March On

What started out as a very wet winter has turned into a very dry one, with February following January as virtually rain free. There is little talk of draught, however, as the season started out with lots of rain. Plus, wet weather is in the forecast for next week. The dry spell did provide easy access to the vineyards for pruning – a good thing.

In the cellar we had a busy couple of months bottling, both our own white wines and those of our custom crush clients. We have already released our 2012 Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc, and there has been a very enthusiastic response. Later this month we will off both the 2012 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir and the 2012 Russian River Valley Pinot Gris.

This weekend (March 1st – 3rd) and next (March 8th – 10th) we are proud to participate in the 35th Annual Wine Road Barrel Tasting. Over 120 wineries from the Russian River, Dry Creek and Alexander Valleys will sample wines still in the barrel. We will pour our 2012 Russian River Valley Chardonnay, which has not yet been bottled and isn’t projected to be released until the fall of 2013. In addition, the last of the 2011 Pinot Gris, 2011 Rose of Pinot Noir, and the 2010 Chardonnay will be offered at sale prices. Finally, guests will have the opportunity to taste our 2009 Mendocino Ridge Pinot Noir Garagistes and our 2009 Russian River Valley Zinfandel. For an early blog review of these wines and the Barrel Tasting, check out  http://www.ijamming.net/sonoma-winter-wineland-3-taft-street-winery/

As spring approaches, our social season starts to roll. The first major event of the season will be our annual birthday party (April Fools’ Day); this year’s event will take place on Saturday, April 6th. Our club party and concert series won’t be far behind. Now is an especially good time to visit the Tasting Room, as the summer crowds have yet to arrive and the hills are still green. You bring the picnic and we’ll supply the wine!

Cheers!

Mike Tierney
President, Taft Street Winery

Winter Salad – Tuscan Kale/Radicchio/Almond

There is still time to enjoy the heartiness of winter salads with your favorite grilled or braised meats. Here is a simple yet tasty salad which utilizes only a handful of ingredients.

Ingredients:

  • 1 bundle Tuscan Kale
  • 1 small radicchio
  • ½ cup almonds, chopped
  • Dressing:
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Slice the kale and radicchio into thin ribbons. Combine with almonds
  2. Mix dressing ingredients until emulsified. Dress greens. You will have some dressing left over. Serve.

This salad goes well with heartier dishes, and a red wine such as the Taft Street 2011 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir would be especially nice.