Wine one was the 2009 Chalk Hill Chardonnay paired with a Roasted Butternut Squash and Apple Soup from Josh Silvers, Syrah Bistro & Wine Bar. Aromas in the glass of fresh apple, vanilla, butterscotch and tropical citrus notes. The taste was fruit forward with ripe apple and pear, a nice lemon zest in the middle and a creamy vanilla finish. The creamy texture of the soup paired perfect with flavors in the wine.
Wine two this evening was the 2009 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir. There was no doubt where the grapes were grown on this beauty when the mushroom and earthy notes grabbed my nose from the beginning. Cherry, hints of spice and cola with fresh cut rose filling out the aroma's. Lovely red fruit with cherry, strawberry and raspberry very dominant. Towards the finish nice juicy strawberry followed by a touch of spice. Very nice Pinot for $20.
Wine three was the 2009 Knotty Vines Zinfandel a nicely balanced Zin. Aromas of raspberry, spicy pepper notes, ripe blackberry with a slight hint of oak. The flavor started with a awesome raspberry jam followed by pepper notes, fresh blueberry and a nice warming spice. I struggle with this varietal but really enjoyed this one.
The final wine of the evening the 2008 Symmetry Red Meritage Alexander Valley. A blend of 65% cabernet sauvignon, 25% malbec, 7% merlot, 2% petite verdot and 1% cabernet franc. The wine was paired with Jeff Mall's Zin Restaurant and Wine Bar recipe Applewood-Smoked Porkchop With Fresh Applesauce, Braised Rainbow Chard, Corn Bread Stuffing. The aroma of rich plumb, ripe blackberry, baking spice and cloves was so pleasing to the nose. The flavor was outstanding with the dark fruit coming to the front followed by hints of chocolate, molassis and spice. Big flavor yet elegant and silky. I did not have all the ingredients for the recipe but I did have a boneless pork country rib with applesause and stuffing (and no time to really cook that evening) what a nice pairing.
Cailyn and Joel it was another excellent tasting. I highly recommend Down Home Downtown Seasonal recipes from Two Sonoma Wine Country Restaurants. Click the link and you can purchase your own copy. I have mine sitting on the end table so visitors can see the beautiful wine country pictures and cool recipes from Jeff Mall and Josh Silvers. To my wine blogger participants I enjoy each time we get together to taste and chat about wine. Let's not forget the fine folks at Rodney Strong Vineyards who deserve a big thank you for tonights selections. Grateful for the opportunity to taste and enjoy!