Saturday, August 27, 2016

Upcoming Events & About Us

Welcome to TWITs - click here to read about us.

    List of Wines the TWITs have tried so far ---> TWITs Events
    Helpful Tasting & Pairing Aides ---> Help
Upcoming TWITs Events:  

August 26th Friday - Albarino - hosted by Abbie & Matt
Other fun news:

We once hosted a tasting for "I don't always drink white wine, but when I do I drink this one..." and every guest brought their fave white wine and had to explain why it was their fave. During that evening, Lynn and Brian brought us an infographic to look at, it showed 20 White Wines and the various qualities of each. You can see it here:

So I wrote the artist, Sean Seidell, directly and asked if he also had one for RED wine too. he actually replied to me today! he has an iPhone app coming out soon, and he will be doing the Red Wine Infographic for the holiday season. I am so excited. He does Infographics on more than just Wine items, which is also pretty darn cool. Follow his Facebook page here:

TWITs away from home:
We have a wonderful TWIT living the dream in Napa Valley California.  Ping us if you'd like more information.

We, unfortunately, no longer have a Sister Club based in Orlando, Florida called the TWOTS (The Winos Of The South). However, we do know several fantastic honorary TWITs who live there, ping us if you are traveling to the area and need a fellow wino contact.

Wines TWITs have tried so far:

January - ?
February - ?
March - ?
April - Malbec - hosted by Ms. Shannon
May - Grenache - hosted by Ms. Abbie
June - Pinot Grigio - hosted by Ms. Amanda
July - Chianti - hosted by Ms. Jane
August - Reisling - hosted by Ms. Mina
September - Monastrell - hosted by Ms. Sarah
October - Rioja - hosted by Ms. Abbie
November - Petite Sirah - hosted by Ms. Jennifer
December - no wine club this month

January - Champagne - hosted by Ms. Jane
February - Organic Red Wines with No Sulfites Added - hosted by Ms. Abbie
March - ISAW Wines - hosted by Ms. Mina
April - Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley Oregon - hosted by Ms. Elizabeth K.
May - Sauvignon Blanc - hosted by Ms. Elizabeth
June - Nero D'Avola - hosted by Ms. Shannon
July - no wine club this month
August - Viognier - hosted by Ms. Deb & Ms. Jennifer
September - Tempranillo - hosted by Ms. Elizabeth K.
October - Barbera - hosted by Ms. Mina
November - Gamay/Beaujolais - hosted by Ms. Abbie
December - Holiday Sparkling Wines - hosted by Ms. Sarah
January - Wine & Cheese Pairings - hosted by Ms. Jane
February - ISAW Foundation Tasting at Emily Amy Gallery - hosted by ISAW, EAG, and the TWITS
March - no wine club this month
April - Chilean Wines - hosted by Ms. Abbie
May - Pinot Noir - hosted by Ms. Deborah & Ms. Jennifer
June - Pinot Grigio - hosted by Ms Marilyn
July - no wine club this month
August - Rose - hosted by Ms Abbie
September - cancelled

October - Prosecco - hosted by Ms Kat
November - no wine club this month
December - Sparkling Wines - hosted by Ms Abbie

January - no wine club this month
February - South African Wines - hosted by Ms Abbie
March - North Georgia Winery Tour
April - no wine club this month
May - no wine club this month
June - Le Caveau tasting 6/4/11
July - Le Caveau tasting 7/3/11
August - Spanish Wines - hosted by Ms. Abbie
September - no wine club this month
October - no wine club this month
November - French Red Wines - hosted by Ms. Abbie
December - Australian or South African Shiraz/Syrah - hosted by Ms. Marilyn

January - Tempranillo - hosted by Ms. Ardela
February - Tuscan Wines - hosted at Le Caveau
March - Garnacha - hosted by Ms. Leslie
April - Georgia Mountain Wineries Bus Tour - TWITs Event
May - Bottleshock Movie Night - hosted by Mr. Janssen
June - Arizona Wines & Blood Into Wine Documentary Viewing - hosted by Le Caveau & Prime Wine & Spirits
July -Rose - hosted by Mr. Janssen
August - Wine to Water Charity Event - hosted by Ms. Deb
September - Chianti - hosted by Ms. Susan
October - ISAW Foundation Wines - hosted by Ms Ardela
November - Gamay & Beaujolais Nouveau - hosted by Ms. Marilyn
December -Christmas Cabernet - hosted by Ms. Abbie & Mr. Matt

January - Le Caveau and Joe Herrig - New Wines for 2013
February - Vino Venue - Try the Enomatic Wine Tasting System
March - Bordeaux Wines - hosted by Ms. Val and Mr. Rheinallt
April - Pinot Noir - hosted by Ms. Kathy and Mr. Jamie
May - Italian Wines - hosted by Ms. Deb and Mr. Jaffett
June - I Don't Always Drink White Wine, but When I Do, I Drink This - hosted by Ms Abbie and Mr Matt
July - Le Caveau Blind Tasting of Natural Wines - hosted by Ms Melissa and Mr Les
August - Argentine Wines - hosted by Ms Abbie and Mr Matt
September - Holiday Dinner Wine Pairings - hosted by Ms. Kim and Mr. Alan
October - TWITs GA Winery Tour - TWITs event
November - Cabernet Franc - hosted by Ms Marilyn
December - Languedoc Wines - hosted by Mr Matt and Ms Abbie

January - Syrah - hosted by Ms Jacki & Mr Santi
February - A Red Wine You Love - hosted by Ms Abbie & Mr Matt
March - we ended up postponing February's tasting into March, so we covered both months already.
April - Tomfoolery Tasting - hosted by Ms Jackie & Mr Santiago
May - Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa or Sonoma & Pool Party - hosted by Ms Lynn & Mr Brian
June - La Dolce Vita!  Favorite Italian Wines hosted by Ms Kathy & Mr Jamie
July - German & Austrian Wines - hosted at Le Caveau 
August - Chardonnay - hosted by Ms. Ardella
September - TWITs Takeover Southbound - hosted by Southbound Restaurant
October - Spanish Red Wines - hosted by Ms. Abbie & Mr. Matt
November - Rhone Wines - hosted by Ms. Valerie and Mr. Rheinallt
December - Sparkling Wines- hosted by Ms. Marilyn

January -Winter White Wines - hosted by Ms Abbie & Mr Matt
February - we skipped February
March - Volcanic Wines - hosted by Ms. Karin and Mr. Joshua
April - Eastern European Wines - hosted by Mr Matt and Ms Abbie
May - Loire Valley Wines - hosted by Mr. Rheinallt and Ms. Val
June - Rose - hosted by Mr. Janssen
July - Australian Wines - hosted by Ms Kat and Ms Angela
August - Basque Wines and a Game - hosted by Ms Deb and Mr Jaffet at Le Caveau
September -Red Wines of the Piedmont - hosted by Abbie & Matt
October - we skipped but Abbie had a Serendipitous Encounter with Jancis Robinson!
November - Au Rendezvous Bistro - hosted by Abbie & Matt
December - Oregon "Pick Your Pinot" - hosted by Ms. Marilyn


January - Farewell to Marnie @ Kaleidoscope
February - Greek Wines - hosted by Abbie & Matt
March - White Burgundy Wines - hosted at Le Caveau Fine Wines
April - Uruguay and Brasil: the Overlooked South American Wine Country - co-hosted by Joshua & Karin and Deb & Jaffet
May - Pet-Nat Wines - hosted by Ms. Lauren
June - skipped June
July - Shining Stars Charity Wine Tasting - hosted by Marilyn with Randall & Karen of Marietta Wine Market
August - Albarino - hosted by Abbie & Matt
September - 
October - 
November - 
December - 

Friday, August 26, 2016

TWITs Albarino - August 26th, 2016 - hosted by Abbie & Matt

TWITs Albarino - August 26th, 2016 - hosted by Abbie & Matt

When:  Friday August 26th, 2016 - 7:00pm ET

Theme:  Albarino, a white grape varietal

Bring:  TWITs should bring a bottle of Albarino within the specified price range (Up to $20/bottle for Singles, between $20 - $40/bottle for Couples)

Tasting Notes:

Thursday, June 30, 2016

TWITs June/July - Shining Stars Charity tasting - South African Wines -July 9th, 2016

TWITs June/July - Shining Stars Charity Wine Tasting - South African Wines - Saturday, July 9th, 2016 2pm - 4pm ET

Host or Hostess: Ms Marilyn with Randall & Karen of Marietta Wine Market

Where?  Marietta Wine Market
18 Powder Springs St. SE
Marietta, GA 30064

Theme:  Shining Stars Charity Wine Tasting - Wines of Portugal - whoops surprise!  we thought we were tasting wines of Portugal, but when we arrived it was South African wines. still delicious either way.

Bring: TWITs should bring $20/person for cost of the wines, and any other amount they wish to donate to the charity.

Wines We Tasted:  
2015 David Frost Sauvignon Blanc
2015 Boschendal The Rose Garden Rose (blend of Merlot, Shiraz, and Pinotage)
2012 Brampton Old Vine Red (blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Carignan and Shiraz)
2014 Ruse en Vrede Stellenbosch Merlot
2013 KWV Classic Collection Pinotage

Monday, May 2, 2016

May "Pet-Nat Wines" - hosted by Ms. Lauren

May "Pet-Nat Wines" - hosted by Ms. Lauren

When: Monday May 23rd, 2016 - 7:00pm ET

Theme:  Pet-Nat is a nickname for Petillant Naturel (pet-tay-ahn Nat-tur-rell), or "Methode Ancestrale", a method of producing sparkling wine by bottling the wine during the the primary, alcoholic fermentation to capture the carbon dioxide that is naturally released. This differs from wines like Champagne that undergo a second, bubble-producing fermentation.

Documented by the monks of the Abbey Saint-Hillaire in 1531, Petillant naturel is considered to be the first sparkling wine pre-dating methode champenoise by nearly a century.

Articles about Pet-Nat
What is Pet-Nat Wine ?  An Ancient Winemaking Style on the Rise
Pet-Nat, Champagne's Hip Younger Sister
Pet-Nat, Champagne's Cool Kid Sister is the Bubbly You Want to Party With
Pet-Nat, the Alcoholic Soda of My Dreams

Bring:  Bring a bottle of Pet-Nat wine within the specified price range (Up to $20/bottle for Singles, between $20 - $40/bottle for Couples)

Tasting Notes:

Welcome Wine) 2014 Pet'Sec Les Capriades ~ $28 @ Hintons Savvy Cellars
11% alcohol, made from a majority of Chenin Blanc with a small percentage of Cabernet Franc
green, light grassy nose, almost like urine but in a good way, effervescent pinot grigio-like, filtered, light, not too sweet.

1) 2015 Vitae Springs Vineyard "Minimus" Petillant Natural, Williamette Valley $25.99 @ Le Caveau
12.3% alcohol, 100% Muller Thargau
cidery, cider & wine, dry as a bone, bitters, cloudy, bubbles quickly dissipate, "miller lite left too warm at the poolside", it's gone dull, needs to be ice cold, with mint sprig

2) 2013 Dirty & Rowdy Pet-Nat Pinot Blanc, El Dorado County in Santa Rosa, CA $42.99 @ Le Caveau
11.2% alcohol, 100% Pinot Blanc
sweeter nose, more golden, asian pear kombucha, good pool wine, easy drinking, not a lot of finish, great for summer, serve cold, clear gold color, peachy keen, could be dangerous.

3)  NV Quentin Bourse Le Sot de l'Ange (The Idiot Angel) Azay-le-Rideau La Couture $22.99 @ Le Caveau
biodynamic, 11% alcohol, 100% Grolleau (vines planted in 1954)
I'm a pink owl, lambic, pickle juice, tomato, vinegar, "it's very fruit forward, specifically tomato", fun times, orange/rose color, peachy hue, tart, pickle juice, sweet tart, refreshing, it has character, you're 3rd bottle, watered down kool-aid with pop rocks

4) NV Patrick Bottex "La Cueille" (The Pick) Bugey-Cerdon $15 from
8% alcohol, 90% Gamay, 10% Poulsard
"a million degrees different", foamy, it has good head, a ton more sugar, deep, a fruit basket, too sweet, melon, lots of peaches, watermelon, jolly rancher, "does this come in lite?", get diabetes afterwards, better as a slushy or champagne popsicle, this is a "gas station wine", melted sorbet

5) 2014  Francis Coppola"Sofia" Blanc de Blanc, Monterey County ~ $16 @ Briarcliff Kroger
12% alcohol, Pinot Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscat blend.
foamy gold, clearer, light, harsh, sweet-ish, one-dimensional, bitters on it, mild, starter wine only, if I was out of beer, the "shake-weight" wine.

6) 2014 Pet'Sec Les Capriades ~ $32 @ Brookhaven Wines
11% alcohol, made from a majority of Chenin Blanc with a small percentage of Cabernet Franc
butterscotch, oaky, caramel, I Like It!, tart, vinegar nose, I'm on an emotional roller coaster, mostly downhill, it's morphed, sour, flawed

7) 2014 Eric Texier Rouletabulle Petillant Naturel $24.99 @ Le Caveau
9% alcohol, 100% old vine Chasselas
foamy, effervescent, dry wine, pairs with the avocado/coconut ice cream so well!

8) 2015 Castello Banfi Rose Regale ~ $19 @ Publix
7% alcohol, 100% Brachetto
ruby red, super sweet, strangely also sour, holy moly, pickled strawberries, "a bit of bananar in it", would pair w/chocolate well.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

April 28th - Uruguay and Brasil: the Overlooked South AmericanWineCountry - Co-Hosted by Joshua & Karin and Deb & Jaffet

Uruguay and Brasil: the Overlooked South American Wine Country 
Co-Hosted by Joshua & Karin and Deb & Jaffet

When:  Thursday, April 28th, 2016 7:00 pm ET

Uruguay and Brasil: the Overlooked South American Wine Country

Bring:  TWITs pay $20/person to cover the cost of the wine.

How to say Cheers in Uruguay or Brasil:  Saude!  (Pronounced Sa-OOO-Gee)

South America possesses more vines and makes more wine than any continent except Europe. The wine was not up to international standards until things began to change in the last quarter of the twentieth century. Chile was first to export, Argentina makes more wine and Brazil is third but a sleeper.

When they opened their markets to import it became obvious to the locals that the imported wine was a higher quality. They began to invest in equipment and hired oenologists.

The most important producers have started moving south, developing the Campanha (Fronteira) on the Uruguayan border.  (Wikipedia)

Map of Uruguay and Brasil vineyards, whose wine we tasted

Flag of Brasil and map

Brazil (Brasil): The climatic diversity typical of a continental country and creativity of the Brazilian people, known for their ability to reinvent everything, have led the country to develop a completely original vitiviniculture. The European tradition, brought to Brazil by thousands of immigrants in the 19th Century, coupled with investments in innovation, also contributed to the construction of this unique character.

Each region developed their specialty, preparing labels with culture, typicity and their own features. In common, they show the freshness of a young industry, consisting of small producers (on average two hectares per family), who make light fruity wines with moderate alcohol content. This style, which has the real spirit of Brazil, has been discovered and increasingly admired around the world.

Brazil is currently the fifth largest producer of wine in the southern hemisphere and it is certainly one of the fastest growing markets in the world. There are over 1,100 wineries across the country, companies that have been gaining a reputation for the development of high quality labels, with special emphasis on sparkling wines. Both those made through the champenoise method and the light and aromatic ones made from Moscato grape have received numerous compliments from international critics. The secret lies in the outstanding balance of acidity shown by the grapes grown in the country.

Brazilian wine (made from Syrah, Gamay and Tempranillo) was chosen as one of the official labels of the event, an anticipation of the success that the Brazilian wine industry will have when the country hosts the next Olympics in 2016 and the 2014 World Cup. (Snooth)

Inspired by the search for identity and excellence of Brazilian wine and committed to develop only premium and top premium wines.
Lidio Carraro Boutique Winery entered the market breaking paradigms. With a Purist philosophy and rescue the essence and integrity of the wine, the whole process of Lidio Carraro is conducted with minimal interference and maximum respect to the natural expression of the grape and terroir of origin, developing unique wines which reflect the 'Pure Wine' concept that requires much knowledge, sensitivity and only the best row material.
Lidio Carraro is a pioneer in the country to deploy an integrated vineyard management and winemaking, which begins with a careful study of clones and soil mapping, strict production control, until receipt by gravity and grape wine of great wines without the use of wood.

A dash of history
Millions of native Brazilians lived in the area for thousands of years prior to the landing in 1500 of a Portuguese sailor, Pedro Alvares Cabral, who claimed the land for Portugal. His real purpose was to reach India to load his ship with spices, silk, and some other valuables. 
Lusitanian settlers migrated to coastal sections of Brazil, and a lot of them cultivated sugar cane. Over 4 million Africans arrived to Brazil between 1550 and 1850, as slaves to grow and process the sugar cane. 
After sugar cane, farmers grew coffee which continues to be an all-important crop nowadays. The national language is still Portuguese. (Wikipedia)

 Flag of Uruguay and map

Uruguay is considered the fourth most successful wine producing country in South America behind Chile, Argentina and Brazil. Its rise to prominence is based on the inky French grape, Tannat (pronounced Tuh-NOT, as in "To Be or To Not"), known for its high tannin levels, hence its name. 

Tannat, the main grape of the Madiran, was brought over by Basque-French immigrant Pascual Harriague in 1870. (Decendants of the original cuttings still exist and are known as “Harriague.”) The grape proved perfectly suited to Uruguay’s sunny, but wet climate. It is produced in many examples of excellent dry red wines as well as a late harvest desert wine, that somehow tames the tannins into rich, sweet cocoa flavors. 

Other varietals grown in Uruguay are for reds: Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Syrah. Whites: Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and some instances. (Snooth)

Tasting Notes:
NOTE:  It was difficult to source all of the wines at a retail store, so prices are approximate, as they were sourced (at times) from various distributers, etc.

1) Uruguay - 2013 Vinedo de Los Vientos 'Estival' White Blend - $24
12.5% alcohol, 60% Gewurtztraminer 30% Chardonnay  10% Moscato Bianco
thicker wine, viscous, acidic, 

2) Brasil - NV Salton, Flowers, Serra Gaucha Brazil - $17

11% alcohol, 70% Moscato, 25% Malvasia, 5% Gewurtztraminer
florals, honey, green apple, light wine, residual sugar, pear, white grape, a good Summer Pool wine.

3) Uruguay - 2012, 1752 Gran Tradicion Petit Manseng Sauvignon Gris $17 @ Brookhaven Wines

14.5% alcohol Blend of Petit Manseng and Sauvignon Gris
funky start, viscous, thick, syrupy, pear, rotten melon, marmalade, spread on tart, pair with food, earthy, apricot, dried fruites, dessert-like, peppermint on the end/spice burn, almost like menthol, 

4) Uruguay - 2014 Bodegas Carrau, Sauvignon Blanc $17

13% alcohol
cumin, grapefruit, acidic, menthol, dry, sweet tart, unbalanced, licorice 

5) Uruguay - 2014 Bodega Garzon, Albarino $20 @ Whole Foods

12.5% alcohol
light on the nose, white flowers, light, acidity, (nose is better than the palate), white peach pith, pear, 

6) Uruguay - 2014 Pisano Pinot Noir $15ish @ Total Wine

13.5% alcohol
hazelnut, mossy, oaky, scrub brush, white pepper, very spicy hot, barrel burnt, ash

7) Uruguay - 2012 Bodegas Carrau, Pinot Noir de Reserva $16

13% alcohol
fresh cut grass, rubbing alcohol on after-palate, tart, pucker

8) Brasil - Salton, Pinot Noir, Serra Gaucha Brazil $15

13.5% alcohol
tar, charcoal, burnt bacon, black pepper, charcoal past the burnt, super fruity, no earthy-ness
This was my personal favorite of the reds.

9) Brasil - 2013 Lidio Carraro Merlot Agnus $12.59 

13.5% alcohol
chemical, formaldehyde, pine sol, cola, root beer, fart in a sanitized doctor's office, burnt flavor, forest funk, septic, poopy, nice palate but the nose is nearly unbearable, recommend pairing with something gamey or fatty (like a marbled steak) 

10) Brasil - Salton, Cabernet Sauvignon, Serra Gaucha Brazil $15

13% alcohol
a perfect cab, dry, leathery, dark fruit, pepper, 

11) Uruguay - 2011 Vinedo de Los Vientos 'Eolo' Gran Reserva $29

14.5% alcohol, 85% Tannat 15% Ruby Cabernet - 3 yrs in barrel
Eolo means "God of the Winds" - herbal, earthy, cocoa, black licorice, eucalyptus, chocolate

12) Uruguay - 2009 Bodegas Carrau, AMAT Tannat $25

13% alcohol - aged 7 years - 10 hours breathing time before we tasted it
subtle nose, caramel, viscous, dry, pucker, chewy, has grip, cherries

13) Uruguay - 2013 Tannat Pisano winery $21ish
13% alcohol
burnt caramel, rubber, syrah-like, strawberry, sweet tarts

14) Uruguay - N/V Vinedo de Los Vientos "Alcyone" Tannat Dessert Wine 500ml $42 @ Le Caveau

16% alcohol
delicious, krispy kreme donuts, burnt sugar, frosting, molasses, raspberry cream sauce, lemon bars, 


Brasil - Romeu y Julieta (guava paste & cheese) 
Uruguay - Martín Fierro (quince paste & cheese)

Recipes usually evolve over a long period of time, but today we explore a recipe that one man changed forever. In the late 19th century, José Hernández wrote stories about gauchos, freedom, and love from his home, in Argentina. Gauchos are like the equivalent of the American cowboy: men who’s spirits are forever roaming.His most famous character was Martin Fierro (so famous, in fact, that when the author, Hernández, died, the people announced that Martin Fierro had died, too). Though his stories spoke to the people, he spent much of his life as an exile in Uruguay.
As much a creature of habit as any other man, the author became known for ordering the same dessert – one that reminded him of home, but that also celebrated the local ingredients in Uruguay:


He always ordered a certain dessert modeled on the popular Argentinian sweet known as Vigilante, which consisted of slices of cheese and sweet-potato paste. The dessert’s curious name derived from the eighteenth- and nineteenth-century policemen who ate cheese with sweet- potato paste because it was cheap and easy to carry. However, in Uruguay, quince paste, rather than sweet-potato paste, was eaten with cheese, and this is the combination that Hernández enjoyed. As a famous activist for gauchos’ rights and author of the beloved Martín Fierro, Hernández’s every move was observed. News of his preference for the Uruguayan version of Vigilante quickly spread throughout the country, and soon the combination of cheese and quince paste was named Martín Fierro in his honor.  (Peregrina Gourmet)

Grilled Radishes and Bell Peppers (locally sourced from a CA)

Grilled cabbage and snow peas (locally sourced)

Beef Skewers and yummy sauce

Pão de Queijo - Brasílian cheesy bread

Pascualina - Uruguayan Spinach Pie

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Winderlea Tasting with Bill Sweat at Le Caveau

Winderlea Tasting with Bill Sweat at Le Caveau - Thursday, 03/31/2016