Vail Daily review: Can a wine be cheerful? | VailDaily.com

Vail Daily review: Can a wine be cheerful?

Daily staff reportsnewsroom@vaildaily.comVail, CO Colorado

Colorado Native, $7.49 to $9.29 per six-pack

The winemaker on this one describes this chardonnay as “very Burgundian.” That’s interesting, as it wasn’t grown in Burgundy but in the Maconnais region of France. What’s the difference? Probably price because Burgundy is really full of itself, though from what I’ve read, Mconnais wines are far from slouchy. This particular bottle claims to be “light,” “floral” and “cheerful.” Let’s discuss.Light is definitely a given here. The color is light, the flavors are light and the acidity is light. This is not a buttery chardonnay; it does not weigh heavily on the tongue, and the after taste is more bitter than creamy.The floral I get. From the first pour, it had a slightly delicate, flowery tone. I nosed around on it for a bit, but then it either all evaporated or I got used to the smell, like you do with your own perfume, and it sort of dissipated. As far as the taste, I couldn’t expound on floral as a flavor because I don’t make a diet of flowers with which to compare. I did detect a light fruitiness and an overall crisp and refreshing body.Describing a wine as cheerful is maybe a little more personification than I’m comfortable with. Really? Cheerful? A babbling brook is cheerful. A daisy can be cheerful looking. A wine? It looks like wine. It tastes … like wine. I supposed if you downed the entire bottle, at 13 percent alcohol, you might be feeling quite cheerful. Maybe even euphoric.This wine flew solo; I didn’t pair it with anything, and it was good on its own. I would imagine it would make friends with some fish tacos, and the crisp bite would probably stand up to heartier winged creatures, such as duck or pheasant. You can find this wine at Alpine Wine & Spirits in Vail, Avon Liquors and Beaver Liquors in Avon.Krista Driscoll, Daily Staff Writer

There’s a new brew in town, and considering the amount of beer that is produced in Colorado, it’s very unique. Colorado is known as one of the biggest producers of craft beer in the nation. But of all those craft beers, none can lay claim to being completely comprised of Colorado ingredients, until now. Colorado Native is a new product from the A.C. Golden Brewery, a small brewery owned and operated by Coors and located in Golden. Most everything from the water and barley to the glass and cardboard comes from Colorado. The Moravian two row barley is grown in the fertile San Luis Valley in Southern Colorado, as are most of the hops (Chinook, Centennial and Cascade.) Other finishing hops are grown and hand picked on the Western Slope. The water comes from Clear Creek near Golden. Even the yeast is an American descendent of a Tuborg-style strain that was introduced to Colorado in the 1930s, making it the oldest known strain of brewing yeast in the state.Colorado Native is an amber-color lager that strikes a nice balance between lighter mass-produced beers and the bold microbrews that Colorado is known for. It’s not too hoppy (26 I.B.U.s, a relatively low number on the bitterness scale) and offers a mild amount of roasted malt. The beer pours with a nice foamy white head, and goes down smoothly, with just a hint of citrus in the finish. Colorado Native comes in at 5.5 percent alcohol by volume, a bit stronger than the mass-produced stuff, but not nearly as strong as many of the other microbrews in the state. The fact that the ingredients come from Colorado, and the beer is only sold in Colorado means that there are not a lot of transportation costs involved in producing and distributing the beer, giving it a small carbon footprint. A.C. Golden also donates a portion of the proceeds to charity.You can find this beer at Alpine Wine & Spirits in Vail, Avon Liquors, Beaver Liquors in Avon, Eagle Ranch Wine & Spirits, Riverwalk Wine & Spirits in Edwards, Village Warehouse Wines and West Vail Liquor Mart.Chip Bartsch, West Vail Liquor Mart