Honey Sips

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 345 [_thumbnail_id] => 10185 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [video_header] => 0 [_video_header] => field_5ab01b7a3e543 [_yoast_wpseo_metadesc] => Thanksgiving is upon us and plenty of people are telling us how to cook our turkey that we’re ultimately going destroy; so we thought we’d share our favorite tip when it comes to matching a wine with that bird (be it roasted or blackened): drink Beaujolais! [_oembed_6924b28934b01bd6da75004844698e4c] => [_oembed_time_6924b28934b01bd6da75004844698e4c] => 1550875632 [_edit_lock] => 1550877172:1 ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/the-key-to-transcendent-turkey-beaujolais/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 10967 [ID] => 10967 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] =>

Thanksgiving is upon us and plenty of people are telling us how to cook our turkey that we’re ultimately going destroy; so we thought we’d share our favorite tip when it comes to matching a wine with that bird (be it roasted or blackened): drink Beaujolais!

I’ll keep this short, in terms of people who think wine pairing is a thing (some don’t) there are two(ish) ways to approach it:

  1. We have a meal, what are we drinking?
  2. We have a wine, what are we eating?
  3. Beaujolais is good.

We love pairing wine; done right, it’s additive and expressive—the way salt and acid lend the elements of a dish a larger canvas. Drink what you want, for sure; but it’s Thanksgiving and you’re throwing a dinner party so play around with a little pairing!

Don’t think, just act: pick up a bottle of Beaujolais-Villages. It’s a light red made up of Gamay grapes (cousin of Pinot Noir) and it goes with Turkey perfectly, bonus points for how well it pairs with ham.

Toss it in the fridge 40 minutes before the turkey comes out, drown your plate in gravy, and let the sweetsweet flood of melatonin take you away.

[post_date] => 2018-11-20 17:11:14 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => The Key to Transcendent Turkey: Beaujolais [post_type] => post [slug] => the-key-to-transcendent-turkey-beaujolais [__type:protected] => [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 345 [_thumbnail_id] => 10185 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [video_header] => 0 [_video_header] => field_5ab01b7a3e543 [_yoast_wpseo_metadesc] => Thanksgiving is upon us and plenty of people are telling us how to cook our turkey that we’re ultimately going destroy; so we thought we’d share our favorite tip when it comes to matching a wine with that bird (be it roasted or blackened): drink Beaujolais! [_oembed_6924b28934b01bd6da75004844698e4c] => [_oembed_time_6924b28934b01bd6da75004844698e4c] => 1550875632 [_edit_lock] => 1550877172:1 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-11-21 01:11:14 [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-key-to-transcendent-turkey-beaujolais [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-20 17:11:14 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-21 01:11:14 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => https://workbyhoney.com/?p=10170 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

The Key to Transcendent Turkey: Beaujolais

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 4 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 60 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [video_header] => 0 [_video_header] => field_5ab01b7a3e543 [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 206 [_thumbnail_id] => 10151 ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/good-cider-vs-bad-cider-apples-and-oranges/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 10966 [ID] => 10966 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] => I’d wager that the percent of people that drink hard-cider as their first alcoholic drink is a larger number than the percent of people who order one at the bar on a regular basis. Generally, it’s a justly maligned drink: commoditized beer-giants pump out millions of gallons of the sugary stuff and target it at younger audiences who were drinking the juice (sans-booze) from the box not 10 years earlier. Cider has largely been relegated to the “sweet” end of the market, often as an alternative for beer, wine, or cocktails. As a result more swill gets brewed; residual sugar and cloying tackiness are the calling card of what amounts to 10 minutes of fizzy, jolly rancher hangover fuel. Luckily, it’s 2018 and maligned categories are the bread-and-butter of every enterprising hipster and high-quality importer worth their salt, and good cider can be found just about anywhere. We swung by Taylor’s Market to pick up a few bottles and opened them up with some garlic flatbread from our friends downstairs at Pizzeria Urbano. Here’s what we had:
  • France - Le Père Jules Cider Brut
  • Ireland - Craigies Cider Ballyhook Flyer
  • California - Gowans Heirloom Cider Heirloom Cuvée, Macintosh Heirloom

Le Père Jules Cider Brut

Everyone lost their mind on this one. Malolactic Fermentation (MLF)—where malic acid, present in high amounts in apples, is converted to lactic acid by lactic acid bacteria (the stuff that makes your Yogurt, cheese, and Kefir)—drove through this like a freight train; according to a book, in the UK they often refer to the taste & smell after the conversion as “old horse,” not a winning note in the office. This also had the least acidity, which must point to a full-run of MLF eating up all the sharp malic acid. If you want your cider to drink like Kombucha, this won’t disappoint you.

Craigies Cider Ballyhook Flyer

This tasted like melons and butter. I’d like to think it has some sort of comforting connection to the hills and fields where Kerrygold cows roam and graze on apple trees, so I’m going to assume I read that somewhere. This was more palatable to everyone; it was slightly acidic with a just a little of that earthy “old horse” nose to it, where it was additive as opposed to overpowering. It was significantly lower-bodied than the others, nearly LaCroix-esque in its inability to commit to a flavor. This was about as quaffable as any of them got, I’d be comfortable serving a lot of it at a dinner party.

Gowans Heirloom Cider Heirloom Cuvée, Macintosh Heirloom

These were the safe, not-too-sweet but not-too-out-there bottles. One is made of “Heirloom Apples,” the other with only xyzzy apples. We opened up the heirloom one first, guessing the other would be a little more interesting and saving it for last, and it was pretty good. Not cloying or thick, but nothing earth-shattering. These seem like a good way to show someone a “well-executed” cider: great texture and nothing offensive. The Macintosh was bright, acidic, and much more focused than the Cuvée—it would’ve been perfect with some beer-battered fish. Seriously, go try this: drop $35-$50, make a flight of ciders, and cook something fun with some friends. What seem like subtle differences stand in stark contrast and take shape when compared to each other, you’ll be surprised how much you pick up. [post_date] => 2018-11-05 17:55:29 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => Good Cider vs Bad Cider: Apples and Oranges [post_type] => post [slug] => good-cider-vs-bad-cider-apples-and-oranges [__type:protected] => [_edit_last] => 4 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 60 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [video_header] => 0 [_video_header] => field_5ab01b7a3e543 [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 206 [_thumbnail_id] => 10151 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-11-06 01:55:29 [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => good-cider-vs-bad-cider-apples-and-oranges [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-05 17:55:29 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-06 01:55:29 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => https://workbyhoney.com/?p=10105 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

Good Cider vs Bad Cider: Apples and Oranges

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 1 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [video_header] => 0 [_video_header] => field_5ab01b7a3e543 [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => [ha_post_views_count] => 398 [_thumbnail_id] => 9619 [_edit_lock] => 1568847572:1 [show_author] => 0 [_show_author] => field_5d07fee9f1439 ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/chianti-italians-and-the-art-of-breaking-rules/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 9588 [ID] => 9588 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] => Typically, my favorite way to land on a bottle of wine is to walk into the grocery store, walk up to someone who knows a thousand times more than me, hold up my basket of food I'm buying and say “I have $15 for a bottle—what am I drinking?” It’s foolproof: if I bring home something great, I’m a hero of humility that knows how to trust an expert; if it’s not great, it’s not my fault. Lately my wife and I have been making tons of pizza, so more often than not I hold up a basket of mozzarella and crushed tomatoes and for a slick $15 the wine rep hands me a bottle of Chianti. Here’s the thing. I have an interesting relationship with Chianti. It all comes to a head in the bottles we opened up in the office the other day. My bucket list has a lot to do with things that I want to make one day: wooden canoes, beer, there’s something about fermenting pickles in a gourd on there (what?), and one of them is making my own Chianti. A few years back I took a trip with my girlfriend, now wife, to upstate New York to visit her grandmother in Auburn, NY and they were showing me around her grandfather’s basement. We were leafing through old things he worked and tinkered on (he was a crafty, salt-of-the-earth, tobacco-pipe-smoking, built-the-house-that-the-basement-was-under kind of guy) and amongst old farmers almanacs and garden tools we found a bunch of bottles with “Chianti From The Brewer Cellar” (his last name was brewer) and I immediately wanted to grow my own Chianti grapes. Took a while for me to understand that there’s no such thing as a Chianti “grape,” but that it’s a place in Italy and the wine they make is generally made up of Sangiovese grapes. I’m still going to call it Chianti. So, back to the grocery store. I hate to say this; but the last five times I’ve walked in, held up my mozzarella and tomatoes (sometimes pepperoni if we’re feeling fancy) and walked out with a bottle of Chianti it’s been hot garbage. It’s always had this weird taste like what I thought wine probably tasted like when I was younger and generally left me bummed that I didn’t pick up a bottle of Beaujolais. I felt like I was getting played. “Chianti is the perfect food wine,” they told me, “It’s acidity and balance are the only thing that levels well with the acidity and fat on a pizza,” said the internet. Liars. It was a hateful, vinegary mess that demanded your attention, nothing about it was “balanced.” I wasn’t excited to open the three bottles we had in the wine fridge—I was worried I’d get no detailed notes or interesting flavors. I was prepared to write something even longer than the past few paragraphs to fill this post up and feel like these posts aren’t the veiled attempt to get everyone in the office to hang out and drink a few bottles that I know them to be. To my pleasant surprise, these were different! We even had some homemade foot-crushed wine to boot. Redemption and hope, ladies and gentlemen, redemption and hope.

Chianti, Italians, and the art of breaking rules

First: a primer. Chianti is an Italian wine — specifically in Northern Tuscany, and it’s a red wine blend that mainly features Sangiovese1 grapes. If you haven’t tried Chianti, you’ve definitely seen a bottle of it in a traditional “fiasco,” which is a perfectly ironic word in plain-english for what Chianti was 40-50 years ago. Italy had always grown wine with an attitude that focused on quantity over quality, which was great for a commodity good and the price-conscious, but didn’t really elevate the region or the grape. Eventually (mid 1800’s), a handful of blights decimated vineyards across Europe and left ruined Italian vineyards that would eventually be replanted with high-yield varieties. Sometime after the Second World War, this positioned Chianti to fill the bellies of a burgeoning market struck by economic depression obsessed with quantity over quality. As a result Chianti gained a reputation of being a low-quality utilitarian workhorse—eventually the rules around the DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata [Denomination of Controlled Origin] — rules on how to make a specific wine, guaranteed for quality) prioritized making more, cost-friendly wine. This left Chianti (and Sangiovese in the states) no real standing against nuanced, focused French wines while the wine market was becoming interested in craft and terroir. There might’ve been a more welcome palette to the Sangiovese grape coming out of California wineries, but after the `76 Judgement of Paris where a few California wines beat out French wines in their own categories, winemakers started ripping up Italian vines and leaned into the homogenized monsters derived from traditional French grapes and techniques. So, no sangio’ palette to speak of. Luckily there were a bunch of Italian rebels. Instead of following the strict (but safe) DOC regulations set by the Italian government, a handful of Chianti producers broke out of the traditional mold and started making what they wanted to make, and the market really liked it. They started moving away from the “recipe” required by DOC and made wines that blended in some of the Cabernet and Merlot featured in the french Bordeaux’s, calling them “Super Tuscans,” eventually eating DOC Chianti’s lunch. The Italian government let up some of the stricter regulations and Chianti turned a corner.

What We Ate

Just going to slip this in here: some friends are good friends, and those are the friends you give a key to your house. Others—the great friends—show up to your house with that key and leave a loaf of bread on your counter. Andrew Hopper is the latter. You’ll see bread speckled throughout the pictures here, he “just happened to be making” some naturally-leavened sprouted Khorasan sourdough with carrot. When I told him I’d use it for a Chianti tasting in the office, he threw in some home-made whipped cultured butter with sea salt, because Andrew is incredible.

What We Drank

We had four wines in all — one DOC Chianti, two DOCG Chiantis, and one Sierra foothills Sangiovese (Meghan’s. homemade. wine. from. 2004.). DOCG stands for “Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita“ and is supposed to be a “guarantee” of quality. They set it up because too many people were getting wines through DOC, but it sounds a lot like the same problem happens with DOCG. There’s a lot of controversy over who gets the certification and why—but it breaks down to neither being directly correlated to a “great wine,” but it does mean that they stick to a standard. A certified organic apple is organic, doesn’t mean it’s the best apple you’ve had in your life; they’re certifications not guarantees. Alright, the wines.

Borgo Scopeto Chianti Classico 2014

This is the perfect balance of the old-world Chianti with the modern approach to quality; how a vacation destination such as this estate can produce a $15 bottle that has nuance and character is beyond me. This was the highest-acid of the four; a few of us got strawberry and tobacco on the nose and a soft vanilla note at the end of the wine.

Cecchi Riserva di Famiglia, Chianti Classico DOCG - 2013

Out of the Chianti’s this was the favorite by far. At 90% Sangiovese it was the highest ration of Sangiovese grapes out of the three. Apparently, it’s produced “only during vintages deemed to meet the high standards,” which is a level of quality control that shines through the wine—it’s balanced, expressive, and has so much freaking character.

Barone Ricasolio Brolio Chianti Classico DOCG

This was next-up after the second wine, somewhat more subdued and featured less pepper; it felt like more of a nod towards Bordeaux: smoother and had a lot of darker red fruits and subtle spiciness at the finish.

Shady Porch

While she was working in Sonoma, Meghan and her husband Chris were living in a little house on a vineyard with a back-porch they spent time drinking cheap wine and enjoying some of the best weather California has to offer. Chris drew the labels and they made enough wine to imbibe all the guests at their wedding and have some left over. We coerced her into opening a bottle for the first time since her wedding! This was such a fun bottle to drink; spice and cherry with leftover vanilla and clove, older wines (even those that are just 10-15 years old) are fun to drink, I don’t really have a better word for it. They’re exiting and unknown, remarkably honed or completely lost. There’s a great deal of objectivity in wine: growing, pruning, the chemistry in properly fermenting and aging, storing and waiting. But it’s something we consume, there’s subjectivity: sourcing low-cost grapes in the foothills, stomping them with your feet, fermenting the juice, and putting it in a bottle for 14 years speaks to the whimsy behind making something for yourself and seeing it through to the finish. You only share that kind of stuff with people who are special, and that trust you won’t poison them.
  1. Side-note I learned skimming around on wikipedia: Sangiovese is derived from latin and means “The Blood of Jupiter,” so it’s got some serious street cred. ↩︎
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Chianti, Italians, and the Art of Breaking Rules

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 983 [_thumbnail_id] => 8621 ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/honey-sips-pet-nat/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 8538 [ID] => 8538 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] => Pét-nat or Pétillant Naturel is a sparkling wine that's been gaining popularity partly due to an enthusiastic crowd of gorgeous hipsters that are flooding the wine scene on Instagram. Naturally: we noticed. Pét-Nat is a sparkling wine that doesn’t require a specific location, a specific grape varietal (unless you're talking about Montlouis Pétillant Naturel—which we're not), and is one of the oldest forms of sparkling wine production in use today—made using a method called ”Méthode Ancestrale” or “Méthode Rurale.” A good way to explain what Pét-nat is and why it’s interesting begins with explaining how something plenty of people have had before—champagne‚ is made. If you know champagne, don't @ me: this is a simplification. Champagne is made via the "traditional method” and involves a lot of steps:
  1. Pressing - Grapes are pressed and fermented in large tanks to make a “base wine.” At this point you have wine; the fact that this is one step shows how complex true champagne is.
  2. Second Fermentation - winemakers add sugar and specialized yeast selected to produce CO2—the bubbles—and then transfer them to specialized, extra-dark bottles that are made extra-strong (so extra). They then put a crown cap (regular bottle-cap) on top. During this step, they add riddling agents that cause the yeast stick to itself in a later step.
  3. Aging, Riddling, and Corking - None of this happens for Pét-nat so we’re going to put the steps together. The champagne is aged for 8-15 months (longer if the winery can afford it) neck-down—by shaking and settling yeast is forced into the neck of the bottle. Winemakers rapidly freeze the bottles and pop the cap off — shooting all of that yeast out as a frozen pellet (yeast pellet, gross); after which they add some wine and sugar and put a champagne cork & cage on it, happy new year.
Anyways, Pét-Nat is made through a hybrid of the first steps: you make your base wine but before the yeast eats all of the sugar in the wine (which it converts to alcohol) the wine is put in a bottle and a crown cap is put on. As a result, you get some bubbles (not as much as champagne) as well as a wine that has lower alcohol than you would with champagne, usually around 11-11.5%. Due to the lack of riddling or disgorgement (removing sediment) a bottle of Pét-Nat is going to look reminiscent of a bottle of kombucha, with some stuff floating around in there. If you open a bottle above temperature or after a little agitation (some will do it regardless of handling), you're going to have beautiful sparkling wine streaming down your arm in a beautiful mess due to all the sediment and yeast. This lack of disgorgement is a contributing factor to the lack of wide-spread popularity with consumers: remember the last person you grossed out attempting to explain why you love your kombucha; it's hard to sell a bottle of this stuff in Safeway. Another factor holding Pét-Nat back is the obvious risk involved for the producer: before your wine has completed fermentation you've sealed the product up to await a consumer; you entirely cutout a quality control check and leave it up to chance. Some producers often take advantage of this: what could be more natural or have more terroir than a wine allowed to some extent to produce itself? It's poetic, but is your average consumer going to understand that they just opened up a collaborative experimental tome featuring the farmer and the soil? Probably not. They're gonna taste "baind-aids and feet" and look for a cork next time. Luckily, all of these risks highlight the values and traits of a product that gets a growing number of consumers excited: a wine that prioritizes the land over totalitarian production, insists you enjoy nuance over perfection and takes some prior knowledge to get your hands on and enjoy. In short, a wine that's interesting. Our kombucha-loving, funk-curious, bubble-obsessed office is in that corner of the market so we picked up a few bottles, dusted off our champagne flutes, and cracked them open. Here’s what we picked up:
  1. Field Recordings - 2016 Chardonnay Pét-Nat
  2. Haarmeyer Wine Cellars - 2016 Petillant Naturel Chenin Blanc - Clarksburg

Field Recordings 2016 Pét-Nat

Chardonnay This was fruity - a few people noted peaches and lime. It took tasting the second wine to really stick out, but it had a lingering scent not dissimilar to a Belgian ale; which a few of us really enjoyed. Finished with a distinct sourdough note, like a strong, fresh starter.

Haarmeyer Wine Cellars - 2016 Petillant Naturel

Chenin Blanc - Clarksburg Though it was a close call, this was the favorite of the two. Notes of crisp apple and stone fruit, with a strong, fresh acidity that reminded us of the oils you get when you express a lemon. It was remarkably refreshing—well-suited for a stemless wine glass sitting in a shaded chaise lounge, but still comfortable in a coupe in a dimly-lit restaurant next to a salad.
Final verdict? We’ll take our mimosas orange-juice-free and we’ll be drinking them from the bottle with a large bendy straw; this is a sipper that goes down all too easy. It's high acidity (the second one) and low ABV make it remarkably quaffable, while it's unconventional nature begs the drinker to strip the edifice of champagne drinking: crack this open at new years, sure, it's a conversation starter; but lug it to backyard barbeques, pour it with charcuterie and cheese, serve it next to a freaking turkey: it's good. Pét-nat is interesting but it’s not in a vacuum: it’s part of a natural winemaking movement that’s digging up traditional methods and taking risky moves to create interesting product—and where there are bubbles, there we’ll be.
[post_date] => 2017-12-05 13:00:03 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => Honey Sips: Pét-Nat [post_type] => post [slug] => honey-sips-pet-nat [__type:protected] => [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 983 [_thumbnail_id] => 8621 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-12-05 21:00:03 [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => honey-sips-pet-nat [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-12-05 13:00:03 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-12-05 21:00:03 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => https://workbyhoney.com/?p=8538 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

Honey Sips: Pét-Nat

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 90 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 905 [_thumbnail_id] => 8500 [_yoast_wpseo_metadesc] => GSM is a workhorse of a blend that lets winemakers show flair and finesse in a way that makes unique, complex wines from simple parts. ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/honey-sips-grenache-syrah-mourvedre-fall/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 8464 [ID] => 8464 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] => For those who don’t know: GSM stands for Grady, Samantha, Maggie. JK – it’s Garnacha (Grenache) Syrah, Mourvèdre; a Côtes du Rhône (A blend from France’s Rhône valley) that has a complex herbaceous taste that’s really exciting for a simple blend. We called up Beyond Napa, a Sacramento wine merchant that we can count on to find us everything from exemplary to different and exciting and they dusted a few bottles off for us. Here’s what they recommended:
    1. Gramercy Cellars “The Third Man” Grenache - 2014
    2. Sans Liege “The Offering” - 2013
    3. Graff Family Vineyards “Consensus” - 2014
Each of them needed a while to breathe so we opened them up and a half an hour later we poured ourselves a glass and pulled out some tasting sheets. Gramercy Cellars “The Third Man” Grenache - 2014

Gramercy Cellars “The Third Man” Grenache - 2014

Blend: 75% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 5% Mourvedre, 5% Carignan This wine comes from Gramercy Cellars, a Walla Walla, Washington Winery we wish we worked with (sorry) that the folks at Beyond Napa wouldn’t let us leave without, and for good reason. It stood out from the others on sheer balance, it was elegant and nuanced in all the right ways—go buy a few bottles of this: one to blow your mind, and one for proselytizing to those you care about. Here are a few tasting notes from the team: “smell: ground coffee, mexican dark chocolate, black pepper; taste: rich, smokey, red-berry jam, medium low tannin” and “smell: dark chocolate, black pepper, fruit punch.” Sans Liege “The Offering” - 2013

Sans Liege “The Offering” - 2013

Blend: 45% Grenache, 36% Syrah, 18% Mourvedre, 1% Viognier Viognier! Cool little addition, typically Viognier grapes are grown alongside Syrah grapes in the Northern Rhône; blending the two used to be a little more typical than nowadays. This blend is the flagship wine at Sans Liege—a winery out of Pismo Beach—and the label caught our eye first (what can we say? We’re suckers for good looks). Here are some notes from the team: “smell: baking spice, leather, black olive; taste: medium tannin, asphalt, red plumb,” “smell: clay pot, black tea, black olive; taste: grapefruit, asphalt, mild chocolate.” Graff Family Vineyards “Consensus” - 2014

Graff Family Vineyards “Consensus” - 2014

Blend: 90% Syrah, 10% Mourvedre This wine might’ve done well with a few more years in the bottle but was still marvelous; it would have been amazing with food, especially some Hamilton Ranch Lamb #missedopportunity. Side-note: a few of their older vintages—their 2010 for example—had some Viognier grapes in there! Another nod the the way grapes are grown in the Rhône. Here’s what we thought: “smell: cured meat, dark cherry; taste: black pepper, smokey raspberry,” “smell: plum, cured, meat, funky cheese.” GSM is a workhorse of a blend that lets winemakers show flair and finesse in a way that makes unique, complex wines from simple parts. Generally you’re not aging them more than 5 years, so there’s an attitude of “drink this now” that makes them shareable and approachable for anyone at the table. Pouring the Gramercy Cellars Grady nose-deep in Gramercy Josh Reeder-Esparza, Grady Fike Cara Crowley & Meghan Phillips Ashley Rodseth, Sammantha Wallace, and Grady Fike Maggie Giordanengo, Ashley Rodseth, Sammantha Wallace, and Grady Fike Meghan Phillips Grady Fike, Josh Reeder-Esparza Maggie Giordanengo Josh Reeder-Esparza
Every few Friday’s we’re posting our favorite things to drink this fall, so sign up below to get notified when we publish more.

Have your own beverage you’d like people to know about? Get in touch to see how Honey Agency can transform your brand into one that tells a story and gets recognized.

[post_date] => 2017-11-22 16:00:47 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => Honey Sips: GSM for Fall [post_type] => post [slug] => honey-sips-grenache-syrah-mourvedre-fall [__type:protected] => [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 90 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [ha_post_views_count] => 905 [_thumbnail_id] => 8500 [_yoast_wpseo_metadesc] => GSM is a workhorse of a blend that lets winemakers show flair and finesse in a way that makes unique, complex wines from simple parts. [post_date_gmt] => 2017-11-23 00:00:47 [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => honey-sips-grenache-syrah-mourvedre-fall [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-11-22 16:00:47 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-11-23 00:00:47 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => https://workbyhoney.com/?p=8464 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

Honey Sips: GSM for Fall

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [_thumbnail_id] => 8286 [ha_post_views_count] => 779 ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/honey-sips-escubac-sweetdram/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 8279 [ID] => 8279 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] => We’re not playing at anything here: we bought this because it’s gorgeous, the kind of thing you’d find in Urban Outfitters if they sold alcohol. Meet Escubac, a spirit from London's Sweetdram, and your delicious new friend. To properly explain what Escubac is is to explain what Escubac isn’t: it’s not Gin. But it’s similar. Sweetdram essentially makes a botanical spirit similar to gin but without the Juniper. It isn’t a gin, but has a lot of the qualities people love in one: cardamom, caraway, citrus, etc. It ends up making two things, a really drinkable spirit, and a quickly converted office of gin-lovers. We scoffed at the idea of their jenever without juniper, but were quickly proven wrong. The beauty of gin as a base spirit is that it has so many botanicals and threads running through it that it ends up pairing with just about anything you want it to. Remove the juniper and classic cocktails end up having new and interesting notes shine through. By itself, Escubac has an incredibly drinkable summery-citrus undertone with notes of lime and grapefruit peel, but with warming notes of anise, cardamom, and even some vanilla. We found our favorite way to drink it was in Gin & Tonics: 3 cubes, 2oz of gin and filled to the brim with Fever Tree Indian tonic water with a lemon twist (at the recommendation of Sweetdram). That being said, this is a workhorse: it will complement just about anything you pair it with. If you see some at the store you have to pick it up, we found it at Corti Brothers in Sacramento (which you should be going to anyway, they’ve been around 70 years: it’s an institution) but it’s also available through Astor Wines online. Not that you'll have any trouble noticing this on shelves, I mean, it truly is gorgeous. It’s drinkable, interesting, and you’ll never throw the bottle away.
Every few Friday’s we’re posting our favorite things to drink this fall, so sign up below to get notified when we publish more.

Have your own beverage you’d like people to know about? Get in touch to see how Honey Agency can transform your brand into one that tells a story and gets recognized.

[post_date] => 2017-10-27 19:07:54 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => Honey Sips: Escubac from Sweetdram [post_type] => post [slug] => honey-sips-escubac-sweetdram [__type:protected] => [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 247 [_thumbnail_id] => 8286 [ha_post_views_count] => 779 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-10-28 02:07:54 [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => honey-sips-escubac-sweetdram [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-27 19:07:54 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-28 02:07:54 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => https://workbyhoney.com/?p=8279 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

Honey Sips: Escubac from Sweetdram

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 1 [ha_post_views_count] => 610 [_thumbnail_id] => 8242 [_wp_old_slug] => honey-sips-cider-fall-favorites ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/honey-sips-craft-cider-fall-favorites/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 8140 [ID] => 8140 [post_author] => 1 [post_content] => As the season's change we’re beginning to sleep with our windows open, we're pulling out our favorite fall scarves and jackets, and we're bringing our drinking game up-to-snuff with warm drinks and of course, cider. Since hard cider pairs with just about everything, it’s the perfect drink to help transition to those recipes you haven’t blown the dust off of all year. A quick glance in “What to Drink with What You Eat” pointed us to cheese, crêpes, poultry, oysters, and seafood; and we think it’s the perfect thing to pour when pairing gets tricky. We picked up five craft ciders, poured everyone a glass, and got to sipping. First impressions? A handful of natural ciders can be pretty sour and bring with them a great deal of acidity. To be clear: not the warm, smoky pang you might get from a sour beer or the acidic sharpness you get from citrus in a daiquiri; they inch their way closer to a Kombucha or a Shrub soda. Here’s a run-down of what ciders we cracked open:
  • Bumgarner Silver Fork Dry Cider - 2017
  • Lassen Farmhouse Dry Cider
  • Sidra Asturiana Mayador
  • Sonoma Cider “The Anvil”
  • 101 Cider House “Black Dog”
Sidra Asturiana Mayador This one was very sour, we probably shouldn’t have started here. It had a fermented funk to it—almost like a washed-rind cheese; needless to say it’s not for the faint-of-heart. A few of us got notes of black olives, dirty martinis, and a vinegar sour. Meghan pointed out the Bandaid-like brett. The bottle was beautiful and unique; a faded green glass with a taper down the sides — there was also quite a bit of sediment and what looked to be leftover yeast floating around in the bottle. Bumgarner Silver Fork Dry Cider - 2017 This was the clear favorite — from Bumgarner winery in Camino, CA (about an hour northeast of us in Sacramento) this cider had a bleu cheese nose with notes of cinnamon and honey. The cinnamon showed up in the finish with just the right amount of nutmeg to make this a fall favorite. Lassen Farmhouse Dry Cider This had a distinct dusty, earthy flavor to it. Not remotely as sour as the Mayador, the apple comes through and would pair well with a manchego cheese. 101 Cider House “Black Dog” This one is our halloween pick. Seriously, if you’re at a Halloween party with people who you know like things like Kombucha bring a bottle or two of these: it has activated charcoal and it paints the cider a dark blackish-purple. This was sour—think fermented tea and overripe fruit—with notes of lavender and lime. There was a yeasty/bready finish that a handful of us in the office enjoyed and a few others didn’t care for. The bottle claims it is a probiotic, and one employee was overheard to have noted their hair had changed a few shades and they could see through walls, so this stuff must be legit. Sonoma Cider “The Anvil” This was aged in bourbon barrels and had a nutty vanilla flavor with smoky notes almost like peat, possibly having to do withbarels that had a lot of char on them. It leaned away from the sour thread woven through the other ciders—Sonoma Cider is probably a good call if you're looking for something that is more palletable for the average drinker.
[post_date] => 2017-10-20 15:38:35 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => Honey Sips: Cider Fall Favorites [post_type] => post [slug] => honey-sips-craft-cider-fall-favorites [__type:protected] => [_edit_last] => 1 [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => 0 [_exclude_from_reccomended_posts] => field_59149ab33728e [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 1 [ha_post_views_count] => 610 [_thumbnail_id] => 8242 [_wp_old_slug] => honey-sips-cider-fall-favorites [post_date_gmt] => 2017-10-20 22:38:35 [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => honey-sips-craft-cider-fall-favorites [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-20 15:38:35 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-20 22:38:35 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => https://workbyhoney.com/?p=8140 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

Honey Sips: Cider Fall Favorites

Timber\Post Object ( [ImageClass] => Timber\Image [PostClass] => Timber\Post [TermClass] => Timber\Term [object_type] => post [custom] => Array ( [_yoast_wpseo_is_cornerstone] => [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 100 [ha_post_views_count] => 1066 [_thumbnail_id] => 7140 [_wp_old_slug] => late-lunching-cantina-alley [_yoast_wpseo_metadesc] => Tucked away in the alley off 24th and J streets, sits Sacramento's new Cantina Alley stocked with a selection of mezcals, tequilas, and Mexican Craft Beers. ) [_content:protected] => [_permalink:protected] => https://workbyhoney.com/late-lunching-cantina-alley-in-sacramento/ [_next:protected] => Array ( ) [_prev:protected] => Array ( ) [_css_class:protected] => [id] => 7113 [ID] => 7113 [post_author] => 4 [post_content] => The alley-way entrance to Cantina Alley Unassumingly tucked away in the alley off 24th and J streets, sits Sacramento's new Cantina Alley. Every bit as charming as it sounds, it whisks you into the very heart of Mexico. The bar is stocked with a huge selection of mezcals, tequilas, and even craft beers imported from Mexico (the only bar with craft Mexican beers in Northern California). The gracious bartenders were exciting to talk with, as they chatted about the food and drinks on and off the menu. The michelada, with its pork rind garnish was both gorgeous and tasty. The mezcalita, delicious. The margarita, also delicious (and hey, some of us are margarita connoisseurs). The stand-out food was the veggie taco with sweet potato (don't even get me started on how many we devoured), but the elote was what sealed the deal, one bite and you'll be craving this grilled corn all summer. A short walk over from our office, we are already anticipating our next visit.   A table at Cantina Alley Mescalita & Spicy Margarita on the bar A table at Cantina Alley The bar at Cantina Alley Sign for Paletas A few craft beers from Mexico Tacos at Cantina Alley Cantina Alley's sign Hand-written sign A few mezcal bottles Mezcalita & a Spicy Margarita [post_date] => 2017-05-10 22:28:37 [post_excerpt] => [post_parent] => 0 [post_status] => publish [post_title] => Late Lunching at Cantina Alley [post_type] => post [slug] => late-lunching-cantina-alley-in-sacramento [__type:protected] => [_yoast_wpseo_is_cornerstone] => [_yoast_wpseo_content_score] => 30 [is_this_post_a_press_item] => 0 [_is_this_post_a_press_item] => field_57d194812eaa9 [short_header] => 0 [_short_header] => field_59023606f8c0c [_yoast_wpseo_primary_category] => 100 [ha_post_views_count] => 1066 [_thumbnail_id] => 7140 [_wp_old_slug] => late-lunching-cantina-alley [_yoast_wpseo_metadesc] => Tucked away in the alley off 24th and J streets, sits Sacramento's new Cantina Alley stocked with a selection of mezcals, tequilas, and Mexican Craft Beers. [post_date_gmt] => 2017-05-10 22:28:37 [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => late-lunching-cantina-alley-in-sacramento [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-05-10 22:28:37 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-05-10 22:28:37 [post_content_filtered] => [guid] => http://workbyhoney.com/?p=7113 [menu_order] => 0 [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [status] => publish [image] => )

Late Lunching at Cantina Alley

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The White Russian has put my eggnog FOMO at ease.

I’ve always wanted to love eggnog. I mean, I love everything about the holidays. I love everything about a well-crafted cocktail. So, I’ve always wanted to adore an eggnog cocktail. Each year, I’d try it again, more hopeful than the last, but alas, I’ve just never developed a taste for it. And I always felt like I was missing out on a little holiday magic.

Then, I watched the Big Lebowski for the first time. The White Russian cocktail itself could easily be considered a main character of the film. It’s practically a permanent fixture, effortlessly clinking around in Jeff Bridges' hand throughout the entire movie. If he isn't drinking one, he is making one, ordering one, or at the supermarket buying the fixings to make one (in his bathrobe, no less!). 

Since my first sip, the White Russian cocktail has easily become my favorite holiday drink. With it’s strong coffee flavor and sweet creamy richness, topped with a little cinnamon, or peppermint to it really gets in me in the holiday spirit!

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Honey Sips: White Russian Cocktail

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Brunch on the Delta King