Thursday, December 22, 2011

A Sherman Cellars Groupon

In September I purchased a $25 for Wine-and-Chocolate Pairing for Two and $25 Toward a Bottle of Wine ($55 Value) groupon for Sherman Cellars in downtown San Jose. We had never been to Creekview Vineyards and it was just a good enough deal to prod me to go. Besides, how can you go wrong with a wine and chocolate pairing?

Sherman Cellars, a tasting room exclusively for Creekview Vineyards, was easy enough to find, located a block from San Jose's downtown park just 15 minutes from our house. On the way we realized that the groupon said we needed reservations. Sue gave them a ring and luckily they said to come on in.

Tim Gallant, the cellar manager, met us at the door and guided us through the tasting. He told us all about the winery, wine, and chocolate. He was very approachable and we had a pleasant conversation with him. Tim told us that a high percentage of their business comes from the downtown convention centers and hotels.

Our tasting was paired with Brix Chocolate, chocolate created by a pulmonologist specifically to pair with wine. The story is: Dr. Nick Proia would meet with friends monthly to drink wine and eat cheese. The doctor didn't think the cheese was very healthy, so he created the chocolate, which was healthier. The chocolate enhanced the tasting quite nicely. Chocolate or cheese both work for me, health benefits or detriments aside.

The tasting room was a tad small, with room for two, or three couples tops at the bar. It was nicely decorated, with even a Charlie Brown Christmas tree up. Local artists had jewelry, glass infusion, and even some grandma's gardens wine aprons on display, ready for purchase. The front door of the place was open which made it a little cold, on the brisk autumn day.

Charlie Brown Christmas Tree

The tasting started with a nice sparkling wine, which was too sweet for me, but Sue gladly enjoyed both of our pours. The Pinot was a little bland, but I liked it. We tasted a very nice old vine Zinfandel, from vines at least 150 years old., which I thought Jose might enjoy. We also tried an old vine Mourvedre, which Tim said he had to decant for 48 hours to get all the flavors out of, while writing tasting notes. All in all we tried 7 wines, most of which were very nice.

After spending a good hour enjoying the tasting, we purchased a selection of wine and a pack of chocolate to enjoy in the future. Sherman Cellars is a nice place to visit if you can't take the time to get out of the city.