Sunday Sips and Mean Irene!

Well looks like we are all safe and Mean Irene has passed!  So, what do we do with all of the leftover stock in the fridge!?  A Sunday Funday is in order!  We thought it would be fun to get a few $12 and under bottles of sparkling wines to try in case we should be stuck inside all day without power.  Of course, thankfully that isn’t the case so a reason to taste them – Sunday Funday!  

Here are a few tasted, are loved, and under $12!  Of course I had to add in a ‘Go To’ favorite just for comfort in case Irene got really out of hand… Enjoy and hope everyone is safe and well for those along the East Coast who haven’t been hit yet.

Giovello Italy Cuvee Rose Spumante

I loved the bottle and logo and was craving a sparkling rose and this jumped right out at me. Only $12 this wine totally blew me away with it’s refreshing taste, lively bubbles and its vibrantly dry yet ripened fruity taste!  A beautiful color and great to serve as an apéritif with a bit of cheese and almonds.  

Voveti Prosecco NV

This was another great $12 bottle for it’s taste!  The Italian Prosecco was very fruity and had these tiny bubbles that lasted all the way through to the finish.  A green apple taste with hints of ripe peach made us forget about any sort of hurricane coming!  A incredible length for a Prosecco and price!  

Mionetto Prosecco Brut NV

Another great Prosecco, one which could be considered my ‘go to’ and great for mimosas is the Mionetto.  It also has tiny long lasting bubbles and has a lovely tart, green apple taste.  Full of citrus and a bit dry this tastes very close to a champagne but you mustn’t let it sit in your glass for too long as the bubbles start to fade.  A GREAT Prosecco for a brunch party especially if you are serving mimosas for lots of people because it’s only $10!

Sunday Sips!


In Nor Cal enjoying a Petite Syrah from California’s Central Coast! Very fruity with cherry and blackberry flavors that stand out! Great for a BBQ, which we will be enjoying momentarily! Happy Sunday!

Rioja – Pepper, Spice and All Things Nice!

With a unique portfolio of over 100 Spanish wines, Ole Imports has taken pride in their journey to find and represent fine wines through key fundamental elements of: terroir, quality fruit, exceptional wine making and priceless value.  I was lucky enough to try some of their finest sought after wines from the Rioja region and hosted a Rioja Wine Tasting Event on my dear friend’s wonderful terrace under a remarkable sunset looking over the city that never sleeps, New York City.  By the end of the night lips were purple, all were dancing, and everyone was completely happy! My, what an effect an exploration into the Rioja world has!

I set up the tasting with a variety of cheeses to pair, wine crackers to cleanse the palate, and some carrots and hummus to munch on.   The tasting went from light to dark and I started off with a bubbly to get everyone in the mood! Since many of us had not experienced wines from this region, I decided not to do a blind tasting but walk everyone through the tasting process and education of each wine.

So please, step inside this magnificent region of spice and submerge yourself into what you are about to read.  I advise you to grab a glass of Rioja yourself and enjoy!


Wine #1 Casteller Cava Brut N/V
Grape: Parellada, Macabeo, Xarello
Tasting Notes: Dry, clean and crisp, citrus, hints of green apple
Quotes: “Smoother than other sparkling wines, not too sweet or too bubbly, very drinkable and delicious!”, “Smells like a fun CELEBRATION”, “REFRESHING”, “Great drinking sparkling wine!”

Wine # 2 Bodegas El Indiano El Brozal Blanco 2009 (Single Vineyard)
Grape: Tempranillo, Granacha
Tasting Notes: Biodynamic wine with great tannic structure, dry, and filled w/ spice.
Quotes: “Acidic/Bitter”, “Unexpectedly tart” “Could be good wine for Sangria”, “Buttered Popcorn taste?”

Wine #3 Cortijo Rioja Blanco 2010
Grape: Viura
Tasting Notes: Sweet on the palate, nectar flavors
Quotes: “Delicious, fruity yet light” “Great Value”, “Appley”, “Color is similar to a sugar cookie” “Fruity with a twist, LOVE”, “Great with cheddar cheese”

Wine #4 Cortijo Rioja Rosado 2010
Grape: Tempranillo, Granacha
Tasting Notes: Citrus, full of fruits, a bit tannic, very delicious and refreshing
Quotes: “Bold berries”, “Amazing taste”, “Might be great for Sangria”, “Very refreshing for summer or spring!”

Wine #5 Don Sancho Londono 2008 ‘Calma’
Grape: Tempranillo, Graciano
Tasting Notes: peppery, dark cherry, mocha, tannins for a strong finish
Quotes: “Best wine of the tasting”, “Tastes a bit licoricey”, “Amazing with goat cheese”, “A classic Spanish wine”, “Relaxing and great to sip on”, “Peppery and spicy”

Wine #6 Bodegas El Indiano El Brozal 2009 (Single Vineyard)
Grape: Tempranillo, Syrah
Tasting Notes: Spice, peppery, tannin that grips the finish
Quotes: “Very rich”, “My favorite”, “Big and bold, “Love this one, this is what I think of when I think of Rioja”, “Deep Finish”, “This was amazing with the dark chocolate”


Wow, that was intense! As you can see lots of spice, pepper, citrus, and drinking wines capture some of the Rioja region.  A very lovely night of tasting fine wines from Ole Imports turned all of these wonderful ladies in to regulars.  I am already getting questions about the wines we tasted and where to find them to buy for house warming gifts! 

Thank you Ole Imports and thank you to my wine lovers for participating in this fabulous tasting!


And another bites the dust…. From yesterday’s NY Post, AC/DC will be joining a few other 80′s rockers to launch a wine collection in partnership with New South Wales, Australia based- winery Warburn Estate.  Enjoy!

“For Those About to Quaff… AC/DC Wine is Due Soon!”

Hard-living rockers might not automatically make consumers think of fine wine, but “For Those About to Rock” legends AC/DC are lending their name to a new line.

The Australian band has entered into a partnership with New South Wales, Australia-based winery Warburn Estate to produce four bottled varieties, named after some of their hits — AC/DC “Back in Black” Shiraz, AC/DC “You Shook Me All Night Long” Moscato, AC/DC “Highway to Hell” Cabernet Sauvignon and AC/DC “Hells Bells” Sauvignon Blanc.

According to a fan website they are not the first rock band to launch a wine collection, with past trailblazers reportedly including KISS, Motorhead, Whitesnake and Warrant.

AC/DC is lending its name to wines.

AC/DC is lending its name to wines.

Steve Donohue, general manager of buying for the Woolworths Liquor Group which will sell the line, told Australian Associated Press that it was a “no-brainer” to sell the wine nationally.

“This is a world-wide phenomenon and a first in the marketplace,” he said.

One of the highest grossing bands of all time, AC/DC survived the death of original singer, Bon Scott — who died in London in February 1980 after a night of heavy drinking — to rack up more hits with his replacement Brian Johnson

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Sunday Sips!

It’s been a HOT and HUMID Sunday here in NYC and I am trying something different than the usual refreshing Sauvignon Blanc that I enjoy on this type of day.  How about sitting in an AC’d ice cold apartment sipping on a lovely 2007 Syrah from Longboard Vineyards straight from the Russian River Valley!  It’s dark berry flavors, hint of earthy goodness and soft tannins make this wine very enjoyable on a Sunday afternoon at 6pm!  Can’t wait to have more later with some dark chocolate straight from Sweden!  (Thank you Taylor)!

Happy Sunday!

Work and Wine… Can You Pair? Not Anymore…

Back in the days when Ad Agency and Wall Street types indulged in the ‘3-martini lunch’ (among other things – whiskey, bourbon etc..) during business meetings and lunch hours, were times when it was the norm to partake in a business cocktail with lunches.  From the God Father to Wall Street to the more recently historical flashback to Mad Men, are examples that wine (at the least) was enjoyed during working hours and at business meetings to its fullest! Nowadays, I rarely see this and there is usually no wine ordering when out to a work lunch.  So what has changed? Why now are workers hesitant to order a glass of wine to compliment their lunch? Why is it inappropriate to have a glass of Chardonnay or Pinot Noir with clients? Is it an etiquette thing or is it just over time the act has been ‘time capsuled’ into the past where we will be forever indebted to movies and our father’s stories.  These are the questions I’m dying to find out as I was out to lunch the other day and got to thinking, what would happen if I ordered a glass of wine with lunch during the work week…???

So, I’ve turned to the experts far and wide in NYC. Fashion Stylists, Marketing Managers at prestige fashion houses and media companies, VP’s of financial companies etc… and they all seem to have similar perspectives…. IT’S NOT APPROPRIATE AND UNPRODUCTIVE DURING LUNCH MEETINGS…

“Absolutely not. I would never do that. Too risky and also could make you look like you’re not focused or working hard. I work at a media agency and when you are in a service based industry, your clients need to always think you are working for them and working hard.”

Shocking, even finance types are being careful adding drinks to lunch… “Rarely. If I have anything alcoholic at lunch it would be a beer. However, I have co-workers that order wine at lunch maybe 1-3 times a month when we go to a good restaurant. For example, recently lunch at Mialino and BLT fish called for wine.” Boy times have certainly changed… And although they do think it’s fine in moderation… “Fridays especially are fine because afternoons tend to be slower.” Seems like now there is a time and a place…

From the perspective of someone who grew up in ‘3-martini lunch’ period and is still working…”Times have changed so much in my industry. I think it really all started when DWI went into effect. But in the old days I remember taking out one particular customer and he would have 3 Martini’s before lunch, 2 glasses of wine during lunch and an after ‘lunch’ drink. Then go back to his office and write a $30,000 order. This was typical in the old days.” – Wow. That is just madness; I would be done for the week!

It also seems that happy hours/dinners/after work drink meetings are the norm now vs. drinks with lunch meetings…

“Sober lunches lead to a more powerful “let’s get after it” happy hour.”

So in closing, when is it appropriate to drink at lunch meetings??  ”IF I LIVED IN FRANCE-YES THEN IT WOULD BE APPROPRIATE!!!!”

So there you have it and although I 100% agree with the above comments and feel that the portrayal of wine consistently paired with business lunches will not show light anytime soon, I’m wondering if just like fashion trends and branding, this ‘act’ will resurrect itself in the future and even bring about a new era of the  ‘3-wine lunch’.  A girl can dream…. ;)

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