Many Friday evenings are spent on my balcony enjoying food and wine. The weather wasn’t too hot on Friday so we continued the tradition.
We began with St. Andre’s cheese and a baguette. We paired it with the 2010 Jennifer’s Jambalaya from Breaux Vineyards. As you may already know, I’m a member of the Breaux Cellar Club and thoroughly enjoy all the wines from Breaux. This is a perfect wine for a warm evening on the balcony. It’s slightly sweet, floral, and fruity. It’s a blend of seven white wines and has just the right amount of acidity. It paired beautifully with our cheese and bread.
For dinner I cooked my mom’s famous meatloaf, baked potatoes, and green beans almondine. We already had plans to visit Naked Mountain Winery & Vineyards this weekend so we selected the 2007 Raptor Red from my wine rack. Some of the 2007 reds from Virginia are beginning to show really well so we wanted to see how well the 2007 Raptor Red was holding up. We were very pleased when we opened it and paired it with our meal. We noted blackberry, raspberry, sweet tobacco, and spice.
Both of our evenings wines turned out to pair very nicely with our food choices. If you haven’t been to Breaux Vineyards or Naked Mountain Winery & Vineyards lately, plan a trip soon and tell them Virginia Wine Time sent you!
Naked Mountain Winery & Vineyards has been through somewhat of a renaissance in the past year. Randy and Meagan Morgan bought the winery last August and have been working hard to continue the tradition of Naked Mountain as well as introduce their own branding and ideas. There is a new logo, website, labels and winemaker. Seth Chambers is the winemaker at Naked Mountain. You might be familiar with his work. At one time he was the winemaker at Philip Carter. We were visiting Naked Mountain to check out the new wines and look for summer sippers. We found three!
The first sipper our our list is the 2010 Unoaked Chardonnay. This is 100% Chardonnay and didn’t go through malolactic fermentation. On the nose we noted apple, pear, and melon. On the tongue we noted green apple, lemon, and Warren jotted down banana. This is a nice crisp, fruity wine that would be perfect for a warm afternoon.
The next sipper was the 2010 Rose. It’s a blend of 73% Cabernet Franc and 27% Mourvedre. It weighs in at 2.5% residual sugar but you don’t notice it very much at all. On the nose we picked up strawberry and watermelon. In the mouth we noted melon and strawberry. We also got some cherry on the smooth finish. When we taste Rose`s we always think of a picnic on the lawn at Wolf Trap while enjoying a concert. This one would go well with picnic foods.
Our final sipper was the 2010 Riesling. It has 3% residual sugar but like the Rose it’s hardly noticeable. On the nose we picked up melon and peach. In the mouth we also noticed melon and peach but also noted lemon-lime. It has some nice crisp acidity as well. Another nice summer sipper.
During our tasting we were able to chat with Seth Chambers about the evolution of Naked Mountain and some of the upcoming changes taking place. We look forward to the new wines coming out soon and the changes in the labels. We love the new labels and logo. Nice job, Naked Mountain. So if you are looking for some summer sippers to add to your collection, consider the three mentioned here. And if you visit Naked Mountain anytime soon, tell them Virginia Wine Time sent you!
It’s that time of year when we go to Naked Mountain Vineyard and Winery to enjoy lasagna and wine. Which wine did we enjoy with lasagna? Well, to figure that out we had to complete a tasting of wines at the tasting bar, of course!
The 2006 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay and the sweeter Chardonnay Riesling were the two white wines offered for tasting. My favorite was the Barrel Fermented Chardonnay with its aromas of pear and vanilla; I also enjoyed its creamy mouth feel. Paul preferred the fruity characteristics of the Chardonnay Riesling, and I think he had visions of a warmer spring day and a refreshing fruit salad when he savored this one.
Speaking of food, we certainly had lasagna on our minds when we sampled the red wines. The Rhone-inspired 2006 Scarlet Oak Red earned my stamp of approval. Created from a blend of 45% Syrah, 45% Mouvedre, and 10% Tannat, it presented a smoky nose with cherry and raspberry aromas with a whiff dried herbs to boot; similar flavors with a toasty edge were evident in the mouth. Paul, however, was more inclined toward the newly released 2007 Raptor Red, a blend of Tannat (31%), Merlot (30%), Petit Verdot (20%) and Cabernet Franc (19%). Darker fruit elements abounded here with a smoky/earthy nose. I concurred that this blend offered a bolder, more complex wine; from the 2007 vintage, it will only improve with time.
So with lasagna on the way, we settled on a glass of our favorite red wines; I enjoyed a glass of the 2006 Scarlet Oak Red, and Paul sipped the 2007 Raptor Red. As we sipped and nibbled, we met cellar master Brooke Walter who hinted at exciting possibilities for the upcoming releases. She was particularly enthusiastic about the possible release of a stand-alone Malbec. Brooke also assured us that new owners Randy and Meagan Morgan were commited to maintaining the strong winemaking tradition at Naked Mountain Vineyards. Needless to say, we promised to return in the near future to sample new releases at Naked Mountain Vineyards and Winery.
We should also mention that the sausage lasagna is amazing at Naked Mountain, so plan to enjoy a lasagna lunch with a glass of wine at Naked Moutain Vineyards and Winery. Please mention that Virginia Wine Time sent you.
So it’s that time of year to enjoy lasagna and drink wine at Naked Mountain Vineyard and Winery. Last weekend, we brought along my sister Cindy, brother-in-law Travis and my nephew Ellis. Travis is a fellow wine lover and foodie; needless to say, he was game for lasagna and wine.
Of course, we all had to figure out which wine to pair with our lasagna, and that required tasting wines. We were certain that we wanted a red wine, but why not try the white wines, too? Paul’s favorite of the white wines was the Sauvignon Blanc, and it definitely conjured images of springtime flowers and warmer temperatures. Citrus flavors and a crisp finish highlighted this pour. Travis and I favored the full-bodied Black label Chardonnay with its apple and pear notes. I appreciated its toasted nut finish.
Now on to the red wines, and a potential pairing with lasagna was on our minds. Our choice was the 2005 Scarlet Oak Red. This is a Rhone-style blend with Syrah, Mourvedre, and Tannat, and it presented a denser core with aromas and flavors of dark fruit and black pepper. I also detected some tobacco on the nose. The Tannat provided a nice backbone, too, and the Scarlet Oak Red finished long. We all concluded that the Scarlet Oak Red had what it took to meet the weight and spice of the sausage lasagna.
With our tasting done, we settled down for a wonderful meal but made certain to claim a table near the glass doors that allowed us to view snow-capped mountains. A nearby bird feeder was quite busy with all sorts of birds including cardinals and tanagers. I must also mention that my sister Cindy is not a wine drinker but was very patient with us as we completed the arduous task of wine tasting. She and my teen-aged nephew did keep track of the many varieties of birds that frequented the bird feeder, and they even braved the cold outdoors to appreciate the lovely winter landscape while we completed our task to select the perfect wine. Eventually, we all dined on lasagna and garlic bread, and the wine drinkers acknowledged that the 2005 Scarlet Oak Red was the perfect partner with the meal.
Take advantage of the winter lasagna menu at Naked Mountain Vineyard and Winery; of course, enjoy lasagna with a bottle of Naked Mountain Wine. Be sure to mention that Virginia Wine Time sent you.