I recently participated in Protocol Wine Studio’s #winechat on Twitter. #Winechat is an online, hour long educational wine experience. #Winechat is open to all, simply follow the hashtag. Furthermore, #winechat features wineries, distributors, sommeliers and wine writers in conversation with sommeliers, everyday wine enthusiasts and novices who want to learn more about wine. #Winechat is a vibrant experience: the conversation moves fast and there are many side conversations happening as well. To learn more about Protocol Wine Studio I encourage to visit www.protocolwinestudio.com; and to learn more about #winechat visit http://protocolwinestudio.com/2013/07/winechat-it-does-a-palate-good/.
Protocol Wine Studio’s philosophy centers around a cultural aesthetic where wine gently glitters from the background and becomes part of a complete social experience—a journey of wine awareness.
Cairdean Estate: The wines that were featured on #winechat were from Cairdean Estate winery in St. Helena, California.
“Cairdean is Scottish Gaelic for friends, which reflects their belief that wine is meant to be shared by those held close to our hearts. The Cairdean symbol is a representation of that belief with the four hearts always present and brought together in the center by friendship.”
Cairdean Estate is a boutique winery that represents the vision of Edwin and Stacia Williams, who were kind enough to provide me samples to participate in #winechat.
Cairdean Estate 2010 Russian River Valley Chardonnay: The 2010 RRV Chardonnay offered a beautiful entry into the evening. It meets the eye with a soft golden color; on the nose it delivers bright island fruits of pineapple and mango followed by that lovely Napa buttery oak. On the palate it delights with the fruit while following with hints of vanilla and more oak. It is a big wine that expands in the mouth with a delightful dryness while offering a touch of sweetness as it slowly finishes down the back of the throat. I took this wine through several stages of food pairings: First, I paired the 2010 RRV Chardonnay with dried apricots, prosciutto, marcona almonds, and cheese consisting of drunken goat, white stilton with lemon and cranberry cheddar. Second, I paired the 2010 RRV Chardonnay with a homemade version of a delicious creamy French vegetable soup that I first had at the Café in the gardens of the Rodin Museum in Paris. Finally, I paired it with an assortment of shortbread and fruit cookies from Whole Foods. The wine contains a firm acidity, resulting in exceptional pairings with each food. This is not a wilting flower chardonnay, pair it with salmon grilled on an oak plank, mahi-mahi, crab cakes, or chicken tacos with mango salsa. This wine contains 13.9% alcohol, is 100% chardonnay grapes, aged in both 30% new French and 30% new American oak, and sells for $42.00. If you like Napa oaky, buttery chardonnays I recommend this wine! If not, try Cairdean’s unoaked chardonnay!
Cairdean Estate 2010 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: I allowed the wine to decant for two hours before smelling or tasting it. The 2010 NV Cabernet is a beautifully deep red color, almost like velvet. Its bouquet is a powerful combination of earthiness and spice; it smells fantastic! On the palate it offers the same earthiness with a hint of eucalyptus on the back of the tongue, cassis, black cherries and spice are encompassed in a deep oakiness. The tannins are perfect for this big Napa Cab, leaving a lingering dryness that begs for another sip. The firmness of the acidity appeals to food pairings. I took the 2010 NV Cab through the same stages of food pairing: First, dried figs, caramelized walnuts, uncured Italian dry salami, with cheese consisting of Sottocenere with Truffles and drunken goat. Second, I paired the 2010 NV Cab with a grilled steak salad with butter and red leaf lettuce topped with gorgonzola, strawberries and blueberries, chopped shallots, grilled balsamic vinegar marinated steak in a heavy strawberry, balsamic vinegar dressing. Finally, I paired with an assortment of chocolate cookies from Whole Foods. These were perfect pairings for this big wine. This is a full body Napa Cabernet so you want to pair it with a grilled filet, French beef stew or Ox Tail, and flourless chocolate cake. This wine contains 14.4% alcohol, is 100% cabernet grapes. This wine is a very high quality 2010 Napa Valley Cabernet that I strongly recommend!
Both of these two Cairdean Estate wines are award winning wines. To find out more about these wines, as well as many other wines they produce, visit www.cairdeanestate.com.
My song selections: My song selection for the 2010 RRV Chardonnay is Treat Her Right from the original motion picture soundtrack of The Commitments. The song has soul, rhythm and great lyrics; plus it is a great movie. Treat the Cairdean 2010 RRV Chardonnay right and it will reward you all night! To hear the song and watch the video visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoLP3AArnEI&feature=kp.
My song selection for the 2010 NV Cabernet is Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress by the Hollies. Visit www.hollies.co.uk. The title is a perfect description of pouring the Cab into the glass for the first time; it pours like a long cool woman in a black dress, and tastes every bit as sensual! To watch the music video visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lP94PlEtsEQ.
Get your own Cairdean Estate 2010 Russian River Valley Chardonnay and 2010 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and let me know what songs you would pair with them! Cheers!