One of my wine geek favorites is wine blending day at JM Cellars. JM is a winery that I absolutely love. John (J is for John) Bigelow, winemaker/owner and his lovely wife Peggy (M is for Margaret) make wonderful wine. Everything they make is superb… besides being a couple of the finest human beings I know!
Wine blending night is one of the best! There are beakers, measuring cups, funnels, as well as young wine taken out of barrels that they have been aging in. Tonight there was Cabernet Sauvignon from Stillwater Creek vineyard, Petit Verdot from their estate Margaret’s Vineyard and Merlot from one of Milbrandt’s Katherine Leone vineyard.
So… you sip, swirl, smell and pick out the specific characteristics of each bottle of juice that you like. You test out what percentages of each that you want for your blend and put them together. I tried three different percentage blends. The nose of the Cab for this one, I loved. I decided I wanted it to be the star. I had a 40% Cab (with equal Merlot and 20% P.V.),lone with 60% Cab (20% Merlot and 20% Petit Verdot) and the last one 80% Cab (with 15% P.V. and a tiny 5% Merlot). I chose the 60% Cab for the longevity possibilities. The tannins were high enough that I decided it would work the best for me.
As you can see, I always put the blend on the label, figuring I will never remember it otherwise. One of my wine making friends always give me trouble for that, claiming that the blend is the wine maker’s “secret!” I guess that’s why I am a geek instead of a winemaker!