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Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Finding a Passion

I'm a Rider fan.  Yes, I'm one of those crazy people you see with all the green and white paraphenalia in the form of clothing, household items, and in general..."swag". I've been a fan since I was nine years old.  Through thick and thin, good times and bad, even living in another province, I am STILL... a fan.  This is a Canadian Football Team that in its 100+ years has only won 4 Grey Cups.  Now, for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, don't worry about it.  The details are not the point, it's about the love of the game. And, it's about passion.

Why am I telling you this on a wine blog? Because I love this team.  I love watching them play football.  Admittedly, sometimes it's painful.  But, like many others who are fans, we are passionate about this small time team in a small time league called the CFL.  As much passion as I have for this team, I also have passion for wine and learning about wine.

I am almost at the end of Level 2 of the International Sommelier Guild.  And If I complete all sections, I will be granted the title of Certified Wine Steward.  First, let me get there.  And once I do, I'll let you know what's in store next!  I also recently picked up a part time gig at a Fine Wine store.  Nothing like stocking and perusing the shelves to get even more knowledge on the subject! And as tough as it is some days..I love it. And...it's increasing my passion.

With my first cheque, I chose a country, and with a budget of $40-$45, this is what I got:

Red - 2009 Altos de La Hoya- Olivares, Seville, SPAIN
Jumilla DOC
100% Monastrell

Rose - 2011 Olivares, Seville, SPAIN
Jumilla DOC
70% Monastrell/30% Syrah

White - 2010 Herederos del Marques de Riscal
Rueda DO, SPAIN
100% Verdejo

Monastrell (known as Mouvedre in France) is most well known for being in blends, such as the "GSM" that has been made popular in Australia, and the Chateauneuf-de-pape appellation in the Rhone valley. Here in the Jumilla region, it grows well with hot days and cool nights to give it the ripe berry flavours, yet keep some of the acidity in the grapes.  My husband and I tasted this last night, and it was outstanding!  Very impressed with this grape in a great value wine of $15!  Lots of sweet, spicy flavours all blended together with a nice balance of acidity and tannin.  I haven't tasted the Roset yet, but I expect it to have notes of strawberries in it, along with that spice from the Monastrell grape.  And because it's also from the Jumilla region, I expect it to be stunning as well.  The white, from the Rueda region in Spain is made from 100% Verdejo, where the grapes are harvested at night in September, when the temperature is 10-15C as opposed to the daytime temperatures of 28-30C. Again, I have not tasted this, but after it's chilled, I expect a beautiful wine with lots of crisp acidity, stony and herbaceous flavours. Maybe even some floral accents as well.

All I can say is, I was completely excited to find these three fine wines for under $45.  That's right, for $44 and change, I think I got some great value, and THAT my friends..is SO exciting, and ignites my passion even further!  If you are reading this, I say thank you, because when I see stats that you are reading my posts, I know my passion is real...