Sundays with Sinskey

We are now in the second half of September. Here in Napa Valley, this means that harvest is in full swing. The air is filled with that wonderful, sweet smell of the crushed grapes beginning their fermentation. Though I’d be hard-pressed to name a “bad” one, this is definitely the best and my personal favorite time of year for wine tasting in Napa Valley. 

Just now, the mornings are starting to get a little cooler and hazier, with more and more hot air balloons dotting the sky between St. Helena and Napa town. The afternoons are mild and beautiful, even cloudy days lead to the most spectacular sunsets. With so many top-rate wineries nearby, where the vineyard and mountain views rival the wines, as long as you’ve got the sun in the sky, a few good friends and clean wine glass in hand, you simply can’t go wrong no matter where you end up.

And in my case this past Sunday, we ended up at the purely enjoyable Robert Sinskey Vineyards. Though tucked into the side of a hill off Silverado Trail, away from the weekend swells of traffic on Highway 29, Robert Sinskey is no secret. Pinot Noir is what they’re known for, but it’s the Rose that flies off the shelf all too quickly thanks to a shout-out from Ina Garten—yup, the Barefoot Contessa, herself. She named Sinskey’s Vin Gris of Pinot Noir as her favorite Rosé in a Bon Appétit article earlier this summer. But, she’s been a fan for much longer—as explained in a Facebook post from 2012, she was searching for a crisp Rosé to serve at a party in the summer of 1999, and of the six bottles considered, Sinskey’s Vin Gris was the favorite by far. 

With great wine, great food and great views, there’s a lot to like at Robert Sinskey Vineyards. See for yourself:
Part 1: panisse & tomato confit, crostini with arugula, sungold tomatoes, pancetta and aïoli, and RSV zucchini croquette with labneh to taste with the 2013 Pinot Blanc and 2014 Abraxas.
Part 2: roasted eggplant and za’atar, smoked duck breast and sweet corn galette, and a roasted zucchini, tomato and Parmesan tartlet to taste with the 2013 Los Carneros Pinot Noir and 2013 Three Amigos Pinot Noir.
Part 3: RSV lamb burger with dill-mint yogurt, a mushroom & leek empanada with crema and guajillo chili, and a Spanish tortilla with spring onion, potato, piquillo pepper and olive relish, all tasted with the 2012 POV.
The stars of Sunday’s line-up, from left to right: 2014 Orgia, 2013 Cabernet Franc, 2012 SLD, 2012 POV, 2013 Three Amigos Pinot Noir, 2013 Los Carneros Pinot Noir and 2014 Abraxas.

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