Crushed rocks and beef blood?

Yesterday, my sister sent along a newsletter from her favorite wine store Schneider’s in Washington, DC.  Aside from one magical and hazy Napa trip, my forays into really getting wine have been brief and shallow, and yes, I occasionally buy a bottle based on its label decoration.

People who can really taste and appreciate wine are awesome.  People who can aptly describe the nuances of the wine they taste have my utmost respect.  Because of this, the newsletter from my sister wasn’t intended so much as to introduce me to new vintages as it was to feed a love of food descriptions.  There’s nothing quite like a good wine description –where else can you compare something to tire rubber and dirt and be giving a favorable review? — and Schneider’s Has. Got. It. (Read that last bit like Martin Short as Ned Nederlander in The Three Amigos.  The aforementioned sister, aka my sole reader, should understand the reference).

Here’s a sampling lovingly remixed and with many inserts and edits, pulled from Schneider’s/the winemakers’ descriptions of a few different wines:

Opulent yet fresh, with cherry, raspberry and blackberry up front and tar and licorice lurking behind, this stuff is haunted by notions of crushed rocks, spring flowers, blueberries and black currants. Like a good T-bone savored with dessert in a collegedorm room, it’s beefy and the richness is mouthcoating with lavender, incense and white chocolate notes.  Quite honestly, there is not a hard edge to be found. It’s voluminous, multilayered with super racy (dolla dolla bill$ y’all) fig fruit liberally laced with graphite and black tea.  The complex aromas continue into the coffee, earth, and game flavors with just a touch of soft oak. It made me nostalgic, reminiscent as it was of a cedar spice box coated in leather. Bravo!

Just when you’ve muddled through the yeasty strawberry and ripe earth aromas, you’ll run headlong into the toasty pear, spice, anise and butter notes that are plagued by persistent bubbles.  One might call it vivid, with its abundant notes of grilled herbs, beef blood, currants, sweet kirsch, plums and Asian spices.  Like a pinafored maiden at a worldly farmers market, it possesses a huge bouquet of lychee nuts, white peaches and honeysuckle with outstanding ripeness as well as texture and a heady finish. Round and opulent, intermixed with notions of forest floor and tobacco leaf, a latent iron note leaves a tangy, mouthwatering finish. Delicious!

The flavors abound with fresh fruit, crisp apple and a hint of lime (Tostitos©). A fat, rich palate impression waits to smack you upside the head with a big, spicy, earthy, peppery nose that is broad, totally seductive and disarming. Wink, wink. You might even allow that it reveals abundant aromas of crushed rocks in its darker, more cool climate style!  But that’s only if you can get beyond its complex melange of yellow apple, melon and pear.  The long, crisp finish goes on and on. And believe me, you can’tmiss the spice cake notes and complex meaty flavors that build a briary edge framing the tangy finish. It’s like gnawing on a good velvet – quite sophisticated, ripe and plush in the mouth with a long (and I mean long) finish.

Serve this voluptuous beauty with shellfish and you’ll forget all about white Burgundy. But as LeVar Burton says, “you don’t have to take my word for it.”


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