Setting, Stories & Spectacular Wines Make Tim’s Ch. Musar Tasting a 2017 Highlight

There are a lot of great and even grand tasting experiences to be had in the wide world of wine. But every now and then, if you’re lucky, you’ll find yourself at an unassuming, casual weeknight tasting that somehow becomes transcendental. The setting, the people and, most of all, the wines come together to magically transport you to a place far beyond your workaday world.

Last Tuesday’s Chateau Musar tasting  at Tim’s Wine Market Orlando was such an event.

Before you call me overly sentimental or accuse me of having had one too many “tastes,” you must understand that I go to a lot of wine tastings – usually at least two a week and often more. I almost always enjoy them on some level – intellectual, social, or sensory. But for a number of reasons, this one was a cut above and a step beyond.

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EVENTS: Glasses, Classes & Oregon Wines

As usual, there are plenty of events to keep you sipping this week in Central Florida.

  • Ever wonder whether the rumors about the shape of a glass affecting the aroma and flavor of a wine are for real or a bunch of marketing hooey? Judge for yourself tomorrow at Tim’s Wine Market – Lake Mary’s casual event, “Does the Glass Make a Difference?”
  • On Wednesday, try the famous Willamette Valley wines of Patricia Green Cellars at Tim’s Orlando.
  • Expand your intellect and your wine knowledge on Saturday at a one-day WSET Level 1 certification class taught by Master of Wine Jean K. Reilly.

Get details for these and many, many more wine happenings on the events page!


Parkview Pushes Boundaries with New Flights

For the past three years, The Parkview has been pushing the bounds of oenophilic (that’s really a word!) creativity.

In 2014, Matt Coltrin took over the classy Park Ave. wine bar that was once the Winter Park outpost of downtown’s Eola Wine Company. He has since created a wine list that gently but persistently nudges patrons outside their comfort zones – and in a very smart way.

The Parkview continued Eola Wine Co’s popular program of flights, but Coltrin began sneaking a few lesser-known varietals into the lineups. A Uruguayan tannat could appear next to a Chilean cabernet and an Argentinian malbec. A picpoul de pinet might show up alongside a sauvignon blanc and a pinot grigio.

The strategy meant customers could gamble on a new wine without having to commit to a full glass.

After three years of training, The Parkview must now believe its patrons’ palates have significantly matured – because it’s just debuted two whole flights of some seriously unusual wines.

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Bubbles, Chocolate, & Master Somms!

Are you seeking a little decadence as we slip into Florida’s sultry summer? You’re in luck!

  • If you act fast (registration ends today), you can still get in on unlimited bubbly and lunch at Cooper’s Hawk this Sunday with Central Florida Women for Winesense Sunday Funday.
  • Later in the week on Thursday, indulge with wine and chocolate pairings at Swirlery.

Also, an early heads-up about a wine dinner at 1921 with not one, not two, but THREE Master Sommeliers. It’s May 11, and I imagine it’ll be worth the trip to Mt. Dora.

Check out our events page for all the details on these and many other Central Florida wine happenings.


Small Sips: Opici’s Spring Tasting Hints at New Arrivals for Central Florida Wine Lovers

“Small Sips” is a new, short & sweet feature showcasing wine events around Central Florida.

Opici Family Distributing holds a couple of trade tastings a year to show off its new arrivals and current standouts to somms and wine buyers from across Central Florida.

The spring event on Monday at Cafe de France on Park Avenue provided a sneak peak of wines that may be coming soon to your favorite bar, shop, or restaurant.

Here are a few highlights:

  • Albert Bichot Burgundies
    Great range, from entry level Beaujolais to Premier Crus – hard to pick a favorite

  • Krone rosé cuvee brut, Tulbagh, South Africa
    Champagne method, refreshing without being simple. (Expect to see this by the glass at a Park Ave. establishment yet to be named!)

  • Leeuwenkuil grenache noir 2015, Swartland, South Africa
    Soft, easy-drinking, lots of fruit

  • Groot Constantia pinotage 2014, Western Cape, South Africa
    A good introduction to pinotage, without so much smokiness and tannin

  • Markus Schneider riesling 2015, Pfalz, Germany
    Crisp, tangy, lots of minerality – everything you want from a dry riesling

  • Left Coast Cellars pinot noirs, Willamette Valley, Oregon
    Interesting line of single-vineyard pinots, plus a fun white pinot and a rosé of pinot

THIS WEEK: Spanish Wine & Food … and Sunday Funday!

Central Florida’s coming week in wine has a definite Spanish flavor, thanks to two Tim’s Wine Market locations.

  • Tim’s Sanford-Lake Mary kicks things off with an authentic Serrano ham carving and Rioja wines.
  • Later in the week, Tim’s Orlando hosts its second annual paella night with a big pan of the Spanish specialty and 20 Spanish & Portuguese wines.

If you’re still hungry and thirsty after all that, you can join Central Florida Women for Winesense for Sunday Funday at Cooper’s Hawk I-Drive with lunch and free-flowing bubbly.

As always, these events are subject to availability. Get details on the events page!

NEW Classes, Tastings, & Events

There’s an eclectic mix of offerings on Central Florida’s wine calendar in the coming week.

  • Compare Napa & Sonoma to the up-and-comers in the rest of the world at Tim’s
  • Pair Greek wine, food, and film at Swirlery
  • Take your pick of a couple of weekend charity events that promise better-than-your-average-charity-event wine selections.

Get details for these and more upcoming wine events on the events page!