Wine Review: 2014 Hot To Trot Red Blend, 14 Hands Winery

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Craziest thing, I could swear I already wrote this review – like three weeks ago- but, seeing as how I can’t find it anywhere in my drafts or on this blog, I guess I just made that part up.

Wine consumption may or may not affect my memory and cognitive skills.

Hot To Trot is supposed to be their (14 Hands) smooth red blend. And it is, and it’s good, except this one part. There is something about all of their reds, a subtle quality that I can’t tell if it’s a smell or a taste, but it’s a little sumptin’ sumptin’ that is off-putting. I don’t know how else to describe it or if anyone else even experiences it. Maybe it’s just me and my funky wine genome.

Hot To Trot would otherwise be an excellent red blend were it not for this mysteriously subtle flavor of…. ashes from Mt. Saint Helens, fish head fertilizer, the pH of the soil… Heck, I have no idea what it could be but the first time I noticed it, I thought it was probably a fluke. Here it is again though so probably not a fluke.

Maybe it’s just the way the Columbia Valley tastes.

13.5% alcohol and better if you let it sit for a while.

Still funky though.

Wine Review: 2014 Riesling, 14 Hands Winery

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It had been a long time since we tried a Riesling so I decided give 14 Hands another shot. What can I say? I’m a sucker for wine that has horses on the label.

Interesting factoid: a “hand” is a unit measurement equal to 4 inches and this is how we measure the height of horses. Measuring from the ground to the top of the withers, we say that a horse is x number of hands tall. What is special about the measurement of 14 hands is that it is the diving line between a horse and a pony. Under 14 hands is a pony and over 14 hands is a horse.

Another interesting factoid is that 14 Hands Winery is located in Washington State. I can’t help but wonder if my friend, Kricket, who does not like the taste of California, would favor the taste of Washington?

So anyway, back to the wine.

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I read somewhere that the taste of wine, Riesling in particular, will change in accordance to the music that is being played. The blogger conducting the experiment was using classical music and concluded that, while everyone else in the room thought she was crazy, her Riesling really did taste better when she listened to Mozart.

Well, I dunno about that so I decided to conduct my own experiment.

First up, enjoying my Riesling with Pearl Jam Unplugged.

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First impressions: this Riesling is pretty good, very crisp with lots of apple flavor.

When Xavier and I first started buying wine, I was totally clueless, but he said that he liked Riesling so that’s what we got. It was one of the segues that lead to our new hobby.

Wine is fine with Pearl Jam.

But…

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How would it be with Gillian Welch?

My honest opinion is that it was better with Gillian Welch. It is also no secret that I favor Gillian Welch over Pearl Jam in personal preference.

As for why this is, well, the science is subjective at best but I have some theories.

Ever heard of Masaru Emoto?

He conducted experiments on how water reacts to various types of stimuli like praying to it, saying nice or mean things to it, and even playing music for it. He would then freeze the water and photograph the ice crystals.

Sure enough, water from the same source would produce distinctly different crystals in accordance to the stimuli that it was exposed to.

Please check out the link above to see how the water was affected by different types of music.

Now, before you go assuming that Pearl Jam is just a lot of hard rock music so of course it would cause the water to be in a state of disarray, I would also like to point out that Gillian Welch will never write the feel good song of the summer. Most of her stuff is pretty dark in it’s own way.

In any case, wine is mostly water and so are you and I. It makes sense that one of the reasons why we would like a certain type of music or a particular artist is because of a harmonious connection between our dominant state and the vibration of the music. If the wine was also moving and grooving in a harmonious vibration it only seems natural that we interpret it as tasting better.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

 

Wine Review: 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, 14 Hands Winery

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On a Sunday afternoon, Xavier and I went to lunch at a local restaurant called La Paz. It’s right up the street from our all time fave, Cacique, and we thought it would be fun to try a new place.

We thought wrong.

La Paz is why restaurants outside of New Mexico should not serve food they don’t understand.  Additionally, the service was terrible. It took an hour to get our food and the food we finally got was mediocre at best.

Speaking of mediocre, the wine list was also laughable. Featuring such fine selections as Sutter Home White Zinfandel and Bare Foot Pinot Noir, I seriously considered just ordering an iced tea but then I saw one choice that looked promising: 14 Hands Cabernet Sauvignon.

I had never tried it but I knew that 14 Hands wine usually cost more than $6 at the store so it was the creme de la creme so to speak.

This glass of wine was quite delightful and, were it not for it’s presence, we probably would have left when the waiter came to apologize for the 45 minute wait, explaining that the kitchen had sent our food to the wrong table, and promising that our lunch would be delivered eventually.

Despite the underwhelming nature of the restaurant, I really did enjoy the wine so I decided to get a bottle of my very own.

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I wish this story got better but, well, it kinda doesn’t.

There was something amiss about the bottle I bought. While it generally tasted alright, it smelled weird.

Perhaps I should rephrase. I thought it smelled weird.  Xavier said, “That’s what Cabernet Sauvignon smells like.”

He thought it smelled fine.

Oddly enough, I thought it tasted alright just as long as I didn’t sniff the top of the bottle. Overall though, I liked the wine I had in the restaurant better than the bottle I brought home.

The restaurant wine was dark and smooth, very full bodied and pleasantly woody with a good amount of oak.

Maybe I got a dud bottle. I’m sure it happens from time to time.