Tag Archives: porch wine


Porch wine for the long, hot summer

porch wineHas the hot weather made you as cranky as the WC tasting 15 percent chardonnay? Then take a long, cool sip of the porch wine post.

We haven’t hit 100 in Dallas yet, but 99 for the last week or so is close enough. And, from what I hear from my pals in the rest of the country, it’s too damn hot where they are. Which means it’s time for a porch wine post – focusing on lighter wines, red and white, that are lower in alcohol and that offer relief from the heat. The idea with a porch wine is to drink something that won’t make the sweat bead on your forehead.

These four wines are excellent examples of the type, and should give you an idea about what to look for:

Nik. Weis Urban Riesling 2015 ($15, sample, 9%): Well-made German riesling is difficult to find in Dallas, which makes no sense given how warm-weather friendly the wine is. The Weis is made in a more modern style, with fresher apricot fruit instead of dried and brighter acidity, but it’s also layered with the traditional honey notes. Nicely done, and will even age a little.

El Coto Rosado 2015 ($9, purchased, 13.5%): The El Coto is is one of my favorite Spanish roses, and if it’s not quite as well done as the Muga, it’s still delicious and a tremendous value. Look for strawberry fruit, plus a little earthiness and even orange peel from the tempranillo that’s in the blend.

Torresella Prosecco Extra Dry NV ($15, sample, 11.5%): This Italian sparkler reminded me why I love wine. I much prefer cava to Prosecco, so it’s always a pleasure to find a Prosecco worth writing about – not too sweet, firm bubbles, surprisingly balanced, and more apple and pear fruit than most others. Highly recommended.

Drouhin Domaine des Hospices de Belleville Fleurie 2014 ($25, sample, 13%): Top-notch red from the French region of Beaujolais that has nothing in common with most of the plonk made there these days. Firm but not overbearing, with red fruit and soft tannins, and something you can drink on its own or with food. The only drawback is the cost, but given how expensive this quality of French wine has become, it’s not overpriced.

More about porch wine:
Wine terms: Porch wine
Wine when the air conditioning is broken
Wine of the week: Angels & Cowboys rose 2015
Wine of the week: Chateau Bonnet Blanc 2014

Fourth of July wine 2013

Fourth of July wine 2013

I’m drinking a less alcoholic, less tannic red wine because it’s hot out. But I can’t show my face, because that’s not a manly wine choice.

It ?s hot. It ?s sticky. So how many of you will drink the biggest, most tannic, most alcoholic red wine possible to celebrate July 4?

Which, of course, is fine with the Wine Curmudgeon, since I believe that everyone should drink what they want, and rules be damned. But, if you don ?t mind a suggestion, live dangerously. Try something lighter and, dare I say, more pleasurable ? a porch wine, even. Because the only thing I ask is that wine drinkers be willing to try something different.

Which leads to these suggestion, after the jump:

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Fourth of July wine 2012

Some suggestions and a few thoughts about wine with your July 4 celebration next week, whether backyard barbeque or fireworks watching party (the latter with bubbly, of course):

? We ?re in porch wine territory this time of year: lighter wines with lower alcohol, and that includes reds. Drinking a tannic, high alcohol wine when it ?s pushing 100 isn ?t pleasurable (unless you ?re a wine masochist).

? Did someone say bubbly? We ?re celebrating a birthday, aren ?t we? Miquel Pons Cava Brut Nature NV ($15, purchased) is a Spanish sparkler that ?s soft and generous, with sweet lemon fruit and bubbles that won’t quit.

? Fontana Candida Frascati Superiore ($10, sample) is an Italian white that was a big deal a decade or more ago, and then fell on hard times. This vintage is much better made than it was then, with a fresher, more clean approach, very crisp lemon, and an almost orange tea aroma. Just 12 1/2 percent alcohol.

? When in doubt, go Falesco ? the Assisi Rosso 2009 ($16, purchased), in this case. This Italian red blend is a step up from the producer ?s wonderful $10 Vitiano line, with an herbal aroma and soft red fruit. But it ?s sturdy enough for red wine occasions, including Fourth of July burgers, steak and brisket.

? Regional wine is always a July 4 staple, and Dr. Konstantin Frank Dry Riesling 2010 ($15, purchased) is a regional wine with decent national distribution. Look for candied lemon and the fresh, crisp acidity that New York state rieslings are famous for. And, as nice as this wine is, it’s not nearly the best New York riesling available.

More about Fourth of July wine:

? Fourth of July wine 2011
? Fourth of July wine 2010
? Wine of the week: Louis Tete Beaujolais-Villages 2010
? Wine of the week: Luc Pirlet Pinot Noir Barriques Reserve 2010

Wine of the week: Massamier La Mignarde Cuvee des Oliviers 2010

fiche-oliviers-roseThe name of this wine is a very long and very French way of saying that this is exactly the kind of rose that makes the Wine Curmudgeon smile. It ?s cheap and it ?s dry, but more importantly, it ?s full of summer and backyards and porches and barbecues.

The des Oliviers ($10, purchased) is from southern France and is mostly made with cinsault. In this, it ?s firmly in the French style ? some fruit (in this case, cranberry), but not the big dollops that give the impression of sweetness and so confuse so many wine drinkers into thinking pink wine means white zinfandel. This wine is about as far from white zinfandel as possible.

Also impressive: The des Oliviers is a bit floral on the nose, and its clean, crisp finish leaves you ready to take another sip.

Serve this chilled on its own, or with any summer activity. Highly recommended, and a candidate for the 2013 $10 Hall of Fame.