Wine For Kamala

At last! A wine aficionado in office! Actually, we’ve had some before—looking at you Jefferson—but in light of this year’s election, not only was Kamala Harris the first woman to be elected for Vice President, but moreover (for this publication’s purposes) she was the only one of the candidates (for prez and veep) who drinks wine. And being a senator in California, wine is near and dear to her heart. I want to drink like Kamala drinks, I wanna see, wanna see her dancing, walking around in those…whaddaya call it? Pantsuittttts? Thoughts and prayers don’t go too far, elections required for making history, strolling along through that—what do you call it?—Oval office! Omigoodness I don’t know why I went into Little Mermaid lyric mode there so sorry please disregard. I did a spot of googling to see what Kamala drinks, plus have an option I felt compelled to recommend to celebrate this milestone in political history. Originally I thought her election called for true Champagne (and granted I did pop some when the election was called), but Kamala stands for California’s wine. So, let us have a Californian sparkling wine made by a Champagne house. I cannot recommend enough Roederer Estate’s L’Ermitage . They make other solid bottlings but L’Ermitage stands alone. Next let’s look at Kamala’s bet with Ted Cruz in 2017 about who would win the world series. Sadly for this Angeleno (well, adopted Angeleno, the St. Louis Cardinals will always be my favorite) the Houston Astros won, so she gave him a bottle of wine: Ramey Wine Cellars was the pick. I have yet to get my hands on a bottle of that but will keep you posted. Lastly! The Rock Wall Wine Company would neither confirm nor deny that Kamala is a member there, but I’ve read quite a few articles online (the internet doesn’t lie I’m sure) stating that not only is Kamala a fan but: Exhibit A) Rock Wall has a woman winemaker! Let us champion that. Exhibit B) It’s an urban winery! Lurve it. And Exhibit C) Kamala supposedly picked up her wine allotment from them in person! It all could be an urban winery myth, but I ordered up some of their wines and am happy to report that they do excellent work. Also they do a bit of conventional work (varieties you’d expect) plus some outliers like Tannat. Maybe sort of like the Biden/Harris ticket? A bit of tried and true and a bit of new? It is a new day both for women in politics and wine. Rock Wall Wine Co. NV Sparkling Zinfandel, Lake County Easy to love and even easier to drink. The bubs downplay the tannins. The fruit accessorizes with cola, herbs and mayhaps some anise and violets? It gives a full experience from front to back palate. I am so into it. Tart in a way I am into. Omigod it DOES taste like rhubarb, which if you’ve never experienced, I liken to tart cherries. This is totally the canned tart cherries (in water, not syrup) you get to make cherry pie. But with seasonings already added. It is not savory pie but not sweet. Also a thoroughly goth wine if you are interested (of course I am). 2018 Rock Wall Wine Co. Yolo County Sparkling Rosé The person I shared this with was in a bad mood and said it was incredible but given his mood tasted like bitterness and despair. But then we remembered that a woman was going to be vice president and cheered up and realized it has bitterness but that’s part of why it’s a delightful wine. Are pickled peaches things? Do strawberries have blossoms? I don’t know, but if they do those are in the brine. And I do not mind. 2018 Rock Wall Wine Company Sparkling Blanc de Noir Interesting…I am not sure how this is a “blanc” as it appears to be squarely rosé in hue to me, but I’m not mad at that. Sweetart-esque as it leaps from tart and slightly bitter to an almost nutty richness. Very much candied strawberry (but not sweet), and raspberry, and as I said something nearly hazelnutty. It grows on me as it opens up so give it a minute. 2018 Rock Wall Wine Co. Sutter County Fiano Powerful and agile! I get all sorts of honey on tart apple-goodness on this. The structure is what stands out for me. It has force without being forceful. Easy to drink, if I do say so myself. And if I don’t, perhaps Kamala does? 2017 Rock Wall Wine Co. Suisun Valley Charbono Charbono! AKA Bonarda in some fun Argentinean wines. Low tannins, ripe fruit of all persuasions (blueberry! Raspberry! Onwards! There may just be a black currant in there too!) plus a hint of fresh herb and lilac. But heady as the day is long—in summer! Which is the season in Argentina right now so cheers. 2015 Rock Wall Wine Co. ‘The Palindrome’ Yolo County Tannat It felt like a red wine Sunday night. We needed warmth to accompany the full beaver moon that was happening. Smells like money—aka fruit so ripe it may go bad, but money these days is generally a good thing. To have. In life. Tannat is a palindrome, which I am assuming this is named for. It is a taste palindrome starting and ending with cocoa covered freeze-dried blackberries and sour red cherries. And midpalate gets gussied up with a cordial crème filling that is cognac-y without being overly boozy. All freshened up with a bay leaf and a mint leaf (but just one). ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Want to read more from Ellen? Check out her recent articles: Women in Castles Down by the Loire River Whole Wine - Pairing Optional Goth Wines for the Perennially October Soul Back to School More Than Port It’s a Can-demic Ellen in Lalaland Pandemic-Style Pink Velvet, If You Please: Old World 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 Katherine Jarvis Wine Situation Final Five! With Cha McCoy

Rock Wall Wine Co.

Yolo County Sparkling Rosé Blend 2018

If you need to make peace this will bridge the gap betwixt bitter and sweet. — a year ago

Neil, Serge and 10 others liked this
Neil Valenzuela

Neil Valenzuela

Their tasting room in Alameda, CA use to be very cool (pre-Covid)- loads of Cirque du Soleil things going on.
Ellen Clifford

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@Neil Valenzuela whoaaa i gotta go (and/or be part of the show my contortionist roots are coming out) when the coast is clear
Ellen Clifford

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@Neil Valenzuela whoaaa i gotta go (and/or be part of the show my contortionist roots are coming out) when the coast is clear

Roederer Estate

L'Ermitage Brut Anderson Valley Chardonnay Blend 2004

Holy apples and brioche and all the things you want of true champagne but the ripe and the bubbles. Holy cow — 2 years ago

MICHAEL, Serge and 16 others liked this
Severn Goodwin

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Great QPR for that bottle. I have 05/06/07 sitting around at the house, will do a comparison at some point. Been a while since I've had the 04.
Ellen Clifford

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@Severn Goodwin would like to try every year! This is only the second time I’ve had this...

Rock Wall Wine Co.

The Palindrome California Tannat 2015

Oh fun low key on the tannins for Tannat and it is working for me even though I do like to abuse my mouth with too-young Nebbiolos but let’s all treat ourselves well in this pandemic ya? — a year ago

Neil, Serge and 10 others liked this

Rock Wall Wine Co.

Sutter County Fiano 2018

Can we give this a high five? It’s supple and also muscular like a power yogi who doesn’t need to end their sessions with an om. Ripe honey (probably not a thing but I feel it), and pickled golden delicious apple skins (also not a thing but whatevs) and goodness it is strong but smooth. It coats the mouth with a a slight kick. Chill and ready but fast moving. Ashtanga Fiano. — a year ago

Severn, Paulo and 15 others liked this

Rock Wall Wine Co.

Lake County Sparkling Zinfandel

Sparkles! Fruit! But also herbs and savory fruit pie were there such a thing. Enjoyed sporting pigtails because one must venture outside the box, time to time. — a year ago

Neil, Serge and 13 others liked this

Rock Wall Wine Co.

Blanc de Noir Estate Reserve 2018

I gotta say this looks like a rosé not a blanc, but that’s okay because it tastes good—fruity and hazelnutty and good. — a year ago

Severn, Paul and 15 others liked this