Wednesday, September 22, 2010

More Central Coast Wine Tasting!

Our friend Brie invited us to join her and her friend Rose for an afternoon of wine tasting.

We packed a light picnic lunch and headed for Tablas Creek, where Brie is a member.

Pictured here L to R: Brie, Rose, me and Ron.

Tablas Creek grows a huge selection of grapes in a certified sustainable environment. Their tasting list is extensive and offers many delicious white and red varietals and blends.

Our host was native Atascaderan, Shawn. He was gracious and humorous enough to let me snap this classic photo of him appearing to have horns (the wine bottles).

We gave him a new title: Inventory Reductionist Par Excellence.

I'm sure the owners of Tablas Creek will appreciate that.

I enjoyed the 2009 Côtes de Tablas Blanc, the 2007 Grenache, and the 2006 Esprit de Beaucastel.

Personal fave on the tasting list for me was the 2007 Esprit de Beaucastel, which I gave three stars.

Or as they say in french, "trois étoiles."

Next, we zipped into Niner, a newer winery on the west side.

Rose and Brie posed for a lovely photo in the expansive tasting room.

Brie liked the 2009 Sangiovese Rosato (pretty sure she purchased a bottle of it).

Here is a photo of the terrain from the back side on Niner's tasting room. It's called "Heart Hill." Of course!

Back to wine. Rose, like me, was partial to the 2008 Sauvignon Blanc.

I almost forgot to mention that Rose speaks fluent French!

I was so excited to have someone to converse with and learn from that was way beyond my ability!

Rose was very patient with me, just like my French professor at school.

Brie and Ron were left out of the conversation a bit, but I tried to bridge the language gap by sharing what Rose and I were talking about!

Rick, the Niner tasting room host who poured for us, educated us on the fact that "tannins" are found in the skins of red grapes but not white grapes.

Red wines "lay down" longer than white wines because the tannins act as a preservative.

After Niner, we crossed over to the 46 East area, which is on the east side of Hwy 101 in Paso Robles.

Our friend Shakeh, singer-songwriter from the Los Angeles area, was performing at a winery where Ron and I are members, Sculpterra.

We definitely wanted to support her, as well as show off one of our favorite wineries to Rose. It was a fantastic tour, and we all purchased wine.

Time was on our side and we traveled over the dry wash to make a pit stop at another of our wine club wineries, Clautiere.

The girls tried on wigs and gave photo-ops. See Brie and Le Coquette Rose above, and moi, avec les cheveux orange, posing while Ron purchased wine.

Then, we headed over to Maloy O'Neill for a tasting.

Brie purchase the Port and something else. I forgot. I like everything at Maloy O'Neill.

That's why Ron and I are members there.

Plus the fact that Shannon is an amazing person, winemaker, super-taster, friend and fellow non-conformist (nod to the nuns)!

Visit these wonderful "vignobles" and let me know your comments on the wines, tasting rooms and service!

Tell them Sharine and Ron sent you. It won't get you any freebies because we're not famous or rich, but they will definitely have stories to share!

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