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Welcome to Cork-fest!

Posted by on December 8, 2009

We wrote about Gray Ghost a few months ago, and at that time, we mentioned their Holiday Open House.  It was this past weekend, and we found ourselves there on Sunday enjoying the sight of some snow covered vines as we arrived.

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009

This is one of our favorite winery events.  For $15, you get unlimited (and large) samples of a number of wines, can snack on great food, and get to gawk at the cork sculptures made by owner, Al Kellert.

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (6)

Many people like to make things with corks, but he adds an impressive new cork creation every year.  He plays with the red wine stains to get shading, and will use sparkling wine corks for accents as well.  For those who couldn’t attend:

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (15)

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (16)

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (18)

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (20)

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (21)

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (23)

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (28)

This year’s addition may be my favorite yet:

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (25)

I encourage you to go.  Enjoy the corks, get inspired to make your own alternative holiday decorations, and drink some wine.  After we’d eaten our fill of snacks, we started taking our samples upstairs to the Mosby lounge where we could hang out and warm up (the event is in the tank room which is kept cold for the good of the fermenting wine).

Gray Ghost Xmas 2009 (10)

As for the wines, most were one’s we reviewed before.  I still think the ’08 chardonnay is my favorite.  The ’08 reserve chardonnay was too oaky and not well balanced.  The Victorian White is a fine table wine, but it maybe a bit steep for what it is at $14.50 a bottle.  The reds impressed me less.  The ’08 merlot was thinner than I care for, but it did have tons of blackberry in it.  The ’07 cab sauv has some nice earthy/berry elements that I likes, but it was also lighter than I care for.  Both wines were also priced higher than I’d be willing to pay for them.  The Victorian Red is what it is…not quite a rose, but not really a red either.  Finally, there was the Adieu which we enjoyed with our Thanksgiving Dinner.

All in all, the wine are fine, although the reds are a bit overpriced.  The corks are great fun, however.  Think about making this a holiday tradition the way we have.


Creative Commons License
The Welcome to Cork-fest! by Swirl, Sip, Snark, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

2 Responses to Welcome to Cork-fest!

  1. grapeenvyguy

    What a great event! It’s a fair price for the opportunity to snack on tasty comestibles in a festive setting, while enjoying some pretty nice wines. Gray Ghost is pretty good, even if the whites greatly outperform the reds (the Riesling and the Gewurtztraminer – neither of which they had this weekend – are my favs, by far). Kudos to them for putting on an event that’s fun enough to become a holiday tradition.

    But… could you guys fix the driveway? If the pothole at the end gets any bigger, we could open Sea World Amissville and have a ready-made Shamu tank!

  2. Brian (The Other 46)

    Always a favorite around the holidays! I’m always amazed at the cork sculptures. It’s been awhile since I last tasted their wines, although I have a visit penciled in for the last week of December. They used to produce a great Cab Franc and Chard, although I remember prices were a bit steep…

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