In Vino Veritas

Part of travel for me is getting to experience new places, landscapes, food culture, and WINE. I try to visit Italy yearly and there my favorite wine regions are Emilia-Romagna, Veneto, and Lombardy. My favorite wine from Italy is Lambrusco (secco/dry) and when I arrived in Anacortes, Washington I found a few bottles at Compass Wines, THE local wine merchant. I was instantly enamored with the great staff there and the fact that they are so knowledgeable and helpful.

I’ve looked for dry Lambrusco in every state we pass through and it is a very hard wine to find. I had one wine merchant tell me he had never heard of anything but dolce/sweet Lambrusco (ew!) and that I’d have to go to Italy to find the secco type. The fact that Doug at Compass Wines knows his Lambrusco and carries it is one reason I wanted to return to Anacortes. Every Wednesday they have a tasting and I get to experience new wines from Pacific Northwest wineries and expand my palate. I’ve also gotten to know a few French wines that I love.

Apparently, Pinot Noir (I’ve never met one that I didn’t like) is the grape varietal that Vin de Bourgogne (Burgundy Wine) is made from. I had occasion to try one, so I did a little research and learned that the reason Chambolle-Musigny doesn’t have Pinot Noir on the label is because of the Domaine.

Pinot Noir offers a very varied palette of aromas which are a direct consequence of the terroir on which it is grown. That is why the name of the varietal is rarely mentioned on the label of a bottle of Bourgogne wine, which gives preference to its place of production.

Now, I’m more partial to Italian wines than French, but I’m open to new things. So when I visited Compass Wines one Wednesday for their tasting I tried a few wines from… one of which I really liked and was a Bordeaux-style wine. It was the Avennia 2015 Sestina Red (Columbia Valley (WA)).

Sestina celebrates old-vine Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc from the Red Willow and Bacchus vineyards. The initial punch and power gives way to a wine with sharp acidity and somewhat constrained, leafy fruit flavors. For those who crave old-vine complexity and embrace the herbal side of Cabernet, this wine will be a revelation. Tight and focused, it responds well to several hours of decanting.

And then…from a case in the back of the store Doug brought out a 2011 of the same wine. The Avennia 2011 Sestina Red blend is made from some of the oldest vines in the PNW, and the extra years of aging mellowed out the sharpness leaving me with well-rounded fruit flavors lingering on my tongue long after the sip. I had to purchase a bottle. I got in line to initiate the transaction when something else amazing happened.

This was my IG post about the experience:

“Yesterday I went to @compasswines and had the chance to taste two amazing wines [that another customer had purchased and opened]: a 1964 Domaine Clair Dau Musigny Grand Cru and a 2010 Dom Clair-Dau Musigny. They were both fantastic Pinot Noir bottles with the ‘64 showing a mature color, raisin/jam notes, and a lovely lingering smoky fruit finish. The 2010 was great on the palate with a rich fruit (berry/cherry) profile. It was a phenomenal experience! Thanks, Doug! #compasswines #domaineclairdau #cbcgblog #citygirltravels #Airstream #airstreamliving #liveriveted #airstreamlife #rvlife #naarva #girlcamper #glamping #rvingwomen #travelista #unlikelyhikers #blackpeoplehike #blackcamper #snowbird #nolagirl #anacortes #pnw #ptsdwife #armywife #wanderlust #loveisgreaterthanptsd #bourgeoisie #bornbourgie”

This is what RV life has brought to me; the wild outdoors at my doorstep, luxe travel accommodations from our “stream of air” travel trailer named Silver Belle, experiences across America that would never happen if I was anchored to one location in a home all year, and opportunities to connect with people and places in a way that a short vacation somewhere would never give me.

So, I was in just the right place at the right time and got to expand my wine experience a little more. I’m now just a little bit obsessed with Domaine Clair-Daü Vin De Bourgogne. I plan to research and buy another vintage that is more in my price range. It’s not everyday you get to taste $1000 bottle of wine. My 15th wedding anniversary is coming up though so….