From Wikipedia: Véraison is a viticulture (grape-growing) term meaning “the onset of ripening”. It is originally French, but has been adopted into English use. The official definition of veraison is “change of color of the grape berries.” Veraison represents the transition from berry growth to berry ripening, and many changes in berry development occur at veraison.
We were at Breaux Vineyards yesterday picking up my Cellar Club selections. While there we checked out the grapes and this is what we saw. Is this early for veraison?
Our mid-week pour is the 2007 Claret from Linden Vineyards. Right away we noticed the dark, rich color. On the nose we noted dark fruit, coffee, and dried herbs. We noticed almost exactly the same characteristics on the tongue–coffee, currents, plums, dark fruit. We just enjoyed it by itself. It was a perfect sipper for a relaxing evening.
Are you looking for an iPhone app that helps you pronounce the wines of the world? The Enotria Guide is for you. With this app you can find the wine word you’re looking for and have the app pronounce it for you. We received a copy to test out. I have an iPad and while it’s written for the iPhone, it does work on the iPad. An iPad specific version is in the works. We tested it out and found that it had lots of layers to go through to find the words but the words are pronounced clearly and with the correct accent. If you are in the industry and already know how to pronounce the wines of the world, you’ll find this app useless. However, if you are new to wine this app might help you pronounce the words correctly. Have fun!
The last two wineries we visited while on the Chesapeake Bay Wine Trail were Ingleside and Vault Field. Our friend Bob joined us for the tasting at both wineries.
It had been awhile since we visited Ingleside. The tasting choices had changed since our last visit. We opted for the full tasting which included the basic tasting as well as the reserve tasting. With that choice there were 16 wines to taste. Warren and I both selected the 2009 Pinot Grigio to receive a gold star for the whites. Our friend Bob selected the Blue Crab Blanc for his gold star. The pinot grigio had a clean, crisp finish that was perfect for a warm summer day. From the reds, Warren and I both selected the Petit Verdot 2005 Special Reserve for a gold star. This one is not on the tasting list but they had a bottle open and were tasting it the day we were there. This was simply the best red on the tasting menu. We noted plum, currents, coffee, spice, cedar. Bob’s red gold star went to the Cabernet Merlot.
One interesting note about the reds. Ingleside has a 2007 Sangiovese with 9% Charbono. We tasted some charbonos in California but we’ve never encountered a wine in Virginia with charbono. Is anyone aware of another Virginia winery working with Charbono?
Bob’s wife Jackie joined us for our visit to Vault Field. Vault Field produces six wines–three whites, a rose, and two reds. Jackie and I put our gold star for the whites next to the 2008 Chardonnay. We both enjoyed the mouth feel and the citrus aroma. Warren and Bob liked the 2008 Vidal Blanc. They noted pineapple and pear. Of the reds, Jackie and Bob enjoyed the 2008 Red which is a blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon and chambourcin. They placed their gold star next to this one. Warren and I both agreed the 2007 Reserve Red should get our gold star. We noted extracted fruit, coffee, and tobacco.
We had a great time on the Chesapeake Bay Wine Trail. If you haven’t been to the Northern Neck, you should plan a trip to visit the Chesapeake Bay Wine Trail. And if you visit the wineries we’ve mentioned, tell them Virginia Wine Time sent you!
Take a large outdoor farmers’ market featuring fresh Virginia produce. Add in flavorful Virginia wines, specialty foods and a barbecue cook-off. Sprinkle in an entertaining and educational kids’ zone. And mix in a dash of live music.
That’s the recipe for the Save Our Food Summer Festival, a fun-filled family event that will run from noon to 6 p.m. on July 25 at the Farm Bureau Center exhibition hall at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County. The indoor/outdoor event is free for Virginia Farm Bureau members and $10 per carload for nonmembers.
“The Save Our Food Summer Festival is our way of celebrating fresh, local food and other products that go hand in hand with summer in Virginia,” said Wayne F. Pryor, president of Virginia Farm Bureau. “We believe this event offers something for the entire family.”
The festival will feature indoor and outdoor components. Outside, guests can enjoy the farmers’ market and live music. They can cool down with Virginia wine, specialty foods and children’s activities inside the Farm Bureau Center.
·Large Outdoor Farmers’ Market – shop and visit with Virginia farmers (produce and farm fresh meat producers) who bring their offerings from the farm to your table.
·Indoor Virginia Wine and Specialty Food Showcase – taste some of Virginia’s finest wines and sample Virginia barbecue sauces, salsas, vinegars, cheeses, desserts and much more.
Virginia Barbecue Cook-Off – watch five local barbecue masters work the grills to become the Save our Foods rib champion.
Family Cool Zone and “Down on the Farm” Kids’ Area – youngsters can learn more about agriculture and healthy eating in an area produced by the Children’s Museum of Richmond.
·Live Music – Jackass Flats, Susan Greenbaum and the Venture Rays will entertain throughout the day.
The Save Our Food Festival is presented by Virginia Farm Bureau and sponsored by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, the Children’s Museum of Richmond, Flavor magazine, the Goochland Center for Rural Culture, Richmond magazine, WWBT-12, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and Virginia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Co.
In addition to our new visits, we also sneaked in some re-visits to other wineries on the Chesapeake Bay Wine Trail. Here are the reviews:
Athena Vineyards: The favorite here was the Nightingale Chardonnay which was fermented in stainless steel tanks. Crisp with pear aromas and flavors noted with this Chardonnay, and it should be prove to be a popular summer wine especially if served with shellfish. Dessert wine lovers might enjoy Mellow Notes which is a fortified Vignoles. Floral aromas, pear flavors and an almond finish make for a distinctive pour. (Mellow Notes comes in a unique bottle that is shaped like a saxophone.)
Oak Crest Vineyards and Winery: The Symphony wines continue to be the strongest offerings here, and this hybrid grape produces an Alsatian-style white wine. Symphony Dry has no residual sugar and presents a floral nose, pear flavors, and a crisp feel. Moonlight Sonata is another wine produced from the Symphony grape but includes 3% residual sugar.
White Fences: The Meteor Glow was our summer sipper favorite here. Made from Chardonnay grapes, this lightly oaked (9 months) white wine offered lingering pear flavors and a subtle toasty edge. Of course, the Blue Jimmy wines won our Michael Tyler designation; readers may recall that our friend Michael prefers sweeter wines. Blue Jimmy Red is made from Chambourcin and aged in French oak barrels to produce lingering rich berry flavors with a sugar level of five percent. Blue Jimmy White is produced from the Chardonel grape and is done in stainless steel with similar sugar levels as the red. We noted melon and apple flavors.
Planning a trip to any of these wineries? Be sure to mention that Virginia Wine Time sent you.