No, I’m not about to post some pictures of me with a big ole baby belly and purple-stained lips. Wine or no wine, my glass is always half full and I can survive just fine without it for a few months. I have just been thinking lately about how I miss having a glass of wine twice or thrice a week. In particular, I have been thinking of three wines from Cupcake Vineyard** that I am looking forward to tasting again. Unfortunately (for my taste buds), I discovered this vineyard just before I discovered that Mickey was on his way.
Actually, the truth is, I had seen the Cupcake bottles in the store for years, but I never picked them up for two reasons:
1) We usually drink The Usual Suspect Cabernet Sauvignon. From a box. Before you judge, consider these factors: One, with the wine aerator I got for Christmas two years ago, it tastes the same as if you were drinking it from a bottle. Two, this keeps us from feeling any pressure to gulp down an entire bottle of wine in one sitting so it doesn’t ‘go bad’ in the fridge. Three, it’s cheaper than buying the same amount in bottles. And four, it’s better for the environment than buying the bottles. If you still wanna judge, go ahead but I feel no shame in that game!
2) The label. I don’t judge books by their cover but I totally judge wines by their labels. I’m a sucker for a pretty label. This is perhaps the WORST way to pick a wine but I just admitted to drinking wine from a box. I’m clearly no connoisseur. The Cupcake Vineyards label is fine enough but something about it just didn’t grab me enough to convince me that I was gonna love it. Maybe it’s the lettering? Or all that blue? Doesn’t feel like a wine color to me.
But last Summer, I tried Cupcake’s Red Velvet and I was instantly smitten. Usually I’m not big on blends because I don’t know much about wine and if you stick with just one specific grape, I have a better idea of what I’m getting into. But Red Velvet combines Zinfandel, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah and does it masterfully. At least according to my palette which is admittedly not refined. I’ve served it a couple times since then and everyone confirms that it’s delicious.
Want a better description? Here’s what Cupcake Vineyards has to say:
“Experience a wine as rich, soft and elegant as red velvet. Our Red Velvet blend delivers over-the-top aromas of chocolate, deep dark blackberries and luscious red fruits that follow through to the palate. Finish with a hint of coconut and creamy mocha that shows unmistakable intensity and length. Each varietal adds distinct characteristics and lends structure, aroma and depth of flavor. We ferment each varietal separately before blending. Finally, a unique oak regime infuses creaminess.”
The second Cupcake Vineyards wine that I discovered was their Angel Food. I bought it at the same time as the Red Velvet. Once again, it’s a blend and once again, I thoroughly enjoyed it. In researching for this post p, I saw that the Cupcake winery guys recommend pairing it with pancetta-wrapped figs. Um… YUM! Yes please!!!
Cupcake Vineyards also says:
A taste of heaven in a bottle, Angel Food is a luscious, aromatic and delicate blend based on Chardonnay grapes. Experience flavors of baked Granny Smith apple, hints of toasty vanilla, and a long creamy finish.
The third and final Cupcake Vineyard wine is the one I adore the most – their Chardonnay. This was a total surprise because Chardonnays are REALLY not my favorite. I picked it up for a Stella & Dot trunk show I was hosting and I picked it because I was already getting the Red Velvet and wanted to get a white Cupcake wine to match and the Chardonnay was the only one they had in stock. At this point I knew Mickey was on his way, so I figured, I wasn’t going to drink it so what did I care if anyone else enjoyed it? And now you know that I’m a mean hostess.
Much to my delight, it was a huge success. I had several guests come ask me about it. Including a dear friend Tammy who definitely knows her wines. She was surprised to discover that a (relatively inexpensive) Chardonnay could be so yummy. With that kind of endorsement, I had to try it out. I had a 1/2 glass and it was delightful. I am horrible at describing wines but all I know is that it was really smooth and lacking all the I’m-more-like-a-tart-apple-and-too-crispy-to-enjoy-ness of your typical Chardonnay.
The experts at Cupcake Vineyards say:
A big, rich wine from California’s Central Coast, our full and elegantly textured Chardonnay has decadent levels of butter, cream, bright citrus and vanilla. These layers melt into a balance of oak and subtle spice. This wine epitomizes the Central Coast’s crisp and vibrant Chardonnay character. We use a malolactic fermentation to impart rich buttery flavor, then leave the wine sur lie to achieve a full, soft body. Aging for nine months in premium American oak barrels enhances the golden color, adds creamy texture, and injects nuances of subtle toasty oak and spice.
I can’t say that I noticed all of that when I tried it, but it is good. I’m looking forward to having a full glass as soon as it warms up enough for me to feel white-wine is appropriate.
So, cheers to you Cupcake Vineyards! Keep doing what you’re doing!
**I should say, this not an affiliate post. I’m just sharing my genuine love for this winery in case you haven’t tried their wine yet.