August Sweet Club: Iowa

Sweet Wine ClubStella Rosa BlueberryStella Rosa®️ Wines
Blueberry
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Stella Rosa Blueberry is their winery’s newest flavor, and is a proprietary blend of several red grape varietals. The wine is combined with flavors of natural blueberry distillates & purées, making it undeniably irresistible. Its sweet and succulent blueberry taste will elevate your mood and your wine-tasting expectations.

Region: Piedmont, Italy
Analysis: 5% alcohol / volume

Food Pairing Recommendations: This flavor pairs well with fresh fruits, BBQ chicken, charcuterie, cheesecake, and cinnamon roll coffee cake.

Blueberry Frosé

Photo credit: Stella Rosa Wines

BLUEBERRY FROSÉ
Cool off this summer with a refreshing frosé! Check out this fun way to switch up Stella Rosa Blueberry Wine.

INGREDIENTS:

1 bottle Stella Rosa Blueberry
2 1/3 cups frozen blueberries, divided
¼ cup lemon juice
2 oz. vodka
fresh blueberries (for garnish)

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.Pour wine into ice cube trays and freeze for 6 to 8 hours until almost frozen solid Note: wine will not freeze completely
2. In a blender, pulse together wine ice cubes, vodka, 2 cups frozen blueberries, and lemon juice.
3. Divide frosé among 4 glasses. Garnish with a handful of fresh blueberries and enjoy!
© Recipe courtesy of Stella Rosa Wines

Stella Rosa WatermelonStella Rosa®️ Wines
Watermelon
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Stella Rosa Watermelon is a new, and exclusive, addition to the winery’s semi-sparkling collection. Featuring a proprietary blend of several white grape varietals, including White Moscato (an indigenous grape variety from Piedmont, Italy), and a touch of Barbera for color. Its crisp, refreshing taste showcases the natural flavors of watermelon, created using a distillation process of Italian fruits grown in southern Italy. The semi-dry character is a perfect compliment to Brunch and light appetizers.

Region: Piedmont, Italy
Analysis: 5.5% alcohol /volume

Food Pairing Recommendations: This flavor pairs wonderfully with light salads, such as Greek or Caesar, as well as salty appetizers like Edamame or Jalapeño poppers. For dessert, you can pair it with coconut cream pie!

Stella Rosa Watermelon

Photo credit: Stella Rosa Wines

SPICY STELLA ROSA RITA

A little sweet, a little spicy! Try this fun cocktail at home with this month’s Stella Rosa Watermelon Wine.

INGREDIENTS

For Drink:
5 oz. Stella Rosa Watermelon, chilled
1½ oz. Jose Cuervo Tequila Blanco
¾ oz. lime juice
2 oz. watermelon juice
1 jalapeño, sliced
For Rim:
1 tbsp. Kosher salt
1 tbsp. chili powder
Lime wedges

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Place jalapeño slices in a jar with tequila and let sit for 15 minutes for the spice to infuse the tequila.
2. Remove the jalapeño slices & set aside.
3. Mix salt and chili powder together on a separate plate. Smear the rim of the glass with a lime wedge then dip it into the salt-chili powder mixture to coat the rim.
4. Add a handful of ice to the glass.
5. In a cocktail shaker, add the juices & infused tequila; shake vigorously.
6. Strain the mixture into the glass.
7. Top off with Stella Rosa Watermelon, garnish with a Watermelon slice, and enjoy!
© Recipe courtesy of Stella Rosa Wines

Stella RosaWINEMAKING:
The grapes are harvested, pressed, centrifuged, and then held as a cold juice at 28 degrees Fahrenheit. The juice is fermented at various intervals throughout the year, which allows the wine to remain fresh and delicate throughout the entire fermenting process. The Stella Rosa family uses this technique to capture the fresh flavors of natural blueberry distillates & purées for their Blueberry wine, and an off-dry Rosé, busting with fresh flavors for their Watermelon wine. Both Stella Rosa Blueberry and Watermelon contain natural carbonation. The juice is fermented in Charmat-style, pressurized tanks, and as the alcohol is created, so is the carbonation. Once the desired sweetness is achieved, the wine is centrifuged and bottled. The alcohol level stays at approximately 5% and contains 6-10% residual sugar. Its natural acidity and low pH strike the perfect balance with the wine’s natural sweetness. 

ABOUT STELLA ROSA:
It all started in 1917, when the Riboli family founded Los Angeles’ historic San Antonio Winery. Back then, Los Angeles was the prime location for wine growing in all of California. For some time, the wine industry reigned as one of Southern California’s most economically significant and popular industries of that time. After surviving Prohibition and about a century later, the Riboli family has continued its artisan winemaking tradition through four generations. From within the tasting rooms of San Antonio Winery, customers repeatedly requested a sweeter, light, refreshing wine. The Riboli family took this unique opportunity to create a new semi-sweet, semi-sparkling wine style, which today, they are a leader of. And so, Stella Rosa was born.

our-story-mapMADE AND IMPORTED FROM ITALY:
To create the Stella Rosa wines, their family chose the region of Asti, a province in Piedmont, Italy, as the source for its aromatic grapes. The area of Asti has particular significance to the Riboli family, as it is the birthplace of their family matriarch, Maddalena Riboli. Their first Stella Rosa wine was Moscato D’Asti, which has become a flagship of this line. Soon after, Stella Rosa Rosso was created – the brand’s first semi-sweet, semi-sparkling red wine blend, and first wine of its kind to be brought to America from Asti. The rapid phenomenal successes of these two wines began the lineage of Stella Rosa, which now boasts over 20 distinctive flavors.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with strong cheeses, such as a blue cheese. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

Love the Sweet life?
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Sweet Club

May Premium Club: Iowa

ENJOY CLUB:

Mad HatterBold wine Style logoTuck Beckstoffer Estate
Madhatter Red Blend 2016
Napa Valley, California

BOLD WINE STYLE

Since the beginning of Mad Hatter in 2003, our goal has been to craft elegant Bordeaux blend using grapes grown throughout Napa Valley. The 2017 vintage aptly continues that commitment, with vineyards in St. Helena, Calistoga, Rutherford and Oakville.   Under the winemaking and farming direction of Shawn Johnson and Tuck Beckstoffer, vineyard blocks were selected with a blend of micro climates and soils to highlight the best Napa Valley has to offer, creating a wine with complex aromas, purity of fruit, balance and a long silky finish.

A deep garnet hue precedes aromas of crushed cherries, black plum, warm cassis, and violets.  The palate is fleshy with suggestions of blackberries, licorice, and Indian spices. Chewy and approachable tannins lead into a long, silky finish.

Appellation: Napa Valley, California
Varietal: 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 8% Old Vine Petit Sirah, 3% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec
Analysis: 14.8% alcohol / volume
Winemaker: Tuck Beckstoffer

Semper Pinot NoirMellow style logoTuck Beckstoffer Estate
Semper Homage 2016
Pinot Noir
Sonoma Coast, California

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Semper was conceived as a love letter to express enduring faithfulness.  Cultivated in a distinct region of the Sonoma Coast appellation, wines produced in this area have a rare and collectible quality that will only increase in value over time.  During the growing season the vineyard experiences bright sunshine during the day but is subject to a cool blanket of fog that hugs the coastline, creating the ideal conditions for that perfectly slow ripening.

The 2016 Semper Homage Pinot Noir pays homage to some of the great vineyards in the Russian River Valley and Petaluma Gap appellations.  The primary sourcing is Reuling Vineyard in the Russian River Valley, near Forestville.  In addition to having the ideal climate and well-drained soil for making great Pinot Noir, the vineyard is planted with three of the finest Pinot Noir clones, all of which was used in making the 2016 Semper Homage – Lat Tache, DRC and Calera.   The wine is blended with small amounts of two other vineyards – Sunchase Vineyard and Saltonstall Vineyard, both of which are located in the Petaluma Gap at the southern end of the Sonoma Coast appellation.

The 2016 Semper Homage Pinot Noir showcases powerful fruit with an elegant structure and medium body. Upon entry, this wine expresses aromatics of wild raspberry and strawberry, transitioning into a robust rhubarb and cranberry palate. Aged in French oak barrels for twelve months, the wine shows nuances of baking spices that complement the natural fruit components of the Russian River Valley.  While this wine is drinking beautifully now, it will continue to improve and develop in the bottle over the next five to ten years. 

Appellation: Sonoma Coast, California
Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Analysis: 14.5% alcohol / volume
Winemaker: Tuck Beckstoffer, Philippe Melka

THE BECKSTOFFER FAMILY

Tuck Beckstoffer

Tuck Beckstoffer

It began on back country roads and among the vines. The Beckstoffer family arrived in the Napa Valley in 1975 and the young son of a future pioneer spent his days in the vineyards throughout every growing season, cultivating deep roots.

Brought up to respect the land and its fruit, Tuck naturally sought out the practice of viticulture, learning from the masters around him. Much like his father before him, he is a farmer first. It was only after he mastered the art of first craft that he turned his attention to a second craft—winemaking. Over three decades after he first set foot in the valley, Tuck bottled his first wine. For him, it was not a whim or passion project, but the culmination of a life lived on the land, among the vines.

Today, Tuck is one of the few Napa stewards who is both a grower and a winemaker. It is this pedigree that makes his approach different: the process begins with the land itself and culminates with a reverence for the winemaking traditions of the past—sharing successes and failures among fellow craftsmen and appreciating the fruits of their labor over a beautiful bottle of wine.

The St. Helena estate opened in 2016, offering intimate tours and private tastings as a way to share this passion—connecting visitors to the land and sharing the knowledge of how the art of grape growing translates into every bottle. Since day one, the Estate was designed to exude a sense of genuine care and generosity of time and spirit.

As the story continues the unfold, Tuck is raising the next generation in the same way that he was raised—as stewards among the vines. He invites you to share in this journey and visit the estate.

“It’s my belief that all great wines are an ode to teamwork. The wine in the glass is the apex of each season’s fruitful collaboration—hands on the vines, boots in the soil, and a team of voices carrying throughout the cellar.” – Tuck Beckstoffer

Learn more about our PREMIUM WINE CLUB and enjoy these amazing wines every other month. Plus, you’ll receive 10% off all retail wine purchases! Learn more >

Sweet Potato Ravioli November Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Sweet Potato RavioliSWEET POTATO RAVIOLI

RAVIOLI INGREDIENTS:
• 1 ½ pounds red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams)
• 2 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
• ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
• 48 square wonton wrappers
• 2 large egg whites, beaten until foamy

SAUCE INGREDIENTS:
• ¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) butter
• 1 ½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar
• 1 ½ tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
• chopped, toasted pecans (optional)

RAVIOLI DIRECTIONS:
• Pierce potatoes all over with fork. Cook potatoes in microwave on high until soft throughout, about 6 minutes per side. Cool slightly. Cut potatoes in half; scoop 2 packed cups potato flesh into large bowl. Mix in brown sugar and nutmeg. Season sweet potato filling with salt and pepper.
• Line large baking sheet with plastic wrap. Place one wonton wrapper on work surface. Using pastry brush, lightly brush wrapper with beaten egg whites. Place one tablespoon sweet potato filling in center of wrapper. Top with another wrapper. Press edges together to seal. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling. (Can be made up to 4 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

SAUCE DIRECTIONS:
• Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Cook until butter begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Carefully mix in vinegar and thyme.
• Meanwhile, working in batches, cook ravioli in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, carefully transfer ravioli to hot butter sauce; spoon sauce over to coat ravioli. Transfer to plates. Sprinkle with pecans, if desired; serve immediately. © Recipe courtesy of Bon Appétit, Feb 2003

NOVEMBER WINE CLUB

Mellow style logoCa De Lion Wine BottleCa’ de Lion
Rosso Blend
Piedmont, Italy

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Founded in 1871 by Luigi Ghione, Ca’ de Lion winery takes its name from the family ancestor Leone Ghione (1655). Generations of expertise in Piedmont have elevated this artisanal producer to its highest level. Farming sustainably and naturally, the wines from this estate show a purity of flavor. The depth and nuance of the wine vibrates and speaks of the place where it comes from, in the Canelli hills. This vintage was hand-harvested in the middle of September and vinified traditionally in stainless steel tanks, then refined in bottle. It’s a spectacular, unique and indigenous blend. The wine is velvet in the mouth. Brilliant aromatics reveal layers of violet, fresh rose, luxardo cherry, and blackberry. Very light oak and lip-smacking acidity makes this a stellar wine that can be paired with a variety of foods. Serve with a light chill. The wine can be decanted 30 minutes prior to serving.

winemaker Silvio Ghione

Silvio Ghione, Winemaker

“Ruby color with orange tones. Lasting scent with airy perfume, rich with violet and rose. Rounded and very fresh on the palate, light and velvety tannins. Open and let breathe before serving, pairs well with game and cheese.” – Silvio Ghione, Winemaker

Winemaker: Silvio Ghione
Appellation: Piedmont, Italy
Varietal: 60% Ruché, 40% Pinot Nero
Analysis: 13% alcohol / volume
Critical Acclaim: 93pts Wine Enthusiast 2013; Reviewed and approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine

Wine club logoJoin our WINE CLUB and enjoy these amazing wines and pairing recipes each month. Plus, you’ll receive 10% off all retail wine purchases, 4 free tasting tickets and special discounts to attend wine tasting events, classes and more!  Learn more >

 

Lamb Chops with Balsamic Reduction

lamb-chopsINGREDIENTS:
•  ¾ teaspoon dried rosemary
•  ½ teaspoon dried basil
•  ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
•  salt and pepper to taste
•  4 lamb chops (¾ inch thick)
•  1 tablespoon olive oil
•  ½ cup minced shallots
•  1/3 cup aged balsamic vinegar
•  ¾ cup chicken broth
•  1 tablespoon butter

DIRECTIONS:
In a small bowl or cup, mix together the rosemary, basil, thyme, salt and pepper. Rub this mixture onto the lamb chops on both sides. Place them on a plate, cover and set aside for 15 minutes to absorb the flavors.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place lamb chops in the skillet, and cook for about 3 1/2 minutes per side for medium rare, or continue to cook to your desired doneness. Remove from the skillet, and keep warm on a serving platter.

Add shallots to the skillet, and cook for a few minutes, just until browned. Stir in vinegar, scraping any bits of lamb from the bottom of the skillet, then stir in the chicken broth. Continue to cook and stir over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until the sauce has reduced by half. If you don’t, the sauce will be runny and not good. Remove from heat, and stir in the butter. Pour over the lamb chops, and serve.

WineByJoe-RojomellowWine by Joe
Joe Rojo Red Blend
Applegate, Oregon

Nature, Nurture and Artistry… Joe is passionate about bringing forth the natural characteristics of the grapes and letting the flavors and aromas tell the story of their quality upbringing. He fervently believes that the quality of wine starts in the vineyard; therefore, so does he. From early spring until harvest, Joe scrutinizes the vines, selecting the best sites and clones, as well as crop loads with the objective to produce wines true to their varietal character with as much depth, elegance, opulence and balance of flavor possible. His wines are beautifully fruited, rich with aromas and often have a faint impression of sweetness on the palate due to ripe tannins and fruit. Creating his dreams through pure drive and an insatiable passion for his art,  Joe will continue to produce excellence and value through each of his distinct labels.

JoeDobbes“Aging in neutral oak barrels keeps this wine focused on fruit. Ripe, dark berried fruits with complex earth and spice undertones. A warm growing season has resulted in this easy drinking, full-bodied red wine.” – Joe Dobbes, winemaker

Winemaker: Joe Dobbes
Appellation: Applegate, Oregon
Varietal Blend:  40% Tempranillo, 30% Zinfandel, 30% Merlot
Analysis: 14.3% alcohol / volume, 3.92 pH
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed and approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine

 

The Carnelian Project: Pairing Recipe

Braised Beef Ribs with Caramelized Sauce
Braised_Beef_small

INGREDIENTS:

• 3 to 4 pounds beef ribs cut into individual ribs
• 1 cup red wine vinegar
• 1 cup ketchup
• 2 tsp dry mustard
• 4 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
• 2 Tbsp molasses
• 1 tsp salt

DIRECTIONS:

Heat ribs and 2 cloves of garlic in large, heavy pot; with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover. Let simmer 1 hour, remove from heat, and drain.

Mix ketchup, vinegar, mustard, 2 cloves chopped garlic, molasses, and salt in a small saucepan; heat to boil.  Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 8 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently.  Grill braised ribs 10 to 12 minutes, turning and brushing with sauce until glazed.

AWD_Carn_Project_smallThe Carnelian Project
mellow Red Blend
Paso Robles, CA

“Vast hues on an expansive terrain of ochres and earthy reds, with a nose of perfume and crushed rose petal oil surrounding sweet spices. Fresh strawberries on the palate with a suggestion of oak. Dark cherry fruits linger across taste buds.” – Douglas Danielak, winemaker

Winemaker: Douglas Danielak
Appellation: Paso Robles, CAwinemaker-Douglas
Varietal Blend:  34% Syrah, 31% Mourvedre, 18% Grenache, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 1% Counoise
Analysis: 14.5% alc/vol