Saturday, May 21, 2011

Pizza as Shark Bait

Seeing as how it was a Friday night game, we called up Elzee to see if she wanted to join us for some pizza and hockey - and a bit of wine. I don't know if it was the pizza, the hockey or the wine that lured her over, but whatever the reason, it suited me just fine - because a third person meant that I'd have to open a second bottle of wine.

Keeping up with Jackson-Triggs as the "official" wine for this Conference Final, I opted to un-cork two vintages of one of the winery's big guns. After all, being up two games to none, if the Canucks could pull off a win in San Jose, I think they'd pretty much have a stranglehold on the series. Plus, a win by the Canucks would win me the office playoff pool. There were three other colleagues left in the pool (we have to pick winners in one of a specific set of games - but we get to choose the game) but they all picked Tampa Bay to beat Boston at home. The Lightning lost that game; so, I had a chance to put it all away if the Canucks could win tonight.

806. 2004 Jackson-Triggs SunRock Meritage (VQA Okanagan Valley)

807. 2006 Jackson-Triggs SunRock Meritage (VQA Okanagan Valley)

Like our Shiraz in Game 1, both wines are from the premium, single vineyard designated SunRock series - SunRock being the actual vineyard located in the southernmost part of the Okanagan Valley. The vineyard is situated in Canada's only pocket desert as this part of the Valley is the final stretch of the Sonoran Desert that stretches from Mexico all the way to the Okanagan. The intense heat of the daily temperatures can actually be greater than those experienced in either the Napa Valley or in Bordeaux. The near-by lake presence cools the evenings, however, and that cooling effect, in turn, helps retain acidity levels in the grapes. The vineyard can, thereby, both fully ripen varietals that are otherwise marginal in BC and maintain enough acidity to properly balance the wines.

Both vintages were Bordeaux blends of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc - but the final blends differed somewhat in that the 2004 was 50% Merlot, 30% Cab Sauv and 20% Franc, the '06, on the other hand, still featured 50% Merlot but it saw the contribution of the Cab Sauv increased to 45% and the percentage of the Cab Franc reduced to just 5%. Interestingly enough, Boo preferred the '04. He usually jumps at higher Cab Sauv content, but I think he thought it was more integrated from the additional two years in the bottle. Elzee and I both enjoyed the 2006 just a bit more - likely because of the additional retention of fruit at this stage.

The difference wasn't that perceptible to us though - more like identifying or preferring Daniel to Henrick Sedin. How do you pick one twin over another? We didn't have a problem finishing either bottle though.

I see now that I was so caught up in the game and the wine that I only took the one picture through the evening - but by "caught up," I think I mean depressed. Except for a bit of a resurgence in the third period, our guys were having a tough go of it. If it weren't the playoffs, we likely would have moved on to a PVR recording of Survivor or America's Next Top Model. There was some excitement as the clock counted down - with the Canucks only one goal behind - but they couldn't score that tying goal.

Poor Elzee. When I pointed out that, the last time we had her over during the playoffs and served two wines, the Canucks lost as well. She said that could only mean that she'll just never be able to come over for another game. We'll have to find a way to talk her out of that one.

In the mean time, Game 4 is on Sunday. Hopefully, the boys can still return with that third win under their belts. I know I'll have another J-T wine waiting for the game.

Noon start or not.

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