14 February, 2010

How About a Little Competition: "Let's Get Ready to Rumble!!!"

Yep! We're excited and ready for a fight. OK..well, not so much of a fight, but more of a judgment in the SF Chronicle Wine Competition. While the official judging took place many weeks ago, the results were just published, and the public tasting, where you and I can taste many of the medal winners is just a week away - Saturday, Feb 20th from 2-5 PM.

There's unlimited food tastings from the Savor California folks and their partners, and of course, the opportunity to taste some great wine from the best of 4800 entries from 1200 individual wineries.

I like the idea of the competition in that it brings some value, that is, QPR, into the mix. Wines are judged against other wines in price ranges of each wine category. Sure, if one has unlimited money, some pretty fabulous wine is available to purchase, but for me, I'm (I guess obviously...) looking for something that's better than good and is about $20Bucks.

You'll find some very interesting and diverse award winners this year from several wine growing regions including NewYork's Finger Lakes (see below), New Mexico and even Snipes Mountain, the newest AVA in Washington's Yakima Valley.

I'm really interested in tasting a few things that promise to be extremely interesting not only that they were rated well, but also that their prices are extremely reasonable.

First, the 2008 McDowell Viognier Rousanne. It won Best of Class for Viognier, and retails for $22. Viognier is an excellent choice for white in the Fall and Winter.

Next, the 2007 Yamhill-Carlton Elodian Pinot Noir from Tom Eddy - retails at $28. Those of you who know me know my love for Oregon Pinot, and a top rated Oregon Pinot for around $20Bucks is a MUST TRY for me.

And last, but not least, the 2008 Finger Lakes Gewurtztraminer from Keuka Springs Vineyards, which retails at $16 and earned the "White Sweepstakes"award

That's right! The top white wine in the competition:
a) retails for $16
b) is not Chardonnay
c) is from Finger Lakes, NY, not California.

Wow! DIVERSITY, in a big way!

I hope you'll get a chance to have some fun on the water in San Francisco at the Fort Mason Center and taste the best of the best...and I hope to have the opportunity to enjoy a taste or two with you. Please give me YOUR tips or if you see me there, let's have a taste of what you think is great.



(photos (c) Brenda Hawkes, Hawkes Photography)

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