I can’t believe it’s been an entire month since I’ve sat here and written about wine. Where has the time gone? I guess it’s been pretty quiet here in wine country. Other than a few days of warm temperatures in early February, it’s been nothing but gray skies and rain. Should I expect anything more for winter? Probably not. But spring is officially here and there’s nothing but clouds and rain drops on my 10-day forecast.
There was talk of an extremely early bud break, but all of that has been squelched by the cool, rainy weather we’ve been having. But likely sometime in the next couple of weeks certain areas of wine country will see the first sign of the 2011 growing season. It’s the time of year I thoroughly enjoy. Don’t get me wrong, I love sitting by the fire enjoying a big, bold, red wine, but there’s something exciting about the start of the growing season and the warmer days that follow.
Seeing that first bit of green on the vine starts an excitement in me that I just can’t explain. I wonder what the growing season will bring. Will the vines see many challenges this year? Or will they just sway to the gentle breezes and soak in the warm California sun? No one knows. We can’t predict what Mother Nature will throw at the vines in any given year. I’ll be here to report and chat about it as we progress through the seasons.
Stay with me to find out how 2011 will shape up and what culinary and wine adventures I can find in the meantime.
On a side note, there’s a very nice wine in my glass tonight. I’m drinking a 2005 Napa Valley Bald Mountain Vineyard Zinfandel. I love Zin! I really do. It’s a wine I rarely turn down. It has many unique characteristics including bright raspberry, white and black pepper, clove, cinnamon and dozens of other flavors.
Tonight’s wine is elegant and maybe a little understated. Zinfandel can range from shy and meek to bold and aggressive. They can also range in alcohol from around 14% all the way to nearly 17%. I generally like all of these types of Zin, but reserve some of the higher alcohol ones for mealtime. The one next to me right now is perfect for after dinner sipping.