Have you ever been on a road trip that turned out to be more complicated than expected, but became a fantastically, wild surprise? You hop into a vintage classic, expecting to look fresh in the throwback, but not necessarily holding a ton of faith in the machine’s performance for long trips. You turn the key into the ignition, and your legs shake a little at the power this little engine is giving you.
Opening this ten year old Pinot Gris from Ernest delighted me in the same way. The first turn gives way to an initial shock at the golden hue poured into the glass. This liquid gold is the result of small amounts of oxygen seeping into the bottle over the course of ten years like. The aromas of honey bees buzzing around spring flowers make you roll the windows down as you cruise down the desert highway. A windy turn hits you ahead and as you take your first taste, with more acid than expected from first impressions. You must take a moment to catch the full experience of thick honey and late summer nectarines that’s holding just enough biting acidity to grab your cheeks with a warm embrace. As you continue down the road, swirling through the waxy bright flavors, you must honor the moment by closing your eyes, arms out the window, and Coolio “Rollin’ With the Homies” on full blast into the liquid sunset of chamomile.
- Written by Nat Stew (with glass in hand and radio on)