Converted from paper version of the Broad Ripple Gazette (v04n12)
The Wine Scene - by Jill A. Ditmire
posted: Jun. 15, 2007
in my glass
Rum Boy and I met at Binkley's Kitchen and Bar at the corner of College and Kessler the other night to taste more of its diverse and affordable wine list and enjoy the outdoor seating. Predicted rain never fell, but when I arrived and asked the hostess for an outside table for two, she didn't want to seat me in the outdoor section but told me to find a table in the outdoor "back bar" area. I was a bit confused as the outdoor section is under a roof. So is the back bar but it is screened in and has the option of unrolling plastic flaps should rain begin to pelt the east side of the restaurant. The set up is cocktail-height tables and chairs made of steel in a mesh pattern. Comfortable, but, when you get up, you take that imprint with you. Ladies, take note, as I wore a short skirt and was glad it was dark when we left.
Since Binkleys is a full bar, Rum boy indulged in his favorite sipper. First round choice was Bacardi straight. Mine was a glass of the Trapiche Torrontes, a clean, crisp, dry white from Argentina. I've actually been to this winery when I traveled to Chile and Argentina in 2003 and remember enjoying the wine immensely while there, so it was a delight to see it on the wine list. It's very dry with notes of mineral, lanolin and lychee. Rum Boy tasted and remarked it tasted like rum, but that was probably because he sampled his Bacardi first.
Next up a shot of Captain Morgan for he and a glass of Yalumba Viognier for me. This time, Rum Boy tasted my glass before his. Good idea. He liked it-and who wouldn't? This Australian white is rich, lush and dry with an exotic nose of Chinese five-spice powder, nutmeg, and white peach. A truly seductive white wine. Perhaps that helped Rum Boy enjoy his shot of spicy Capt Morgan even more, as he remarked that, while the wine list is a true mix of varietals and prices, the rum list is pretty basic.
We noticed that the beer list is long both bottled and draft. A glance at nearby tables showed most with glasses of that fermentation, though we did spy a few mixed drinks and a martini or two.
Just as we called it a night, a table of 8 ordered a round of what I'd call fruity frozen drinks. We could smell them (the drinks. . . not the drinkers) from our table, and the frothy pastel-colored, fruit-topped glasses were certainly eye-appealing. The mmmm's from those partaking seemed to be a thumbs up or rather "bottoms up" for the exotic, frozen drinks.
I'd say the same for the wine list. Plenty of choices of wines from around the world by glass or bottle. Glass prices are comparable to most restaurants ($6 and up), but the bottle prices are the best value I've seen in a while.
in my bin...
Woop Woop "V", South Australia- a delightful white wine blend featuring a grape that normally is found in Spanish wines, Verdelho. Give the cap a twist and pour a silky, medium-bodied, dry white wine into your glass. Give it a swirl and sniff soft aromas of mandarin orange, lemon zest and French vanilla. Swirl again, then taste smooth, fresh citrus flavors with a touch of mineral/wet stones clean finish. Delicious with fontina or aged Gouda cheeses, tilapia, halibut or shellfish.
I'M Rose of Cabernet, Napa Valley, California- Isabel Mondavi is the latest generation of that infamous California wine-making clan to use her talents in the vineyard. This soft, fruity, brilliant ruby-colored wine is mostly dry with flavors of ripe black cherry, vanilla, and wild strawberry. Serve slightly chilled with sushi, fondue, grilled tuna, salads. Perfect picnic wine, as its dry yet fruity flavor will work with grilled bbq chicken or pasta salads or burgers. And it's a screw cap - we LOVE screw caps!!
Herding Cats, Australia- Zippy label matches zippy flavors in this smooth, fresh, dry white wine. This Chenin Blanc/ Chardonnay blend gives your taste buds reason to purr as you sniff the tropical aromas and taste smooth notes of apple, d'anjou pear, vanilla cream, honeydew melon. A bit stand-offish in aroma and flavor at first, but with a little bit of time it becomes a frisky, playful offering that may lead to a catfight for those wanting to get the last sip of this delicious drink.
Want to try these wines? Mark your tasting calendar for Tuesday, June 26th, 2007, from 6pm to 7pm and experience....
An Evening for the Senses: Wine, Art & Theater
Tuesday, June 26th, 2007, at Wug Laku's Studio, 1125 Brookside Avenue just east of College in downtown Indy. (12 minutes from Broad Ripple)
6pm - 7pm: Taste 5 wines plus an assortment of European meats, cheeses and salami from The Mass Ave Wine Shoppe, 878 Massachusetts Avenue, 972-8466
7:30pm - 9pm: Enjoy a presentation of the 1991 Obie Award for best new play, "The Fever," performed by local actors.
Jill A. Ditmire is an Omnimedia wine specialist, AWS certified wine judge, freelance broadcast journalist and 20+ year home owner in the Warfleigh neighborhood of Broad Ripple. Send your questions and comments to Jill at email@example.com
Also on INSTAGRAM @jaditmire