Friday, November 1, 2013

Hybrid wines and sweet potato soup

Felt like making a hearty soup with the chilly, rainy weather we've had of late. My wife found a pretty decent looking recipe in Cooking Light magazine which was basically cooked sweet potatoes and onion pureed with chicken stock and garnished with Parmesan cheese and crispy bacon. Really hit the spot with a black pepper/Parmesan toast.

I had some samples left over from today's sales rounds of some new wines we brought into Kansas about 2 weeks ago. The Hybrid wines are the second label of Peltier Station; a third generation family-run winery dedicated to sustainable farming in the Lodi region. The winery is named for an old train station where table grapes used to be loaded on boxcars and shipped eastward. A tip of the cap to Claire Augustine of Classique Wines, LLC and Claire Uncorked who turned me on to this winery.

2012 Hybrid Chardonnay, Lodi - This unoaked Chardonnay shows a light, clear color in the glass; as expected. Aromas of banana, mango and ripe tropical fruits leap out of the glass. A bit simple, but smells quite delicious. Spry and tangy on the palate with minerality and spritzy acidity. Might be a bit monolithic if you're into top flight Napa and Sonoma Chardonnay, but a very drinkable $10 wine.

2012 Hybrid Pinot Noir, Lodi - Yes, Virginia, there is a Pinot Noir from Lodi. And this one is pretty nice so long as you aren't an oak-a-phobe. Perfectly acceptable clear garnet color with a good dollop of hickory-scented wood/campfire accompanying the juicy raspberry and cherry notes on the nose and palate. No noticeable tannins. Finishes with vanilla bean and surprisingly nice acidity. A lot to like here for $10. Pinot Noir with a splash of Viognier.

2011 Hybrid Cabernet Sauvignon, Lodi - Deep, woodsy nose more reminiscent of forest floor and cured meat than a tooty-fruity $10 California Cabernet. Medium-bodied, Merlot-like palate with some nice dark fruit, vanilla and moderate tannins. Acidity on the finish seems a little artificial, but overall, a very nice value. Drink up.

Disclaimer: As you've probably noticed by now, I distribute this wine in Kansas.


  1. Well, would you look at that? *I* got a tip of the hat!!!

    I'm so happy you like the Hybrid line. We do very well with it, but we don't have their Cab; we have the Petite Sirah instead.

    I agree with you on both the Chard & PN. They're both quite good, especially for the buck. Put that with the fact that they're eco-friendly & family-owned, it's a winner in my book.

    I really am going to get back to writing one of these days. I'm finally starting to be able to recognize my life after the last year, & I've missed it!

    1. And a well-deserved tip of the cap! I sold damn near a pallet of that stuff in Lawrence two weeks ago and we had to do an emergency re-order before the winery shut down for vacation. Unfortunately, I still haven't been able to take it around to my accounts in Overland Park because of winery rep visits.

    2. Pick up the Petite Sirah. We sell the hell out of it. This whole Hybrid line is solid & perfect for BTG or just a solid bargain. The fact that they're eco-friendly certainly doesn't hurt, either.

      I'm so happy you're doing well with it!