Clearly my absence on the blog could be attributed to any of the following:
A. Summertime signals my brain to stop using my laptop and orders me outside to frolic.
B. I 've been sucked into the world that is Game of Thrones and I can't get out.
C. A new wine and cheese bar located next to my favorite gelato spot is holding me hostage.
D. I'm lacking some serious motivation or inspiration.
If you guessed E. All of the above, you are correct. But don't fret, I'm here today and let's just kiss and make up okay?
And just for timeline and remembrance-sake, I'm going to start with a Weekend Wine-d Down for the last two weekends all bundled up in one
Two weekends ago, we went camping up in the Calaveras Big Trees with one of our favorite families. What was supposed to be a luxurious RV camping escape turned into last minute frantic tent camping (finding this out an hour before departure, with an insane amount of items to be refrigerated...) but it ended up being incredible weather and an absolute treat.
And friends, don't be deceived. I am not a natural "camper". I know all these posts about camping lead to you believe I am one of those flower wreath weaving nature lovers but to be honest, camping does not come easy to me. So. Much. Dust. But the fact I absolutely LOVED the Calaveras Big Trees campsite means it's a pretty incredible place. Aside from the amazing amount of time I sat in a lounger with my Kindle, we took some amazing nature walks and even a little river hike. Apparently, I love a good river hike (as long as I get to wear water shoes instead of tennis shoes).
This weekend we did a little wine tasting with our friends Guz and Elaine at my favorite wine getaway, Bogle Vineyards. Never a wasted afternoon there. And yes I lightened my hair a bit. 🙂
Lastly, we went to my favorite wine and cheese spot (told you I was obsessed) with my bestie Auva and Joel for our last hurrah. Auva is leaving for med school and although I'm crying on the inside, I'm in complete denial. So much denial I didn't even bother snapping a "going away" picture. Womp Womp. I miss her already...
I fell in love with Jam Jar over dinner at Seasons 52 with Rob, it was the highlight of our meal. The fact its from South Africa made me think of Nicole and it was DELICIOUS. On a whim I decide to stop by my favorite wine store World Market, and I let out an audible squeal when I saw that they had Jam Jar stocked. We left with 4 bottles and the rest is history. Also, it's twist top so its perfect for camping (clearly we took it camping, I photographed it on top of our food locker).
Jam Jar is a 100% Shiraz and it's definitely a sweet wine. Although it's on the sweeter side, it's incredibly balanced and lacks the tart or "bite" that a lot of non wine drinkers don't enjoy. It's loaded with berry flavors like strawberries and raspberries and a hint of dark chocolate but it's not overpoweringly sweet like a port. The finish is soft and balanced and doesn't linger for long on the palate. It has the option of being served chilled or room temp but I highly recommend it chilled. It's not only a tasty wine to sip, it goes great as an apertif or served with a rich dessert like cheesecake. I can't rave enough about Jam Jar, especially for beginning wine drinkers or those who enjoy moscato or rosé.
Sweet Shiraz - Jam Jar
Country: South Africa
(Local) Price: $7.99 at World Market, online here for $9.99.
Rating: A+++++ (My new favorite summer wine obsession)
I realize that I might need to learn to discriminate wines a bit more because A+ ratings across the board makes it seem like I love every single wine ever. I just really love to share the wines I'm crazy about, instead of ones I'm not fond of. But really, Jam Jar one is my favorites in the whole wide world, especially in the summertime!
What's your drink of choice during the summer?