We've been having an odd winter here in San Francisco. Up until a few days ago it seemed like we had completely skipped winter and moved straight into Spring. All of the plants around here are confused. They had begun to bud and grow, and now they're getting buffeted by rain and cold winds. Go figure. Regardless of whether we're actually going to get one, we're barreling towards Spring, and with spring in San Francisco comes lots of wine tasting events, and a few really good ones.
The Annual Rhone Rangers Tasting in San Francisco is certainly one of the spring highlights for wine lovers in the Bay Area. Held at Fort Mason, like many of the other big tastings, Rhone Rangers offers the chance for wine lovers to taste through a vast field of Syrah, Grenache, Viognier, and many other varietals and blends that fall under the general banner of Rhone-style wines.
I adore these wines, and this is always a great tasting event. I highly recommend it to anyone, especially those that might be stuck in a Cabernet rut (or a Merlot, Chardonnay, or Sauvignon Blanc rut for that matter). There's a lot more out there in the wine world, and this tasting will provide a heck of an education to anyone looking to explore alternatives to such varieties.
And of course, for those who are crazy for Rhone-style wines, then there's a whole weekend of activities, including two seminars and a winemaker dinner on Saturday, and of course the grand tasting on Sunday morning. Complete details can be found on the event web site.
How about a couple of free tickets? Let's run a little contest here. I want Rhone limericks. Come up with a limerick, and you'll get a chance to win a free ticket to the grand tasting. I'll pick two names out of a hat from those who enter. Here's a refresher on the rhyme form:
There once was a wine from the Rhone
Who hated to be all alone
He dreamed of recitals
With multiple varietals
And so got Chateauneuf on the phone.
Take your best shot by March 17th (why did he choose that day, I wonder?) and we'll give away a couple of tickets.
2011 Rhone Rangers Grand Tasting
Sunday, March 25th
2:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Fort Mason Festival Pavilion
Buchanan Street and Marina Blvd
San Francisco, CA
Tickets to the grand tasting are $45 in advance (a $15 drop from last year), and should be purchased online. Use the promo code SDKGT312 when you register to get $5 off the grand tasting or use promo code SDKWP312 to save a total of $60 off the combination ticket if you're up for the full weekend of events.
And remember my tips for optimum enjoyment at public tastings: wear dark, comfortable clothes; get a good night's sleep; come with food in your belly; drink lots of water; and SPIT !
A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.
Wine and Beauty Explained San Francisco's Lost Sommeliers Finding Pirate Treasure With a Corkscrew Vinography Unboxed: Week of March 1, 2015 Vinography Images: Sonoma Spring Siduri Wines: Rewarding the Search for Flavor Vinography Unboxed: Week of February 22, 2015 Vinography Images: Frost and Fog The Glory of 2013 Napa Cabernet: Tasting Premiere Napa Valley A Dose of Claret: Visiting With 2010 Bordeaux
Wine Will Never Smell the Same Again: Luca Turin and the Science of Scent Forlorn Hope: The Remarkable Wines of Matthew Rorick Debating Robert Parker At His Invitation Passopisciaro Winery, Etna, Sicily: Current Releases Should We Care What Winemakers Say? The Sweet Taste of Freedom: Austria's Ruster Ausbruch Wines 2009 Burgundy Vintage According to Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Charles Banks: The New Man Behind Mayacamas Wine from the Caldera: The Incredible Viticulture of Santorini Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Chateau Rayas and the 2012 Vintage of Chateauneuf-du-Pape A Life Indomitable: The Wines of Casal Santa Maria, Portugal Bay Area Bordeaux: Tasting Santa Cruz Mountain Cabernets Forgotten Jewels: Reviving Chile's Old Vine Carignane The First-Timer's Guide to Les Trois Glorieuses of Hospices de Beaune