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I have to admit, I’m kind of a Washington wine snob. I live in the heart of the state’s wine country, surrounded by world-class vineyards, winemakers, and award winning wines. Life doesn’t get much better than that… I’m truly spoiled living where I do just minutes away from Red Mountain, Horse Heaven, Columbia Valley, and Walla Walla AVA’s.
Tonight we are celebrating all the deliciousness Washington wine has to offer with Charles Smith varietals and a girls night in. The back porch is the BEST place to be in the hot evenings sitting with friends and just enjoying each others company, catching up over appetizers and wine.
Why did we pick Charles Smith? Well not only is it great Washington wine that is ready to enjoy right now, as their motto says, “it’s just wine… drink it”, it’s also super fun with unique names and styling like, Kung Fu Girl Riesling, Eve Chardonnay, Boom Boom! Syrah, The Velvet Devil Merlot, and Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon.
Actually, the real reason is that we don’t just buy good wine, we follow rockstar winemakers, and Charles Smith is one of them. (literally… at one time was a rock band manager!) When else can you buy wine at a reasonable price from the only person to win Winemaker of the Year by both Food & Wine and Wine Enthusiast?!?!
When all of the girls get together for our “Girls Night In” we all just bring a snack and keep it low key. Since I was hosting this time, I went ahead and made a simple warmed Brie Cheese topped with a blackberry jalapeno sauce. It’s SO easy and pairs so nicely with the Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon and Boom Boom! Syrah.
The Boom Boom! Syrah (97% Syrah, 3% Viognier), named after Charles’ first love lost, Elizabeth “Boom Boom” O’Brien, is a full-bodied, soft, dry red wine with complex flavors of blackberry and boysenberry with notes of white pepper, savory herbs, and crushed granite. He says she was as spicy as this Syrah. The bomb icon tells you that you are in for something big and bold in the bottle!
The Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon (96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot) is a full-bodied, aromatic, dry red wine with classic flavors of blackberry and cassis with mineral notes of graphite, and has won scores of 89+ four years! Like all of Charles’ other wines, this wine name has a story too. Chateaus are in Bordeaux, and since Cabernet Sauvignon is a Bordeaux varietal he decided to call it Chateau Smith Cabernet Sauvignon to mock all of the other “Faux” Chateaus not in Bordeaux.
So you can easily see why I chose brie and blackberry with jalapeno… the perfect compliment to those bold flavors! To make it up, simply warm your brie in the oven, I cut mine into wedges and let it melt down a bit.
Warm until it’s soft and gooey! Then simply warm up some blackberry jam and stir in just a little jalapeno sauce or juice and pour it over the top. Serve with crackers and you have a delish dish with very little effort!
And if that wasn’t enough, we had some yummy little goat cheese bites rolled in walnuts and dried cranberries topped with a balsamic glaze. YUM! They tasted so great with the Boom Boom! Syrah.
- 1 wheel brie cheese
- 1 cup blackberry jam
- 2 tsp jalapeno sauce
- Warm brie in an oven safe dish at 350 degrees until warmed and starts to soften (about 5 minutes).
- While brie is warming, stir jam and jalapeno sauce in a microwave safe dish.
- Microwave 30 seconds and stir.
- Cook an additional 30 seconds and stir.
- Pour blackberry jalapeno sauce over the warmed brie.
- Serve with crackers.
“Girls Night In” is one of my favorite events I look forward to. It’s just a nice way to relax with friends and catch up since we are all so busy. It’s always fun to see what everyone brings for snacks and wine. We often will set up a theme and do wine tastings as well. Everyone brings a Riesling and then we taste and compare. Always a fun evening!
Have you ever tried Washington State
Charles Smith varietals?
What’s YOUR favorite?
Leave a Comment Below!