Sips of the Week Simi Sauvignon Blanc, 2012, Sonoma County Winery Notes: This brilliantly clear, pale-straw-colored Sauvignon Blanc leads with fresh and appealing aromas of Meyer lemon, lime zest, stone fruit, grapefruit, tart apple, and hints of flowers followed by a lively palate which reprises the lemon, lime, and grapefruit themes of the nose. This refreshing, bright, and crisp wine has a long finish, and ends with a lingering impression of citrus and wet stone. Simi Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, 2010 Winery Notes: Simi 2010 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon follows up on its deep, dark garnet color and ruby edge with lifted and pretty aromas of clove, cinnamon, hints of cedar, mint chocolate, and toasty oak notes that beautifully frame dark fruit. Compelling flavors of cassis, blackberry, and plum along with black pepper, cedar, and clove spices adds life to this medium-to-full bodied nicely structured wine that finishes with rich dark cocoa tannins.
Susan Lueker, Director of Winemaking at Simi Winery, who as a young girl made dandelion wine with her father on the family farm, says she always wanted to be a scientist. At the University of Missouri she studied chemistry and medical child development then went to graduate school. Partway through, she transferred to the University of California, Davis to pursue a degree in viticulture. When her ecology class visited vineyards for the first time, she knew she wanted to be a winemaker. She started her career at Hacienda Winery, took the experience she gained there to Kendall-Jackson and then went to Dry Creek Vineyard where she worked for eight years. Susan joined Simi in 2000. Wine Sandwich John Ragan, Wine Director of Union Square Hospitality Group. Born and raised in Kansas City, MO, John developed a passion for hospitality at a young age while working in restaurants throughout high school and college. While pursuing a graduate degree in urban planning at the University of Missouri in Kansas City, John visited California’s wine country, where he realized he wanted to pursue a career in the field. He relocated to Napa to pursue this passion, working first at the Restaurant at Domaine Chandon followed by three years at Martini House as Sommelier. John then relocated to San Francisco to become the Sommelier at the acclaimed Campton Place, alongside Chef Daniel Humm. While at Campton Place, the San Francisco Chronicle awarded the restaurant four stars, noting “Sommelier John Ragan is as brilliant in his beverage pairings as Humm is in creating the food.” Upcoming Events 10/19 Laurie is a featured presenter at the Autumn Wine Festival in Salisbury, MD. 11/8 Laurie leads a group lesson on “The Art of Blind Tasting” at Crush 2013 Judgement at the Mansion. Next Week We’ll be back next week to talk Sake with Tiffany Soto from PABU and taste BBQ with Chef Andrew Evans! A Special Thanks to Sheehy Lexus of Annapolis and Wells Discount Liquors.