tasting room

A new way to sample wines | Tasting Room T.A.S.T.E Technology

I recently received a little black box via Fedex.

T.A.S.T.E technology

The little 50ml wine bottles

Interesting I thought, I wonder whats inside.  Too small to be wine, too big to be a book.  Well it turned out to be wine, six little 50ml wine bottles!  There was a little information card that explained what the acronym means…Total Anaerobic Sample Transfer Environment.  Basically the wines “are transferred directly from finished bottles within a sealed, zero oxygen chamber…”  The wine makers sample the samples and make sure they taste right and then the wine is shipped off to the consumer.  Why would you want to buy such small bottles?  Because maybe you don’t want to shell out $50 and $60 a bottle to find out what a wine tastes like.  The Tasting room allows you to try out 6 different wines for about $30.  But is 50ml enough?  It’s enough wine for about a quarter to a third of a glass, its enough to get an initial idea on whether or not you should purchase a real bottle.  One thing to note is that because of the tiny format the wine has a relatively short shelf life.  It’s best to consume the wine within a month of receiving it, and there is a helpful “best before” date right on the back of the bottle.  The bottles feature stelvin enclosures so you don’t need a tiny corkscrew.

Tasting Room Website

Pillsbury Wine Company tasting room north soft opening, April 9-11 2010

I received a special invite to the “soft” opening of Pillsbury Wine Company’s Tasting Room North. A soft opening is different from a Grand Opening in that the event is not

Pillsbury tasting room north

promoted to the general public. The general public is welcome, it’s just not announced. A soft opening is where the restaurant, bar, hotel, it’s where the business opens and works out the kinks in the system by testing it out on their friends!
Pillsbury Wine Company’s North Tasting Room is located at 1012 Main street in Old Town Cottonwood, Arizona. It’s called the north tasting room because the vineyard is actually located far away in the south eastern part of the state. Cottonwood is about an hour and fifteen minute drive north of Phoenix, just a few miles from Jerome where Tool front man Maynard Keenan’s Caduceus cellars and Merkin vineyards tasting room is located.
Pillsbury’s tasting room, features a simple design and layout. It also features art work by members of Sam’s family. There is an espresso bar, and of course wine to taste!

Inside the Tasting Room

On Friday night Sam estimates that there were close to 100 visitors over the course of the night, that is some soft opening! I arrived at about 11am on Saturday to meet Sam and do a little interview for the Weekly Wine Journal’s Youtube Channel, and take some pictures for the Facebook account. Nice way to plug alternate forms of media eh??
I also tasted 2 wines. I tasted the 2008 Roan red, which is a Grenache based Rhone style wine. And I also tried out the 2009 Viognier. The Viognier had just been bottled by 3pm the previous night. We will be giving more in depth reviews of Pillsbury’s wines in the future, but here is a little teaser.

The 2008 Roan Red is stylistically quite similar to the ’07 Roan Red, if you liked that, you won’t be disappointed with the new offering.

Beautiful color on the 2008 Roan Red

The 2009 Viognier is amazing! In just a couple of weeks it will have settled nicely in the bottle, but even at the time of tasting, with less than 24 hours in the bottle this was a very nice smooth, crisp wine. I was amazed. This wine will sell out fast, only 80 cases were produced.
Before I left I had to pick up a bottle of the 2007 Petite Sirah. Only 30 cases were made of this monster 15.4% 28 brix wine. Sam told me that there are now only 3 cases left. I will be opening this one soon!

more of that beautiful color