>Chardonnay #3


Chardonnay #3:  Quail Creek Chardonnay 2009, California, 12.5% alcohol, $5.99.

Aroma:  White grapes, grass, artichokes, acorn squash
Flavor:  Tart, flavor of unripe peaches.  Watery mouth feel, slight bitterness of flavor.  Not all thrifty priced wines taste bland, however this one does.  I had to rack my brain to find hints of flavors other that white grapes, tartness, and slight bitterness.  This is the type of wine that you would liquor people up with at a backyard barbeque.  I would not serve this with a meal.  Its not complex its something to drink
a lot of and get tipsy while doing the electric slide at a 4th of July barbeque.


This wine was paired with the same cheese from last week.  I have to mention once again that I absolutely adore this cheese.   The quail creek wine ruined the sumptuous flavor of the cheese.  The cheese enhance the bitterness of the cheese.  Blah!   I tried to enjoy this wine with last week’s cheese and ligonberry preserves, five spice tofu, wild rice and hot spiced pickled beets.  The wine went surprisingly well with the ligonberry preserves.  Ligonberries taste like a cross between blueberries and strawberries.  This is a sweet wine but not overly sweet.  It has a tartness.  It blended well with the ligonberry preserves and the tartness cuts some of the berries sweetness.  The bitterness of the wine was eliminated by the ligonberry preserves.  Perhaps this wine may go well with a dessert of some sort.   The wine went well with the five spice tofu and ok with the spiced beets.   

>Thank You!


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>Chardonnay #2


Chardonnay #2:

Barnard Griffin Columbia Valley Chardonnay,  2009 from   Richland, Washington, 13.2% alcohol

Aroma: Fresh peaches, slight blue cheese aroma

Flavor: Peaches, but not overly sweet

I enjoyed this wine with Gazpacho, two cheese described below, and fresh raspberries.  The wine goes great with the gazpacho, and especially great with the raspberries. 


I enjoyed this wine with the Tallegio Cheese from Chardonnay #1.   The Barnard Chardonnay does not go well with the Tallegio Cheese at all.  The Barnard wine ruins the flavor of the Tallegio cheese by creating a bitter taste on the tongue. 

Cheese:  Follow your heart Nacho Vegan Gourmet Cheese Alternative

The flavor and spices of this Tofu Cheese alternative really remind me of nachos, but its not creamy. However it will satisfy my desire for nachos while I’m on my diet.  Interestingly the vegan nacho cheese goes great with the Barnard Chardonnay.

>Chardonnay YAY!!!!!


Chardonnay #1:

Stellar Organics Reserve Chardonnay, 2008 W.O. Western Cape, South Africa, 13.0% alcohol

Aroma: Burnt toast, oyster mushrooms, collard greens
Flavor:  Black currant, collard greens, artichokes
I enjoyed this wine with a late afternoon snack of morning star vegetarian corndogs.  I think that this wine went well with the corndogs!



Taleggio Cows milk Italian Cheese  $14.99/lb   $7.20 for 0.48lb
Amazing!  A, soft, spreadable, creamy cheese with a flavor like vanilla ice cream.  This cheese is so wonderful that I want to marry it.  The cheese also has a slight summer vegetable flavor like green beans, zucchini, or cucumber with mushroom? 
I do not like the Stella Chardonnay with this cheese.  The pairing is all wrong.

>Pinot Grigio #3


Pinot Grigio #3
Villa Sonie Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie from Gattinara, Italy, 12.0% alcohol $9.99
Aroma: rainbow sherbet
Flavor: light smooth citrus

I enjoyed this wine with Kale, grilled baby octopus, spaghetti squash, and grilled artichokes.  The wine went well with all items of this meal

Bonus: La Serena Raw Sheeps Milk Spanish Cheese
Made iwth Milk thistle flower, $21.99/lb  $6.38 for 0.29 lb
Flavor: smooth creamy soft spreadable cheese. Very delicious and went great with the Villa Sonie Pino Grio

>Pinot Grigios!!!!!!!


Last month I completed the tasting of seven Cabernet Sauvingnons under $15.  Now it’s time to move onto Pinot Grigios!

Pinot Grigio #1:  Innovacion Pino Grigio, 2009, Mendoza region of Argentina, $9.99

Aroma: Warm Apple pie and pie crust

Flavor: Sweet (however not overly sweet), smooth and creamy, floral

I enjoyed this wine with eggplant Parmesan and filet mignon cooked in a red wine sauce.  The Innovacion wine went great witht the eggplant Parmesan.  However not surprisingly, it did not go well with the filet mignon in red wine sauce. 


Cypress Grove Humbolt Fog Goat’s Milk Cheese  $21.99/lb $5.94 for a 0.27 lb

Flavor:  ash, smooth near rind, dry in the center.  A light blue cheese, doesn’t have an overwhelming blue cheese flavor.  This cheese goes perfectly with the Innovacion Pinot Grigio.  The wine actually tastes sweeter when paired with the the Cypress Grove Humbolt Fog cheese.

Pinot Grigio #2:

The Naked Grape Pinot Grigio, California, 12.5% alcohol, $8.99

Aroma:  Molding Bread

Flavor: Sweet, watery mouth feel, anise, unripe peach

I enjoyed this wine with miso soup and a seitan and quinoa stuffed red pepper.  The wine paired perfectly with both items.


Pantaleo Goat’s Milk Cheese, $17.99/lb  or $5.76 for 0.32 lb

Flavor:  Bright and lemony.  Perfect for summer.  This hard cheese has  a romano or Parmesan flavor and texture.  I really love the lemony flavor of this cheese!  This wine goes great with the Naked Grape Pinot Grigio, however it makes the Innovacion Pinot Grigio taste astringent.

>Sauvignon Blanc #6 and #7


#6 Fire Road Sauvignon Blanc, 2009, 12.5% alcohol  $11.99 sale price  ($16.99  regular price)

The Fire Road Sauvignon Blanc is from Marlborough, New Zealand.

Aroma: Ruby red grapefruit, tangerine, and cantaloupe

Flavor: Ruby red grapefruit


I enjoyed this wine with my dinner which included starfruit and two cheeses for my first course.

Carr Vally Smoke Gouda, $17.99/ lb $5.22 for 0.29 lb


This cheese is wonderful!   It is slightly salty, faint tartness, and not overly smokey.  I think that it went well with the Fire Road Sauvignon Blanc.

Herve Mons Tomme Des Bois Noir, Raw Goat’s milk $15.99 $6.24 for 0.39 lb

This cheese is horrible!  It taste like dirt.  Furthermore it tastes like burnt dirt with the Fire Road sauvignon blanc.  If someone gives you this cheese, the appropriate response should be to punch them in the face. 

For my main course I enjoyed a steak with chimichuri sauce, garlic crabs, and swiss chards.  The Fire Road wine goes great with the steak with chimichuri and the swiss chards.  However, the sweetness of the the wine seemed to be too much with the sweetness of the garlic crabs.  It was a sweetness overload.

#7  Valdivieso Sauvignon Blanc, 2009, Chile $12.5% alcohol


Oatmeal perhaps?

Flavor:  Sweet, low acidity, flavor of oatmeal.  This wine brings out the ash flavor of the canna de cabra cheese that I reviewed in the last post.  It’s not a good combo.

>Sauvignon Blanc #4 and 5


Sauvingnon Blanc #4
Rayun Sauvignon Blanc 2010, 12.5% alcohol, Chile  $8.99
For more information on this wine, visit:   http://www.H2Vino.com
Aroma:   Prunes
Bright, slightly tart, slightly dry in the mouth  It’s hard to pick out flavors.  I’m distracted by the tartness on the side of my tongue.  There may be low undertones of acorn squash flavor in the wine.
The wine went so beautifully with roasted sweet potatoes.  The acidity vanished and the the slight acorn squash flavor married beautifully with the roasted sweet potatoes.  Heaven!  It tastses like a totally different wine.  I will definitely purchase this wine again when I make any sweet potato dish.
Wine with spicy orange lentil stew:
The cayenne pepper in my lentil stew makes the wine burn a bit going down, however the flavor of the wine seems a bit “fruitier” with the stew.  Eating a bit of whole grain baggette  before sipping the wine, tempers the burn from the wine and the cayenne pepper.  When I eat and drink in this order, the wine goes well with the stew.  I am interested in trying this wine again with my lentil stew when I don’t put cayenne pepper in the recipe.
Sauvignon Blanc #5
Chalone Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, 2008, Monterey County California
Green bananas, banana bread
Flavor: green bananas, smooth.  Goes well with my lentil stew, the flavor doesn’t change

Queso De Cabra al Pimenton  Spanish Cheese $15.99/lb  $3.52 for a 0.22 lb serving
Goat’s milk with pimenton
Soft cheese, not spreadable
Light flavor.  I don’t notice any spicy peppery flavor from the paprika in the rind of the cheese, however I like it.  It reminds me of munster cheese.  Goes great with the Rayun Sauvignon Blanc.  The cheese cut out the “bite” in the wine.  This cheese also goes well with Chalone Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc.  Their is no change in the flavor of the cheese or the wine.

Caciotta al tartuffo, Italian cheese  $21.99/lb  $6.16 for 0.28 lb serving
Sheeps milk cheese with black truffles
Rich smokey flavor of the black truffles.  Buttery, not creamy.  Semi soft, not spreadable.  My whole mouth is filled with the aroma of black truffles.  Goes amazingly well with the Rayun wine.  This cheese makes the Rayun wine taste delicious.  I can’t say the same for drinking the Rayun wine by itself. This cheese takes away the acidity and hightlights the sweetness of the wine.   The wine tastes like a fruity sweet Riesling with this cheese.
The Chalone Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc doesn’t go well with the truffle cheese.  I can’t explain the flavor change, but its not a good one.

>Sauvingnon Blanc #2 and #3

Sauvignon Blanc #2:  Joel Gott Sauvingnon Blanc 2009,13.8% alcohol, California.  $11.99/bottle sale price, $13.99/bottle regular price

Aroma:  White grape juice, cucumber


Plain, no harsh or standout flavors.  Smooth, slight cucumber, honeydew, and Santa Claus melon flavors which give the wine a watery after tastes in the mouth.  I considered this wine too boring to enjoy alone, and due to its plain flavor you could drink a whole bottle without noticing it.  However, the flavor came alive when I tried it with a dinner consisting of black eyed peas, roasted brussel sprouts and roasted sun chokes. 


Sauvignon Blanc#3:  Quail Creek Sauvignon Blanc 2008, 12.5% alcohol, California, $5.99/ bottle sale price, $7.99 regular price


Fresh rain, tangerines, green olives


Tangerines.  Smooth, watery, easy to drink, a little “bite” on the back of the tongue. 


Cana de Cabra Cheese  $14.99/lb

A goat’s milk cheese with two consistencies.   The cheese close to the rind is smooth and creamy like with a fresh churned butter and vanilla creme flavor, while the cheese in the center has a bright tart slightly dry flavor.  Other flavors include celery and parsley.   

1.  The Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc drastically brings out the vanilla flavor of the cheese.   When paired you will think that you just tasted vanilla bean ice cream instead of a slice of cheese.
2.   This cheese brings out vanilla notes in the Quail Creek Sauvignon Blanc.

Pecorino Toma Pepato  Cheese $7.99/lb

A Sheep’s milk hard cheese made with whole black peppercorns.  This cheese was wonderful.  It had a surprisingly fruity flavor like ju ju bees candy.  Something magical happens in your mouth when you pair this cheese with apples. 

1.  I would not recommend pairing this cheese with the Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc.  The wine burned on my tongue after eating the pecorino toma pepato cheese.
 2. This cheese pairs perfectly with the Quail Creek Sauvignon Blanc.  The wine does not become harsh when paired with the pecorino toma pepato cheese. 

>Sauvignon Blanc

>I’m actually going to try a few Sauvingnon Blancs. 
2008 Pomelo Wine is a Californian Sauvignon Blanc, 13.0% alcohol,  $5.99/bottle


Cotton, white grapefruit, white grape juice


White grapefruit

I enjoyed the wine with roasted chicken and brussel sprouts for dinner.   The wine flavor changed by developing a bit of a bite on the tongue with the brussel sprouts and chicken. 


I tried the Pomelo wine with a Palhais Button Portuguese goat cheese @ $3.99 for 60 grams. 


Slightly crumbly texture, vanilla ice cream after taste on back of tongue, slightly tart-sweet apple flavor

The Pomelo wine flavor became increasingly smooth with this goat cheese.  This pairing was a hit!