2011 The Count, Founder’s Red Wine, Buena Vista; 2013 Loveblock Sauvignon Blanc

A rare two-for, a his and hers special to accompany a delicious birthday meal at Fleming’s steak house in Charlotte, NC. His is the domestic Cabernet blend; hers is the imported white.

2011/2012 The Count, Founder's Red Wine, Buena Vista, Sonoma County, California, USA.

2011/2012 The Count, Founder’s Red Wine, Buena Vista, Sonoma County, California, USA.

His accompanied a Caeser salad and a medium filet mignon, served on a plate that was even hotter than the steak. The Caesar, amply showered with fresh pepper, had a cool crisp of breadstuff served with it, a buttery treat that was pretty excellent. The dressing was a bit heavy but the steak just buttery smooth. The filet was cooked just about perfect and matched up well with the well-balanced red–an easy selection to make from a favorite Sonoma vineyard. You taste smooth blackberries here, some subtle mild accents too. They are nearly hidden from the palate but come alive as you taste the 2011/2012 The Count.

Her Marlborough-originated Sauvignon Blanc accompanied a Caesar as well. A gossamer of gold in a big fishbowl of a glass, the Loveblock shimmered in the intimate restaurant light and matched the twinkle in my wife’s eyes. It complemented a Chilean sea bass and spicy risotto that seemed just fantastic. The Loveblock, an organic white from New Zealand, is a fresh, fragrant-smelling offering from winemakers Kim and Erica Crawford and is really expressive on the nose. Your author is more of a red fan but appreciated the excellent work here in the 2013 vintage.

We enjoyed these wines–plus a chocolate truffle (with wisps of a great raspberry swirl) dessert and a cheesecake with blueberry sauce–not only to celebrate the occasion but also as a part of Restaurant Week in the Queen City. We’ve had a great time in town over the past week and look forward to next year’s event (and more good wines!) already.

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