Category: Wine & Food

Provence Style Rose in Temecula Wineries

Posted on June 25, 2021 in Wine & Food, Wine 101, Wine Musings

Why Temecula Wineries Like Wilson Creek Are Good For Creating Rose

Grenache Grapes Grown in Temecula

There are two main families of Grenache.  There is the French-style Grenache and then the Tinto Grenache out of Spain.  Both really like the heat, which makes them great for growing in Temecula.  Currently, we have about 3-4 acres of the more traditional Grenache out of France and we just planted 5 acres of Tinto Grenache, which will provide a bit more color and richness and ultimately allow us to create a true varietal Grenache.  Grenache is a very versatile grape that can be used as a great blending grape or varietal; it adds a nice essence to each wine it is blended with.  It is also a very plentiful grape where we get a lot of yield and that makes it great for creating a lot of exciting wines.

One of the unique aspects of Grenache is that it can be grown in all sorts of climates, but it only truly ripens and gets mature in warmer climates.  So, when you see an expression of Grenache in Temecula it is outside of the usual expectation of places where Grenache is harvested.  Much of the Grenache we know is from places like Provence where it is harvested when it is younger because many of the wine-growing regions in the world are much further North and it doesn’t have the climate to reach full maturity.  This has a lot to do with old world and modern day refrigeration.  Old world there were only so many places where you could actually store the wine by digging into the side of a hill and then storing your barrels essentially underground to keep them under the 62-degree threshold necessary to store wine.  With modern refrigeration you are now able to grow and preserve wines in varying climates, which allow them to fully mature in growing regions like Temecula.

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Wilson Creek Winery Virtual Tasting Notes – 5/13/21

Posted on May 13, 2021 in Wine & Food, Wine 101, Wine Musings

 

Wilson Creek Winery Vineyard Update

Cab Sauv Block 1 Influresence – The Calyptra has popped off exposing the pistil and stamen, grapes are self-pollinating, which means we are right at the beginning of flowering season.  We have injected 1000 gallons of crab meal, fish meal, etc as fertilizers to prepare for the growing season.  We will need some supplemental watering as we didn’t get as much precipitation as needed and the cover crop didn’t quite take off, which usually preserves our moisture in the ground.  From a temperature standpoint, it’s been pretty cool, which has been a good start so far.  The USDA, NRCS & Metropolitan Water District is asking to partner with us because we are seeing a lot of success with low irrigation and high heat in our vineyards.

Wilson Creek Winery – Sparkling Rose

This is a classic french style rose.  In France, most roses are from Provence, which is similar to Temecula and is primarily Chardonnay and Grenache, which is almost identical to how we have blended this wine.  We added a touch of French Columbarde to the wine and overall we have created a very nice dry sparkling rose.  Some wines are great for drinking in an environment, like a sunset and some are great for food.  This wine is one of those great ones that is perfect for both.

Right off the nose the aromatics of this wine really bounce out of the glass with a floral bouquet and the hints of strawberry from the Grenache, which is indicative of the way we make this wine.  We use a base Chardonnay that is pressed, which is a beautiful grape for Temecula.  We then infuse Grenache grapes that we have left the skin on and press that in, which is what gives us the wonderful taste and color.  This is very similar to our Brut in that it is a traditional dry French-style wine.  The subtle hint of fruit and aromatics on this makes it a great wine to introduce people who normally don’t like dry wines and they will love it.  This will pair well with a fruit salad: honeydew melons, strawberries, cantaloupe, etc.

Wilson Creek Winery – 2019 Viognier

A Rhone Varietal that is grown in the north of rhone.  In Temecula, it truly matures, very floral with a hint of white flowers and fruit-driven with subtle tastes of apricot, pitted fruit, peach, honeydew melon with a great balance.  This would pair well with seafood and food with spice to it, it neutralizes and works well with Capsaicin. As a varietal, it doesn’t have high tannins because we harvest it sooner.  

Viognier is tough to get to maturity, but when it’s ripe it’s beautiful.  The Viognier is the last of our whites that we harvest because it does take so much to get it to maturity.  This year’s Viognier is really a perfect balance of the past few years in terms of dry and sweet.  It pairs really well with sweet peppers, paprika, and mustard flavoring. This is not good to pair with spicy food, because it does have a higher alcohol content.

Wine Fun Fact: In the Rhone Valley, there is an area called the Condrieu, which is the only appellation in France where you are able to produce 100% Viognier or Viognier blends.

How long would you store this: The reason to store a wine typically is to allow the tannins to break down and drive additional characteristics to the wine.  With grapes the longer it stays on the vine the more the skin (tannin) of the grape develops.  Since it does not develop particularly thick skins this is not a wine that we would suggest typically holding.  Max is 2 years.  It will develop a more “round” characteristic to it with a bit of storage.  Heat, Light, and Movement are the biggest factors that will age your wines faster and to the detriment of the wine.  Don’t put your wine above the Fridge!!!!  Underneath a staircase in a long deep dark closet is perfect.

Q – This wine tastes sweet, but you have described it as dry – why is that?  

A – The Residual Sugar on this is less than .05% – however, it does have a lot of fruit characteristics which make it appear sweet.

Wilson Creek Winery – 2019 Roussanne

A meaty and beefy, white wine. More dense ripe fruit, rich, melons, mandarin oranges, and even a hint of spice – cumin and coriander. If you like Chardonnay then this might make a nice transition into a different wine. Thials – Thick mouth feels – makes for interesting aging.  

It’s problematic and needs lots of attention.  We are typically ½ done with reds and then come back and get the Roussanne.  We actually spray down the Roussanne with catlinite clay in the vineyard to ensure that it can stand the 105-degree temperatures later in the growing season. 

Really wants to be paired with Food:  White Pepper or Indian Food – Not heat spicy, but more of an aromatic food.  Really treads the line of Palate Cleanser and Complimentary Wine to go well with a dish like an herbed chicken, black pepper in a white sauce.  

Wilson Creek Winery – Non-Vintage Ecclesia-Cabernet Sauvignon Blend

Named after a group of greek politicians – that would get together and share knowledge and have a good time together.

  • Cab Sav – 51%
  • Petite Syrah- 19%
  • Malbec – 14% 
  • Tannat – 6%

It’s a beautiful mix of young and new fruit  It’s incredibly thoughtful, so we would recommend opening it up earlier than you plan on drinking it to allow it to breathe.

Blends are like groups of friends and cultures, the more the better and this wine is no different.  The non-vintage blend allows us to really have a wonderful mix of young and old fruit, which creates this very interesting variation of a wine that smells different than it tastes.  It’s incredibly thoughtful, so we would recommend opening it up earlier than you plan on drinking it to allow it to breathe.  Chocked full of dark fruit and earthy flavors: cooked strawberries, cherry, jam, tar, pencil shavings, with a bit of petrichor the smell after the rain. 

This is a wine that will need to open up a bit, decanting may even be a good idea for this.  At the very least try and open the bottle about 10-15 minutes before drinking.

Food Pairings: Beef Bourguignon, Mushroom Burgers, 

This is very comparable to Double Dog and at a lower price point. – Like Greg’s Perineese that he is training to bring sheep in the vineyard.

More about Tannat: Tannat is the last grape we harvest every summer and is historically grown in South West France in the Madiran AOC, which is very close to Bordeaux.  There are two very different types of Tannat grapes: Clones 1-4 are the old school blenders very bitter, very tannic, very colorful.  We have a few blocks of these currently.  Clones 5-8 is the new world style that is more likely to deliver a full varietal.  We just planted 5 blocks of this and in 5 years we will have something very special to look forward to.

Wine Club BBQ is in August – 3 day event!!

 

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Thanksgiving Pie + Wine Pairings

Posted on November 11, 2020 in Wine & Food

Thanksgiving is already here! With so much to be thankful for, we wanted to take time to thank all of our Wine Club Members and Guests who enhance our lives everyday! You are the reason we love bringing you fine winedelicious cuisine, and good times!

To celebrate you all and all the things we have to be thankful for, Wilson Creek put together a few wine pairings to go with your favorite Thanksgiving Pies! Because nothing says celebration like sweet treats and bubbly!

Apple Pie

Brut Sparkling or Chardonnay

Pumpkin Pie

Almond Sparkling 

Pecan Pie

Angelica Cream Sherry

Key Lime Pie

Coconut Nui Sparkling or Golden Jubilee

Lemon Meringue

Rose Sparkling or VS White Cabernet

Cherry Pie

Sangria Sparkling or VS Cabernet-Zinfandel

Chocolate Cream Pie

Almond Sparkling or Decadencia Chocolate Port

Blueberry Pie

Sangria Sparkling or VS Cabernet-Zinfandel

Peach Cobbler

Brut Sparkling or Riesling
Once again, THANK YOU!

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National Cookie Day Wine Pairings

Posted on December 4, 2019 in Wine & Food

Christmas Cookie & Wine Pairings!

Traditions play a big role in making the holiday season so much fun! Here at Wilson Creek, we have a lot of fun with our traditional Wassail we enjoy every year. It’s definitely a crowd pleaser and very popular with our wine club family.

With Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve and many other reasons to gather with loved ones, having fun & fresh ideas are always a great compliment to those traditions.

Christmas Cookies are almost compulsory when it comes to the holiday season; one of America’s most popular traditions. Another very popular holiday tradition?… Wine, of course! So why not combine the two and make it that much more special!

Here are a few recipes that will delight your guest’s palates and warm their hearts.

SUGAR COOKIES with Vanilla Sparkling Wine or Brut Sparkling Wine

GINGERBREAD COOKIES with Angelica Cream Sherry or Wine Enthusiast Rated 90 Point Zinfandel

SNICKER DOODLE COOKIES with Wine Enthusiast Rated 91 Points & Editor’s Choice Meritage or Golden Jubilee

BUTTER COOKIES COOKIES with Chardonnay or Coconut Sparkling Wine

CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES with VS Cabernet-Zinfandel or ZSM

PEANUT BUTTER COOKIES with Decadencia Chocolate Port or Almond Sparkling Wine

OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES with VS White Cabernet or Wine Enthusiast Rated 90 Points & Editor’s Choice GSM

CHOCOLATE THUMBPRINT COOKIES with Double-Dog Red or Rose Sparkling Wine

The great thing about traditions is that there is always room to make new ones. So while you’re enjoying the holidays with your loved ones, maybe try a few of these pairings and see if any are worthy of a new tradition.

We have a feeling you won’t be disappointed.

All of us at Wilson Creek Winery warmly wish you a Merry Christmas & a very Happy New Year!

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Thanksgiving Wine Guide

Posted on October 25, 2019 in Wine & Food

We know how stressful the holidays can be, especially when you are the host. You want to be the Hostess with the Mostest, with that perfect Pinterest display! Our must have guide for choosing the perfect wines will leave you feeling confident for your crowd-pleasing Thanksgiving feast!

Rather than selecting one bottle of wine to compliment all of your dishes, we recommend getting a couple options. You have all of those flavors of tart cranberries, creamy mashed potatoes, brown sugared yams, stuffing with a combination of ingredients, white and dark meats, and you can’t forget that spiced pumpkin pie for dessert! As we always say, there are no wrong pairings. We believe that the best pairings are with the wines you enjoy drinking, but for Thanksgiving we recommend lighter bodied wine to compliment the flavors of your dishes.

Sparkling Wines

Bubbles are the perfect celebratory wine! As guests arrive serve Sparkling Wine to get everyone in the holiday spirit! Sparkling is also a great choice to enjoy with salty and cheesy appetizers. The bubbles cut through the salt to cleanse the palate leaving a refreshed feeling. We have 10 Sparkling Wines to choose from and any of them would be a great choice to get your holiday started.

If you plan to serve it with dinner, we recommend going with a dry sparkling such as Brut or Blanc de Blanc Sparkling.

 

White Wines

When selecting a white wine, think about pairing it with your lighter side dishes and salads. Try white wines with less oak and more flavors that are fruity and refreshing.

Viognier – Full-fruit-forward flavors of peach, green melon and hint of tangerine in the finish.

Roussanne – You’ll love this medium-body wine with exotic flavors of pear, melon, and herbal tea trickling into a citrus peel finish.

Golden Jubilee – The best traits of both a dry and sweet wine. The sweetness is tempered by tropical fruit aromas of mango, pineapple, and guava.

Sauvignon Blanc – Aromas of citrus, citrus blossom and ruby grapefruit followed by delicate fruit flavors of grapefruit and gooseberries.

 

Red Wines

Yes, Red wines are delicious with Turkey and not forbidden! You definitely want a lighter bodied red with moderate acidity to balance out the richness of your dishes.

Zinfandel  – Supple in flavor yet firm in structure with cascading layers of cherry, blackberry and raspberry.

Malbec – Clean, clear delicate fruit reminiscent of blackberries giving way to a medium bodied wine with jammy characteristics.

ZSM(Zinfandel, Sangiovese, Malbec) The aromas are very distinctive highlighting Zinfandel’s spicy notes. Flavors of blackberry, plum oak spice and berry jam fill in the mid-palate.

Syrah – Aromas of sweet oak, cherry, and raspberry with flavors reminiscent of cherry, cedar, and spice gives way to a soft tannic finish.

 

Dessert Wines

Get dessert going with an after dinner celebration of sweet wines! Bubbly is also a great choice to pair with pie if your guests prefer something less sweet.

Moscato – This is a luscious wine! Flavors of honeydew melon, mandarin orange, and a touch of mint.

Decadencia – A fortified dessert wine made from century-old “Old Vine” Zinfandel with a touch of natural chocolate making it even more heavenly delicious.

Angelica Cream Sherry – A truly world-class Sherry. Fortified with brandy. Perfect for sipping by the fire after a long day. Serve room temperature and enjoy!

 

Make your Thanksgiving Display Pinterest Worthy with our Fall Dinnerware now available in the Tasting Room!

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