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Taste Live with St Supery Winery

We had the exquisite pleasure of participating in Taste Live with St. Supery Winery. Taste Live provides the structure for tasters around the globe to taste and tweet with the wine maker at a set time and date. Taste Live provides information about the wines to be tasted as well as ordering information before hand. On the day of the event, Taste Live home page shows notes from the presenter as well as the tasters. Set up an account and you can post your own tasting notes and opinions as tweets from their home page as well. St Supery is a (gasp) Napa winery. You might be wondering why Washington wine bloggers are blogging about a California wine tasting event. I can give you three good reasons:

  1. We think that Taste Live is a cool idea with a lot of potential. It was time to give it a try and St Supery was on deck.
  2. We have been exploring the potential of different twitter tasting formats, and how they can be engaged to support Washington wines.
  3. If you want to be able to explain the difference between apples and oranges to someone else, it is a good idea to know about both. How can I explain the difference between a Washington Cabernet Sauvignon and California Cabernet Sauvignon to you unless I have been tasting enough of each to understand the differences myself.
Intermission TasteLive St Supery

Intermission TasteLive St Supery

We gathered friends together with a spectrum of wine tasting experience and palates. We wanted to get opinions and engage in conversation more than issue a professional point score on these wines. We asked our friends to bring a dish to complement the wines and we provided the wines, hospitality, two dishes, wifi, two laptops, access to post their comments on our account if they did not have a Twitter account of their own and  the opportunity to learn more about Twitter. We had two last minute cancellations but the five of us had great wine, great food and a great time.

Childcare issues got us off to a late start, we didn’t a chance to log in to Taste Live until 20 minutes into the tasting and most people were finishing up the first wine, St Supery 2008 Sauvignon Blanc. This Sauvignon Blanc is a tart wine with loads of grapefruit and lime zest on the nose and on the palate. It has some nice mineral tones to ground that BIG grapefruit taste. For me, I prefer my grapefruit to be paired with something and I felt the same way about this wine. It opened up and became much more interesting to me when we paired it with the Goat cheese, pear, endive salad suggested by St. Supery. When paired, I got some lovely lime and melon flavors in this wine and the acidity went from tart to pleasingly bright. On Taste Live, participants found the flavor really changed at different temperatures. I liked it much better last night well chilled then at the warmer temperature it was at while I was typing this.

stsupery from the JugShop guests: SB is distinctly Napa; grapefruit; creamy; citrusy, crisp….would go well with some rich white fish #stsupery #ttl

mrwinemaker Every vintage brings a different climatic slant, but the SB maintains consistent with its Green lime, grapefruit and vibrant #stsupery #ttl

The Virtu is a Sauvignon Blanc – Semillion blend and it caused the most debate by far at the table. Ed went hmm when he first smelled this wine followed by “wow” after sipping. He tweeted about it knocking his socks off. Then the debates began and continued through out the evening.  We debated the Sauvignon Blanc vs the Virtu over aroma, flavors and pairing. A big aspect of the debate revolved how the wine changed over time in the glass and off the ice.  The nose on this wine can be subtle when well chilled, but becomes complex with layers of stone fruit,watermelon and cedar per Ed. The St Supery Virtu is bright with balance fruit then evolves into this lovely  creamy finish. This is a rich wine that pairs well with rich foods. We savored this wine with the Coconut Curry Soup from St Supery and Oysters ala Ed. Everyone really enjoyed the Virtu with the modified Oysters Rockefeller and those oysters were slurped up in a hurry! With the soup, I prefered the more complex Virtu over the more straight forward  Sauvignon Blanc but it was the Virtu and oyster pairing that made me sigh and smile.  Both the Virtu and the oysters had these complex layers of flavor and aromas but the pairing worked because none of those layers overpowered the other. The Virtu was a wine we kept going back to. It wasn’t a favorite for everyone, but it Virtu had dedicated and vocal fans at the table and across the country.

MRodeno SB goes w/lighter foods (salads, guac & chips, corn), Virtu richer, goes w/salmon, scallops (good sub for oaky Chard) #stsupery #ttl

Winereview @JugShop My vote Virtu, SB like a great 20 year old wild and fun, Virtu like a elegant lady with loads of class and money #stsupery #ttl

winebratsf Virtu retaste. Now it’s warmed up a LOT of hazelnuts. Mmmm honey VANILLA! #ttl

The single red of the evening was the St Supery 04 Cabernet Sauvignon. Although quite drinkable now, St Supery recommends cellaring this one to let it truly develop its potential. It is tight but even so the nose was sensual full of smoke, meat, leather, cherry, blackberry, herb and oak.  We devised a pseudo-decanter to help it open up. The first 30 minutes, the wine was tight but tasty. It was paired with Eric’s chipolte chicken kebabs over saffron quinoa which echoed the smokiness of the Cab very nicely. As this wine opened up, we got more fruit with blueberry and cassis. The chocolate and licorice  stepped into the picture as we continued to swirl our glasses. We nibbled on fresh boysenberries from the garden as we savored and sipped the Cabernet Sauvignon. It is a grippy wine with enough fruit and acid to lay down for awhile. This is a wine I would definitely want to revisit in a couple of years.

PinotReport The Cab is showing lots of leather and meaty notes, but is also still keeping some of the delicate lavender and other herbs. #stsupery #ttl

WineWonkette at $38 this is a steal! Have paid much more for Napa cabs that would bow to this Cab #stsupery #ttl

The St Supery Moscato is a pale lemon color that is bursting with peach aromas. Fruity and floral, the sweetness of this wine is reminscent of biting into a perfectly ripe peach. You know the kind that I mean, where the peach juices run down your chin with each bite? It is a sweet wine, but the sweetness is juicy fruit sweet, not syrupy sweet. Nicely balanced with refreshing acidity. I am not usually a fan of the sweet wines but this one was so well balanced that it won me over. The lemon sorbet was sweet but the lemony tartness and the pop of the pepper made this a delightful pairing with this lovely Moscato. Although there was no consensus at my house about the favorite wine of the night, everyone agreed that the Moscato and sorbet was the best pairing.

dawnadowntown guest: the moscato was the perfect end to the evening. A sweet, fruity kiss goodnight after a spicy roll in the hay. #stsupery #ttl

stsuperychef Moscato is not just for breakfast anymore …it’s great with spicy Asian food and absolutely amazing with bleu cheese #stsupery #ttl

It was a delightful evening, and we are already planning our next food and wine feast. The next Taste Live event is July 18 and will feature french wines imported by Frederick Wildman and Sons. You can read more about Taste live by searching Twitter.

The evening of this event there were over 750 tweets about this tasting. As tasters continue to tweet amongst themselves, make recommendations, share recipes and remember, that number will only continue to grow.  Hey Washington winemakers, when will you give Taste Live a try?

Disclaimer: The wines for this tasting were provided to us as samples for the purpose of participating in this Taste Live event.

WineWonkette at $38 this is a steal! Have paid much more for Napa cabs that would bow to this Cab #stsupery #ttl

5 Responses to “Taste Live with St Supery Winery”

  1. Thank you all for participating in the event, and for the great summary. I was on an airplane during most of the event so it’s nice to live vicariously through your post even a couple days after the tasting. ‘Oysters ala Ed’ will be on my table this weekend!

  2. Bean says:

    That is the great thing about blogs. It might take me longer to get all the details up but when I do, it serves as a long lasting library of tasting notes and recipes.

  3. ed says:

    This event exceeded all my expectations. The wines were superb and I enjoyed every dish. In retrospect my favorite pairing was the salad and first Savignon Blanc. Perhaps because I was hungry. But then I think of the chipolte chicken skewers with the Cab and those oysters with the Virtu…No the whole meal was absolutely fantastic as a whole. Made all the more fun because we not able to get our final tasting crew “on board” until the last minute.

  4. Bean says:

    Hmm did you forget something? I thought you liked the Moscato and sorbet best on Saturday night 😛

  5. Eric Hartlep says:

    Spicy Chipotle Chicken Kebabs

    I guess some folks were interested in the grilled chicken I did to compliment the great St Supery cabernet … so here it is: there are in the foreground of the photo on this page.

    I like to intersperse cubes of chicken breast with chunks of orange and red bell peppers, brown mushrooms and irregularly cut zucchini, as well as sweet onion on skewers to grille over medium heat. I cut the veggies up first, place in a large bowl (with room enough for tossing them) and sprinkle liberally with Ceylon cinnamon, Mexican oregano, and freshly ground triple-pepper (black, white and red), as well as a bit of ground chipotle. I hold the sides of the bowl and gently toss the veggies with an upward flicking motion; when unspiced sections of veg become visible, I dust on more until things are pretty well covered thinly all over.

    Cube up the chicken so the pieces will be about the same as the veggie chunks – that way everything contact the grille evenly. In a second bowl, I dust a lot of chipotle powder, a Mexican spice called epazote, Mexican oregano, ground Ancho chili peppers (adds a touch of sweetness rather than heat), abodo seasonings, and a fair amount of ground Indian cumin seed. I get all my spices from Penzey’s Spices out of Wisconsin – they are amazingly pungent and come in very handy glass wide-mouth bottles.

    I rub the chicken thoroughly by hand (usually wearing latex gloves – I just find it easier, less messy for me), then drizzle extra virgin olive oil over it and mix again to coat. I take off my gloves, wash my hands and drizzle and coat the veggies in their separate bowl as well.

    You can skewer the veggies and chicken immediately, or cover with plastic wrap and put in the frig a while until it is time to grille. For some reason, I always start my skewers with a mushroom, then evenly distribute veggies and chicken until the skewer is full. I only add salt to taste at this point – I don’t like to add salt early for fear it will dehydrate the flora and fauna.

    Generally I use a gas grille, but cooking over coals on Bean Fairbank’s grille the night we sampled the St Supery wines worked great. I turn the kebabs 3-4 times while they are cooking, depending on how fast they seem to be browning up, and leave room on both ends of the skewers so I can handle them to turn wearing oven mits – I don’t use tongs or a spatula for kebabs because that can loosen up the bits and if they become loose and turn, some parts will get over-done while others barely cook at all.

    I serve the grilled meat and veg over quinoa, which I cook on the stove – two cups water to one cup quinoa. I liked Bean’s glass-lidded sauce pan very much, because the key to cooking quinoa is not to open it up all the time to stir and test for doneness. I add a good amount of tarragon and Ceylon cinnamon and some sea salt to give a different background taste to the grilled toppings. Enjoy!

    Eric Hartlep
    Seattle, WA

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