Wines for Teach
May 4, 2022
Teachers, have we got the wines for you! You deserve a quiet glass of wine for all your hard work, and we can help make sure that the wine you choose is perfect for you. SO, if you'd like to know how the items found in your classroom fit into a bottle of wine, read on to discover the wines that are uniquely suited to YOU!
I had a blast thinking of the perfect recommendations that will hit home with the people who taught me how to appreciate the art of learning. While each of these may sound silly, all of you who are familiar with common classroom items will find that some wines will taste like a bit of home to you - and now you'll know why!
One of my favorite sayings about a wine's aroma is this: "apple and pear are there somewhere". This refers specifically to white and rosé wines, which often showcase those characters pretty readily once you give the wine a good swirl and sniff. If you are a green apple lover, trust me that Picpoul Blanc should be your go-to Texas selection (like mine!), and red apple lovers will find crunchy red apple skin notes in rosés made from red grapes such as Grenache and Cinsault.
Much unlike apples, graphite is a rare note found in wine, and most often that wine is red. Have no fear, for mineral notes like this are quite special gems that give the wine a 'stony' or 'steely' edge. Where are these found? I'm glad you asked! There is much discussion about the origin of the graphite aromas in wine, and it is likely a combination of just the right components that create this rarity. Oak aging, and exposure to oxygen through other porous vessels like unlined concrete, can reveal a grapes' natural minerality, or even add to it. In the case of oak aging you may even find subtle notes of pencil shavings among the mix. Try a Syrah, Merlot, or a Cabernet Sauvignon from our collection and you'll surely be the first at the table to smell the classic #2 pencil!
Have we all wanted to take a bite out of chalk at one time or another? If so, while that may not be a tasty or satisfying option, there IS a wine that may satisfy this odd craving! In the wine world we used the descriptor 'chalky' when we talk about a wines tannins (tannins are the sandpaper feeling on your teeth and gums when you swish red wine around your mouth, and are incidentally also what make an over-steeped tea taste bitter.) Tannins can be sandy, finely grained, rough, astringent, chewy, green, chunky, and much more. All of this depends on the grape variety, how the grapes grew in the vineyard, the winemaking process, and how long it has been in bottle - but I find that the Tempranillo grape provides pleasantly 'chalky' tannins, especially when it is young and aged in wood. Check out the collection in our shop for a healthy selection of Tempranillo's from both Lost Draw Cellars and William Chris Vineyards!
That wooden desk you sit at every day may have subtle aromas, and we are so pleased that so do some red and white wines! A fruity wine that has a collection of other aromas such as herbs, flowers, and wood is a well-rounded delight to smell AND drink, which is just double to pleasure of enjoying a glass. Oak flavors often come from aging a wine in a toasted oak barrel, of course, but I have come to find that some grapes carry these flavors all on their own. In the Texas Hill Country where old Live oak and aromatic cedar trees are found in droves, their very root systems are sharing water and nutrients with our grapevines, and you may even be able to smell the trees once the grapes have been fermented! So, the next time you pick up a wine from the Texas Hill Country, such as a Tannat or Mourvèdre grown next to the 200 year old oak trees at Hye Estate Vineyard, stick your nose in the glass before swirling and find the tempting wood notes there between the fruit.
The On-The-Go Breakfast
It's early, you're late again, and it is time to grab a yogurt or a piece of toast and GO! While drinkable yogurt is not what we're going for, there are wines with tart, creamy, and toasty notes that you can enjoy a little slower once the day is done. These wines have gone through a very special winemaking process called 'lees stirring' where the yeast cells that are crucial for fermenting a wine are kept in contact for longer and swirled around to impart flavor and texture. Sometimes this smells like nuts or cheese, but often I'll very clearly find whisps of toast and cream, and along with the increased creamy texture and tartness of a white wine, my mind goes my morning yogurt! While too much of this can be a bad thing, see how we employ lees stirring to balance wines like Roussanne and Marsanne, and even some red wines like Mourvèdre.
Whatever wine you celebrate with, I hope that your week is filled with the appreciation you deserve, and that your fellow teachers are there to enjoy the wine right along with you!
WRITTEN BY KELSEY KRAMER
Forever-student, wine educator, and sommelier