It's time to go South of the Border with Cork Poppers and check out some wines from South America. (Actually, our theme included wines from Mexico but no one could find one!) We gathered at Bob's house with wine and food in hand for a delicious and tasty tasting day!
Our first wine was from Roger, a Lolea Frizzante White Sangria, No. 2. Comments ranged from "It smells great" to "I can see why this is a summer beach wine.
Many of us thought it was too sweet, though it was a sangria and super cold would indeed be tasty on a beach. I thought it was too sweet for just sipping a glass of wine but on a hot day at the lake, I'd like it! Anne called it "Very tasty" and Bob said "I think it is very good," but I think many of us agreed with Roger who said, "I was first attracted to the bottle." Cost: $15.99 at World Market.
Cheryl was next with a Gouguenheim Valle Escondido Torrontes 2016, a white wine from the Mendoza Valley in Argentina. This was a nice and quite dry white. Kate called it "The red wine drinker's white." Cheryl, our white wine fan, said she didn't "enjoy it as much as I hoped to." Cost: $16 at Vine and Brew, a local wine store.
At this time, hostess Heather, Bob's daughter, said, "I'm a cheap wine drinker" and then said, "I have to behave." Mike M. reassured her. "Only for about a half hour or so."
Bob was up next with a Long Country 2018 Sauvignon Blanc from Chile. This one the budget price of the day -- $5 at Meijer stores. Cheryl, Mike S. and I liked this one better than the white before us (at $16!). Barb and Kate liked the second wine better.
In any event, it makes for an excellent Neti pot and sinus cleaner, which I discovered when I was laughing so hard -- well, you get the idea.
Dick offered our first red -- Echeverria Family Wines' Gran Reserve Syrah 2014 from Chile. This group was named as Chile's Producer of the Year and the description described it as as "deep red with violet gleams." None of us knew what violet gleams were and in any event, most of us heard it as "violent greens," which was equaly confusing.
Rick said, "I might get addicted to it," and Bob added "Even if you don't like red, you'd like this." Heather said she liked "any wine you don't have to pay for" but Kate smelled "new cars and plastic" when she sipped it. It was a little light for me. $15 at the local Vine and Brew.
Kate was up next with Colome Vineyard Autentico Malbec 2017 from the Mendoza region of Argentina. Barb said, "It has a little barnyard in it," (referring to its earthy quality, not aroma). Kate and Barb agreed it had a gorgeous color and was very earthy with a lot of body. This one was $24.85 at Vine and Brew.
Around this time Barb realized that the towel Dick was using to pour looked like a Rorschach test and decided it was a man walking an English setter.
Clayton offered a Cantina Malbec 2016 from Argendina's Mendozea by Bodea y Vinedos Cardena. It's a high mountain wine and he found it at Meijer stores but I forgot to write down the price. Barb called it "soft" and I thought it more fruity than the one before. Clayton said it had notes of "leather and cinnamon" which Barb heard as "liver and cinnamon." Kate said that at this point, she was past intelligent comment.
This and the one before it were both malbecs. I thought the first one would be better with food, this one for just enjoying a glass of wine.
Barb and Mike offered up a Pirca 2015 Carmenere from Vina Marty in Chile. This was $10.
My notes say "Buy this now!" I thought it was very good and Kate said, "I love it! I love this!" It also smelled wonderful and I called it my favorite so far. And yes, it would be delish with a cheese toastie and a bag of Doritos.
Rick was last with Serie Riberas Gran Reserva Carmenere 2017 from Chile. This cost $20 at Tiffany wine shop in Kalamazoo.
This one was quite good too. Indeed, there was none left in the bottle as it was passed around after the first tasting. To be honest, I didn't really have a preference between this Carmenere and the one before -- they were slightly different but both good.
Well, after all that merriment, it was time to hang out and chat, and eventually move upstairs for dinner! Bob and Heather had made wonderful floral table decorations for our South of the Border theme!
I loved these!
And the food was to die for. There were tacos, beans, rice, two wonderful salads, a Topopo and a taco salad.
All this was topped off by Meredith's fabulous Mexican Chocolate Cake and tons of equally delicious conversation!
It was like being in a field of beautiful flowers with your friends taking all the time in the world to just enjoy one another's company.
Because really, that's what it's all about!
If you enjoy wine and want to check out some of the other Cork Popper tastings, check the tab on the menu at the top of this page. Wines are organized by category and theme.
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