This post is our contribution to Wine Blogging Wednesday, where bloggers in the wine industry post about a single subject or theme.
On this Wine Blogging Wednesday #61, Lenn Thompson had a great idea:
Rather than walking into your local wine shop to pick up a wine for WBW, I want you to actually visit a winery and taste a wine there. Bonus points if you can taste it with the winemaker or the vineyard manager.
So on Wednesday, September 16, Hello Vino went for the bonus points and took to the road up to Lodi, California to taste a few wines with Dave Dart, owner and winemaker at d’Art Winery. I tweeted a couple videos while I was at the tasting room, but here’s a video of Dave introducing the three wines we tasted:
The Wine Tasting
A very approachable red wine with touches of spice, nice fruit with a full mouthfeel, and a lingering finish that is quite enjoyable. Also food-friendly, this Tempranillo would pair well with sharp cheddar, roasted chicken with pepper & herbs, and spicy sausage.
The “King of the Reds” - the grapes for the d’Art Cab are grown on the estate. Fittingly, the label on the bottle is a graphically-enhanced photo of the entry gate (in fact, all the wine labels are photographed and designed by Dave Dart). This is a big wine (15.5% ABV), with the distinct d’Art style of bold fruit and flavor, with softer tannins than other California Cabs. For a food pairing, you could pair this Cabernet Sauvignon with a roasted rack of lamb for dinner, then some dark, bittersweet chocolate for dessert.
This “California style” Port is a tasty dessert wine with big fruit and nice oak, with subtle caramel and vanilla flavors. Made up of 50% Tempranillo, 35% Petite Sirah, and 15% Cab, this Port would pair well with blue cheese, chocolate with almonds or hazelnuts, and even a nice cigar.
If you find yourself in the central valley of California, I highly recommend stopping into the d’Art Winery tasting room. Open Thursday through Sunday, 12-5pm, you’ll most likely be greeted by owners Dave and Helen Dart. In addition to the tasty reds and inviting atmosphere, you can take in the creative aspects of the winery with poster art of the wine labels designed by Dave, and even a drum made from a wine barrel and deer hide. If you’re lucky, you may even find yourself tasting wines from inside the barrel room!
Rick from Hello Vino