The Wine Guy

    Baptisms, Birthdays and Bashes


    This time of year has always struck me as a time when social gatherings occur in an easier, more carefree manner. If there’s a party inside, step outside and take in some springtime air and a sip or two of a good wine. Here are some ideas that will only make the party, the fresh air and you, feel better.

    Going to a special birthday party? Then bring an equally special wine. Far Niente Napa Valley, Chardonnay, 2017 ($75.00), is singularly definitive of some of the best soil in Napa. The winery was founded by a ship’s  captain from Boston, John Benson and the label for its first wine was created by the owner’s nephew, a young Winslow Homer. Today, Beth and Gil Nikel produce only Chards and Cabs, both equally stunning. As you hold this wine in your hand, your body heat will present different notes and aromas-melon and  spring flowers, light apricots and caramel. The finish is rich, pronounced and structured. Huge, elegant juice.

    Maybe something sparkling? Billecart-Salmon Brut Reserve, ($60.00), has all the quality of a declared vintage Champagne at a non-vintage cost. Town and Country describes this one as a “zesty champagne with notes of apricot, baked bread, and red fruit that really wakes up the palate, making it a perfect sip to start a meal or to refresh the palate between the main course and dessert”. After all, there’s not much better than a deep breath of Spring air and a sip of great bubbly.

    In France, Rose wines are associated with new beginnings, especially toasts at Baptism parties. So, get some Fleur de Mer Côtes de Provence 2018 Rosé, ($19.99) and toast that little one right! Wine.com says, ”It makes sense that this juicy wine is named Fleur de Mer (or flower of the sea), because it’s bursting with the flavor of freshly cut watermelon, ripe raspberries, and the slightest trace of ocean salt. There’s a subtle and soothing hint of lavender on the nose, which makes the entire sipping experience a treat for the senses. Pair this crisp and luscious rosé with salty prosciutto and sweet melon.” I think you’ll agree. Have a sip or two of this one and it’ll be hard not to think about weekends in Wellfleet not too far off.

    Having a party, a ”time”, a bash? Whatever you call it, be sure to have something that brings out that party spirit. Warm late afternoons turning to cooler evenings are always better with a wine that goes along with the changes, like a nice Pinot Noir. Foris, 2016, Pinot Noir, Rogue Valley, Oregon, ($19.99), has been ranked 90 points by Wine Enthusiast-definitely a great value at this price. Frosted red berries and tart cherry are followed by mocha and caramel on the finish. This is a big, rich wine that’ll go perfectly with the cool evening of a New England spring night. Start making those party plans!

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