Last evening the work folk gathered for an educational and delicious special occasion. It was a wine-tasting evening, hosted by Carol, our CEO, and her husband, Les. But the point of the event was not just to show up, drink a lot, and swoon over warmed chevre brie with apricot jalapeno sauce (among about a million other amazing things). This was an evening of hard work and intense scrutiny, as the tasting was a contest where we had to try to identify 12 different wines from 12 different locations (1 sparkling, 5 whites, and 6 reds).

Didn’t even notice until it was mentioned afterward, but the pouring went in order of how full-bodied the wine was. That said, none of them were really heavy, so not sure how much that would have helped. We started with the sparkling wine, which was a bit of a gimme, since there was only one. We ended with one that I brought, which was one of our BC purchases.

Much eating, drinking, and merriment took place, fueled by the fact that there are some rather giggly lightweights among our ranks (not naming any names…) Fortunately, Work Andrew’s camera did not leave its case… But in the end, only one could prevail. Only one could be the undisputed office champion of the grape.

And that person was me. w00t!

Extra splendidly, my score (9 of 12) was more than double what most of the co-workers got. And Dan B, who came in second, and who usually doesn’t drink at all, got 5. That was pretty awesome. Dan S and Not-Work-Andrew (who I brought with me) came in third with 4 of 12 correct. Of course, I’m under no delusions that I’d have won if our hosts had been participating. They were doing the pouring, thus clearing the way for my glorious triumph. 🙂

Our wines for the evening were, in order of appearance:

  1. Sparkling – Pierre Sparr Cremant D’Alsace Brut 2007 – France
  2. Pinot Grigio – Folonari Delle Venezie 2007 – Italy
  3. Sauvignon Blanc – Villa Maria 2008, Marlborough – New Zealand
  4. Riesling – Herzog Von Wurttemburg, Kabinett Halbtrocken 2006, Wurttemburg – Germany (the second wine I brought)
  5. Gewurtztraminer – Pierre Sparr 2007, Alsace – France
  6. Chardonnay – Jekel Gravestone 2006, Monterrey – California
  7. Pinot Noir – Flat Rock Cellars 2007, VQA Twenty Mile Bench (Niagara) – Ontario
  8. Temparanillo (and others) – Marques de Riscal Reserva 2003 – Spain (Rioja)
  9. Malbec – Trapiche Malbec Reserve 2006, Mendoza – Argentina
  10. Cabernet Sauvignon – Santa Carolina Reserva 2007, Colchagua Valley – Chile
  11. Shiraz – Yellow Tail 2007, South Eastern Australia – Australia
  12. Marechal Foch – Oak Bay Vineyard 2007, VQA Okanagan Valley – British Columbia (the first wine I brought)

The three I got wrong were the Ontario Pinot Noir, the Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon, and the BC Marechal Foch (yes, my own). The Cab Sav was sneaky, cuz it was all green pepper-y, and after doing both Niagara and BC wine tastings within the last couple months, my palette is pretty schooled to automatically peg a green pepper-y red as Canadian. Ahh well. 🙂

Big thanks to our hosts for a most excellent and delicious evening, and I would definitely say this is a theme for a social occasion that I would recommend. (Would also work for beer or scotch.)

And today, just to keep the cultural activities going, we’re going to have pho, then watch the UFC from last weekend and snarf down nom bacon-wrapped jalapenos. Nom.

1 Comment on Hints of cherry, cedar smoke, and sweet, sweet victory

  1. This sounds like fun. I worked in the wine business for four years and still miss it. When did you visit BC? My wife and I were out there in 2004 and also drove to Walla Walla in Washington state which also has an amazing wine industry.

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