Last night as I was dragging the recycling bins out to the curb, I was once again mildly astonished at how many wine bottles I’d managed to accumulate. And I smiled when I thought about what fun we’d had drinking all that! Yowzer! The star of the recycling bin was, without a doubt, the Stags’ Leap 2008 Petite Sirah we opened for Judy’s birthday. You would think — as Judy did — that anything from Stags’ Leap would be dynamite, but it was actually a bit of a let down. I later realized it was young and needed to breathe, or at the very least should have been decanted and allowed to open up. It was tight and a bit harsh. I have an aerator courtesy of friends who know that I love anything related to wine, but really I cringe at using aerators or anything that would interfere with the natural wine process. Okay, I’m a wine purist — I admit it.
When I worked at Trader Joe’s pouring wine, one of the older wine pourers (not in age, in longevity with TJs) would actually shake the bottle of wine to aerate it. Heresy, I say! But, okay it was Trader Joe’s wine — we’re not talking Stags’ Leap here — although Trader Joe’s does have some top-shelf wines. But I digress …
The Stags’ Leap Petite Sirah was nestled in with dozens of empties (yes, dozens, because I seldom remember to do the recycling) including a dozen white wine bottles. And that’s where I was really going with this, but I will save that for next time. Since I mentioned Stags’ Leap, just wanted to make sure you know there are two Stags Leap wineries, both in the Stags Leap American Victicultural Area (AVA) of Napa Valley. We have Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, known for their cabernet sauvignons and made famous in the 1976 Paris tasting where it brought California wines to the attention of the world by beating out the French wine. The other winery in the same AVA is Stags’ Leap Winery (apostrophe after the s) known for it’s Petite Sirah. I have one more bottle of that stashed away and will report on it … in a few years when it’s had time to mellow.
And hey, check out my book “Beyond the Spotlight: On the Road with Phyllis Diller” available at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble and “wherever fine books are sold.”