Tag Archives: wine ideas

Toast from JaM Cellars Bubbly Review

Toast Sparkling Brut

Hello my wine lovers!! Have you noticed something new??!!? That’s right, check that web address. www.yourwinegirltx.com   I am now a full blown official website!!  Yourwinegirl is now easier to remember, and easier to enjoy! 🙂

Now onto the wine of this hot (didn’t it hit like 105°F yesterday?) summer hour! This wine comes from the same family as the Butter chardonnay, and I can definitely taste the family resemblance.  🙂

Toast Sparkling Brut

Toast BRUT Sparkling

Non Vintage Toast California BRUT Sparkling

Watch the WINE REVIEW video i made about this Sparkling BRUT

Okay, so JaM cellars is seriously starting to become my favorite winery (still love you too Gruet)! First Butter, and now Toast, I swear it’s like this winery can do no wrong!

Bright and beautifully bubbled, this lightly golden wine has wonderful aromas of white peach, melon and buttery yeast from the first swirl in your glass. (Remember the best way to fully enjoy a glass of bubbly is to drink from a white wine or tulip glass. Yes, it does look like a tulip…it’s honestly better because it’s not quite as open as your white wine glass, so it preserves the bubbles better while still opening up the bubbly to it’s full potential! Mmmm).

Lingering you in, the white peach continues and meets with sweet pineapple and creamy nectarine as you take your first sip, and ends with a slight toastiness and a long, lingering sweet nutty finish. 

Absolutely amazing, this sparkling is unlike any bubbly I have tasted! I mean, I was absolutely blown away! Sweet here, creamy there, nutty there! But like many of you are probably thinking, how can this be a Brut???!?!? Brut means Brutally Dry.. yep, you heard me, it means even more dry than Extra Dry, which is what this bottle of Toast tastes more like, and what I know many of you freak out over when it comes to picking a bottle for making Sunday mimosas. (Hint: extra dry is slightly sweeter, so it’s better in general for making mimosas).

So how does JaM do it?! Turns out, they add a little touch at the end of their wine process.  🙂

I know you’re dying to find out how bubbly is made, so here is a fun little summary!

Toast is made in the sparkling wine process called Méthode Champenoise

Also called the Traditional Method, and best method to make sparkling wine, this is how wine in Champagne, France is made. In a nutshell, when you make sparkling wine, there are four different methods as to how you ferment the wine. This can tell you the quality of the wine.

The traditional method is when the wine goes through a secondary fermentation in the same bottle. The secondary fermentation is how the bubbles are made… which is by adding another dose of sugar and yeast, also known as liqueur de triage, (remember sugar+yeast=alcohol) to the already made bottled wine and capping it (It’s almost like a bottle cap. No corks are used yet).. so that it can start another(secondary) fermentation process. When this happens carbon dioxide (bubbles) are trapped in the bottle, along with the yeast, that is now trapped and basically dies at the bottom of the bottle. (Ever heard of the term Sur Lie? It means aging on the yeast. It’s when winemakers leave the wine to age on this dead yeast to further influence the flavor of the wine to how they want it to taste. Which means, they can have a huge yeast impact, very little or any amount they prefer depending on how long they age it! Pretty cool actually. It can age like this for years!)

Entering the Remuage phase, while the wine ages on this yeast, in order to better help remove it eventually from the bottle (because well, not a lot of people like to drink dead yeast from their bottle of wine. And it could also impact the flavor later on in the wine if it did stay in the bottle, though there are some left with the yeast in it), the bottle is turned slowly via riddling. A person, or rumuer, will actually turn the bottle (riddle), which is neck down in a riddling rack (think of a coffee table with holes that hold the bottles by the neck at about a 30-45°angle) slightly every day so that the bottle is not agitated (remember all that carbonation is still in the bottle!) and the yeast makes its way to the top of the bottle.

Finally, after the yeast has sat for at least several months (usually a minimum requirement for sparklings) aging the wine, and is now at the top of the bottle, it is time to let it out in what is called the dégorgement phase. The cap is removed and the yeast sediment is blown out of the bottle from all the natural carbonation that has built up behind it!

Here is what makes Toast taste so sweet and different: right after all the sediment comes out from dégorgement, and before the official corking of the bottle, they add Muscat to the wine! (That sweet grape that Moscato is made from!) in what is called the Dosage phase. This is the final topping of the bottle as a liquid sweetener, liqueur d’expédition, and in this case, Muscat, is added and the cork is finally ending the process. Ta-da!

I know. Exciting stuff right?

So what are you waiting for?! You know it’s gonna be good. You know how it’s made. Grab some friends, make up a celebratory occasion, or have a legitimate reason, and pop a bottle open! 🙂

Perfect to Pair With: Cheese plates, chicken and pasta, seafood risotto, fresh strawberries and fruit, or just plainly chilled by itself!

Average Price: $24.99  (This has been my highest priced recommendation, and I am sticking to it! A great price for a sparkling wine in itself, you will love this bottle!) – Available at jamcellars.com, total wine, and other wine specialty shops. Or ask to have it brought it at your favorite wine retail location! 🙂

Cheers my wine lovers!

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Also, if you are looking for more don’t forget to watch the WINE LESSON video I made!

Green Wine for St. Patrick’s Day?!?

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day my wine lovers! Now I know that this is a big beer holiday, but hey, why don’t we change it up, and make it a wine holiday! 🙂

Now how do we make this grand Irish tradition a wine holiday you ask?
Well, how about with a glass of GREEN WINE?! That’s right! Someone finally came up with green wine, and that someone might just be me! 🙂

So how did I do this you ask? Well, it is quite simple… and quite fun!
Step 1: Pick out your favorite bottle of Pinot Grigio.
Why Pinot Grigio? Good question! Well, if you look at your selection, majority of your Pinot Grigio bottles are green, or have some green to them somewhere on the label. Hence, a reason why I picked the Kirkland Pinot Grigio.
The other reason for picking a Pinot Grigio is that they are light, easy, refreshing, and inexpensive (Kirkland Pinot Grigio is on sale at Costco for $5.99! You can find a bottle of decent Pinot Grigio around $8 at any wine retail location!). Personally, for me, I have always assumed a little green tint to Pinot Grigio because of the citrus and light feel. I could also say the same thing for Sauvignon Blanc. The point: grab an inexpensive bottle of Pinot Grigio!
Step 2: Go Green!
Yes, what you see there on the table is GREEN WINE!! 🙂 All it takes? A couple drops of Green food coloring! Yep! That is it! No harm to the wine in any way, no take away from the taste, just plain ‘ol non toxic coloring dye!
Now you can make it your wine as green as you want. Like in the picture above, and the video available below, you can add a couple of drops to your own glass, which makes it an Emerald Green, or you can add a couple to the bottle, and come out with almost a Slimer Green (yes, totally just made that reference to the Ghost Busters. Can’t help it. He is an awesome shade of green! Click on the link to watch a clip of Slimer’s first appearance!)
 
Step 3: Enjoy!
Now that you have your St. Patrick’s Day juice, it’s time to celebrate and enjoy! I know it is a little weird to look at while you take a sip of the green delicious liquid, but I promise, it is worth it, and will be a huge hit at your next gathering! Plus, how many times can you say you drank Green Wine?!?
So sit back and relax with your bottle of Green deliciousness and have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day my wine lovers! Cheers!

Popcorn and a Glass of Fifty Shades of Grey White Silk!

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Hello again my wine lovers!! Hope you are keeping up the drinking, as it is a civic duty of a wine lover. 🙂 Now grab some popcorn, (I really do enjoy a bag of the Skinny Girl Popcorn. My husband got it for me and it’s so delicious!) and then hit the store for a bottle of today’s wine tasting!

 Fifty Shades of Grey White Silk

 
Okay, so yes, I will admit, I read the book when it first came out, and went to see the movie Valentine’s weekend. My two cents: book definitely better, but the movie did a pretty good job too! And yes, I went to Alamo Drafthouse and had a glass of this white blend while watching the movie too. Don’t judge me. I like wine and I am sticking to it!
Now when I found out about the Fifty Shades of Grey wine a while back, I was surprised that a white blend (well now that I think about it, Grey does drink a lot of white in the movie and I believe in the book too…) would be made (there is also a red blend, called Red Silk, which I will hopefully be trying soon!). However, I think this blend hits it just right!
A blend of Gewürztraminer (as I mentioned in Rose Wine tasting, the one that usually has a defined Lychee taste) and Sauvignon Blanc, this crisp white blend is light and full of flavor!
Clear with a light golden hue, this white opens up with lychee on the nose, a little pear and crisp honeysuckle; but blows your mouth with even more lychee (it’s like you just bit down on one! Mmmm), grapefruit and a slight creamy butterscotch!
So what are you waiting for??! Grab that popcorn and a bottle and enjoy all for under $15!
Perfect to Pair With: Popcorn, light pizza, fruit and cheese plates, white fish, and of course, just by itself!
Average Price:$12.99- Available at Albertsons, CVS (yep, the drugstore!), Total Wine, World Market and other wine retail locations!
Cheers my Wine Lovers!!

Spanish Quarter Wine Tasting!!

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Happy Holidays my wine lovers!!! 🙂 Sorry we missed each other on the last holiday, but hopefully you were able to check out the Thanksgiving wine pairings on my Facebook page, Youwinegirl.

Now! It’s time to think of Christmas gifts, and well, what better gift is there than the gift of love through a bottle of wine!!! 🙂

This week’s wine selection is the Spanish Quarter Cabernet Sauvignon-Tempranillo 2010.  An awesome Spanish Red wine, this is a delicious new tongue teaser that’s below ten dollars and makes the perfect Christmas gift!

The Spanish Quarter
2010 Cabernet Sauvignon-Tempranillo
Spain

A beautiful red colored wine, this Spanish beauty captures you from the bouquet of raspberries, and dark plum. Smoothly it flows down your tongue with a little spice, red fruits, and low tannins! That being said, there is No bitterness, No dryness, or intense alcohol in this wine! 
It’s absolutely delicious and pairs well with pizza, heavy meats, and chocolate!
Great for your last minute Christmas gift, this wine is available for purchase for under $9!!
Average Price: $8.99!!! Available at Market Street stores, and other grocery stores!!

Cheers my wine lovers!!:-)

Merry Christmas!!:-)
“Have Yourself A Merry Little Cocktail.”

Zombie Wine Tasting!

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Happy Halloween my wine lovers!! Time to bring out the ghosts and goblins, and have some spoo-tacular dripping red blood wine! 🙂
This week’s selection is the Haunted Zombie Zin. A novelty item, and unfortunately only seasonal in most available locations, this wine is perfect for your halloween party!
Zombie Zinfanel
California
Non Vintage
“The zombies are on the move. No need to panic. Haunted Zombie Zinfandel is a flavorful, easy-drinking wine with just the right amount of spice to satisfy the un-dead’s insatiable cravings. It’s sure to seduce anyone from the grave.”
A totally easy drinking red blood wine (it’s pretty red), this Zombie comes to life not only in the dark (Yes, I totally checked it in the closet after buying it. Totally glows, just make sure to expose it to the light), but also on your lips!
For those Red Zinfandel drinkers out there (Guilty!), this wine is a little light and young compared to your Lodi Zinfandels, but still has the intense raspberry, slight oak and spicy aroma that carries over your tongue with cherry, increased raspberry notes, and moderate alcohol that slide down the back of your throat.
Perfect to pair with spaghetti and meatballs (I mean brains and eye-balls!), steak or any hearty dish, this wine really is a perfect gift for a Halloween occasion!
So sit back, pass out the candy to the trick – or – treaters from the front porch, and relax while sipping a glass of “zombie blood” and a handful of “chocolate eye-balls.”
Average Price: $13.99 – but Market Street has it on a steal of a sale for $5.00! Available also at Albertsons!
Happy Halloween Wine Lovers!! Cheers!

 

“Wine and Dine is Fine All the Time!”

What Kind Of Wine Are You?

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Time to share your feedback my wine lovers!!

IF YOU WERE A WINE, YOU WOULD BE……

A Merlot! Because I’m Fruity!
 
A Cabernet! Because I’m Big And Bold!
 
A Riesling! Because I’m Light and Sweet! 
 
A Malbec! Because I’m full of spices and love!
 
A Pinot Grigio! Because I’m Zesty and Tangy!
 
A Shiraz! Because I’m spicy and berry licious!
 
A Chardonnay! Because I’m rounded and buttered up!
 
You can be more than one wine, but share why! This is meant to be fun and shared with all wine lovers!!! Please leave your answers and even other wine suggestions!!
Cheers!!!

“Being in Love is Like Sipping A Glass of Good Cabernet.”

More Wine Please

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Hello My Lovely Wine Lovers!! I have missed you so! The wine tasting is to follow this week, but just wanted to share some wine info with you guys to increase some of that wine knowledge I hope I’m installing in you! 😀
I Saw this on my local news, and just had to share it with you!

Glass Shape, Color Can Influence How Much Wine You Drink

There’s always a reason to over pour your wine one night, especially after a crappy work day, but also when it comes to one of those over-sized fancy wine glasses too. (You know what I mean, who can resist the awesome huge wine glasses?!?) Just remember my wine lovers, a standard glass of wine is 5 ounces! How much is that you ask? A little over half a cup. Yeah, that’s right, HALF A CUP. Check out that measuring cup of yours; yeah, it’s not that much. But that doesn’t mean you can’t slowly sip that glass or hey, even have more than one glass! It’s just a little way to help you regulate (you can do it!) and remind you that when you go out for a drink, that half a cup is your way standard size; so enjoy and savor it, or buy a bottle (it could be cheaper!).
By the way wine lovers check out my Thoughts on How to tell if wine is bad on your way out

“Good wine is a necessity of life for me.”

Apothic Red Labor Day Tasting!

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Greetings my wine lovers! It’s Labor Day weekend,  and you know what that means!!! Grape juice time!!!
Don’t forget to pick up a bottle, (and believe me,  there are a lot of sales going on in the wine department this weekend), and enjoy this holiday with family and friends!  May I recommend the very affordable, easy drinking Apothic Red?
A California red blend that is so smooth and lusciosly delicious with chocolate, vanilla, and red berries, that even your best girlfriend who only likes super sweet wines will devour every drop; except (and drop this line after a glass or two), It’s not super sweet! It’s right on that dividing line,but not so sweet that those who crave the bold and heavy reds will enjoy this wine as well:-)
Pair this wine with just about anything, from foods with some sweetness, like milk chocolate, or even the heavy and bold foods, especially meat lovers pizza. 🙂  I actually paired this awesome red with red velvet cookies! (And man was it delicious!)
So sit back, relax, and enjoy your holiday weekend with this beautiful red bottle (It’s bright and red bottle just lures you in), while watching the sunset and eating some barbeque:-)
Average Price: $9.99 – however,  you can usually get this on sale for $7.99 at grocery stores and Costco!
Have a great Labor Day weekend Wine lovers! Cheers!
“Wine is the thinking person’s health drink.”

Red Diamond Merlot Wine Tasting!!

Welcome back my wine lovers! I so apologize for the delay in tastings, but as promised, here is wine tasting #1 of 2 this week!! Now, let’s get down to the bottle! In honor of the awesome video that my friend, Jillian posted on my page, today’s selection is the Red Diamond 2010 Merlot!  Now just in case you have no idea what video I’m talking about, please enjoy it below.

Now, after watching this, who would say no to Merlot?! Actually, at first, I did debate it, because honestly, and hopefully you’ll still think so awesomely of me, I am not a big fan of Merlot. I never really have. They’re usually either too much or too little for me. But, being the wine lover and always wanting to share and expand my knowledge with you guys, I decided to suck it up and do it! Now, I must say, that my boyfriend did have a hand in this selection. I asked him to pick one at the store, (I was there looking at bottles of Merlot as well) and this is what he picked, and I am happy to say that my boyfriend can pick some awesome wine!!! 

Red Diamond 
2010 Merlot
Washington State

“Our Merlot is of Washington’s best varietal – a polished wine with softly-spiced black cherry, berry and plum flavors. Reveal your Red Side with Red Diamond Merlot.”

Rated as one of America’s Top 10 Restaurant Merlots by Wine and Spirits Magazine (it’s an American magazine that rates wines and spirits on the 100 point scale. A little bit easier and more fun to read in my opinion than some others), you can definitely see why after the first sip. 

Now I must say that when you do first pour this raspberry red wine in your glass and breathe in the aromas, you will more than likely be overwhelmed with alcohol. Granted, it’s not higher in alcohol than the other wines previously reviewed (it’s only 13.5%), but it does knock you off your rocker there at first. However, you will also get a nice whiff of cherry as well, that intrigues you to take a sip. This is where I was blown away. Intense and succulent red and black fruit take over your lips and slide down your tongue, as you can taste the black cherry, raspberry, plum, and some slight toast and vanilla. From here, my mouth exploded with even more delight as this:
incredibly smooth (it’s definitely not rough or unbalanced), 
dry (wine is either dry, off-dry or sweet. It’s not sweet sweet, not quite sweet enough to be off-dry, so it’s classified as dry, BUT not horribly dry), 
medium bodied (wines are classified as either light, medium or heavy body. It’s not light as a feather, or heavy like a thick smoothie, but just right in the middle like a juice thickness), 
medium alcohol (can be classified as light, medium or high alcohol. The alcohol is not barely there, or always there in your face intense, it’s medium to where it’s balanced and enjoyable)
and long lingering finish (put as either short, medium or long finish, it’s not short in that the tastes go away very quickly, or medium to where the tastes linger for a little bit at the back of your throat, but as long, as the wonderful berries and oak and any other tastes you pick up definitely last to the end and linger at the back of your tongue before completely going away) wine just really changed my mind about Merlot. 🙂 

Enjoy this Merlot with beef, pork or even portobello tacos (yes, it really does go great with any of these kinds of tacos, just as long as they’re “meaty”), chocolate cake or brownies (it’s good with dark chocolate but in honesty, probably a little better with milk chocolate), or almond toffee (oh yeah, it’s good)! I personally had it with some small brownie bites and almond toffee, and then the next day, with meat trio pizza where it was absolutely divine!! 

So sit back, relax, and enjoy the full moon with a glass or two (yes, the bottle was 2/3rds gone for me and my man, as well as my co-worker when he enjoyed his own bottle)!

Average Price: $11.99 – Though you can find this on sale majority of the time for $9.99 at grocery stores like Kroger and Tom Thumb.

Happy Tuesday Wine Lovers!! Stay Tuned for Tasting #2 This Week!! 

“If your heart is warm with happiness, you’ll need a glass – if sorrow chills your heart, have two!” 

Sweet Red Wine Tasting!

Sweet Red

Hello my wine lovers! Glad to see you again! Now let’s get down to the good juice!  This week’s wine selection is Llano Sweet Redfrom none other than, TEXAS! The newest state to join the wine industry, and becoming increasingly popular, Texas is making a huge impact, as more and more wine drinkers are discovering the wonderful wines to come from yes, my home state. 🙂

Non Vintage 
Llano Estacado
Sweet Red

“Llano Sweet Red is medium sweet with a smooth finish and aromas of blackberries and cherries. We recommend this unique wine be served slightly chilled or at room temperature with spicy Texas foods, Southwest cuisine and oriental dishes.”

(Just a little fun information for you guys!) Classified in probably the first wine category to put Texas on the Wine Country map, Texas Sweet Reds, have kind of become the staple, at least, of the lone star state. I mean, you couldn’t go wrong with a sweet delicate red that was easy, very affordable, and showing your local support! Of course, since these wines became popular, other awesome wines have surfaced and become vineyard favorites.

One of the first vineyards to gain this popularity, Llano, has always been one of my favorites. Never a disappointing wine, this vineyard is wonderful, supportive and affordable as can be!

A nice light cherry colored wine, the aromas fill your nose within the first swirl of your glass. Raspberries, blackberries, cherry, and a light effervescence take over and create an intoxicating atmosphere as you breathe it in, bringing your mouth joy as you take a lovely sip of an off dry (meaning, it’s sweet, but not intense dessert sweet), light bodied red wine, that awakens your palate (tastes) of blackberries, raspberries, cherries, and for me, some sprite/spritzer (let me know if you taste this too!). Ending with a smooth (it’s not rough) medium finish (the tastes linger for a little while after taking a sip), this wine is sure to please your taste buds and cleanse your mind of the day.

Enjoy with spicy foods, asian dishes, as your dessert, or, as me and my family did, with portabella mushroom tacos and salad! The slight jalapeno in the tacos really complemented the sweetness in the wine. 🙂

So sit back, relax, and enjoy your weekend with a great bottle of Texas Sweet Red! 🙂 
Average Price: $ 7.95 – I got mine for $6.99 at Kroger. Widely available at grocery stores, and liquor stores! 
Happy Friday Wine Lovers!
“Love is like wine. To sip is fine. To empty a bottle is a headache.”