Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
Friday, October 7th, 2011
Located on California’s Central Coast in the quaint town of San Luis Obispo lies the popular agricultural-based state university, Cal Poly. Although viticulture has been a mainstay at the university for the past thirty years, it is only recently that the program took its potential to the next level and began producing their own wine. Today, Wine & Viticulture students embrace Cal Poly’s “Learn By Doing” mantra and grow, make, and sell wines directly from the Cal Poly campus.
All winemaking is overseen by industry veteran Christian Rougenant (of nearby Bailyana Winery), who guides the students in crafting premium, award-winning wines. We were fortunate to secure a few cases of Cal Poly’s latest achievements in our Gold Series - definitely worth checking out if you haven’t done so already!
Cal Poly 2008 Pinot Noir
Cal Poly 2007 Pinot Noir
Cal Poly 2008 Chardonnay
For a limited time, enjoy FREE SHIPPING on any mixed or full case orders of Cal Poly wines! Cheers!
Wednesday, September 14th, 2011
Zinfandels are often referred to as a piece of California history – offering luscious, fruity wines that are authentic to California, and distinctive to the number of regions it thrives in. But, when we look at a regular bottle of Zinfandel and compare it to one termed “Old Vine,” what’s the difference and what flavors can we expect?
Zinfandel vines are unique in that they tend to be very sturdy and have the ability to age for decades – some California vineyards are actually over 100 years old! These older vines grow a deeper root structure that in time changes the size of the grapes and affects the flavor and sugar content. When you sample a regular bottle of Zinfandel, you should notice a brambly, earthy flavor with prominant blackberry or blueberry notes. Tasting this side by side with an “old vine” Zinfandel, you should taste deeper fruit flavors that help balance out the naturally earthy tones. These Old Vine Zins are known for being rich, intense, and the most multi-dimensional example of a Zinfandel wine.
The tricky thing with distinguishing an Old Vine Zinfanel from a regular Zinfandel is that there is no legal definition or industry standard that defines how many years old the grapes need to be to be termed “Old Vine.” While some winemakers like to use 35 years as the minimum, others look to 50 years as the standard.
What we do know is Zinfandel is truly California history in a bottle, and Old Vine Zins are often the most complex and age-worthy examples. Try taste testing a few side by side, and see if you can tell the difference!
Here are some recommendations. Enjoy!
Scott Harvey 2006 “Old Vine Reserve” Zinfandel
Thatcher 2006 Zinfandel
Friday, April 22nd, 2011
Caption this week provided by David Gwyn. He'll receive this printed on a T-Shirt. Want to join the fun? Find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/WineClubs
Tuesday, April 12th, 2011
Chicken Tomatillo Enchiladas
2 Lb tomatillos, husked, rinsed and quartered
12 oz chicken broth
2 cups green onions, sliced
4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
2 cups cilantro, chopped
2 serrano chiles, sliced
1 tsp. ground cumin
12 six-inch corn tortillas
4 cups cooked chicken meat, roughly chopped
1 Lb queso blanco, coarsely chopped
1 cup half and half
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Mix tomatillos, broth, garlic, and cumin in a saucepan. Cover and bring to boil, then lower heat and cook about 10 minutes. Transfer mixture to food processor. Add cilantro, onions, and chiles and coarsely puree.
Overlap 6 tortillas in a 13 x 9 baking dish. Top with half chicken, queso blanco and half tomatillo sauce. Repeat. Pour half and half on top and season with salt and pepper.
Bake for 25 minutes. Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.
Enjoy with a glass of Taft Street Russian River Valley Chardonnay!
Saturday, February 12th, 2011
Gold Medal Wine Club is now proud to offer the Craft Beer Club to beer enthusiasts across the country. As seen on Good Morning America and recommended by Rachel Ray, this newest division of our company discovers exceptional craft brews from around the country and delivers them each month direct to you or your gift recipient!
Each compelling selection is produced by small-production, independent brewers who use only traditional brewing ingredients and time-hon0red brewing methods.
Americans are finally beginning to treat craft beer as seriously as fine wine, so now is the perfect time to treat yourself, your family, and friends to hard-to-find, outstanding brews from some of the best Brew Masters in the country! Craft Beer Club’s specialty is discovering the best beers these highly skilled craft brewers have to offer – we do the research so you don’t have to. From ales to lagers and porters to stouts, Craft Beer Club is a perfect way to enjoy and learn about the many styles of craft beers being produced. With over 1,600 craft breweries in existence in American today, we now have more craft breweries than any other country on the planet.
PLUS, by joining this Beer Club, you’ll receive great FREE GIFTS with purchase.
Join the Craft Beer Explosion today!
Thursday, September 9th, 2010
1. Why is Pinot Noir considered a finicky grape?
2. What are the principal wine grapes grown in the French Champagne region?
3. What determines the varying sweetness levels in Champagne?
1. Pinot Noir is different from many other varietals in that it is especially difficult to grow, it’s sensitive to soil types, weather, moisture, and sun, and it bruises easily, which often requires hand harvesting. The thin skin of Pinot makes it especially fragile and tricky for winemakers to handle and work with, which explains its “high-maintenance” reputation. What this translates to for the consumer is that it is difficult to make good quality Pinot Noir, and its even more challenging to make good quality Pinot Noir that is also affordable.
2. The principal wine grapes grown in the Champagne region include Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. These three varieties share certain characteristics such as early ripening, speed of maturation, musts that are high in sugar content, and lifted bouquets of great finesse. When blended together for Champagne sparkling wines, Chardonnay gives life, acidity, freshness and aging potential; Pinot Noir adds depth, complexity, backbone, strength and fullness, and Pinot Meunier is desired for its hardiness and its forward development, making it very useful for non-vintage blends.
3. The dosage (or amount of sugar) added after the second fermentation and aging determines the sweetness level of Champagne. Here are the guidelines for following the Champagne sweetness levels from driest to sweetest: Brut (dry), Extra Dry (semidry), Sec (semisweet), and Demi-sec (sweet). It’s recommended to serve Bruts and Extra Dry as aperitifs, or throughout the meal, whiles Secs and Demi-secs pair best with desserts. Cheers!
Wednesday, August 25th, 2010
Sandra Robison provided this week’s winning caption. She’s received a special promotion code for a 10% discount in our wine store. Thanks, Sandra, for your witty contribution!
Like our Facebook page to join in the fun!
Wednesday, July 7th, 2010
Congratulations to James Dietz, this week’s WineToon winner! His winning comment below got him a 10% discount in our wine store and publication in our blog! Want details? Visit us on Facebook and join the fun: www.facebook.com/wineclubs
Friday, July 2nd, 2010
Think you know your stuff when it comes to wine? Test yourself! Our Wine Wizard questions are here to help you learn a bit more about the industry you love. Read below, then impress your friends with all of your wine know-how!
1. What is a grape clone?
2. If the name of a vineyard appears on a wine label, what percentage of the grapes used to make the wine must come from that vineyard?
3. What are the benefits of maceration in red wine making?
1. Clones are terms for naturally occurring genetic subtypes within the same grape variety. In other words, not all Cabernet grapevines are exactly alike. Many grapevines evolve and mutate based on their surroundings and the differences in the flavor profile can range from being very pronounced to extremely difficult to differentiate. Clones have historically been traded between different wine regions throughout the world, allowing growers to take advantage of these evolutions to experiment with new flavors in different areas.
2. Under U.S. wine laws, if the name of a vineyard appears on the wine label, at least 95% of the grapes used to make the wine must come from that vineyard.
3. Maceration is the process where tannins, coloring agents, and flavor compounds are leached from the grape skins, seeds, and stems. The process can help bring out many flavors in the wine that would otherwise be lacking. It can enhance the body and mouthfeel for many wines, as well as strengthen the color. Greater extraction can add to the complexity and life expectancy of the wine by developing more complex tannins that will soften over a longer period of time.
Monday, June 28th, 2010
If you enjoy everything about the world of wine, you might consider joining us on the popular social networks, Facebook and Twitter! All summer long, we’ll be posting articles, news, updates, sales, specials, and contests through these social media outlets…. We’re even going to host virtual tastings on Facebook. You can also let us know what you think about the wines you’re receiving, or let us know about an awesome wine & food pairing you’ve found — we’d love to hear from you!
It’ll be a great place to discuss all things wine!
We’ll see you there!