Sunday, December 20, 2009

Burson "Rosso Ravenna" Tenuta Uccellina/Consorzio Il Bagnacavallo 2004

Today was an pretty good day. Sarah took off for Rochester on Thursday (missed that storm by a few hours), so it was all me. When Sarah takes off for an extended period of time, I kind of don't really know what to do with myself. It's almost like the first week of college before classes start. I can do whatever I want! I can stay up late! No ones going to tell me what to do! The only problem being, I'm kind of over that phase of my life. It does mean that I can indulge in all of the things that Sarah doesn't really listening to metal all weekend. (Speaking of, I heard this Christian metal band on Liquid Metal called Living Sacrifice. Aparently, they are from Arkansas. They sound like garden variety metal/metal-core. They sound all right, but they certainly aren't Shadows Fall, Mastodon, or Slayer. Funny, the Christian metal band thing, because for all I know, they were singing about raping the bass player's grandmother and sacrificing a goat. I wouldn't have guessed that they were a Christian metal band a la POD. I guess it's possible to be influenced by Slayer and not be a degenerate? Isn't some of the metal ethos a disrespect for organized religion? Whatever, they're doing their thing, which is totally cool. I hope they don't end up on a bill with any black metal bands from Norway. There might be some fisticuffs. I also heard Three Inches of Blood, who are from Seattle. A girl I know used to date one of the dudes in the band. They're more old school thrash--think Iron Maiden or Judas Priest. Pretty good too.) In addition to listening to metal all weekend, I completed the donut ride in Redondo Beach for the first time. The first time I tried to keep up, I got left in the dust. Couldn't keep up with the pace. Saturday, I kept up. The dudes on that ride get going pretty fast and set a quick pace. I clearly am not in as good of shape as most of those dudes. At one point, I looked down and was going 42 mph (which actually isn't that fast compared to some of the speeds in the Giro d'Italia or Tour de France. Look on You Tube and you can find racer guys going well over 60 mph downhill). On a road bike. Completely hemmed in by other bikes inches away from me. Such is the fun of a pelaton. Kinda scary, but really fun. It's effortless to be going that fast since the mass of all the other riders displaces all of the air and you just draft off them. The good news is that I know that I can keep up now, and I'll probably try and go just about every weekend, and try not to piss anyone off. (You want to make someone mad, just go slower than the pelaton, which is a mistake I made this weekend on a hill. I got a push and a "you can't go in reverse, dude." I won't make that mistake now--I know better. So thanks, random benevolent asshole. I honestly didn't even think about it. I'm a newbie. Next time, I'll stand up.) Today, I rode a metric century--62 miles, culminating with a trip to the Santa Monica Farmer's Market (totally dig the bike valet--I don't have to worry about my bike getting jacked). I should probably apologize to anyone that bumped into me--sorry, you caught me at about the 50 mile mark. I know I was sweaty. Look at the bright side though--at least you didn't run into me at mile 62. (Total for the weekend was just under 100 miles--a little over 99 to be exact.) At the market, I picked up a 100 % grass-fed rib-eye from Rocky Canyon ranch, some fingerlings, and a butternut squash--dinner. Yeah, red meat is another one of those things I consume more often with no girlfriend around. I also opened the wine above, which is a weird and wacky wine from Wine Expo. The best part about drinking the bottle by myself is that I have approximately 1/2 of the bottle to consumer tomorrow, which means that I get to see if the wine evolves or turns into undrinkable garbage.

The Rosso Ravenna is 35$ at Wine Expo, and made from Burson, otherwise known as Longanasi (actaully uva Longanesi, but I think that's maybe something lost in translation, since uva means grape?). Apparently, Antonio Longanesi found a single vine of this grape in the 1950's and saved it from extinction. I'm seeing a pattern here with saving the native grapes. Sounds awfully similar to Schioppettino. Got to love the Italians...The only real (there is a fleeting reference here, and Roberto from Wine Expo figures prominently) non-Italian reference to this wine seems to be from Vinography, way back in 2004. 2004? That was a long-ass time ago--the same year that I really started drinking wine. Interestingly, Alder mentions that there isn't much info about this online...and it's still the same today. The winery is located in the Southern part of Northern Italy, around Bologna and Ravenna, and officially hails from Bagnacavallo (Er well, that's what the internet says, the bottle says Russi. I'm sure they're probably both right since it seems to have two producers?), which means something about water and horses--hence the horse on the label (quite a nice little piece of design, I think). Anyways, in the absence of information about this wine, I guess there's not much else to do except for tell you what I think. Alder had the 2000, which was only the second year that this particular wine was made. I'm guessing that by his score, which was an 8/10, that this has improved, because I don't feel even the least bit cheated by spending 35$ on it. It's pretty damn good and pretty damned interesting. Cherries, dried cherries, strawberry, licorice, herbs, mushroom, and an excellent balance of ripe fruit, tannin, and acidity carry through to a lightly spicy, earthy finish. Lots of stuff going on here, which makes it fun to drink. Perhaps slightly pricey, but I don't think that you find too many wines that are this complex, big, and yet have such good balance for that much less. Update: Day Two, I would say this is holding up well, although not nearly as exciting to me as yesterday. Perhaps I was too nice? No, I don't think so. Anyways, lots of pomegranate character is apparent. Reminds me of POM juice. The earthy/herb thing has faded to the background and it's all tart fruitiness. Still a very nice wine, and interesting to boot. A


Tricerapops said...

i felt tired/inadequate just listening to the bike ride. that's a good outlet however to burn those calories from wine - i need to discover mine. 'thanks benevolent asshole' - classic.

appreciate the scoop on the Burson.

Jeff said...

Dude, I've always been pretty active since I was a fat kid until about 13-14...but I like riding a bike the most. It's a lot more fun than running or something, and a lot more competitive. I'm doing the Levi's Gran Fondo (103 miles) in October, so I really need to train more...because I don't think that I'm quite there.

Anyways, yeah I liked the Burson. I think it's really good and interesting. Maybe a bit pricey, but I still think it's good and it's really fun to try something so unique and different, IMHO.