It’s not enough to just sample wines via Skype with Elaine Chukan Brown of Hawk Wakawaka Wine Reviews, so I asked her to be a guest on my Wine Without Worry podcast while we talked and tasted. And this show’s topic is summer wines. As we did before, Elaine sent me some bottles from California, and I reciprocated with a duo from Washington State. So what arrived in the mail for me from the Golden State?
First up was the 2013 J. Brix Cobolorum, from Santa Barbara County. It’s a pet-nat, meaning a fizzy, cloudy, yeasty, fresh delight. And only 17 cases made! Wowzers, thanks Elaine! We use this j. brix wine as a launching pad to chat about Santa Barbara County, where the terrain and climate is so varied, as Elaine explains, it’s “actually possible to grow almost anything there.”
I have to mention the charming note I got from Emily and Jody at the winery, which came packed in with the bottle:
Aw! How sweet. I’m a sucker for x’s and an o’s. Elaine and I then moved on the the 2012 Vesper Vineyards McCormick Ranch Grenache Rosé, from San Diego County. Can’t say I’ve ever had a wine from this neck of the woods. As Elaine noted, the Vesper had a “lightly oxidated style” but was “still so juicy that it really shoots through the mouth.” A couple of tank samples (!) of 2013 sent along showed a little more classic classic pink wine style. But the 2012 highlighted what Elaine pointed out (and I’ll paraphrase her thoughts) is an interesting change in attention to rosé right now. With increasing sales that come along with increasing consumer interest, winemakers can devote more time to crafting different and unique styles of rosé. Of which the Vesper is a fine example.
So what did Elaine think of ’em? Well, you’ll just have to listen to the show.
Wine Without Worry on iTunes.
Want to see what I look like while podcasting? Kinda looks like a UFO just came into my field of vision and I crane my neck skyward with a stupefied look on my face. That and more in Elaine’s post about being a guest.
Special thanks to Aaron Epstein of Le Metro Wine for his great assistance in getting these extremely limited production California wines into my hands. Cheers, wine dad and wine dude!