SIMI Merlot

SIMI Merlot

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This wine is a must have for all red wine lovers. It is smooth and subtle. Perfect to sip while watching TV or great with a bold pasta dish like my Baked Cavatappi. It is also a perfect compliment to beef, poultry and, of course, the hearty pasta dish.

Its composition consists of 96% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Malbec, & 1% Cabernet Franc. This might not mean much to you but the subtle percentages in grapes and detectable. The more you drink Merlot, the more keen your taste buds will become to the differences in the grape variations.

The winemaker, SIMI, is part of the Russian River Valley appellation. I mention this because I have never tasted a bad wine that originates from the Russian River Valley. Of course, I have not tasted every wine from this region, however, these wines have never disappointed. If you are new to wine, start by asking your local merchant for wines from this California region.

For more information about this wine and winemaker, visit their website: http://www.simiwinery.com/product/2011-Simi-Merlot-Sonoma-County

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Wine

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Am I a Master Sommelier? Yes.

No I’m not. But I probably know more about wine than most. I am an Oenophile. I enjoy wine as much as I enjoy my meal.

My wine curiosity started about 25 years ago.  I had no idea how or where to go to learn about wine. One day, while working in Philadelphia, I attended my first wine dinner, held at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. I was hooked. I learned so much. I did not know that wine was a living organism…that it tastes different from day to day. I did not know that wine tours almost surpass visits to Disneyland. I did not know that global warming may have an impact on wine production. (Oops, that statement was political. My bad!!!) I did not know that all 50 states produced wine. Alabama appellation??? Anyway, that evening showed me that I had a lot to learn if I was to become even remotely familiar with wine.

I started my wine education in my backyard, Long Island. Long Island is becoming more and more respected for producing serious vintners. Many 90 point wines (Wine Spectator’s flagship wine rating) are produced 90 minutes outside New York City. Regardless of what you’re told, tasting is the best way to become knowledgeable about wine. In my case, many Long Island wineries still offer free tastings, in spite of the incidents chronicled in the New York Times some years ago. Appreciating the complexities of wine takes time. It takes lots of practice. I’ve been at this for 25 years and I’m still learning.

Long Island Wine Country

There are long-held steadfast laws regarding when to drink what with what, like white with poultry and red with beef, however, many restaurant sommeliers are loosening those rules, allowing the palette to dictate what to drink with what. I think a nice French rosé, such as the Mas Fleurey Côtes de Provence would go nicely with lemon-herbed roasted chicken. Ultimately, you will decide what you will drink with what.

Seek out your local wineries. Wherever you live, there is wine produced there. Support those wineries. Their wines will probably surprise you.

Periodically, I will add posts, introducing to some and presenting to others, wines that I find noteworthy. I am not partial to region and I am not a snob. I have no problem recommending $7 dollar wines. If it’s good, it’s good. Bottom’s up!

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