Chocolates? Flowers? A beautiful red wine perhaps? Nope. Those are all cliché. We, the “cellar men” (I humbly include myself in that group as I am often invited in) have blended for you a truly exceptional 2016 Elevation Riesling. Now we are sorry that we can’t deliver this Valentine to you for today’s celebrations but when you do get a chance to taste it in a number of weeks, remember the cellar men did their duty, very lovingly with you in mind on Valentines Day. For some reason this is all sounding a bit Shakespearean. 🙂 Our winemaker Brian has been crafting this Vineland “center-post” wine all year. From the vineyard to the crush pad and into the cellars, he has shepherded this outstanding varietal Riesling. He formulated and reformulated the blend until he was happy and then paused. Blend? I said it was a varietal (single grape variety – Riesling). Yes it is, but all wines (varietals or blend of varietals) are blends in the end. We blend tanks and portions of tanks of varietal wine from specific parts of our vineyards to come up with the profile that we feel is the best. Blending is definitely the post-graduate work of winemakers. Brian had the blend down to three possible percentages (all within 5% to 10% of each other). Shaving the blends that close makes all the difference. He called the cellar men to our office, created the blends he was considering and had us all taste them. He wanted our opinions. To the lay person the differences may not have even been noticeable, but to us they seemed very dramatic. It was not necessarily about an academic “good or better” but more about the time honoured profile of Elevation Riesling and how to best express that pedigree for 2016. So it is about “best” but in a very respected frame. There were discussions and some disagreements but in the end, the final decision created a wine that will rock you. I promise. So with great regard we did our loving duty today even though we arrive without the physical gift in hand. Oh, geesh, that reminds me. Are the flower shops still open?? Will they have anything more than a daisy and a bunch of greenery for $50? (my apologies Earl – you would never allow that) 🙂 In truth, I am covered as my love for over 36 years (high school sweethearts) is way beyond that. If I do the laundry and the dishes and pour her a glass of chilled Elevation Riesling (2010) I am golden!! Happy Valentines Day!