Red, White and Brew: Celebrate Memorial Day with American-made wine and beer |

Red, White and Brew: Celebrate Memorial Day with American-made wine and beer

By Val Goranov
Special to the Daily

Happy early Memorial Day. Originally called Decoration Day, this holiday weekend honors the men and women that have done so much for this country. F16 jets should be flying over in their honor too.

Our theme today will be kind of similar – we will talk about the local winemakers and brewmasters that spend countless hours each day to produce the best American product for our enjoyment. Like last year, I’ll talk about Merlot. Please don’t skip that section. But unlike last year I will focus on California wines this time.

Red wine

These California wines showcase some of the best quality at affordable price points in America.
Val Goranov | Special to the Daily

Rodney Strong is one of my favorite wineries: especially because of the value for the price. It all started more than 55 years ago when dancer Rodney Strong settled into Sonoma in California to pursue a second lifelong passion. The quality of winemaking has been on the rise there, and their 2016 Merlot is finally getting the attention it deserves. It shows lots of dark fruit notes, the palate is elegant and the tannins are soft. A great match for your grilled pork or burgers. Rated 94 points, it over-delivers for the moderate price tag of $18.99 at Alpine Wine and Spirits.

White wine

Are you tired of the same go-to whites from New Zealand? It’s time to try something similar, yet not too same-y. Uppercut Sauvignon Blanc from the North Coast in California will satisfy you. Compared to its cousins in Marlborough, this one has a mineral backbone that reflects the vineyards’ volcanic soils. Citrus flavors are present, but they are not the main character here. Green apple, pear and melon notes are found from start to finish. It drinks very easy, and the acidity is not too high either. A very balanced wine that is totally worth the money. It is on sale now for $13.99.


Denver Beer Company’s Tart Delight delivers the perfect sour punch that’s never overpowering.
Val Goranov | Special to the Daily

Denver Beer Company has always impressed me with their beers. Their newest addition did the same. A year-round selection, Tart Delight is a Citrus Sour. It is fermented with lime juice and a touch of pink Himalayan salt, which is my favorite. The finish is clean and crisp. Overall ,it is a very refreshing beer with just the right amount of tartness. Whether you are a sour beer fan or just need a thirst quencher, this one is a must-try. A six-pack is $7.99.

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