Oh, what to say. I haven't been drinking much. Why? For once, I am not sick.
We are presently buying a house. A first house. A house 3,000 miles away. A house in need of a lot of work. Needless to say, this has been taking up a lot of my free time and meager mental powers, and when I am not thinking about all that, any drinking I have been doing has been of the stress-release and drink-to-forget variety and I haven't necessarily been doing anything other than going "yum" and drinking. I have been going through periods of sleeping 4-5 hours a night, waking up at 5 AM, and have been even losing weight because of the immense worry that has, even though I have been eating normally, done something to me (I imagine that being actually awake for about 19/20 hours a day has something to do with that). Right now I'm interested in cork mostly in plank form, to put down on the kitchen floor. And I am worrying/investigating things like "how to move a wine collection across the country (safely) without going broke in the process". You know, fun things like that.
Anyway, wine of the immediate and drinking sort. I have some things to write about later, but right now, at the last minute, I am attempting to at least participate in this lovely Wine Blogging Wednesday number 16, hosted by Derrick of An Obsession with Food. This month the challenge is to see whether the pretty outside means tasty inside, and find a wine with a good label.
Even though my first thought was Ridge, because they have fantastic labels (simple, text based, and dating back to the 1960's) I chose this wine because it has a Gary Taxali label, and I love me some Gary Taxali. This is a slightly more sedate label than some others he has done for Bonny Doon, but it is great nonetheless. Even if I am not sure what exactly it is. I am a sucker for a good label, even though I am under no illusions that it actually indicates good wine is inside. I have had some really bad wine in nicely labeled bottles, and some really good wine in dreadfully labeled bottles, so it goes both ways.
The wine itself is a Grignolino d'Asti, from Piemonte in Italy (this is one of Bonny Doon's wines made from European grapes), and the name of the grape variety is supposedly derived from the fact that the grape is one with many pips. It's a light but vibrant clear ruby in the glass, with a paler orangish edge. It was pretty funky directly out of the bottle, with a medicinal smell of old Band-Aids (not as bad as you might think), but as it sits it is getting softer, and now has an aroma of old chair leather, thyme, and violets. It's much bigger and more full-bodied than you would expect from the color-- robust with a good amount of drying tannins and nice acidity. There is a clear thread of cherry red fruit woven though the tannins and the expected leathery/iodine overtones, and overall it is very pleasant, although not overly complex. It's a funny combination of refreshing and tannic.
I have had some really bad Bonny Doon wines with great labels (like the Freisa), but happily, this one is nice and I will be glad to drink the whole thing later on. Later on, while I am learn more about cork flooring and homeowners insurance.
Cost: I think it was around $15 or $20