Rickeys, Vol. 2

I've gotten way behind on reporting my adventures with Rickey (not Martin).

All of these use roughly 2 to 1 spirits to lime juice, with a lime shell and soda water on ice to fill roughly a 10 oz glass. For 1 1/2 oz of liquor, 1/2 oz instead of 3/4 oz of lime juice works better for me. The lime starts to overpower the spirit if you use more.  I found that in my early rickeys I was pouring too much soda (I gotta get decent glassware), and that was responsible for their slightly watered down taste.

The first one is an Irish Rickey: Irish whiskey (I used Jameson's 12 year) and lime.  This one just tasted like watered-down whiskey, and with this whiskey, that's a shame.

No. 2 is  a Whiskey Rickey; I used Jim Beam Distiller's Series, but you could also use rye.  Here's an example of where 3/4 oz lime juice to 1 1/2 liquor is too much: I couldn't taste the bourbon through the lime. As with the Jameson's, with this liquor, you want to taste it (and paid to taste it).

Next we come to a Scotch Rickey, here using Jimmie Walker black.  Not bad if you keep the lime at 1/2 oz.  I could taste the Scotch, and it made for a nice summertime drink.

Going south of the border, a Tequila Rickey, using a reposado.  Not bad, not great.  With salt on the rim of your glass you could call it a Margarita Rickey.

Last, a Mezcal Rickey: This was my favorite of the batch. I prefer mezcal's stronger flavors to tequila generally, and the smokiness of it appealed to me with the lime, sort of like grilled fish.

We've still got a few weeks of summer left, so I'll report on one more batch of rickeys between my looks at Sauvignon Blancs.

2009 Dancing Bull Sauvignon Blanc

I drank a bottle of 2009 Dancing Bull Sauvignon Blanc over a couple days that ran me in the $9-$10 range. 

I found this to be a so-so bottle of SB: the nose didn't seem particularly distinctive.  The mouth wasn't as overly citrusy as some SBs I've drunk this summer, which I liked, but the flavors weren't particularly notable, just generic.

The winery's web site (very graphic-intensive and one of the best designed I've seen) claims that both the nose and the mouth show fresh mown grass and boxwood.  I guess I need to get to a nursery and sniff some boxwood, but that seems a little over the top. 

Both the site and the label say that this wine would be good with Chinese take-out, and I do agree with that.

2008 Bogle Sauvignon Blanc

I haven't drunk many California Sauvignon Blancs this summer, so I decided I should try a few more.

This 2008 Bogle, which hails from Clarksburg (apparently where they have lots of quail or pheasants or some kind of game birds running around; two are in gold on their green label), ran me in the $10 range. Clarksburg is just south of Sacramento on Interstate 5.

The nose didn't blow me away with any noticeable sniffs.  The wine itself, the first glass at any rate, struck me with strong apple notes.  I didn't get that quite so much from subsequent glasses.  This was also a sweeter SB with a low acidity than most of the ones I've drunk this summer, on the edge of being almost too sweet for my taste.

If you prefer your wines a little sweet, this would be a good choice at the price point.

2009 Brancott Sauvignon Blanc

This review will be short and pretty sweet.  Last weekend I drank a 2009 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc from Brancott.  I think it ran me roughly in the $15 range.

It was a very hot and sticky weekend, like the rest of this summer.  I don't usually drink more than 2 glasses of wine on any given day (I've gotta get with the program), but Saturday I think I drank 3 glasses, and Sunday I finished up the bottle.

Now, this wasn't a particularly outstanding SB.  The nose was uninspiring, and the flavors weren't particularly subtle, especially compared to the Crossings bottle at the same price point from a week or so before. But it was a pleasant wine for a hot summer day, and that's what counts sometimes.

And a p.s.: the Pouilly Fume from last week that I didn't care for:  it works great for poaching fish with a pat of butter, herbs, squeeze of lime.

2007 Regis Minet Pouilly Fume

I was looking forward to trying a Pouilly Fume after all the Sauvignon Blancs I've drunk this summer to see what the difference is since they use the same grape.  I was in for a let down.

This 2007 Vielles Vignes Regis Minet from the Loire ran me in the $25 range, and it's another example of higher-priced wines not necessarily being better.

It was about the tartest wine I've ever drunk, almost like acidulated water.  More lime than lemon notes to my tongue, or maybe lemon-lime.  I did get a little of the SB grassiness.  The nose wasn't anything to sneeze at.

Other reviewers have reviewed this vintage pretty highly.  Maybe I just got a bad bottle.

2008 Mapema Mendoza Sauvignon Blanc

This week I drank a 2008 Mapema Sauvignon Blanc from Argentina.  These grapes are grown pretty high up, 3,900 feet, "in the shadow of the Andes mountains," in Tupungato Department in Argentina's well-known Mendoza wine-growing region.

The label describes this SB as "Floral with crisp, lemony citrus and melon flavors," and that sums it up pretty well, though I never get the melon notes that SBs are supposed to show.  My initial assessment was that it was one step up from water with lemon, but it grew on me.  It doesn't have the strong, herbal notes of many SBs, as if you're drinking a grassy meadow smoothie or watered-down green Chartreuse.

This is a very light wine, but enjoyable; it runs in the $12-13 range. Definitely a good summer wine for the 100 degree weather we're having.