Bridge Lane Rosé
Region: Long Island
Retailer: Lieb Cellars
Boxed wine is a pretty polarizing thing. People generally have an opinion about it. My opinion has always been a very neutral "It's fine." I see the pros, but I mostly taste the cons.
I'm happy to have discovered Bridge Lane, because now I can say, "It's awesome!"
Bridge Lane is not something I would normally drink. It's boxed and it's from Long Island. But the packaging is great, and you get 4 bottles worth of wine for $40. But most importantly, their grapes are sustainably farmed and handpicked! AND STAINLESS STEEL FERMENTED! HOW OFTEN DO YOU HEAR THAT WHEN IT COMES TO BOXED WINE? UH NEVER. MOSTLY IT'S SOME RANDO FROM YOUR DORM FLOOR EIGHT YEARS AGO ON FACEBOOK RANTING ABOUT SOME BOXED SHIT SHE GOT ON SALE AT TARGET AND HOW IT'S MOMMY'S JUICE TIME. Ick.
But that is not the case with Bridge Lane. Yes, some rando may be threatening to kill her children if she doesn't start sucking some down, but at least it is a thoughtful wine. The second label to winery Lieb Cellars, these wines are handcrafted, bright, youthful and fruit-forward. This is actually my second box of Bridge Lane (I've also had the Red Blend) and I have to say, I'm very impressed. It's not easy to maintain a fresh wine in a box, in a bag, but god damn it, they did it!
To me, this is a great answer to the summer get-together where you're like, "Fuuuck, I don't want to buy five hundred bottles of wine but I also don't want to buy four boxes of Franzia." Well, now you don't have to do either. You can buy a couple boxes of Bridge Lane and call it a party.
Even if that party is just yourself on a Monday afternoon.
Tasting Notes: Classically rosé. Bright cherries on both the nose and the palate. Easy drinking and smooth with a friendly finish. It sticks around, but you're totally cool with it. Perfect for a party on your patio or porch. Great alone, but I believe would make for some killer spritzers as well.
Ross Test: Sticky but satisfying
Sauvignon Blanc may have been the white wine that converted me from Only-Drinking-Cabernet-FOR-LIFE-I-KNOW-EVERYTHING twenty-three year old, but Vinho Verde was the white wine that I first fell in love with. And that is why I enjoy this Arca Nova Vinho Verde ($9, Silverlake Wine) regularly. Maybe too regularly. Like, more regularly and dependable than my digestive system.
Vinho Verde is the best for my favorite type of drinking: summer day-drinking. Cheap and low in alcohol, you can buy and drink a lot of it. Slightly sparkling, delightfully dry, and just juicy enough to be thirst quenching, I'm pretty sure it's the estival ultimate.
There is nothing better for me than coming home in the summer with the AC blasting, popping a bottle of vinho verde and putting on some early Beatles. Is there anything more fun and poppy than Please Please Me? In my personal opinion, no. And it pairs perfectly with vinho verde. THEY ARE ONE IN THE SAME. If you look up "light & playful" in the dictionary [of my dreams], you will find a photo of the Beatles recording Please Please Me drinking vinho verde. They're laughing and chugging bright green & teal bottles and having a blast and blowing kisses to me through the glass cause I mean, I'm totally there in the dictionary [of my dreams].
The Arca Nova is bright and tastes like grapefruit lemonade, with hints of melon and Paul McCartney's sweat. I say Paul because it's kind of sweet but not as genuinely sweet as George's would be. Paul may write sweet songs but I don't believe he's as sweet as he lets on, and he's not as pure as Georgey boy. That being said, I fucking love that about Paul. You just know he's a bit of an asshole, and not gonna lie, I need my men with a bit of asshole. That sounds like I'm into buttstuff which is fine but I'm not into buttstuff but anyway, okay, ahem.... Anyway, Paul McCartney was my second crush ever after Disney's Robin Hood (yes the fox, the literal and figurative fox). And this is how I always imagined Paul's sweat tasting-- crisp, salty and intoxicating.
THE POINT IS I LOVE IT.
PAUL AND VINHO VERDES.
Sidebar, real quick, uhhhh the guitars on "Anna"?
I listen to that song like 400x on repeat and then have to change my pants.
IT IS SO GOOD. IT'S LIKE THE CHERRY COKE OF GUITAR RIFFS.
Un Saumon Dans la Loire 'La Boutanche' Rosé
I didn't mean to review another rosé. But when the homie Corey Cartwright of Selection Massale pulled out a bottle of 'La Boutanche' rosé at lunch, there was no way I wasn't reviewing it. I'm a huge fan of the Un Saumon Dans la Loire 'La Boutanche' series. They are all well crafted, easy drinkers at reasonable prices. I couldn't not talk about this wine.
Especially considering my best bro Ryan Ellis came through with IF YOU'RE READING THIS IT'S TOO LATE ON FUCKING VINYL. ILLEGAL GERMAN VINYL. BLACK MARKET CLEAR VINYL. THIS IS DRUGS TO ME. LIKE I FREAKED OUT WILDER THAN IF HE HAD JUST STRAIGHT UP RUBBED MILEY CYRUS' MOLLY ON MY GUMS.
I didn't mean to be listening to Drake and drinking rosé again, but, that's just the way shit happened to go. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
The 'La Boutanche' rosé is gamay based, so you know I'm tripping on this shit. Tastes like a cherry Starburst and has me feeling like I'm the one again. It's the color of the red lights in any number of Brooklyn bars I've been wasted in and never knew the names of.
Also cranberry juice, but that is not very evocative.
Like, I don't care about a wine that looks like fucking cranberry juice. I care about wines that remind me of the six years I've been vacationally drinking in the bowels of Williamsburg, having the time of my twenties, throwing shows at now defunct bars (RIP Bruar Falls), watching my homies' bands blow up, and homies' bands dissipate, eating at Five Leaves every time I come through no matter the company, throwing rap and Nirvana on a jukebox in the same breath and talking about Blink 182 until 6AM.
THAT IS THE SHIT WINE SHOULD MAKE YOU FEEL.
CRANBERRY JUICE DOES NOT REMIND YOU OF YOUR WOES.
This wine is so good because it is so fucking youthful. It's bright and vibrant and makes me want to travel and party and pass out on your floor. I want to pop it like a pack of Skittles I finish in 36 seconds, even though I promised myself it would last me the whole flight. I don't have will power with anything pleasurable because I'm a hedonist with a guilty conscience. Like this bottle should last me more than an hour, but it can't because it feels too good to drink it all and listen to Drake and daydream about all the things I did and haven't done yet.
I don't feel like I'm getting old, but I kinda am.
But also: who the fuck cares?
I'll always have my memories, my rosé, and my illegal Drake vinyl.
Some nights I wish I could go back in life.
Not to change shit, just to feel a couple things twice.
Tasting Notes: I like this more after it has time to open, and is not super cold. Much better at a chilly room temp. Cherry and herbal on the nose, tart cherry candy on the palate. In love with the mouthfeel with this one. Lingering but light, feels like a Helmut Lang tee for my tongue. Refreshing and delightful, if you like cherry Sour Punch Straws, which I happen TO FUCKING LOOOOVVVVEE.
Ross Test: Better in a glass but doable.
I have been getting asked to do a newsletter of some sort for awhile now, so now I will be doing that if you're interested in that sort of thing.
Don't worry, it will not be an every day obnoxious sort of thing. It will be a cool, "Hey here's some cool posts + some cool wine info + other cool stuff" sort of thing.
I'm pleased to announce that your girl, M. Ross,
is A FUTURE AMERICAN AUTHOR.
PLUME, SPRING/SUMMER 2017
I quit my job as Mindy Kaling's assistant because I really believed I was going to sell a book, and because my boyfriend Ben really believed I was going to sell a book. I don't know if I would have had the guts to quit without him. It was hard, and scary. I hadn't even finished the proposal, but I was up the Saveur awards in less than a month, and there was nothing that was going to stop me from going to New York, attending the awards and trying to sell this book. There were no guarantees on anything. There was a good chance I would spend all my money going to New York, not win any awards and not even have any publisher meetings because I didn't even finish my proposal.
But as luck (and a lot of hard work) would have it, I finished the proposal, won the awards and I had a lot of good meetings. I had meetings for hours on end, for days on end. At the end of the day, I would rush off to Saveur events. It was extremely exhausting, especially coming on the heels of a press trip to Napa. I was running around like crazy and so anxious about everything. I barely ate, didn't sleep at all, and had to be "on" for over a week straight.
Friday, June 5th, I had a legit breakdown.
The night before I had super surprisingly won the Saveur awards. My meetings that week had gone beyond wonderfully (I'm better in person I promise). There was no reason for me to be crying uncontrollably with panic, and yet I was. It was so bad I couldn't leave my hotel room and had to cancel seeing some of my favorite people on my last, and only free, day in NYC. I have anxiety, but never like this. It was so embarrassing, but I was so upset. So upset that I begged a wonderful, maybe one of my best, friends to bring me Xanax (something I do not fuck with) to my hotel. He brought it over during his daily run, in a tie-dyed shirt and basketball shorts. We sat by the pool and I cried and buried my face in his shoulder and he told me not to Heath Ledger myself. I was so scared and I was so scared of him leaving. He told me to go to the park, to get out, and I'd be okay. But I really didn't feel like I would. I was so, so scared.
And I couldn't even believe I felt that way.
EVERYTHING WAS GOING GREAT.
But I had legit ran myself into the ground.
I mean I got some pizza and chilled and was fine,
BUT, was legit not fine for awhile.
I got back to LA on Saturday night after almost missing my flight because I got drunk at the pool after some conferences calls and left my only credit card at the hotel. My book was going to auction Tuesday morning, 11 AM, EST. I proceeded to smoke a lot of weed and be an anxious mess until then.
I had spent everything I had going to New York.
Financially and emotionally.
I woke up Tuesday morning at 7:30AM PST
my body completely covered in hives
with a message from Chase that I had
$25.01 to my name.
And by 10AM PST,
I had sold my book
to Plume, an imprint of Penguin.
So. Here I am.
Still mostly broke, but hey,
I sold a fucking book.
And my rash is finally gone, so that's good.
I'm just so excited. I never in a million years thought I would be writing a wine book, because generally I hate wine books, but this is my wine book. And you know me. So, you know.
I guess the point is in your life, you will have the choice to make scary decisions. You will have the choice to leave what is comfortable. You will have the choice to spend all your money on pursuing your dream. You will have the choice to throw your middle fingers up at the people who have doubted you, who have told you you're not a real writer or you talk like an idiot or you have a mustache. Your ex-boyfriend who a month ago messaged you to tell you you're a degenerate schizophrenic pandering to twenty-somethings. Your family who never understood what the hell you were doing because they saw you keep changing your path, when really you were just following it.
You have choices.
Make them for yourself.
Especially when they are scary.
They may not work out. I've made a lot of scary choices that have not ended up in me winning awards and selling books, but I wouldn't be here right now if I hadn't made all those other scary choices leading up to these recent scary choices.
It was fucking scary.
And there is a good chance things may only get scarier.
But you know what?
This is the first time I haven't been scared.