A Special Report by Jan Beks, the Wining Dutchman
I grew up with ads about Sandeman. The silhouette of the guy with the cape and sombrero filled my teenage years: “The secret one shares with Sandeman” was the slogan I remember from the early 70s. But in my family there simply was no wine, let alone sherry culture, at all. At that time for me Saturdays meant to buy beer for my dad and my mother’s brothers so they could enjoy drinking beer while discussing matters like politics and sports. I didn’t even drink beer at that time.
Last winter during my first-ever trip to Porto, Portugal, the silhouette of Sandeman entered my life again and I wondered why it showed up here. Luckily the answer was not far away and I soon got to taste the port of the same company. And if it were not for the tour at the Sandeman cellars and the other ports I tasted during this trip, I never would have gotten rid of the Sandeman myth. Continue reading “The Trip That Took Away A Secret”
Another Featured Posting by Jan Beks, The Wining Dutchman!
At the end of July 2009 we headed for Walla Walla. From The Dalles, OR, it is about a half day drive to this centre of more than 100 wineries in the South East of Washington State. For the first time in 2 years we are able to travel together again. My travel partner Teresa surprised me with scheduling a five day trip into this booming wine area. Situated at the same latitude as the major French wine areas it substantially has grown over the years since it was established in 1984.
We discovered that once we arrived in the region it became even harder to select the wineries and their tasting rooms we wanted to visit. An article by the Wine Spectator given to us by Stacy was some help but as adventurous as a Middle East Correspondent and as stubborn as a Wining Dutchman can be it sounded nice to try some other places too or instead of the pre-selected ones. Continue reading “More Into Wine In Walla Walla”
Posted by Jan Beks, from the Netherlands: The Wining Dutchman!
In great contrast to the sweet Tokaji wine experience posted recently was my experience in 2007 in the south of Oregon. We were finally able to visit the winery Stacy recommended in the area around Roseburg. That was on one of our annual trips with Poppy, visiting his 60th and somewhat year school reunion. I am glad we followed your hint and visited Henry’s Estate Winery . We did the wine tasting and as a last we decided to try the Henry the V 2004.
This red wine is a blend of 5 different wines in for it seems the perfect mixture of grapes grown by the owner at this particular place in that particular year: 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Cabernet Franc, 13% Merlot, 7% Syrah and 1% Malbec. For just over $30 a bottle I was tempted to buy more than the one bottle we did buy to take with us back to the Netherlands. But we simply had no other choice since the airlines wouldn’t allow us even one bottle more. Continue reading “Umpqua Valley’s Henry the V”
This is a Special Posting by Jan Beks, from the Netherlands!
Long after my first wine experience I went on my first trip into a cellar all covered with mildew in the far Eastern part of Hungary. It was my first ever wine tasting, sometime in 1997. Close to the Romanian border and not far from the Transylvanian area where vampires used to haunt humans like you and me. There it was where I would be taken for several wine tastings over a period of two years. I thought I had found my love but instead the only love I found was love for the region’s famous wines.
By the way it was around the same era Teresa (Stacy’s sister) was at arm’s length without me noticing it. Such a small world.
Each time a cellar visit started with some “ordinary” wines from the region or nearby. Continue reading “From King to King”