Thursday, September 14, 2006

My First Sauternes

Connie's Post
the experimental botrytis viognier is in the fermenting process now. gerald gave me a peek and did an alcohol measurement. its mesmerizing, the lovely apple green liquid roiling and bubbling over and over. i can picture it as a screensaver! the smell is pleasant and reminds me of eating an afternoon grape: a bit thick with juicy flavors. i can't wait until my sinuses fully recover and i get my nose back.

the process has made me want to experience a well-made wine from noble rotted berries, so i head over to Wegman's--and kudos to Danny's group for hiring a nice man named Bruce! Bruce listened attentively to me. i requested a well made, but inexpensive Sauternes or Tokai (murdering the pronounciation) and Bruce produced a 2001 Chateau Sahuc Les Tour. he advised the first Sauternes be a French Sauternes. me, i'm total novice girl--so i'm listening, as usual, very willing to be started off on an adventure. an added detail: i rarely purchase a wine more expensive than $10. i know. please don't comment. its a developing palate and small budget, i have.

so in the carrying basket goes the small, precious bottle. Bruce suggests a nice blue cheese, some walnuts, dark chocolate, pears, and the ever delicous Carr's whole wheat crackers. then he looks at me and asks, "is this what you will have for dinner?" i blush and say, "um, yes--but i'll make the kids tunafish sandwiches..." again, please don't comment.

i get home and gerald is so excited he prepares the whole meal. and this, my friends, is truly a masterpiece of a meal. the Sauternes was very interesting. i'd prefer a typical novice's dry red, but the dessert wine was a beautifully rounded experience and changed my mind. sweet but dry, vaguely apple-y and then other flavors i can't describe. a thicker liquid that bloomed spicy and then i experienced a warm feeling at the end. now, you pair that with the equally thick, lush and salty blue cheese atop a crunchy wheat cracker and its a perfect combination. walnuts worked equally as well. chocolate...hmm...good meal finish. gerald and i were laughing and sharing our descriptions--having such a great time in our kitchen. The kids loved their tunafish and raw veggie snacks, noshed on the crackers, tried the cheese and dark chocolate. and, i will confess, the tunafish sandwiches work AWESOME with Sauternes. but then again, gerald has a way with anything between two slices of bread.

i know this has nothing to do with the vineyard, but hope to share with you what i love about the new world my husband has opened for me. in my view, the best way to experience wine is through a lovely setting, food that relates well and the feeling that you are falling in love. again and again.

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