Posts Tagged ‘Ripple’
Ree Ohh Haaaa!
Wednesday, June 12th, 2013 I attended a fun wine tasting for the Trade put on by Vibrant Rioja who were showcasing the wine region at a tasting put on at Ripple Restaurant in Cleveland Park, Washington, D.C. Aaron Gordon was representing Vibrant Rioja and let’s just say – he’s a character! The wine trade always has attracted the artsy and the intellectual, and maybe the slightly off-center – I would say this guy fits the bill! The other speaker was a more traditional sommelier.. well almost David Denton who was also at one time a punk rock guitar player – but now he works as the sommelier at Charlie Palmer Steak on Capital Hill. But the presentation was very good – well, actually I couldn’t see the tv screen presentation (was it a slideshow?), but the layout of the wine tasting was really excellent and easy to follow – numbered glasses, white in front of red.
So what did I gain from this Rioja tasting?
-Tempranillo can be white – yes, I had probably my first white Tempranillo – and it was very good! I would say it was a medium-bodied white and I think it had some oak, but it was also unusual in that it was slightly oxidized even though it was a young wine – so it had those sherry-like features/burnt almond that made it seem much older.
-there are many indigenous varietals I had never heard of and I tried one that made me pretty excited – Maturana Tinta – a gamey/blackberry fruit red grape that had quite a bit of life and a touch of gaminess! After tasting so many steady Cabernets and even Tempranillo’s in my wine tasting career, it’s always nice to find a red varietal that has life and potential – this wine (albeit this was a better-made more expensive version by Dinastia Vivanco (2009) shows how there is more great wine to explore even from well-known regions like Rioja.
-a red wine over 10 years old isn’t necessarily brickish in color or aged in taste – I’m still amazed at the vibrancy and purple color of the Bodegas Ontanon Reserva 1995 (Tempranillo and Garnacha) – my understanding is that this wine had been kept in the winemaker’s cellar until recently which may explain alot – the color suggested a relatively young wine and the fruit was still noticeable on the palate, although there was quite a bit of that aged cedar box you get from slightly older wines. I think more than anything, Tempranillo can age amazingly well, but proper treatment and storage of your wines can make a HUGE difference when you go to open something over a decade old – consider improving or maintaining quality wine storage!
Overall, the event was very nicely laid out and had a festive feel. I also like the fact that they chose a wine bar – Ripple – vs. a traditional fancy schmancy fine dining restaurant – it gave this a more festive air. Rioja is almost an exclamation point for Spanish wine – you can simply walk in to pretty much and decent restaurant and ask for a “Rioja” and the server will know that you mean a Tempranillo from the region. Tasting Graziano, Garnacha, Maturana and many other varietals opens up this traditional wine region to new experiences. Also, the traditional blending of Cabernet and Merlot with everything is a choice here – some traditionalists in Spain are trying to bring more local character to their wines by avoiding the overly oak, rich, modern style. One last point – traditionally, Rioja uses American oak barrels vs French for aging of wines – this also gives them a slight “coconut” aromatic that sets them apart from other European wines. Cheers to Rioja!
Charlie “I Drink on the Job” Adler
Chefs For Equality – a Cause Worth Eating For!
I have really great news for DC Fundraisers and Foodies in our Nation’s Capital – DC has reached Foodie Destination! OK, so maybe there are still quite a few events with poor food and bad drinks, but after recently attending the Capital Food Fight, the Washingtonian Brunch & Bloody’s event and Wednesday, October 24th’s Chef’s For Equality event, I noticed many of the same restaurants and chefs showcasing different sides of their culinary ability. The bad news is I didn’t get a list of dishes from last night’s event – I was spending too much time tasting, drinking and a bit of hobnobbing – but let’s just say there wasn’t a bad dish! What made this event extra Foodie was that there was also a Cocktail focus and some of the top Mixologists in our region like Todd Thrasher and Adam Bernbach went all out to impress the crowd.
The Evening’s cause was to raise awareness and votes for Same-Sex Marriage Rights in Maryland – since I support same-sex marriage but I’m really focused on Food and Drink Events, here are the details on the politics of the event from the Human Right’s Coalition. Also, Washingtonian had a nice article with some Chef gossip and the details on the political cause. Other Articles include the Washington Blade which mentions MD Gov. O’Malley’s speech at the event, Tim Gunn from Project Runway was a speaker at the event as well, you can read more at MyFoxDC’s Coverage. I’m all for political causes and fundraisers, but I feel it’s my duty to stay focused DC’s culinary experiences.
Below is a list of participating chefs and Mixologists as well – I was able to copy the links to most of the restaurants so it’s also a nifty way to find out more about each establishment. I’ll try to update the dishes if I can get a list of them, but alas, this is mostly a Publicity post right now – I REALLY like to include more food information – Cheers!
Find out more about DC’s top culinary chefs participating in this special event.
- Victor Albisu, Taco Bamba – is currently holding Pop-ups at
- José Andrés, ThinkFoodGroup
- Sebastien Archambault and Peter Brett, Blue Duck Tavern
- Cathal Armstrong, Restaurant Eve
- Jon Arroyo, Founding Farmers
- Kyle Bailey, Birch and Barley
- Ian Bens, Juniper
- Justin Bittner, Bar Pilar
- Jeff Black, Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
- Danny Bortnick, Firefly
- Devin Bozkaya, Westend Bistro
- Amy Brandwein, Chef AmyB
- Erik Bruner-Yang, Toki Underground
- Jeff Buben, Woodward Table
- RJ Cooper, Rogue 24
- Logan Cox and Alison Reed, Ripple
- John Critchley, Urbana
- Travis Croxton, Rappahannock River Oysters
- Noah Dan, Pitango Gelato
- Scott Drewno, The Source
- Enzo Fargione, Elisir
- Teddy Folkman, Granville Moore’s
- Mark Furstenberg, Bread Furst
- Georgetown Cupcake
- Spike Gjerde, Woodberry Kitchen
- Dean Gold, Dino
- Todd and Ellen Gray, Equinox
- David Guas, Bayou Bakery
- Thomas Hall, 901 Restaurant
- Scot Harlan, Green Pig Bistro
- Michael Harr, Food, Wine & Co.
- Jerry Hollinger and Zena Polin, The Daily Dish
- Mike Isabella, Graffiato
- Jim Jeffords, Evening Star Café
- Haidar Karoum, Proof / Estadio
- Billy Klein, Café Saint-Ex
- Ris Lacoste, Ris
- Jamie Leeds, Hank’s Oyster Bar
- Andrew Little, Sheppard Mansion
- Tiffany MacIsaac, Buzz Bakery
- Jody Manor, Bittersweet
- Dennis Marron, Poste Moderne Brasserie
- Jon Mathieson, BLT Steak
- Cedric Maupillier, Mintwood Place
- Aaron McCloud, Cedar
- Harper McClure, The Federalist
- Raynold Mendizabal, Fujimar
- Clayton Miller, Wit and Wisdom
- Mary Lee Montfort, Mary Lee’s Desserts
- Wes Morton, Art and Soul
- Terry Natas, Carmine’s
- Kaz Okochi, Kaz Sushi Bistro
- Nelson Paz, The Ritz-Carlton, DC
- Padua Player, Susan Gage Caterers
- Christophe and Michelle Poteaux, Bastille
- Nora Pouillon and Todd Woods, Restaurant Nora
- Leslie Poyourow, Fancy Cakes by Leslie
- Beau Ramsburg, Rettland Farm
- Michel Richard, Central
- Kimberly Robinson, Makin’ Whoopie
- Omar Rodriguez, Oyamel Cocina Mexicana
- Craig Rogers, Border Springs Farm
- Lara Stuckey, Fluffy Thoughts Cakes
- Peter Smith, PS 7’s
- Alli Sosna, Allison Sosna Group / Microgreens
- Emily Sprissler, Mayfair and Pine
- Nicholas Stefanelli, Bibiana
- Vikram Sunderam, Rasika
- Zoe Tsoukatos, Zoe’s Chocolate Company
- Jeff Tunks, Passion Food Hospitality
- Bryan Voltaggio, Volt
- Rob Weland, Cork Wine Bar
- Robert Wiedmaier, Marcel’s
- Paul Yeck, Jaleo DC
- Steve Yoon, Sushi Rock
- Demetrio Zavala, Lincoln
- Adam Bernbach, Proof / Estadio
- Derek Brown, Passenger / Columbia Room
- Gina Chersevani, Hank’s Oyster Bar
- Jeff Faile, Fiola
- Matt Ficke, Columbia Room
- Jon Harris, Firefly
- Corey Polyoka, Woodberry Kitchen
- Michael Searles, Virtue Feed & Grain
- Rachel Sergi, Jack Rose
- Andrew Shapiro, Green Pig Bistro
- Colin Sugalski, Toki Underground
- Bryan Tetorakis, Rogue 24
- Owen Thomson, Volt
- Todd Thrasher, TNT/PX Restaurant/The Majestic/Society Fair/Virtue Feed & Grain
- Ari Wilder, Fujimar
- Rob Yealu, The Federalist
Charlie “I Drink on the Job” Adler