Category Archives: Pinot Grigio

Ooh la la … Lots to like about this wine!

Today’s French lesson is brought to you by someone who lasted exactly two weeks in French 101.  Lucky for you dear reader, I have mad Google skills. You’re welcome. According to About.com: “The French phrase ooh là là isn’t so much an expression as an interjection. It can indicate surprise, disappointment, commiseration, distress, annoyance … any moderately strong reaction to something that was just said or done. It can be strengthened with additional ‘s, always in pairs.” Examples of such an interjection could include, “Oh dear!”  “Oh my!” or “Oh no!” Although, the literal translation is, “Oh there there.”

I see London, I see France, I see you’re wearing granny underpants.  And frankly, my dear, those just won’t do if you’re planning to break open a bottle of Ooh La La 2011 Pinot Grigio. Trust me on this.  I’m feeling slightly under-dressed in an oversized sweatshirt and my favorite pair of granny panties.  Need a little boost of estrogen? All you need to do is hold the bottle in your hand. Bust out those frilly polka-dot undergarments ladies, we just might have found THE most girly wine yet!  

I read somewhere its innovative and unique packaging appeals to the “millennial female.”  Okay. Sure. Sign me up! I’ll be the new face of the millennial female, even if I might have been born a few years too early.

I wouldn’t say I have fetish, but I do have a black and white polka dot purse. Actually, my family has corrected me many times, because it’s actually a lunch bag. But since it seems to hold my wallet, car keys and enough crap to save the day at any given moment, I call it my purse.  So, it only seems natural that I would be drawn to the bottle without a second thought.  After all, when hasn’t a bottle of wine saved the day?

Ooh La La 2011 Pinot Grigio was just as I imagined it would be. It was crisp, and light on the palate, with hints of green apple and pear.  It’s fermented clean and cold versus using oak barrels, which ensure a slow fermentation. This method is used to preserve the virginal flavor of the fruit. This slightly effervescent wine did have one surprise: a bottle cap.  That’s right. No cork, no twist-off cap, just a simple bottle cap. You might be thinking, “That’s not wine! That’s just a very large beer minus the hops!”  But, it’s the truth and nothing but the truth.  Two Wine Slobs’ honor! (What little honor there is in being a wine slob.)

The Purse…or the lunch bag.
Depending on who you ask.

I did have one complaint, however.  Not about the wine, but about the website. It’s still under construction, much like Franklin Road in Idaho.  Will they ever finish it?  I hope so.  Millennial females like to be in the know. You know? But, “Oh there there,” don’t you fret.  They did manage to launch a Facebook page in August.  Which you can find here: http://www.facebook.com/OohLaLaWines.

And there you have it; a little French lesson, a new use for your favorite lunch bag, an occasion to wear polka-dot panties, and a fresh perspective on cold fermentation — all in one blog post. Ooh La La 2011 Pinot Grigio would be a great addition to any casual gathering with the girls whether you’re into polka dots or not. Ciao, wine lovers!

Aromatique: Fresh and fruity

SipQuips:  Crisp green apple and pears.  Very light on the palate.  Refreshing and fun!

Kitchen Coupling: Fresh green salad, white fish, light cheeses and fruit, pasta with white sauce.


Pin-chardasshean-oh Grigio

This one earned a half glass.One of the first lessons we learned while attending Wine Review School (St. Vincent of Saragossa Academy, Class of 2009) is to never let the quality of the food influence your opinion of the wine.

Just because you guzzled that $200 French Chablis while snarfing a plate of bad chili fries doesn’t mean the wine was bad. It just wasn’t a proper pairing. (We could recommend some vintages that would be appropriate, but that’s a different post.)

Matching your vino with your grub is important to enjoying both. So we’re trying not to let a disappointing culinary experience shadow our opinion of this 2006 Rheinhessen Ars Vitis Pinot Grigio from Germany.

We picked up this bottle of Qualitätswein (that’s what it promises on the label) for $3,99 from the Grocery Outlet. Think of that. A five-year-old bottle of wine was shipped all the way to Idaho from Germany, sold for under four bucks, and someone still made money. That’s nuts.

But I digress.

This is a perfectly serviceable wine, especially if you like your whites a little on the tart side. The fruit here is all green apple. It’s definitely not a sweet wine. There are some earthy undertones, especially after it warms a bit.

Our tasting of this wine may have played second fiddle to a kitchen adventure that had mixe

Check it out. Reality looks just like the recipe page!

d results. Debbie concocted a gorgeous looking casserole of polenta, fresh rainbow chard from the garden, cannelloni beans, and asiago cheese. I thought it was quite tasty; Debbie said the chard-asiago dish tasted more like charred ass. (Recipe here … if you dare.)

That’s a lot for any wine to compensate for.

The truth is, we haven’t drunk a lot of pinot grigio, despite the fact that it’s the most commonly imported white in the U.S. Apparently, at least according to some sources, it’s also the most maligned. It’s often referred to as uninteresting.

I don’t know if this wine validates that position. It’s one-dimensional, to be sure, but it wasn’t bad. And with the right meal, it might be downright enjoyable.

Now, about that chard-polenta casserole…

Aromatique: Sharp, fruity aroma, like a Granny Smith apple
SipQuips: Tart, but not quite sour. Green apples, with a hint of earthiness.
Kitchen Couplings: Spicy Thai or Asian food; sushi


It Ain’t Easy Taming a Shrew

This one earned a half glass.Act I

Loaded down with soft-sided coolers, a bag of blankets and cushions, I approached the will-call booth to pick up our tickets. Can I just say how much I adore the attending outdoor plays at the Idaho Shakespeare Festival?  My daughter and I made haste getting through the line to the hillside. It  was opening night and getting a prime spot  that was shaded and somewhat flat is always a bit of an endeavor. We had stopped at Fred Meyer to pick up snack packs of hummus, sandwiches, fruit and sweet treats from the bakery. Have you seen their chocolate covered strawberries, and mini tarts?  Heavenly!

Our friends arrived and in no time we were plundering our coolers, pulling out bits to eat, laughing, talking and my favorite – people watching. I had no idea I was supposed to wear a sundress, oversized southern style hat and spiked red heels to the event!  My friend and I rolled our eyes watching the bleached blonde southern belle doing her best not to plant herself in the dirt as we gnawed on sandwiches and brushed away crumbs.  Did I mention the lady in blue with the tennis bracelet and diamond ring that almost blinded us?

Act II

Although sparkling jewelry and high heels are not overly abundant at the festival, one thing is: Wine!  One glance around the amphitheater is proof enough. Everywhere you look, patrons are sharing a bottle and sometimes two while they dine and anxiously wait to soak up a little culture. I dug through our beverage cooler in search of my latest wine find. I pushed past the peach iced tea and lifted the ice pack I’d stolen from my freezer. I wasn’t looking for a bottle, rather a box. That’s right, a box of wine. This isn’t your mother’s standard Franzia occupying a permanent spot in the refrigerator with enough booze in the bladder to serve eight comfortably. Instead, it is a rather small, extremely portable box which promises three glasses. I chose the Bota Box Pinot Grigio as the perfect accompaniment to my ham and Swiss on a baguette.  A few twists of the plastic cap and within seconds it poured freely into my newly acquired plastic wine glass.

Pinot Grigio

Act III

Indeed, great things do come in aseptic packages! I paid just $3.99 at Fred Meyer for this little glorified Californian juice box and it was worth every penny.  And, for all you environmentalists at heart, the box is not only fully recyclable, the package manufacturing is also green!  Green shmeen … how does it taste?  That’s really the bottom line, isn’t it?  It’s good. Nothing earth-shattering, not great, but it is good. The taste-bud teaser of sniffing the cork is lost with this form of packaging. One must simply pour and allow the wine to breathe before the ritualistic nostril plunge. This wine has a touch of floral and a heavy dose of citrus. It is sharp on the tongue with hues of crisp lemon and green apple with a spicy warmth.  If you are looking for a dessert wine, continue the search.  This wine is quite tart.

Final Act

If you don’t know anything about the classic, “Taming of the Shrew,” it is about an ill-tempered woman named Katherine who must be married off before her enchanting sister Bianca.  Because of her vial temper and childish antics the task proves extremely difficult. Eventually, a brazen young man named Petruchio agrees to marry her sight unseen, aware her family’s wealth will bring him fortune.  Unhappy about the decision, Katherine is all but forced to go through with it.  Petruchio uses garish tactics to tame his new bride, which in the end prove to be successful.  With a newfound love and appreciation for her husband’s brazen actions to make her a dutiful wife, Katherine wholeheartedly accedes to his perspective.

Idaho Shakespeare Festival Amphitheater

Idaho Shakespeare Festival’s Amphitheater

“Forward, I pray, since we have come so far,
And be it moon, or sun, or what you please.
And if you please to call it a rush candle,
Henceforth I vow it shall be so for me.”  – Katherine

Although, I did not fall in love with this wine, nor did it tame my lust for glass bottles and corks, but when an occasion, such as outdoor plays or overnight camping trips, the Bota Box Pinot Grigio shall be what pleases me.

Aromatique: Floral and citrus scent

SipQuips: Tart on the tongue. Flavors of lemon and green apple. Definately not sweet.

Kitchen Couplings: Sharp cheeses, light pasta dishes, poultry, fish or seafood. Don’t forget the ham and Swiss sandwich!