Love Wine

I love wine. I love love. I luxuriate in pink things and hearts and red roses. Please don’t revoke my goth card. We have souls too. Lost ones, perhaps, but a good wine will help anyone find their way. As a single person who luxuriates in me-time, I feel odd recommending wines to perpetuate the idea that we NEED love. But we sort of do. Need love. Us humans. Perhaps it is power of persuasion, but I am inclined to tap in to wines with love-themed names. I get drawn into romance. I tell myself that THIS is a wine I can share with a lover, a friend I love, or myself in the name of self-care. Also, I literally stopped an argument with my last boyfriend one night by revealing that I’d brought a bottle of Stolpman’s Love You bunches for the two of us. He was a writer too, so maybe equally susceptible to a well-named wine. But after being ruined for bad wine, having spent enough time with me, he knew the Stolpman quality was on point too. The goal of this is to share my love wines whose insides I love as much as the name. Before getting to my hyper-recent tastings, and what sort of date they pair with, there’s a few wines I will point you towards based on past experience and reputation. Ones that I’ve had on my love radar but didn’t manage to procure the latest bottlings. If you can, I thoroughly implore you to do so and drink them for me: - Calon-Segur : third growth Bordeaux with an iconic heart on the label - Anything from Burgundy’s Les Amoureuses : okay I haven’t tasted this premier cru, but I dream, and the name fits - Any wine from St. Amour, the cru Beaujolais appellation : the Saint of love? Come on! - Paul Achs Lust & Leben :a red blend from Austria…and LUST! - Maison Noir Love Drunk Rosé : Oregon delight and love is the best sort of drunk - Broc Love Red : just fabulous - Stolpman Vineyards Love You Bunches : it comes as Carbonic Sangiovese , rosé , and now orange too , the last of which reminds me that skin contact wine is great for a hot date. Ahem. AND NOW! Here’s my latest love-wine findings and what sort of Valentine they are for. And at the end of it all—I’ll reveal the official Elle Clifford Shower Wine (thinking of trademarking ECSW) for Valentines. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ IT’S PROBABLY JUST PHEROMONES WHO CARES Sometimes you just want to give into someone even if they aren’t who you think you SHOULD like. 2017 Michael David Winery Lust Zinfandel Maybe the name leads me in, but just a sniff of this made me think “this is trouble”. Trouble in the way that you know it must be pheromones because this person is probably a bad romance, but you are going to drink them up all the same. So I did. The first sip is so heady I went in for more second-guessing myself all the time. “This wine isn’t me! This is too rich! Too big! I am more sophisticated than this wine!” But I guess I’m not. It’s an upscale trashy chocolate covered cherry. Utterly desirable. Tech notes? Velvet, aforementioned chocolate covered cherry, on an off-dry vanilla milkshake. PS - if someone can invent an off-dry vanilla milkshake, slip into my DMS YOU WANT TO IMPRESS THEM WITH NAPA CAB So maybe they are basic, but you are okay with that—bring on the Cab! Also, Napa Cabs can indeed be lovely. 2019 SLO Down Wines Love Hammer Cabernet Sauvignon Ummm it’s tasty Napa Cab. Tastes like it, feels like it, IS it. Oodles of blue plums and currants, both black and red, plus vanilla—but vanilla is multifaceted. This isn’t vanilla ice cream, more like vanilla shortbread. It is all unobjectionably smooth and ripe. Seductive indeed. IT’S NEW AND PURE LOVE A rosé that is free-spirited and warm-hearted is needed. Something that will spur conversation without igniting conflict. 2020 Chateau de Berne Romance Rosé 45% Grenache noir, 25% Cinsault, 15% Syrah and 15% Merlot—how I love a statuesque bottle of salmon colored wine from southern France. It smells like a blend of white rose water, white peaches and alpine strawberries. I’d feel like a pretentious ass mentioning alpine strawberries except I recently experienced them and I am a changed woman. They are less ripe but crystalline and linear in medium ripe strawberry essence. FOR THE PERSON WHO LOVES ALL OF YOU For the one who loves your obvi loveable parts, and also the parts of you that are less savory. For me that would mean my terrible short-term memory and tendency to never close things. As for my loveable parts…I always bring wine? You tell me. And then get a bottle of this for your near and dear. 2018 Love and Squalor Willamette Valley Pinot Noir This wine is love (deep fruit autumn leaves) and squalor (a hint of cigarette), and something rich while maintaining Pinot’s lithe nature. It has a little of everything from cherry notes to a kiss of cola. And what, you may ask, you must ask…WHAT is my shower Valentine’s pick? This is tough, are we talking about a shower I take by myself? I’d be taking a glass of Love and Squalor with me. It speaks to both my love of wine and the soupçon of trash that I feel when I drink it in the shower. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Want to read more from Ellen? Check out her recent articles: The Art of Wine Labels A Grand Crew Indeed Resolutionary Wine Lit Wine Perfect Pie Pairings You can also listen to Ellen's podcast , The Wine Situation here . Check out her recent transcripts of the Final Five questions: Wine Situation Final Five! With Lamar Woods Wine Situation Final Five! With John Taylor