It was a perfect way to start the weekend. Brian met up with Jean and friends at East End Wines up in Austin off of 11th Street. It’s a great old house that has morphed into a terrific wine shop featuring labels from all over the world at prices that make wine tasting enjoyable. Tonight, the crew was sampling wines from the Bordeaux region in France. This is one of the most renowned growing areas in the world, and there were great prices to boot! We tasted a white, two reds, and a semi-sweet white as well. And, after perusing walls and walls of wines, we settled on one of the wines that we sampled.
This 2011 Saint Lafayette Bordeaux Sauvignon Blanc was a real pleasant surprise! What they said, “Juicy, clean, light. Fresh & grapefruity palate, more apple on the nose. Focused bouquet goes from citrus to more tropical fruit like lychee & mango. Crisp acidity. Light bitterness of grapefruit pith & mineral makes it finish very clean and fresh. Lengthy, fruit filled finish.” What we said, “Crisp, fruity and clean on the finish. A refreshingly, tasty wine on a warm summer evening.’ However, thanks to a really nice breeze, we sat outside and enjoyed some lively conversation with Margaret and Lance and their family. It was a terrific way to spend an early Friday evening. With a price point on this wine under $13.50 a bottle, you’ll get a lot of taste for the money; you’ll probably want to stock up on it for really hot afternoons. It was a nice change for us!
With daughter #1 off on the road to the coast, we’re officially dog-sitting the grand-puppy, which with our trio of hounds presents a whole new opportunity to ‘train’ her! Well, not really but it sounds good. Funny thing about dogs . . . they respond to repetitive things. Saying something over and over or doing something over and over, they catch on pretty quick. Bridget (the grand-dog) has mastered several important commands . . .”Give Me Your Paw” is good . . . “Shake” is better. Usually with ‘Shake’ you get both paws and a flying leap in your general direction . . . you may end up getting her ‘zombie attack’ where she stands up on her back legs and reaches for you in full stretch with her front paws. She’s a sight to behold.
Anyway, we digress, tonight’s effort is short sweet and to the point – it’s been a long week of road trips, birthdays and more road trips . . . time to unwind for a couple of days. We really recommend you try East End Wines . . . Matt, Sam and Bill have loads of wine experience and they have brought in a significant variety of wines at really good prices. If you’re a wine lover in or around Austin, you really should check them out . . .they are located at 1209 Rosewood Avenue. You can get more information by logging on to their website at http://eastendwinesatx.com.
Have a great weekend and remember to enjoy your favorite wine responsibly and recycle whenever possible.
Last Friday, Jean had the opportunity to visit a new place in Austin called East End Wines located off 11th street and I35 (thanks to Margaret and Lance). Here she met Sam – Sam, is half of the East End team and Matt is the other. Together these two have put together a wonderful wine shop, tasting room that is described as “East End Wines is chock-full of obscure bottles just waiting to inspire anyone who loves wine. – Wes Marshall, Austin Chronicle” and “The shop’s inventory is like a restaurant wine list compiled by an obsessive savant, peppered with labels you’ve never heard of and some you’ve heard about in breathless conversations with wine people – Mike Sutter, Austin American Statesman”
Have to admit, when she opened the door of the old house that the shop resides in – she stepped back in time to Ingram and the original location of Grape Juice owned by Patrick and Keri Wilt. In fact, Sam reminded her of Patrick – Sam’s love and appreciation of wine came through loud and clear . . . he got his Sommelier degree in 2005 and on that Friday was sporting a shirt with SAMMELIER written across his chest (gotta just love anyone with that sense of humor). The shop has a huge (and we mean HUGE) inventory ranging in price from under $10 waaaaaaay over $10 – truly something for every palate. Here is a sampling. Jean picked up a few labels for the blog – we wrote about one on Day 273 – and we look forward to sampling the others in days to come.
Tonight’s wine is one that she picked up for $12.57 (plus a 10% discount when one buys four bottles of wine at East End – nice touch) – 2008 Big Woop Red Wine from Southeastern Australia. Being huge (and we mean HUGE) fans of Australian wine, expectations were pretty darn high for this wine. This wine comes from the Woop Woop Wine line. Apparently “woop woop” is an Aussie expression that means “somewhere in the middle of nowhere”. So that would make a big woop what happens when one’s GPS dies and they have to navigate with a REAL map! Actually, if you add the “h” into woop, you get an expression that means “no big deal”. As in, “What’s the big whoop? It’s one tiny scratch on the car, Mom.”
Big Woop Red is a blend of grenache, shiraz, and petite verdot in a 1 liter bottle. Since she was with a group of folks at an offsite retreat, Jean decided to take the wine to the masses and get their input. Thanks to Renee, Rachel, Scott, Dave and Rosie for offering themselves up – we know, a dirty job, but someone had to do it! All agreed that although a bang for your buck – the wine was a disappointment. The color was a deep red and set an expectation. What’s the flavor factor you ask? Well, the nose was pretty healthy with pencil shavings, wet cedar, leather and red fruit . . . Really? What’s going on here – an inexpensive wine, all these aromas used to be the exclusive right of the expensive stuff. The mouth feel was kinda sorta full – but more medium body, a bit of an explosion of dark fruit with a dose of Shiraz spice . . . the finish is not so much, nothing that really set the world on fire . . . not great, but not bad or as one might say – “Big Woop is no Big Whoop”.
While a return trip to East End Wines in no doubt in order, a return trip to Big Woop is not. We do look forward to popping the cork, or in some cases unscrewing the cap, on the other bottles that await us.
Have a great night and remember to enjoy responsibly and recycle whenever possible as you go out on a limb and try something new!