Cheers To You

An exploration of all things wine with local wine expert Mary Earl.
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Posts Tagged ‘Mike Januik’

What we’re drinking: Novelty Hill 2008 Roussanne

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

Brynn writes:

Here’s a tasty winter white wine for you. Produced by Washington winemaker Mike Januik, this white Rhone grape varietal has quickly become one of my favorite.

Add Januik’s winemaking touch and you’ve got a winner. I bought this wine at the winery in Woodinville after tasting it there, but I’ve seen it in our local grocery stores/wine shops.

At first whiff you could be inclined to think you’re about to try a chardonnay, but don’t let the nose or warm yellow color fool you.

We drank this wine Sunday night with stuffed acorn squash and a garlic seasoned brown rice and quinoa mix. The finish at first left the impression of white grape juice, but the more I let it linger the more I noticed the sweet honeysuckle notes. I also tasted peaches and pear.

Here’s what Januik has to say about his Roussanne:

Vibrant and expressive with wild honeysuckle, juicy melon and fresh citrus aromas and flavors that linger across a lengthy, refreshing finish.

What I like about this wine is it provides crisp citrus notes, but also a medium body that gives some weight to the wine. The wine is aged sur lie for 10 months (which means the discarded yeast cells during fermentation stay in the juice, giving it a rounded mouth) and barrel fermented in neutral French oak. Only a small number of cases were produced, meaning some good TLC went into making this wine.

The grapes are handpicked from Stillwater Creek vineyard — the family vineyard — and fermented in small batches. I believe the price range is below $20.


What we’re drinking: Snow?

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Brynn writes:

As I write this, I have no idea if the weather predictions will be correct for Wednesday, but if they are many of us could be seeing a whole lot of snow falling from the sky.

So instead of posting about what we’re drinking, I thought I’d see what you all are drinking (or plan to be drinking) to stay warm this afternoon/evening. I’m hoping you have nowhere to go in this crazy snowstorm and can instead curl up by the fire with a good glass of your favorite vin.

If I could drink right now I’d probably either go for a glass of the Treana White Rhone blend — a great winter white with rich body and warm mouthfeel — or Washington winemaker Mike Januik’s Novelty Hill Rousanne, another full-bodied white varietal from France’s Rhone Valley.

If my power happened to be out (fingers crossed that doesn’t happen), I’d probably be craving a glass of mulled wine instead, to keep me warm. While it’s easier to throw some mulling spices in a sauce pan simmering with a not too expensive Merlot or Cab, if the power were out I’d have to get resourceful and dig out our backpacking stove to heat it.

So fellow wine lovers, what say you about your choice of wine for a snow day?


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