25 July 2006

becoming a connoisseur

I haven't had much time for blogging because I'm trying deperately to read as much as I can of Collapse for my book club meeting next week. It's a really interesting book, if a bit dry and slow at parts. I'm not hoping to finish it before the meeting -- I'm only about 150 pages into a book of 500+ pages -- but I'd like to make it maybe halfway through so I have something to add to the discussion.

But I did take a break from reading this weekend to go on my first-ever wine tour! It was a friend's birthday, so her boyfriend arranged for a van to drive a large group of us down to Seneca Lake to tour some of the many, many wineries there. I've never been much of a wine drinker, but I'm determined to make myself like it at least a little, partly because of the health benefits of red wine, and partly because wine carries a certain sophistication that beer and other alcohols do not, and I've spent far too long being completely, utterly clueless about wine. So I went with an open mind and tried lots of different kinds of wine. And now I have a little bit better of an idea what I like and what I don't.

We visited six or seven wineries. My favorites -- where I had what I thought were the best wines -- were Torrey Ridge and Red Newt Cellars, though at Wagner Vineyards I had one of the best ice cream cones I've ever tasted: amaretto cream sherry swirled with chocolate. Yum. At Torry Ridge I bought the one and only bottle of wine I purchased that day -- Summer Delight, a sweet, scrumptious wine that is described as tasting just like strawberry rhubarb pie. It is indeed strawberrilicious.

An all day wine tour was, I think, a bit long for my taste, but I'm glad I got to go and experience some of what the Finger Lakes are famous for, and expand my own tastes at the same time. The Finger Lakes area is such a beautiful setting for sampling wines on a perfect summer day. So even though I'm now behind in my reading, it was very much worth it.


ren said...

We should go out to Casa Larga sometime - the only real wine tasting I've been to (as opposed to wine festival, which is more like a big alkie fair) was there, and the have some good wines. It's a good way to find out what you like. And their vineyard is gorgeous too!

Heidi said...

I've actually been to Casa Larga, for an Optics department function, and thought it was lovely, but I was pregnant at the time so didn't do the tour/tasting. It is beautiful there, though.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, sounds like fun. I love wine, always have, but my expertise goes as far as, "I like white better than red." But surely there must be some red wines out there that I would like. And yeah, I love a frosty cold beer, but there is something much classier about wine... :)