Monday, May 24, 2010

Weather and Grapes

Mother Nature is a huge part of growing grapes and making wine, especially since wine is made in the vineyard.

When rain comes we just think about how we will have to mow more, with wind it is worrying about what will blow over and when frost comes we worry about all our young plants...well that is precisely what happened to our Viognier grapes this year...FROST! We lost all our Viognier grapes to the frost.

Not to worry Cabernet Franc lovers...those grapes are fine and flourishing. That is one of the problems about being a farmer/grape grower...some years you get an excellent harvest and some years you don't, but you only have that one year to harvest worthy fruit to make into wine.

Cheers to a good 2010 harvest!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wine vs Beer Dinner...

It's the US vs. Canada all over again as Magnolias at the Mill will host one of their most ambitious event dinners yet this Thursday, May 20th. Chef Mark will pair beers from Canada and wine from Corcoran Vineyards and it is up to you to decide which was the best.
Here is a sneak peak at the menu...
Greeting with our pre-release Rose or Central City Pale Ale
1st Course
Seared Peppered Scallop, Shrimp & Pineapple Quinoa, Citrus Beurre Blanc
Our 2008 Riesling vs. Brasseurs Illimites Simple Malt Altbier
2nd Course
Speck Wrapped Asparagus, Red & Gold Beet Carpaccio, Shaved Parmesan Reggiano
Our 2008 Chardonnay vs. Trou du Diable La Buteuse
3rd Course
Tempura Soft Shell Crab, Pickled Green Tomatoes
Our 2007 Mary's Cuvee vs. Brasseurs Illimites Simple Malt IPA
4th Course
Wood Grilled Beef Medallions, Chipotle Whipped Sweet Potatoes
Our 2007 Meritage vs. A l'Abri de La Tempete Corne de Brume
Dessert Course
Strawberry Shortcake, Shortbread Cookies, Grand Marnier Cream
Our 2007 Seyval Blanc vs. Brasseurs Illimites Simple Malt Imperial Stout
Is your mouth watering?? This is going to be a very hard decision especially since I am a wine drinker and a beer drinker, but I am up for the challenge! Are you?? Come join Jim and I on Thursday...let the fun begin :)
You can book your seat on line at or by calling Magnolias at 540-338-9800.
See you there.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Drink Local Wine

I have been thinking and thinking about what to actually write about the Drink Local Wine conference last weekend that hasn't already been Blogged about, Tweeted or posted on Facebook.
Overall, I thought it was a good conference, it is always nice to be able to taste the wide variety of wines we have right here in Virginia. To think that we can have 20 or so Viogniers right in one room to taste, is awesome. Chat with the wine makers and truly get the insight on how they process the fruit and where the fruit is grown, all of which makes a huge difference in the final product taste.
We tasted some exceptionally awesome red blends or Meritage wines. Each and every one of them was different. All using Bordeaux grapes, but by putting them into different ratios and having completely different growing regions makes each one of these wines unique. For instance, our 2007 Meritage was with Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Merlot blend so it is going to be much more fruitier than one made with Petit Verdot and/or Cabernet Sauvignon.
There was also a "take-away" message that I must mention...consumers still don't think about drinking local wine like they eat/buy local food. And how can we change that?? One person, one store, one restaurant at a time. Putting our products in front of consumers as often as we can and writing about it...via social media!
All and all it was FUN...but the most exciting time for me was meeting all the fellow wine enthusiasts and bloggers/tweeps/facebook fans.
Hope to continue on the enthusiasm of drink local wine...