Sunday, August 23, 2015

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:  

Saturday August 22nd 3p-5p - A Gamey TWITs hosted by Ms. Deb and Mr. Jaffet at Le Caveau
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 - 
August - A Gamey TWITs - hosted by Ms Deb and Mr Jaffet at Le Caveau
September -
October - 
November -

December - 

Saturday, August 22, 2015

A Gamey TWITs hosted by Ms. Deb and Mr. Jaffet at Le Caveau on August 22nd 2015

A Gamey TWITs hosted by Ms. Deb and Mr. Jaffet at Le Caveau on Saturday August 22nd, 2015 3p-5p ET.

TWITs need to bring $20 each to cover the cost of the wine tasting.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Rose' - June 19th - hosted by Mr Janssen

Rose' - June 19th - hosted by Mr Janssen

About: " Rose, is a type of wine that has some of the color typical of a red wine, but only enough to turn it pink. The pink color can range from a pale orange to a vivid near-purple, depending on the grapes and wine making techniques." NOTE:  Rose is not the same thing as White Zinfandel.

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

Food Pairings: Vino For Dinner site says"Roses are nick-named a summertime "patio" wine, as they are refreshing on warm summer days and are lower in alcohol, which makes them easy to drink. They are a great party wine, as they can have broad appeal (not too sweet and not too heavy)... Rose is a versatile wine that pairs well with shellfish and can stand up to a bit of spice. "

Tasting Notes:
Welcome Wines (yes plural)
NV Louis Perdrier Brut Rose, Cote D'Or 11.5% alcohol ~ $10
NV Charles Bove Brut Touraine Cuvee Reserve, Montrichard Loir et Cher 12% alcohol ~ $20

1)  2012 Wolf Mountain Brut Rose ~$25 @ Wolf Mountain Winery
12.5% alcohol
light pink color, sauerkraut finish, sour nose, crisp, wow, sickly strawberries, minerally, strawberry fields, light, after I eat bell pepper it smells like chocolate, latex balloon, whoopee cushion, rubber

2)  2013 Bandol Rose $46 @ Le Caveau
11-14% alcohol (doesn't say)
melted cheap chocolate nose, tar, smoke, charcoal, minerally, less limestony, finish dies on the palate, sugar, caramelized onion, sour-y nose, tastes like fire, rhubarb pie, salami, bitter finish, odd finish, flat, paint thinner, guessing Cotes Du Rhone Grenache, Mina likes it, most do not, not sparkly, after tasting cheese it smelled like dried hay.

3) 2014 Domaine Andre Neveu Sancerre $22 @ Le Caveau
12.5% alcohol
mushrooms, lovely, perfumey, musty, tea roses, floral on palate, Marilyn  likes it, has some age on it, more substance, depth, balanced, light, Rh guesses Pinot Noir, no aftertaste, sophisticated, you can see yourself on a porch, on a beach, or a moon, drinking this one, Grandmas house, acidic, vibrant, similar to a Sauvignon Blanc, low country water, grandma's closet, but good, light/orange pink color, burnt sugar but not sweet

4)  2014 Domaine Dupeuble Pere et Fils Beaujolais $15 @ Le Caveau
12% alcohol
candy pink color, might be a white zin, strawberry, dissipates quickly, easy to drink, fuzzy peach smell, nice finish, nice viscosity, fuzzy peach smell, easy to drink, perfect for the pool, better cold, soho cup, horsiness, Mr. Ed, Rh guessed Gamay correctly!

5) 2014 Chateau Puech-Haut Saint Drezery "Tete de Belier" $40 @ PH Wine Merchant
13.5% alcohol
stanky, bubble gum, cheap after shave, teen spirit, perm solution, ammonia, honey palate, reminds me of lipstick on a pig, more like pig on lipstick, Wilbur from Charlotte's Web, too cloy, Languedoc ?

6) 2014 Chateau Puech-Haut Saint Drezery "Prestige" $20 @ PH Wine Merchant
13% alcohol
Val likes this one, no nose tastes amazing, light, more acidity, melon, musk melon, it was good, I want six more please, forgettable, generic, not the Natalie Cole, smooth and easy to drink

7) 2014 Round Pond Estate Proprietary Nebbiolo, Napa $24
14.6% alcohol
cloudy turbidity, bazon-gas joke, tart, peachy, fresh, apricot, apple juice, lime and lemon, sprite without bubbly, tastes good with almonds, Mina likes this one, I want my sweet and unsullied,

8) 2013 Clos Roche Blanche Touraine, Loire $24.99 @ Le Caveau
12% alcohol
grapefruit, orange peel that lasts, pepper, possibly volcanic soil, Matt guesses Syrah from Northern Rhone, Rh says Jura or Sicily, good with chocolate, smoky, like a cured sausage, hard salami, really complex, "this sh*t is amazeballs" bloody mary

9) 2013 Chateau Cantelaudette Bordeaux 
12.5% alcohol
butter, smells like f*cking butter, diacetyl, tossin' butter, wankin' butter, simple, doesn't last, for the pool or boat, pepper

10) 2014 Feudi Di San Gregario Ros'Aura , Campania $18 @ Savor in Kirkland
13% alcohol
no nose, Tyrion, amazing, yum, very light, melon, subtle, delicious

Friday, May 15, 2015

Loire Valley Wines - Friday May 15th, 2015 - hosted by Val & Rheinallt

Loire Valley Wines - Friday May 15th, 2015 - hosted by Val & Rheinallt

Theme: Loire Valley Wines

Bring:  TWITs should bring $20 / person to cover the cost of the wines.  Our host and hostess will be hand-selecting the wines for us.


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Eastern European Wines - April 16th, 2015 - hosted by Mr Matt and Ms Abbie

Eastern European Wines - April 16th, 2015 - hosted by Mr Matt and Ms Abbie

Theme:  Eastern European Wines - We will do our usual blind tasting method.

Eastern Europe is everything east of Germany, Austria, and Italy:  Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Belarus, Poland, Ukraine, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Moldova, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia, Albania,   (We will throw Greece & Turkey in there as well for TWITs purposes.)

Bring:  TWITs should bring a bottle of Eastern European Wine.  It can be a single varietal or a blend, but within the specified price range (Up to $20/bottle for Singles, between $20 - $40/bottle for Couples). * we later found that it is not easy to find "expensive" Eastern European wines.  Most bottles were under $20 each.

Why are Eastern European Wines so affordable?
Countries in Eastern Europe have some of the oldest winemaking traditions in the world.  From the oldest vine in Slovenia, to the ancient techniques, such as the use of Kvevri’s* in Georgia, the East provides that heady mix of the exotic and incredible history.  Relatively still unknown in many countries, the wines form these regions are diverse.
Many of the Eastern European countries had thriving wine industries prior to 1991.  Bulgaria, for example exported the cheap stuff to the Soviet Union and the good rustic reds to the West, especially to Britain.  However, the Wine producing countries paid a heavy price for Gorbachev’s attempts to sober up the Russians.   He literally “pulled the rug out from under” the Eastern European wine exports.  In 1986 Gorbachev started a campaign against the over consumption of alcohol in the USSR.   He raised prices for Vodka, wine, and beer.  Wine production halved between 1985 and 1990 as incentives to grow and tend vines melted away.  Gorbachev’s ambitious plan served as a huge blow to the economy, cutting both alcohol sales and government revenues.  There are many difficulties facing winemakers both before and after the end of Communism: corruption; the haphazard redistribution of vineyard land to private owners with no wine-making experience; an absence of properly trained local winemakers; a general absence of money.  It will take time for the wine industry to get back on its feet.  There were already the beginnings of a recovery thanks to entrepreneurial winemakers who were aware that parts of Bulgaria and Romania had the climate and soils to make high quality wine and at considerably lower cost than elsewhere in Europe. They were also conscious that both countries were likely to join the EU, saw an opportunity and began to embark on the complicated process of buying up vineyard land.  Today however, things are looking better and better.  Eastern Europe’s winemaking is taking an upward turn.  Let’s have a taste!

Kvevri – is a large earthenware vessel originally from Georgia in the Caucasus dating back to about 8000 BC.  It has an inside coat of beeswax, and resembles an amphora without handles, and is used for the fermentation and storage of wine.  Often it is buried below ground level or set into floors of large wine cellars.  

Tokaji - the wine named after the town of Tokaj (and once called Tokay outside Hungary), was in its time the world's greatest sweet white wine, made from nobly rotten grapes as early as 1650 according to local history - long before botrytised wines were recorded in Sauternes and the Rheingau, the birthplace of such wines in Germany.  The main ingredients are Hárslevelű and, especially, Furmint, with some Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains (Sárgamuskotály) grapes. The local conditions around the 27 Tokaj villages in this very protected corner of middle Europe are such that in a good year the best are affected by noble rot, here called aszú, and can reach exceptional sugar levels. (As in Sauternes, a confluence of rivers encourages morning mists.) They range from dry to quite extraordinarily sweet with the following descriptions: Szamorodni (in which there is no selective picking of grapes affected by noble rot), dry or sweet; then Aszú 3, 4, 5 or 6 Puttonyos, 6 being the sweetest. (A puttonyo is the traditional hod used as a measure for the sweet grape paste, made from pulverised botrytised grapes, added to wine made from unaffected grapes before a slow second fermentation, though the timing of this addition may vary.) Eszencia is very rare grape sugar essence - a grape syrup really - made from the tiny amount of free-run juice from the botrytised grapes that are used to make Aszú paste. Because its sugar content is so high, yeasts can work only at a snail's pace and these wines continue to ferment in cask for many a year. These were the sort of wines which made Tokaji's reputation as an elixir of life and love. The final ingredient in Tokaji's extraordinary character is that in its traditional guise, it is aged rather like sherry, under a film of local yeast, in barrels partly filled, in strange underground caverns lined with mould like black felt and signalled only by the low doorways hollowed out of the small hills of the Tokaj region. Some producers now make their wines in a less oxidative, more modern, style and there is much debate as to which style or exact method of winemaking is more traditional or desirable.
Tasting Notes:
Welcome Wine: 2012 Peneca Rebula Colliano, Slovenia, Primorska region - $15.99 @ Sherlocks Wine Merchant Brookhaven
100% Ribolla Gialla (aka: Rebula)
12.5% alcohol
This was a delicious, refreshing, sparkling wine.

1) 2011 Movia Rebula Ribolla Ceglo, Slovenia - $34.99 @ Le Caveau Fine Wines
100% Ribolla Gialla, 13% alcohol
nose: orchids, astringent, nectar, a big bouquet of flowers, a nice Senior Citizen home, spring flowers, palate: viscous on the mouth, dry, not too sweet, clings to your tongue like an apple juice, lingering finish, but not too long. easy to drink.  Tropical fruit, lychee

2) 2012 Legacy Pinot Noir, Romania - $8.99 @ Your DeKalb Farmers Market
100% Pinot Noir, 12% alcohol
chocolate, cacao, easy drinking for beginners, dry at first but has a very sweet finish, a bit too sweet, fruity wine, cranberry bitterness, "I'd be very nice if someone served me this wine", "I'll cook with it later", several TWITs dumped this one.

3) 2013 Kobal Family Blaufrankisch, Slovenia Bottle 2413 of 9000 ~ $20 @ Le Caveau
100% Blaufrankisch, 13% alcohol
bell pepper, butter, perfumey, bitter lemons, something greeny, herbacious, cabbage, sauerkraut ("not mine though", says Mina), nice acidic finish, pepper nose, made in traditional method, live yogurt, astringent, banana pepper

4) 2010 Domaine Costa Lazaridi, Amethystos, Adriani Drama Greece - $21.99 @ Toco Giant
Blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Agiorgitiko, 14.5% alcohol
octopus, fruit forward, full bodied, bitter, peppery, pulling moisture out of my teeth, very dry, jammy, needs something oily to pair with it, not for beginners, slap your sausage on the berries, I love it!

5) 2010 Plantaze, Vranac, Lake Skadar Valley, Montenegro ~ $20 @ Sherlocks Wine Merchant Brookhaven, 100% Vranac, 13.5%
spicy finish, not much nose, bitter palate

6) 2008 Protopapas Syrah, Athanasios, Greece, Pageon Regional Red Dry Wine, Demos Orfanou, Kavala  - $11.99 @ Your DeKalb Farmers Market
100% Syrah, 13.5% alcohol
ammonia, perm solution, smells of French Oak, spicy on the tongue, peppery, smooth, bitter chocolate, dry, makes your mouth dry, dry as a bone
We suggest retasting as it needs to open up.

7) 2012 Peloponnese, Boutari Elios, Greece, Mediterranean Red - $9.99 @ Your DeKalb Farmers Market
40% Agiorgitiko, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Syrah, 13.5% alcohol
smells sweet, but it is dry, honey nose, butterscotch, the finish is subtly dry, not puckery, dry in the back palate, chocolate hints, caramel, pepper

8) 2013 Boutari Kretikos, Crete, Greece - $11.79 @ Your DeKalb Farmers Market
60% Kotsifali, 40% Mandilaria, 12.5% alcohol
nose of the sea, speared shark, shellfish, ocean, smells like a salty breeze, interesting nose, mild perfume, it went to my nose and cleared my nose, lighter, summery, not as dry, easy to drink, we like it, the nose makes me want to relax, simple and easy, salt and sea breeze, might be good with oysters, a crowd pleaser!  

9) 2012 Egri Bikaver, Hungary - $8.99 @ Minks
12% alcohol
nose of iron, smells bloody, cucumber, whore's lipstick, soil.

Egri Bikaver (aka: “Bulls Blood of eger) is Hungary’s most famous red wine blend.  Officially Egri Bikavér must contain at least three of the following 13 grapes: Kadarka, Kékfrankos, Blauer Portugieser (Kékoportó), Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Menoire (known as Kékmedoc, or Médoc noir before), Pinot noir, Syrah, Turán, Bíborkadarka and the modern Austrian crossings, Blauburger and Zweigelt.
In 2004 a new level, Egri Bikavér Superior was introduced. In this case, at least 5 out of the 13 recommended varieties must be used and also a lower yield must be applied (maximum 60 hl/ha). It needs to age at least 12 months in wooden cask and 6 months in bottle before releasing on the market. Regulations on the composition of the blend, the wine making technology and minimum alcohol level also differs from normal Egri Bikavér. All those regulations are aiming for an overall higher quality wine.

10) 3/6/2010 Dolna Banya Winery, Bloody Bull, Egri Bikaver, Bulgaria - $7.69 @ Your DeKalb Farmers Market, 10.5% alcohol
honey nose, coca cola nose, cranberry, herbal tea, liquer 

11) Zadar Maraska Cherry Wine, Croatia, Adriatic coast, Kosher - $10 @ Whole Foods
14% alcohol (28 proof)
super sweet nose, cough syrup, wedding cake, cinnamon, apple jam, something Mina's Grandmother would drink with her friends after coffee, "that cherry crap was awesome with espresso"
(we did try it in espresso and it made it so much better).

12) 2013 Dr. Heidemanns-Bergweiler, Pinot Noir, Mosel, Germany - $15 @ Total Wine
100% Pinot Noir, 12% alcohol
sour apple, old cherry, compared to candy its sour, decent, not remarkable, dry

REFERENCES for articles:
** It is EXTREMELY hard to find any info on Latvian wines or varietals.
1. University of KY
2. Wines of the Balkans
4. The Wines of Eastern Europe  - Jancis Robinson
5. Bulgaria, Romania, and the new wave of wine - - David Williams
6. Blog “What I Like About This Wine” - he has several entries on Eastern Europe with videos and photos of his travels to various regions there.
7. Bulgaria and Romania, new wave of wine -