Happy August, Wine Club Members!

We would like to thank you for all the feedback from the first club offering. And from the responses and requests for additional bottles, it looks like we found some gems! Knowing that we had our work cut out for us, we started down the club selection path early in July to find two more great deals for August.

Before we get into sharing details on these selections, we wanted to chat about a key component in drinking wine. Heck, its a key component in eating food as well: temperature, temperature, temperature. At what temperature should you drink red wine? At what temperature should you drink white wine? At what temperature should you drink Coors?

To dive into this, we must cover the storage of wine. If you have a wine refrigerator, you should make sure you have that thing full with great wine from Hidden Track! If you do not have a wine refrigerator, find a closet or pantry in the middle of your home and store your wine there. The cooler the better. Do not store your wine:

– in direct sunlight;
– on top of a refrigerator;
– near a heat source;
– along a south west facing wall; or
– below 32 degrees

OK, those are your easy storage tips to ensure that your vino gives you its best results possible… Now grab a bottle and drink some.

Red wine. This is easy – room temperature, right? Ahhhh wait. Room temperature in our house ranges from 75-80 degrees. Not the best temperature for wine to show you its best (you can store wine that you are going to drink soon at this temp though). Let’s get that temp down closer to 65-70 degrees (keep ‘er under 70, please). If you are storing wine at a warmer temperature than this, that is fine. Just put the bottle in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes and bring the temp down a bit. There will be a remarkable difference in taste!

White wine. Ice cold right? Brrrrrr no. Most people keep their white wine in the refrigerator. And that is fine, but 40 degrees is a bit too cold to drink good white wine. The colder the wine, the more it masks the beautiful flavors trying to dance around your palette. There is a reason why certain domestic beer producers want their beer to be served below freezing. They don’t want you to taste anything for fear you would never drink that product again. Same with white wine. Let the wine give you the results it has been training for while in the bottle. Drink your white wine between 50-55 degrees… And don’t be afraid to let it show you what it can do around 60 degrees, too. If there are no flaws, you will continue to enjoy the wine as it warms up. So take the bottle out of the refrigerator 20-30 minutes before you are going to drink it….then enjoy.

No more lectures for today. Lets discuss the wine selections!

When we hear Sonoma, we instantly think Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. So we thought it fitting that two wines really jumped out at us this month, and they both happen to be from Sonoma – a Chardonnay and a Pinot Noir. Throw that together with the fact that 2012 happened to be an excellent vintage in Sonoma for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and voilà – we got a couple of winners!

Neyers 304 Sonoma County Chardonnay 2012
This gorgeous Chardonnay is unoaked, and a great example of how Chardonnay should actually taste. Oak is the preferred method of aging Chardonnay and can bring beautiful qualities to the varietal. However, drinking an unoaked Chardonnay lets this noble varietal show you why it is noble. The major influence on the varietal is the yeast, or “lees”, that is used. This can be wild from the vineyard, or the added strands of a winemakers preference. The lees will dance around and build character, flavor and texture. As this is an active live culture, some winemakers are known to talk to and sing to the wine while fermenting to make the yeast happy… Well, whatever song was sung to this batch of Chardonnay was very influential. And a fun note, there was no added yeast to this Chardonnay. All natural!

Head High Sonoma County Pinot Noir 2012
Head High is kinda sorta a second label from Three Sticks Winery. This Pinot Noir project was a study of five different vineyards, in which grapes were harvested from 11 different lots within those vineyards. Each lot was then handled and fermented separately to bring out the unique qualities of the different vineyard parcels. Ten weeks before bottling occurred, the lots were blended together to create your wonderful Pinot Noir compilation. Winemaker Don van Staaveren is one of the pioneering winemakers of Sonoma County, and creator of the 1996 Cinq Cepages – 1999’s Wine Spectator Wine of the Year with a perfect 100 point rating. An avid surfer, van Staaveren named Head High after a surfing term to describe wave height. Head high = surf height from 5-7 ft, or about the height of a surfer’s head when riding a wave. The marker on the bottle’s neck is also a nod to measuring wave height… We’re, like, pretty stoked on the whole thing, bro.

Thanks again for your support and enthusiasm with the club. We’re looking forward to seeing you in the shop soon!

Cheers,

Danielle & Craig