02 November, 2012

Concannon Vineyard - A Place for All Seasons

In the bright heat of summer, I visited with Luscious Lush Thea the Concannon Vineyard where we met John Concannon, great grandson of the founder, toured the lovely grounds and tasted the wonderful wine they have there.  Hearing the history of the place firsthand, we thought they should do a documentary since the story is so fascinating,  rooted in family, California history and best of all: wine!

Now that the weather is turning cold and rainy, the temperate winter of Livermore makes it the best time to visit.  Especially since they have the best wine bar on site and a fabulous retail store to help you get fun holiday gifts for those on your list of legal drinking age.  While everyone else is scurrying around Broadway Plaza, take a detour to Livermore and the Underdog Wine Bar.  You can while away an aftenoon "shopping" for the perfect wine to gift.  The menu has suggestions to guide your choices and help you  learn more about the wines they sell. Plus the snacks are amazing.  Tuna tartare anyone? 3 oz tasting pours let you experiment and find your next new favorite.

100 degrees outside and still tanks are "chill"
traditional makes tasty
Concannon is best known for its wonderful Petit Sirahs.  Jim Concannon was the first to bottle it as a varietal.in 1961  Known as a great blending component, he recognized the caliber of the fruit to drive a luscious, inky delight all on its own.  Concannon wins awards for their wonderful offerings .
 Using techniques from the most modern to the most traditional they are able to maintain the timeline of excellence, winning medals, which you may or may not care about , and producing lovely wines, which I know you do.

And talk about commitment to the land.  John's stewardship of the Livermore vineyard inspired him to  convert the agricultural holdings into a conservation trust so the land is safe from condo-fication.  So we will always be able to go back and enjoy the taste of history in a glass in the Conservancy tier of the wine offerings.
No McMansions here!

Speaking of history, they found Captain Joe's original recipe that he used to make wine for General Pershing.   It has a hint of cigars,  dark fruit aromas and lovely flavors of more dark fruit.  Substantial mouth feel with a slight burn and lovely haunting smoulder to finish  Super food friendly and definitely matches the  personality of namesake character.

I do love some good Petit Sirah.  But we tasted through the whole line which includes so much more:
 2010 Conservancy Charddonay, Livermore valley
Bright low malo nice acidity for food hint of popcorn in finish, nice bitterness

2010 Reserve Chardonnay, Livermore valley
green fruit citrus more malo smoother lovely  citrusy finish

2011 Viognier amazing tropical notes John says banana but like those banana daiquiris you get in St. John when then pull sugar bananas off the tree nice silky mouthfeel yummy flavors

2008 Merlot bright med garnet lovely raspberry aromas and flavors , drinks like a much pricier bottle so would make a great gift.  The fruit comes from the coldest part of  ruby hills, which allows a long hang time 10 %cab it's a wine that is paying attention.  Firm backbone  looks like a $50 bottle with its embossing and fancy bottle, drinks like a $30 wine and retails for $15

2009 Cabernet Sauvignon,  Livermore lovely black cherry aromas hint of morning bun aroma slightly sweet food friendly smooth pleasant flavors

2008 Petit Sirah, Livermore vly dark luscious Gremlin wine taming the beast concannon 1st in Us now over 2000 producers "squid ink purple st Bernard sitting in your lap" pleasant grip smooth slightly brambliness

crimson and clover red blend landmark years 50%ps Cab and Zin 1.2 RS  double dipping  components aged separately then interesting oak regimen to enhance mocha character super food friendly delish with Ahi and smoked salmon

Sounds delish, right?
They have handy pariring recipes here: 
Over the summer I worked on a Petit Sirah Profiterole that involved my three stage 2 day ice cream prep and home made pasty.  But I will adapt the recipe for you here for your holiday entertaining timeline:
Step 1: Buy Petit Sirah Chocolate Sauce
Step 2: Buy frozen vanilla cream puffs, Whole foods has a great one
Step 3: Assemble, relax, devour!
Plan your visit soon!
Concannon Vineyard
4590 Tesla Road
Livermore, CA 94550
Phone: (800) 258-9866
(925) 456-2505
Fax: (925) 456-2511
Hours: Daily, 11AM - 4:30PM

Underdog Wine Bar at Concannon Vineyard
Phone: (925) 583-1581
Thursday-Saturday 11:30 to 10PM
Sunday-Wednesday 11:30 to 8PM

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