, the preference is to go the lower end of the spectrum.

I got assistance from one more team member, and they suggested a brand I forgot about, Casillero del Diablo, distributed to the United States from Excelsior Wines.  I surmise that many of us have had a bottle of two of theirs without realizing it. It’s a standard label that is sold in even the most simplest of wine shops.  And this is no way discounting them.  Of the few I’ve had, it’s a great value for under $10.  And more times than not, it’s all we need for a simple dinner or to drink on its own.

But what was suggested was a new one to me.  Right next to the collection of del Diablos, I was introduced to the Devil’s Collection Red, which is a trio of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carmenere, and Syrah.   It’s like they read my mind.

Before I even walked in these three grapes, along with Petit Sirah are what were on my mind.  So to get a bottle, and a new one for that matter, that contains a few of what I was seeking, only triples the fun and enhances my wine buying experience, along with hopefully making this meal fun.

CasilleroDecanter

So how did everything turn out?  Well the meal was amazing and the wine was really good.  My friend had a beautiful decanter to add to the atmosphere of our friendly feast.  And the color on this wine really shines here.

The synopsis mentions flavors of plum and black cherry.  Through the power of suggestion, the latter did seem noticeable. A small hint of chocolate?  I was hoping to taste it and as my palate expands will hope to catch it next time.

This is a very good bottle at the price of $12.99.  And with a mix of medium-to-full bodied wines mixed together, it tasted refreshingly lighter than what I was expecting.  I’ll definitely give it a go again.

if you’re interested in reading more about these wines, you can go here, here, and here!  Yes I know that’s a lot! 🙂

AmazingDInner

I will leave with a couple of fun pictures from our meal.  I want to give a huge thank you to the host.  The steak, with acorn squash, and peppers was a hit.   The vegetables, especially, tasted organic, natural, and most importantly healthy.  Well maybe I just used three all-too-similar synonyms to over-emphasize how great this was!

Thanks so much.

Best,

Ideen

Wine Ice Cream Social

It’s time to switch it up and pay another homage to this beautiful season we call Summer!

I’ve come across various wine ice creams, slushies, and other frozen concoctions in the past couple of years and never thought to try them, let alone write about them. There’s no time like the present.

In serendipitous fashion, I discovered Mercer’s Wine Ice Cream at one of my favorite local wine shops near me!

With the assistance of the friendly team members at Wine World of Abingdon, MD, I got 3 pints for me and my pals.

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You can’t judge a book by its cover, but how beautiful do these look?

Now if you were just getting regular, old-fashioned, and delicious ice cream, $6.99 a pint might seem a bit steep.  But we’re talking vino, we’re talking emotion, and we’re talking new experiences.

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Most importantly though, how did they turn out?

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Strawberry

Exhibit #1 : The Strawberry Sparkling. This was my favorite.  You could really taste the alcohol content right away.   And mixed in with the ice cream this was a match made to perfection.  The strawberry pieces really added a lot to this.  This is one of my favorite fruits in frozen form or to be cherished alone.  This was fantastic.

Strawberries and champagne will usually always be a winning combination.  And they nailed this one.  If I wasn’t careful I would’ve eaten the whole thing and been unable to write this post.

Peach

Exhibit #2 : Peach White Zinfandel.  I liked this one too, but I didn’t taste much in the way of alcohol.  I love peach and the fruit pieces were also delectable and very much appreciated.   I haven’t had much experience with Blush Wines like this one, so I didn’t have the highest of expectations.

Don’t get me wrong, peach is a wonderful fruit and is one of the joys to be had during these beautiful months, but I just felt like I was tasting peach ice cream.  On its own that would be great, but my taste buds didn’t get much of the wine.

Cherry

And finally, exhibit #3 : Cherry Merlot.   This one hit a little more.  I love cherry and the cherry pieces looked magnificent. Merlot is a grape that I’ve gradually enjoyed a little more each time I have it.

Of the three helpings, this is the least summery but the one that seemed the most powerful.  The color also stands out.   This is one I’d think I’d have to be careful with or I may be taking an extended nap or two.

There was an abundance of flavors, so if time allows, I will be reviewing some more!

If you’re interested in purchasing some, the only location in the Baltimore area that carries them is Wine World.  And here’s a location guide for anyone else interested!

I would definitely recommend these creams for any outdoor events and parties. We have a lot of Summer left!

Enjoy!

Best,

Ideen

The Universe Loves You

karma

Signs are everywhere and if you pay attention, it feels like the world is on your side and can be a powerful source of comfort.

I had a set of wines all set to talk about this week.  But that will have to wait.  As I walked into one of my favorite shoppes, Wine World, one of those aforementioned signs was shown to me.

Upon entry, the first thing I see, is this incredibly charming display for California Karma.  Of all the bottles in plain sight, this is what I see first. This is no accident.  Or it could be the strategically placed set-up near the front, but still.   And yes I realize it’s just the name of the wine.   But is there more to this quantum story?

So after this prolonged introduction, how is the wine itself?   I had their 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon and it’s tremendous.    It’s lighter tasting than many Cab’s that I’ve had, but that doesn’t diminish how tasty it is.   I may have detected some plums or even a brown sugary finish.  But I can’t be certain.  Further research has yet to reveal what fruits and flavors may have been added to make this so wonderful.

After reading their story, I can appreciate the simplicity and no nonsense approach to their production.   Maybe I will try the Chardonnay in the future.  But maybe just one karmic experience at a time.

Less than 10 years old, the Paso Robles, based winery shows us a different take on Cabernet, that is friendly and approachable, just like their synopsis reads.

And ladies and gentleman, that is what wine is meant to be, friendly and approachable.  And I will add relatable and endearing.    And with a price tag of $12.99, it’s all those superlatives and more.

They suggest having it with meat or pasta, but I enjoyed my glass tonight with a nice homemade whole wheat chicken quesadilla.   And they complemented each other well.

And that’s the fun of wine pairing, you can create your own duos and your own destiny.   Just like karma. And karma can be a beautiful thing, if we create it as such.

Thanks so much.

Best,

Ideen