Monday, December 23, 2013

A Landmark Addition - Portland's In the House

I don't know what to say. Here I am three-quarters of the way through this Wine Odyssey and that special way point snuck up on me completely.

I guess I hadn't been keeping track of the numbers as we opened the latest bottles and, lord knows, I'm not exactly up-to-date with my writing. As such, this landmark addition to The List came and went without my realizing it. Of course, I knew that I was approaching the number 1500 bottle but I hadn't prepared sufficiently to celebrate it with a rightful bang. There were neither planned fireworks nor special trips to the cellar. This bottle could easily have been Two Buck Chuck (except that I don't have any) or something equally cheap and cheerful.

Luckily, for me, that wasn't the case.

As fate would have it, one of my best blogging buddies, April from Sacred Drop Channel, was in town for a visit to Vancouver. April and I had played, thick as thieves, during the 2013 Wine Bloggers Conference last Summer in Penticton. To the extent that, upon my return home, Boo asked who this Sacred Drop person was and why I'd been so familiar with her all weekend on Twitter. What can I say? Sometimes personalities just click and that was definitely the case with us.

April and her main squeeze, W2 (short for "WineWidower"), had decided to travel up from Portland for a short, anniversary celebration and they thankfully fit in some cocktails and dinner with Boo and me. Knowing that April was as enamoured with wine as I am, I popped the cork on one of my faves. As mentioned though, it was more coincidence than thoughtful planning.

1500.  2008 Blue Mountain Brut Rosé (Okanagan Valley)

Not only is the Blue Mountain Brut Rosé one of my favourite BC bubbles, it's proved to be a tough bottle to find over the years as well. At times, production has been so limited that you had to be on a special, "double-secret" winery list and you had to act right away if you ever expected to succeed in buying some. Since I hadn't quite graduated to that list until recently, if you ever got your hands on a bottle, it automatically became one of those special occasion treats. I've added one other vintage of the Brut Rosé to The List when a 2007 cork was popped back at #1028 - when we opened it for another special occasion: Christmas dinner.

I wrote a fairly comprehensive piece on Blue Mountain leading up to WBC13; so I won't write much about it at this time. The winery does, however, make its Brut Rosé using a traditional Champenoise method. The wine is also made from traditional Champagne grapes - 63% Pinot Noir and 34% Chardonnay - except for a small portion of Pinot Gris that is added to complement the wine's complexity. With three years ageing on the lees (or exhausted yeast cells), it's no surprise that the wine has creaminess - with plenty of biscuit notes - on the palate. There's some definite red fruit that makes itself known as well - along with some hefty acidity.

You'll note that there's no actual wine in the glass for the accompanying photo. That's because I was so caught up in the conversation with April and W2 that I wasn't even thinking about a picture for the blog. The bottle was empty and we were ready to move along before it dawned on me to take a shot. Whatever was I thinking?

If I'd known this evening was going to play scene to my #1500 bottle, I probably would have ordered another eventful bottle while at dinner. As it was, we all went our separate ways - ordering flights by the glass at Salt Tasting Room. April had been tipped off to Salt and I agreed that it's a fine choice for light dinners and a neat introduction to the Vancouver dining scene. The assortment of tasting plates and wines saw the conversation and laughs carry on until it was well past my bedtime and well beyond the time any happy couple likely would have allotted for strangers to intrude upon their anniversary. As another indication of how caught up we were in the moment, again, none of us had thought about taking any pictures until we were almost out the door. Luckily, we managed to slip one shot in on a phone.

Some bloggers we are.

Despite the lack of preparation, however, #1500 turned out be the special event it deserved to be after all. Great Wine. Great Occasion. Landmark number. I think I may just need to be a little more prepared in the final wines leading up to #2001 though - and the way we've been drinking, that could happen a lot sooner than might be expected.

1 comment:

  1. April is the best, that's for sure! Congrats on 1500!