Sans Liege | 2008 The Prophetess

66% Syrah, 34% Mourvedre - Santa Barbara County

A captivating bottle from Curt Schalchlin, making the wines that he wants. Big whiffs of velvet crimson. Coats the mouth well, notes of stone fruits, currents, cassis, and a spicy finish. Definitely one of the more left field wines I’ve had this year.

I like it.

Grande Absente | Absinthe

I don’t know enough about Absinthe except that it’s the worst spirit I’ve ever consumed neat, and it actually transforms into something quite enjoyable when prepared with sugar and water. Although I did not have the necessary tools, …errr…contraptions for proper absinthe service I hope I did it some justice.

Thanks for everyone who dropped in to help, and Thanks to Rickey & Laura for the bottle!

Cherry Bounce | Giuliani 10yr

A few years ago a close friend and business partner packed up and left to Italy on a whim, it was where his heart ached he said. In this transition we cleaned out his storage space and in the very rear were 5 gallon drums of ‘fresh’ cherry bounce. He gifted me a drum, and it took me a good couple of years to figure out what to do with it all. I ended up bottling it, gifting much of it, and made a Manhattan with a couple shots.

For you Michael.

La Vieille Ferme | 2010 Rhone

It was cheap bottle night, and this was on the block. From it’s importer’s website:

Jean Pierre Perrin established La Vieille Ferme over 35 years ago, when he chose to produce an inexpensive, straightfor­ward Rhône wine to sell by direct mail to French wine lov­ers.

Picked this up from Safeway for $6 during their wine sale and it was alright for what I paid. 82+ pts.

Groundwork | 2009 Grenache

“The Grenache is my Point A, my touchstone. It is the foundation of everything I’ve done thus far, and the inertia behind everything I’ve yet to do.” - CURT SCHALCHLIN

You may have heard of Curt Schalchlin, he’s the young winemaker from Santa Barbara County responsible for the cultish Sans Liege label - which you might have caught earlier on Corkhoarder. Nothing too serious, but excellent example of a new world grenache. 

We were raised to chase our dreams, and this is exactly what Scot Wagner did. Formerly of ACME Fine Wines in St. Helena, he decided earlier this year to part ways and open his own collective in Sausalito. Enter STASH Wines, a shop specialized in exceptional taste.

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In addition to chasing our dreams, we also chase parking spaces with our names on them. With this being the benchmark of ‘success’, Scot is on the right path. Anyways, as Scot opened we picked up a few bottles from his shelves and he was generous enough to gift a bottle of Waveland to taste.

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More on this in a few.

Best of Luck Scot!

[ STASH Wines ]

Boekenoogen | 2006 Pinot Noir

Aside from Willamette Valley and Russian River, I really like the Pinot Noirs from the Santa Lucia Highlands. Boekenoogen makes a bottle that plays like a dark passenger. Dark and mysterious nose, compounded with a complex earthly-ness, cherry notes, strawberry jam, and just a touch of tannins for a backbone. Can’t say I’ve ever tasted a comparable Pinot.

Jaffurs | 2009 Syrah

One of the proprietors of Coach House Liquors & Deli, which has an excellent wine selection, introduced me to Jaffurs years ago and we’ve been big fans of their syrah ever since. 

Big brawny black fruit, cigar, eucalyptus, oak. It’s chewy and fulfilling. A final note about Jaffurs, if you come across a Verna’s Vineyard Syrah - you’re in for a real treat. Look for some in upcoming posts.

Corison | 2007 Corazón Gewurztraminer

We don’t consume many gewurztraminers, but Cathy Corison sold us on the story behind her Corazón label. Corazón is not just a playful take on “Corison” but literally translates into ‘heart’ 'darling’ or 'love’ in Spanish. She’s put her heart into her wines, and into this bottle gewurztraminer. 

It’s not the German style gewurztraminers that we’re used to, but a brighter California style that’s fitting. Fantastic bottle for a summer evening.

Pairings: What wine (or beverage) do you prefer with Bon Chon Chicken?

If you haven’t had Bon Chon Chicken, or Korean Fried Chicken maybe it’s about time you had. We’ve been obsessed with this stuff since a local Bon Chon Chicken opened up. Unlike the super secret mystery birds that other friend chicken chains use, Bon Chon Chicken only uses organic free range chickens from Mary’s Chickens in Sanger(just outside of Fresno), CA. 

These chickens are cooked up to be crisp and juicy then coated with one of two sauces. The question begs - what goes best with Bon Chon Chicken? 

Our top picks were some of the newer California micro-rieslings such as Tatomer or Big Basin, white bordeaux, tart Italian whites, and champagne, or something sparkling - but dry/brut. What do you think pairs well with Bon Chon Chicken?

Dexter Lake | 2009 Red Wine

This is not a wine one would bring to Quince for dinner, but a small playful bottle to open and experience at home while playing the air guitar. Give this bottle 45-60 minutes to breathe as the mustache can be quite timid.

Once it’s grown it’s a really fun wine for its price point. Making the end of any day that much more special.