Classics: The Gospels of Pauls — Part II — THE BIG REVEAL!

For a thorough refresher on Part I, please click here.

As to a summary, it was the 3rd anniversary of our blog going live. And it was the birthday of the late, great jazz bassist Paul Chambers.

To celebrate, a tasting construct was born: 4 “classic” Ridge wines, 4 “classic” Paul Chambers performances. Paul Draper, Paul Chambers. The Gospels of Pauls.

The challenge? Pair them.

Our guests for the tasting were eleven wine bloggers.

A more eclectically driven, passionate bunch would be hard to come by.

But had they the moxie to go on camera in defense of their pairings?

Of course!

Because they’re wine bloggers. They do what they do because they love it. Nothing more, nothing less. They have no fear.

I wish to thank them all, for making a lunatic proposition not only enactable, but magic.

Each at their own pace embraced. Each in their own way believed.

And with them, through them, by them, we had a tasting in which new ways to understand both wine and music were revealed.


I encourage you to read them, follow them, know them. And you will know them by their blogs. They are:

Barton Orchard
There are few who know Ridge better than him. I learn something new every time we taste together.

A writer after my own heart; someone who truly understands wine & music … and accordingly, who understands art.

Food Porn
One of the smartest, funniest, most cleverly and wisely written and constructed blogs out there …

Luscious Lushes
The beating heart of the wine bloggers world …

NorCal Wine
Smart, serious, passionate — Receptive, open-minded, sensitive — Disciplined, driven, devoted.

Rachel Voorhees
Round and round she goes, can she stop? No one knows! The rare writer who has discovered the 25th hour. Will to wine power.

Santa Cruz Mountains and Santa Clara Valley Wines
Our regional specialist. A writer of place.

SF Wine Blog
Impossibly comprehensive, impossibly humble, impossibly talented.

Stay Rad
The best new wine blog I’ve yet encountered, hands down. Read this. It’s tremendous.

Wine As$*&le
Nose in glass, tongue in cheek. The Oeno Bunker-Buster.

One eye to the heavens, one eye to the earth. One of the best visualists out there. Makes you want to eat and drink and eat. Yum indeed.


The Big Reveal begins with my “pairings.” Which were as follows:

2001 Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello

Such a round, voluptuous tone, such a beguiling reconciliation of seriousness and play. A decadence of timbre that makes you want it so bad, but a complexity that makes you force yourself to stop and pay attention. You want to swing with this, move with this, love with this, you want its girth to sprawl out on your tongue and lay its fruits out for your own hip-twisting intake. This is no shaking bag of bones, this is meat, this is flesh, this something to hold onto. This is surely the wet tenor tone of Sonny Rollins.

2000 Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello

The beckon and the dodge. The hint and the withdrawal. Provocation and denial, the slightly evil mitigation of desire. You want it, you feel it, it’s implied, then it’s promised, then it’s gone, then it returns. What is this strange seductive mantra, this hallucinogenic Om? It is humility at altar, as you meditate your way into the deep elusivity on offer. It bends, it twists, it takes off layers at a pace your singing palate cannot manage without trembling. But you look, and all is simple, all is pure, all is everything and nothing, all is nothing more than what you thought it should be, all the parts are in their place, there’s nothing clever, not a trick in sight at all, it’s just so simple, it’s the truth that can’t be had until the soul is past exhausted; only then, only then, does the mystical make sense. Surely this must be the taste of Miles Davis.

1999 Ridge Vineyards Lytton Springs

Conception. An Orion of fireflies beading a smear of trees in a breeze slow like river grasses. Cutting your left hand’s outline out of dark construction paper is the sky alight tonight, as if the trees were not between us and the moon, but cut away. Searching is the word to name the sound of John Coltrane. Not exuberant, furious, impassioned, thundering, but SEARCHING—how to climb the keening staircase of the notes, up through a cut-out in the sky— And when you don’t believe that fireflies reflect the constellations, then your lashes go down wishless. Millions produced, only one required for conception. Ascension. Surely this is the taste of Lytton Springs.

1997 Ridge Vineyards Geyserville

Surely Monk. The Haiku of Jazz. The Jazz of Wine. The Wine of Monk.


The Big Reveal concludes with seeing how we all matched up. Who thought what went with which. Who thought which went where.

–Two were with me on Wine #1. Luscious Lushes and Stay Rad felt the Rollins.

–Three were with me on Wine #2.  SF Wine Blog and Santa Cruz Mountains dug the Miles connection, and Luscious was with me again.

–I was all alone on Wine #3. Coltrane and Lytton? No one but me.

–Wine Asshole said it right from the start, the one OBVIOUS pairing with this wine was Monk. I agreed. So did Santa Cruz Mountains, SF Wine Blog, and Barton Orchard.

You can see the full pairing schematic below:


The Jazz. The Wine. The Ridge.

The Wine. The Jazz. The Ridge.

Categories: Cabernet Sauvignon, Events, Geyserville, History, Lytton Springs, Monte Bello, Offerings, Paul Draper, Press Reviews, Social Media, Tasting Flights, Tasting Notes, Varietals & Blends, Video, Viticultural Salmagundi, Wine & Art, Wine & Music, Wine and Jazz, Wine Blogs, Wine Quotes, Wine Tales, Zinfandel

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