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Wine Bloggers Conference

Is Grenache finally gaining re…

Is Grenache finally gaining respect? Will it be spoiled by success? Hearty varietal has found a home in California http://shar.es/mCi4a

Tablas Creek 2009 Rosé

 

 

Courtesy Tablas Creek Vineyards

 

Type: Dry rosé Made with: Mourvedre, Grenache, Counoise Plays well with: duck, figs, cheese, nuts and picnic fare.

Let’s be clear.  This is not a sweet wine.  Alas, US rosés, in particular, have that bad rep from the cheap box wines that were so popular in the 1960s and ’70s.  But this ain’t your daddy’s Lancers.  The Tablas Creek 2009 Rosé was pink, as in the color a fresh rosé should have. The nose was fruity with watermelon and strawberry, and the fruitiness continued into the taste, even though it is

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Tablas Creek 2006 Cotes de Tablas

 

Courtesy Tablas Creek Vineyards

Type: Dry RedMade: In Paso Robles, California with grenache, syrah, mourvedre, counoise grapesPlays well with: Slightly spicy beef dishes, anything laced with garlic.

With Tablas Creek Vineyard GM Jason Haas one of the honchos behind the Rhone Rangers and Hospice du Rhone, you think maybe he and his family are into Rhone-style wines?  Like the winery’s portfolio is based on these food friendly wines of the Rhone valley of southern France.  The Cotes de Tablas is a typical Rhone-style blend of syrah, mourvedre and counoise built on a foundation grenache. The nose is

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Guerilla Pouring with Benjamin Spencer

 

 

Benjamin Spencer's great viognier

While waiting for the Rhone Rendezvous tasting at the recent Hospice du Rhone wine festival, we started chatting with winemaker and blogger Benjamin Spencer.  You can catch one of his posts here at intowine.com.  He also has a very small boutique winery Leojami – and you can check out their site here www.LeojamiWines.com.

 

Spencer and Anne were talking about writing about HdR, but then Spencer mentioned that he was about to do a guerilla pouring, as well.

A what?

“Well, basically, it’s just a behind the scenes pouring at public wine

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Jason Haas - Tablas Creek Rosé Heaven

Jason Haas, of Tablas Creek and nice pink stuff

We’re having an insanely good lunch at the Hospice du Rhone on the last day of April – duck confit, goat cheese, roasted veggies (food was catered by The Girl and The Fig, of Sonoma, California), and it’s the rosé lunch, partly sponsored by the Synidcat de Tavel, where they make some of the world’s greatest dry rosés.  Every table had five Tavels to share.

So what does Jason Haas, general manager of Tablas Creek Winery, go around and do?  Plops down random bottles of the Tablas Creek 2009

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Hospice du Rhone 2010

 

Instead of John, George, Ringo and Paul – you have Pierre, Francois, Yves and Yves

Oy.  We’ve finally recovered from a busy weekend at the Hospice du Rhone (and the following week, which was busy but not for wine-related reasons).  HdR is a two-day festival celebrating wines made from the 22 varieties of grapes commonly grown in the Rhone Valley of France.  It’s one of the older variety-related tastings/gatherings in California and has become one of the most respected, as well.

 

We’ll be posting more on our experiences soon.  But in the meantime, here are a

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HdR pix being tagged and will …

HdR pix being tagged and will up in FB album soon. What a mind-blowing event!

OMG!! The coat du rhone is tru…

OMG!! The coat du rhone is truly ugly, but what a a cool honor.

One of the problems of coverin…

One of the problems of covering an event like HdR is reporting accurately while enjoying the wines.

HdR auction way fun. If we wer…

HdR auction way fun. If we were rich instead of good looking…..