Wine in the Woodlands
My wife and I were invited to a couple of the final events of Wine and Food week in the Woodlands. The Waterford by Robert Mondavi Seminar and the Wine Rendezvous Grand Tasting & South American Chef Showcase. I found some great wines to add to my everyday list (I’m too impatient to keep much of a cellar, though I do have some Silver Oak, Amarone and my wife’s Cristal Champagne put back), had some excellent South American food and only had one incident of “red wine on the white clothing spillage”.
The Waterford event showcased wines glasses from Waterford (of course) designed in partnership with Robert Mondavi. It featured a somewhat blind taste test using the glass from the Wine Rendevous event downstairs (a quite small glass with logos on it and an obivous lip on the rim) and the Waterford Chardonnay and Cab glasses. We could tell the difference between the glasses fairly obivously, as there was no room in the smaller glass for wine surface, and the logos distorted the view. I didn’t realize that the lip on the rim would make a difference, but it did apparently due to where the wine hits your toungue.
I’m not enough of a wine expert (apparently, since I’ve had wine out of dixie and styrofoam cups) to appreciate the fact that the Waterford collection has a glass for almost every wine type, and they supply a reason: I’ve reiterated their notes for each glass at the bottom of this post for my future reference (and yours, of course). We did end of with a pair of Chardonnay glass each as part of the event…much better than dixie cups.
Both wines they served for the tasting were from the Fall Creek Vineyards (Texas Wines!). The red, named Meritus, was one of my favorites for the evening. It’s 90% Cab, with some Merlot and Malbec thrown in.
We descended the escalator and entered the main event: 30 south american chefs, and lots of wine.
My personal fave of the evening was a 2003 Rosso di Montalcino from Coldisole, being server at the W.J.Deutsch booth, an excellent Sangiovese wine. This was probably my favorite as much for the convesations I had with the gentleman behind the table pouring as much as the taste…isn’t that always the ways it is with wines? Good conversation and good times make the wine.
Troy at that booth told me the story of the man behind the wine, Lionello Marchesi, who invented the shoulder harness seat belt as an engineer, then got into the wine business. A good wine by a geek wine dude…my kind of grapes. ?I went back by with friends to have them sample this, and my wife enjoyed it so I’ll be hunting this one down at Spec’s. Troy and I also talked Amarone wines, and I searched the area high and low…but could find none for sampling.
I also enjoyed the 2006 Tormaresca Neprica and the 2006 Trivento Amado Sur.
As promised, here is the list of the differences in the Waterford glasses (the sizes and shapes are the obvious differences; the presenter did say that the Chardonnay glasses was the “all-rounder” so I’ll be drinking most of my wines out of these); the Bordeaux glass is the tallest, the Cab the biggest by volume:
- Fume Blanc: the shape of the glass allows for the concentration of aromas towards the nose, accentuating the discernment of the delicate fruit aromas of this crisp, dry and refreshing white varietal. Size 8.9″, Capacity 14oz
- Chardonnay: the size of the bowl reveals the wine’s true bouquet and intensity,while emphasizing and optimizing its wide range of rich aromas. Size 8.4″, C 22oz
- Pinot Noir: the distinctive bouquet of the grape benefits from the flared shape of the glass, directing the wine towards the tip of the toungue. This glass balances the fruit and natural acidity of the wine, creating a unique and harmonious tasting experience. Size 9″, C 26oz.
- Cabernet Sauvignon: this shape directs the wine to the back of the mouth; elevating and enhancing the enjoyment of the wine’s distinct flavors and aromas. Size 9.6″, C 28oz.
- Bordeaux: the generous bowl allows Bordeaux to open and breathe. The gently tapered shape focuses the bouquet, while the balanced design directs the wine to the center of the palate. Size 10″, C 25 oz.
- Merlot: The Merlot experience benefits from a large glass with a wide body. This permits proper oxygenation of the wine while concentrating complexand tertiary aromas towards the tapered opening of the bowl. Size 8.8″, C 27oz.
- Burgundy: the subtlety of Burgundy-type wines is such that they require a larger area to gather their aromas. Size: 8.8″, C 22oz
- Syrah: the ample bowl of the Syrah glass allows for perfect oxygenation and both flavor and bouquet optimization. Size 9.6″, C 20oz.
- Champagne Flute: the design of the flute-shaped glass accentuates Champagnes delicate bubbles, delighting both the nose and the palate. Size: 9.2″, C 6oz
- Martini: obviously not a wine glass, I believe they included it to make the set an even number (we were told it was because Mr. Mondavi also enjoys Martinis). Size. 7.5″, C 9oz