Charlie Opines About Wine

In my search for interesting wines to serve to guests at our Cape Cod Bed and Breakfast, I attend many planned and impromptu wine tastings. I am happy to share my experiences with you. It's a tough job but someone has to do it.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sandwich to Dennis: Wine Road Trip

Charlie’s Weekly Wine-ings

In the peak of the season at our bed and breakfast, we seldom get away from Sandwich or the Inn. After breakfast, we are cleaning up and getting ready for tomorrow’s breakfast and new guests, then new guest arrive between 3:00 and 6:00 PM. Last week we had that rare day with no check-ins and our current guests were on day trips or already fixed for dinner reservations. With a sense of adventure, we planned a spur-of-the-moment Road Trip.

We called friends who live in Wellfleet during the summer and winter in Florida. We actually see them more during our winter RV travels than we do during the summer season. Luck was with us and they were available to meet to catch up. We picked a spot in Dennis, the Harvest Gallery Wine Bar. Surprise, yes, the road trip involves wine and my never-ending search for great wines to serve our guest.

As stated on their website, “Harvest Gallery Wine Bar entertains all of the senses!”

Michael Pearson, the owner and also an artist, has combined his love of wine, food, art, and music to create an atmosphere like no other. Harvest Gallery and Wine Bar features over 30 Cape Cod artists accompanied by a full-service wine bar featuring wines from all over the world and a locavore-minded menu with seasonal specials and deserts – all to be enjoyed with live music.

We found everything stated on the website to be true. We planned to meet our Wellfleet friends and others at 6:30. We were the first to arrive and picked the best table in the gallery. Are we getting that old? We are now the early birds.

As a true wine bar, they offered a long list of nice wines that could be tasted as a ‘flight’ of three 2 oz. glasses for only $10.00. I like flights; it is a great way to try a lot of different wines that you may not otherwise sample if you had to buy a bottle. I went with an all red flight of:

Pinot Noir- “Bourgogne by Albert Bichot”, 2009, Burgundy, France
Malbec /Merlot – “Esprit de Flore” 2008, Cahors, France
Cabernet –Owen Roe “Sharecropper’s” 2009, Columbia Valley, WA.

I ordered the Esprit de Flore, but was accidentally given the “Rook”, a Merlot/Syrah from Corvidae Wine Co., so in fact I had a four wine flight. I have had the Rook before and have had other wines form Owen Roe, but never the Sharecropper’s. After our flight tasting, we moved on to a very nice Australian Shiraz/Grenache blend, the “Wallace” 2007 Barossa Valley.

As we enjoyed our wines, we shared a Mediterranean Plate of hummus, taboulli, cucumber, and pita, plus some great guacamole with chips from the very nice small plate menu. After a few hours we had caught up on what our friends and their families had been doing and discovered a few new wines to serve to our guest at our Sandwich Inn. As early birds often do, we also left early. By then the Harvest Gallery and Wine Bar was packed with a younger crowd and the entertainment was in full swing. So we made a short night of it, but had a great time on our Road Trip.

Happy Wine-ing

Charlie Preus, the Innkeeper’s Assistant and Wine Steward at the 1750 Inn at Sandwich Center, Sandwich, Cape Cod Massachusetts

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