Saturday, February 9, 2013

A Neighbourly Evening

Regular readers of this blog will have come to know that Boo and I love the neighbourhood that we live in. We have some truly great neighbours and evenings like tonight just serve to cement those sentiments even further. K-Pop and Baby Mama invited us over for dinner since neither our chats over the fence nor our brief passings on the street tend to allow anything resembling an involved conversation.

And, believe me, there's never any shortage of things to talk about when we're chatting with these two.

Their hope was that The Kid would have already settled down for the evening by the time we'd arrived. Hardy. Har. Har. Not much chance of that one coming to pass. Luckily, K-Pop's efforts to tucker out The Kid didn't detract from our cocktails. It took the better part of a bottle to successfully send the little guy off to bed, but isn't that what cocktails are for?

Another fine traits about K-Pop and Baby Mama is that they like their wine. I always like to see what other folks choose for their wines and I particularly enjoy seeing K-Pop's picks because he's got some smarts when it comes to wine (as well as his other attributes).

1254. N.V. Santa Ana Sparkling Malbec Rosé (Argentina)

The first bottle to be opened was our's though. I figured you can never go wrong with a little bubble when it comes to starting off the evening. I'm not really familiar with this wine but, if memory serves, I picked it up at the Vancouver International Wine Festival a couple of years back because I don't think it's currently available on local shelves.

Sparkling Malbec isn't a style of wine that we see much up here in Vancouver. We all quite enjoyed it though. Being Malbec based, the wine had more heft to it than most bubblies - despite the fact that the wine features 15% Pinot Noir. All the same, it wasn't nearly as big as the sparkling Shiraz wines that come out of Oz. There was some nice fruit on the palate but there was still a hint of biscuit and yeast that came from resting the wine on its lees (spent yeast cells) for four months before bottling. The bubbles were induced by carbonation and the Charmat method as opposed to the traditional Champenoise method. Accordingly, the cost is reasonable when you can find the wine.

1255. 2011 JoieFarm Riesling (Okanagan Valley)

K-Pop had whipped up a tasty curry and, lo and behold, he served it with Riesling. Now, if that isn't a pairing designed just for me, what is? Especially with JoieFarm being the first bottle poured. A Gold Medal winner at both the 2012 All Canadian Wine Championships and the Wine Press Northwest Platinum Judging, the touch of residual sugar goes nicely with the spice of the curry. There were only 780 cases made of this vintage; so, it was a treat for K-Pop to have found us a bottle.

1256. 2009 Cave Spring Riesling (VQA Niagara Peninsula - Ontario)

For me, our second Riesling was even more of a treat. Not so much because it was a better wine but, rather, it's just that much rarer of a bottle to find out here in BC. We don't tend to see many Ontario wines locally. Same country and all, the wines just don't make it out here. Go figure.

I've heard of Cave Spring - if only because it's continually referred to and lauded in the Canadian wine magazines. It's been called one of Canada's premium Riesling producers by some big names in the wine biz but I'm pretty sure that this is the first time I've actually had the opportunity to sip back on a glass. My loss.

The two Rieslings were actually served separately from each other. The Cave Spring didn't appear until the collection of Cartems donuts (yumm!) were served up; so, I didn't try the wines side-by-side. That would have been a nice way to compare them but I guess it's good that we didn't. This way I can't be expected to pick a "winner." I think it's enough to say that they were both winners. Indeed, any Riesling that has a touch of passionfruit note to it - like the Cave Spring did - is going to be a winner in my book.

As the whole evening proved to be a winner in my book. Good food. Good wine. Good conversation. They all add up to great neighbours. By the time we'd polished off the Cartems and the Rieslings, it was time to stumble home. No doubt we could have happily carried on for hours but we'd all had long days and we certainly didn't need to open another bottle. Luckily, we didn't have far to go to get home. Here's hoping that we can pull off another neighbourhood night sooner than later.

No comments:

Post a Comment