Friday, 15. October 2010
In February 2008, we had the delightful opportunity to visit Briar Rose Winery in Temecula, California. It was just a wonderful visit and we loved the story behind the winery as well as the wines we tasted then. At the time owner and winemaker, Les Linkogle was creating a beer using wine grapes. We had the opportunity to taste it and it was wonderful. We’ve talked about it to everyone.
Today we had the chance to visit Briar Rose again and were so delighted. As Terry said “We could have spent all afternoon there talking with Dorian Linkogle and the assistant winemaker.
We did ask Dorian about the experimental beer and it has become very successful. Briar Rose is now bottling it with the label Talking Frog. Above the picture of the frog with a crown, the label says “Sometimes You have to Kiss a lot of Frogs ‘til You Find a Prince.” This wine lager is made with 100 percent Viognier. It has been such a great success that it is sold out at the moment but will be available by the end of 2010. Check out the Talking Frog and try it when you have the chance
Monday, 19. July 2010
While visiting family, that recently moved to Portland, Oregon, we took a break from wine to visit a brew pub for a tasting and pizza. It seemed fitting for a wine writer to visit a pub that just happened to be started by a couple in the wine industry. Richard and Nancy Ponzi of Ponzi Vineyards founded Bridgeport Brew Pub. They teamed up with brewer Karl Ockert in 1984. Today, Bridgeport produces over 100,000 barrels of beer a year and is know throughout Oregon. They also distribute to several other states.
Our tasting included eight small glasses of beer. By the way, one gets more beer in a beer tasting than wine in a wine tasting. The flight comes on a tray with the names, description and alcohol content listed on a placemat below each beer. One can easily taste and switch around in any order they choose. I liked several of the beers. The one that I thought came closest to wine-like, although this isn’t what I was looking for, was the India Pale Ale. It was a dark gold to amber color and had citrus especially grapefruit on the aroma and taste. The crisp finish became bitter on the aftertaste. I also liked the Blue Heron Pale Ale. It too had an amber color with a very creamy mouth feel with a light crisp finish. Our party had a couple of flights and these were the first two beers finished on the flights. The only beer not finished was the Porter, although the men in the group did drink most of it. The dark brown to black color had molasses nuances and this full-bodied beer did go well with the meat pizza.
When visiting Portland, stop by the Bridgeport Brew Pub and try a beer flight.
Read about Nancy Ponzi’s cookbook.