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Vintage Friday

I’d been looking forward to Friday all week, since I have the weekend off. I was delighted when I got the email informing me of the Thanksgiving Wine Tasting to be held at Vintage Spirits.

The tasting ran from four to seven. I arrived shortly after 4:30. The Great Cheese Lady who had been at the last tasting was absent (I wasn’t the only one that missed her), but Bronson had some cheese and crackers out, as well as roasted turkey and cranberry sauce. I thought that was a pretty good idea for a Thanksgiving Wine Tasting: you could easily see which wines would be good with dinner. Some would automatically think of white wine with turkey, but a light-bodied red can work, too.

The first wine I tried was Pascal Jolivet Pouilly-Fume. The grape used is sauvignon blanc, so I was pretty sure I would like that one, and I was right. I wrote “yummy” in my wine notebook (I haven’t mentioned yet, although regular readers are aware: this isn’t a real wine blog).

Next was Juvenile Macon Chardonnay. It was only lightly oaked, so I liked that one, too. I feel like a real oenophile when I drink Chardonnay, because I say, “Is it aged in oak or stainless steel?” just as if I know what I’m talking about. But I guess aged in oak is OK with me as long as it’s not too oaky (there’s a pun there somewhere).

The other two whites, Pfaffenheim Gewerztraminer and Skyleaf Riesling, were sweeter than I like. I do think Gewerztraminer is a good wine for anybody to drink, though. When you can’t say the name, you know you’ve had too much.

Bronson was also sampling two Woodbridge sparkling wines (some of us call them champagne, but there’s usually somebody around to tell us that’s a misnomer: real champagne is from a certain area of France). I learned that Brut is always drier than Extra Dry. Both Woodbridges were pretty tasty, although I found I liked the less dry Extra Dry just a little bit more.

By the time I moved on to the reds, still busily taking notes, another patron asked me if I was writing a term paper.

“No, a blog post,” I said.

I tried three reds: Pinot Noirs by Barefoot and Illahe, and a Blue Coast Vineyards Syrah. I liked all three, but I decided the Illahe was my favorite wine of the evening.

I also tried the Fulton Harvest Pumpkin Pie cream liqueur. That was quite rich. I asked for another taste of the Illahe, just to cleanse my palate.

The wine tasting was a great way to start my weekend. I picked up a couple of bottles, to continue my enjoyment (um, I didn’t drink them both, or even all of one, on Friday). Vintage Spirits is located at 246 Mohawk St. in Herkimer. You can call them at 866-6800 and ask them to put you on their email list, in order to be informed about future wine tastings. Perhaps I’ll see you there.

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