WINE: Open That Bottle Night is meant to be shared with Friends


By Dathan Kazsuk 

It was a little over 18 years ago when Wall Street Journalist's Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher came up with a brilliant concept titled "Open that Bottle Night." The two wrote a column for WSJ called Tastings where they rated wine with a range that went from "yech" to "Delicious!". 

The whole idea of "Open that Bottle Night," which occurs on the last Saturday in February is aimed to motivate people to reconnect with friends over some open bottles of wine, and to open something in your wine cellar you've been dying to open for a special occasion, just haven't got around to it quite yet.

We thought to ourselves ... we're game! We took some time looking at all our wines, thinking which ones had a nice story behind them, and came up with two to uncork. Our first was a 2008 Robert Foley Charbono. Our second was a 2012 Caymus 40th Anniversary Cabernet Sauvignon. Why did we select these two wines? The Foley has been sitting in our cellar for over seven years. It was signed by Robert himself when he visited the area for the annual Triangle Wine Experience weekend. And for the Caymus ... well, it's an incredible wine and we've just been waiting for the right time to open up a bottle.

Related Story: Bottle Signing: A great way to meet and greet winemakers

We invited a couple friends of ours who are also huge wine enthusiasts, and they brought over a couple bottles of 2009 Turley Zinfandels. Looks like we were going to be drinking in style with this stellar lineup.

Sitting around the dining room table, we did some catching up since the last time the four of us were together while trying all the wines and pairing them with the chocolate and cheese spread we put together for the evening. Each of the reds paired well with the blue cheese we had, but we all agreed hands-down the best pairing was with the Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon. The Habanero-Mango Cheddar went best with the subtle complexity of one of the Turley Zins. 

When we felt the Charbono decanted for long enough we each filled our glasses with this dark color red wine. We were slightly scared that 10-years in the bottle could have been past its prime, but we were mistaken. Its ripe blackberry, slightly oaked and remnants of black licorice made this wine just as good as the other three.

We had a great time enjoying wine with friends over good conversation, as wine should be enjoyed.