Monthly Archives: October 2012

Baseball, Wild Boar, and The Perfect Wine: A Candid Interview with Michael Keenan of Robert Keenan Winery

This past week I had the good fortune of taking part in a wine dinner at Annie Gunn’s in St. Louis featuring the phenomenal wines of Robert Keenan Winery. I’m not even going to mince words here, I can describe the evening in two words: PURE BLISS!

Executive Chef Lou Rook and Wine Director Glen Bardgett should pat themselves on the back through the New Year with the bevy of gustatory delights displayed.

First up out of the chute was the Maine lobster local apple roll paired up with the 2010 Spring Mountain District, Napa Chardonnay~ lemon and stone fruits on the nose with flavors of green apple, kiwi, with great balance and acidity. This wine would be just as much at home with Grandma’s chicken dinner as it was with the lobster roll.

Duck confit risotto with Ozark Forest mushroom chutney was masterfully paired with 2009 Keenan Cabernet Franc (my personal favorite). This may very well be the most amazing Cab Franc I have ever tasted. Currant, raspberries, and what I like to refer to as ‘earthy/woodsy’ qualities delight both the nose and the tongue. For a less formal pairing, serve it up with a Portobello mushroom burger.

The braised hog cheek and dried autumn fruit along with the noodle dumplings with pan roasted ‘Cab’ tenderloin was matched up with both the 2008 and 2007 Cabernet Sauvignons. Nothing but finesse with these wines with great acidity, perfect tannins, and bursting with flavors of dark fruit, chocolate, espresso, and graphite. Don’t even consider pairing any other wine with steaks….this one is the king!

The pairing that I thought was the gustatory highlight of the evening was the Wild Boar Sausage with the Gruyere and Local Plum Chutney paired with the 2008 Keenan Merlot. Simply put, it was seduction for the tastebuds. I don’t know how else to explain it.

Fortunately, I didn’t have to. I let the President of Robert Keenan Winery, Michael Keenan, sum it up in his own words. In a very candid conversation, he shared why the Merlot is his favorite, why it may very well be the perfect wine, and his thoughts on wine with sports, some interesting pairings, and what proved to be an accurate premonition regarding the National League series between the San Francisco Giants and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Enjoy the interview, but most importantly, make sure to enjoy Keenan Wines.


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Posted by on October 22, 2012 in Uncategorized


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The Making of A Spanish Superstar: 2011 Gaznata Joven-Blending Project Pt. 2

Most of us don’t think twice about what is TRULY in our glass when we uncork a bottle of wine, pour, and sip. We simply enjoy and assume that whatever grape varietal we happen to be drinking is supposed to taste the same. Not only do varietals have…well…a variety of flavors, you’ll see huge differences from the grapes even when they’re grown in the same area? Who knew?

Yesterday I gave you a little background about one of the most killer Spanish wines I have ever had the privilege of tasting…the 2011 Gaznata Joven. I was even more privileged to have been included in the making of this wonderful wine.

Today’s video shows the education I received from Magnum Wines International Import Manager, Ashley Olbrys, Wendy Vallaster of New Spain Wines, and Winemaking genius Daniel Ramos about the many differences in the Garnacha grape of El Baracco, and how those differences will piece together to create the ‘perfect’ wine.

Hopefully this will make you take a moment to give your glass of wine a little extra appreciation before ‘knocking it back’.


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Posted by on October 1, 2012 in Uncategorized


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