Cool Off with our Favorite Summertime Wines

In the words of a sweet 90’s rapper: Summer, summer, summertime. Time to sit back and unwind!

 

Although I love scarves, corduroys, bonfires and big, bold reds… I love warmer weather and cooler wine. We have an incredible selection of cool, fun, interesting, different and affordable summer wines at Meza Wine Shop.

 

Here are a few of my favorites…

 

1. Hofer H&M Gruner Veltliner

    Ok, this is a summer-summer-summertime necessity for all of Meza’s staff! We order this stuff by the case. This Austrian white is so fresh with bright, tropical fruit. You’ll get a little apple and pear with lemongrass and white peppercorn. It’ll leave you with that, “I want more” wet rock taste (trust me, it’s delicious!) Such a drinkable and friendly summer wine. Get it while we have it at just $17.99 a bottle.


 

2. Broadbent Vinho Verde

    This bright, smooth Portuguese wine will rock your non-existent summer socks off and help you sit back and unwind. It’s clean, balanced, crisp, fresh and full of citrus flavor! Full of zesty lemon and a little effervescence, it has a cool, lime green color and would be superb for lunch, picnics or day-time drinking. You’ll find this steal with our value rack price at just $10.99.


 

3. Chateau Morgues Du Gres Galets Rosé

    In the words of DJ Jazzy Jeff, “There’s an air of love and of happiness, and this is the Fresh Prince's new definition of summer madness.” This yummy, deep ruby rosé is the definition of summer madness. You’ll get blackberries, licorice, mineral, charcoal, fruit bouquet and juicy spices on the nose and palate. It’ll go great with whatever you plan to cook on the grill tonight. Just let me know what time I should be over and I’ll bring the wine. Retails at $14.99 at Meza!

 

4. Schlosskellerei Gobelsburg Zweigelt

    This light, Austrian red will leave you searching for other DJ Jazzy Jeff tunes as you sip away on its glorious flavor. With some almond, sweet cherry and pepper, you’ll love how balanced, youthful and lean this wine smells and tastes. What’s really cool about this wine is that it’s from one of the oldest wineries in all of Austria, with vines dating back to 1171. A delicious piece of history you can pick up at Meza for just $18.99.


 

These are just a few of the yummy wines you don’t want to miss out on this summer. Whether you’re like me and on summer break from class, playing hooky from work, “working from home…”, watching your children (and 30 others) at the pool, or enjoying a weekend of grilling in the back yard, Meza has all the wine you need.

 

PS I definitely need a good bottle of wine because I just realized that the song “Summertime” is 19 years old.

 

Until Next Time,

Kristina

Meza Community Post: Art & Wine, with a Focus on Local

Art and wine truly do seem to go hand in hand. Or at least, the wine can make the art flow a bit more!

At Meza we love to really solidify that connection. Twice monthly we co host Sip & Sketch, an art and wine event, with the Arts Council of Westerville. With so many varrious "wine and canvas" events available right now that are growing in popularity, we love that we can offer something a bit different. Sip & Sketch offers the unique twist of utilizing various local artists and art teachers from the Westerville area to teach the classes - and each class is a bit different. One week you may be using pastels, the next acrylic paint. The artist offers up a variety of "inspiration" pieces and offers help with technique - and no one leaves with an identical piece of art work! Each piece is truly unique. 

Cost of the class is $25 - which includes the materials, class and 2 glasses of vino to enjoy while you sketch! That's one of the most affordable events of this type in town. Its such a great way to kick back and relax and take your mind off things while you sip wine and create art. Looking to register for an upcoming event? Just call us at 614.259.3101 to be added to the schedule. We also offer private classes for groups of 10 or more! A great way to celebrate a birthday, kick off a night of Bachelorette festivities or to utilize as a team building event for your group at the office. 

The connection to the artistic world is not foreign to Westerville. Coming up next month (July 8-10)  is the Westerville Music & Arts Festival, an annual community event that features over 150 local artists, food vendors and live entertainment. The Music & Arts Fest is held at Heritage Park (Everal Barn) with an exciting twist this year - the Friday evening portion will be held in Uptown! There will be a special music and arts showcase with a reception at Old Bag of Nails just a few doors North of Meza. Stroll the street and check out some amazing local art work, and stop by Meza Wine Shop for our Friday night wine tasting!

Check out the website for the Music & Arts Fest below - such a cool way to spend a summer weekend!

http://www.westervillechamber.com/events/details/2016-westerville-music-arts-festival-2409

Cheers!

Tatjana

 

Meza Travels: Hot Wine Spots to Check Out in Oregon

I did a write up last month about our trip this spring to the Willamette Valley but mostly it highlighted our wonderful experience at Chehalem. But with two of our team members heading out there this summer I wanted to give them some additional ideas of places to visit (as well as for any one else looking to plan a wine country trip in the near future.) Here were some of the highlights of our vacation.

Wineries

Argyle

We fell in awe of the tasting room at Argyle and in love with the wines. The tasting room is the town of Newberg and a beautiful mix of modern and industrial design while maintaining a bright and warm atmosphere. If you love interior design like we do, this place is a must stop! We did a flight of bubbles, chardonnays and pinots, some of which we have had at the shop and some that were tasting room only. We also got to taste some of their more unique offerings including a range of sweet to bone dry Rieslings that were gorgeous. Thinking that we would be beating the crowds by going right as the tasting room opened we were surprised to see it full with a fun and large group who were coming in on a trolley for wine tasting before a wedding. SO fun!

Soter

This was a definite stop on our list as one of our Meza team members, Shawnee, now works at the tasting room at Soter part time. While she wasn't there this particular day we were set up with an appointment (this winery is appointment only and somewhat hard to find but the scenery along the way will keep you content while you search). The tasting room is stunning with a beautiful open air patio enclosure. Warm neutral tones and rustic wood elements give that feeling of bringing the outdoors in. And the view is not bad on the eyes. These were by far my favorite wines we tasted. The Rosé, the North Valley Chardonnay and the White Label Pinot Noir (a bit of a splurge!) were our standouts. Luckily almost all the wines we tasted there are available through our local distributor back home so we could purchase them when we got back. 

J.K. Carrier

This one took some effort and about 28 turns up the mountain! What a cool place. The wines are unique and delicious and the tasting room reminded us of a log cabin with cozy touches like stacks of plaid throws. 

Beckham Vineyards

This may have been our favorite place to visit given that it reminded us so much of Meza! A husband and wife team (along with their 3 small children) run the show. We could have nestled up on their tasting patio for hours. Some of the Pinot Noirs are aged in clay amphoras (made by the winemaker who is also a potter) which was a unique twist. The Rosé we had was perfection on a warm day. Lots of locals and regulars coming through which is always a good sign and they were greeted warmly. Loved seeing this family establish themselves in the wine biz and can't wait to see how they grow!

Also visited:

Stoller - Beautiful patio and view

Chehalem - Tasting room is in town of Newberg. These are some of my favorite whites. Be sure to taste their single vineyard Rieslings and Pinot Gris and the Gruner!

Penner Ash - Beautiful view, great wines, super friendly staff

Winderlea - Beautiful wines (not available in Ohio), stunning views, super clean, modern tasting room

** Not many of the tasting rooms served any sort of food. This was something that I think makes a good tip and you may end up doing quite a bit of traveling from one spot to another. There are several small shops and markets where you can stock up on some cheese and sandwiches. 

Food

Pine Street Biscuits

Holy cow. We got the recommendation to head to Pine Street for breakfast and were blown away. But get there early and expect a bit of a line. The restaurant is small but the service is fast and the food.... well its amazing. A million different versions of a biscuit sandwich with options of fried chicken, fried green tomatoes and blue cheese dressing. The bloody marys were stacked high and made to with the perfect amount of spice. If you are in Portland, make this a stop. 

VooDoo Donuts

This felt like a touristy destination but who can pass up amazing donuts? Love the laid back and old school vibe. (Cash only!)

Commons Brewery

We stopped here as a little intermission from wine, and for one of their amazing charcuterie plates that I was stalking on IG. Had a beer and tried to hang out until a table opened up (it was a crowded place!) and ordered our cheese and charcuterie board. The place is super open and industrial - very casual. The cheese board was in my opinion, a masterpiece. There is nothing I love more than some good cheese and cured meat! Highly recommend!

Recipe

Loved this place in wine country! We had a fabulous meal and the setting reminded us of one of our favorite Columbus spots - set in an old, victorian house. A little pricey but well worth it for the quality of the meal. 

Pur Vida

This was a great little Mexican/Latin restaurant. Casual atmosphere so we were pretty surprised when we got our food. Unique and authentic and SO good. It is located in McMinnville  -  a great little town where you can spend some time checking out the shops and local watering holes.

There is so much to see, do and taste in the Willamette Valley and Portland. Going back and forth between the two can be challenging with traffic (so much traffic!!). Would highly recommend doing a solid day in Portland (or two) and then settling into wine country. 

What i can't say enough when people ask what I liked the most about the Willamette Valley wine country is how friendly and laid back the people were. From the winery staff to the winemakers - everyone just has such a great perspective and there was no pretense. 

If wine country is on your list, the Pacific Northwest is a must try destination. 

 

Cheers!

Tatjana

 

Do You Know What's Really In Your Wine Glass?

For decades people have focused on dieting - carb counting - calorie counting as a way to ensure they stay trim and healthy. It really feels like lately, especially over the last two years or so, that the conversation has shifted slightly. We aren't just focused on our weight, but on our over all health and wellness. I hear lots of terminology being thrown around about toxins and additives. As a mom, I find myself soaking in article after article about what foods have what "toxins" and chemicals. I see these terms being the new focus in all aspects. All over I see and hear women like myself focusing on Organic foods, "whole" foods, and non processed foods. Women who are focused on skin care regimens that are not full of toxins. We juice, we yoga, we detox. But then, right after the IG post or Facebook pic about the amazing organic, clean meal they just consumed and the all naturally derived skin care line they are using, I see a picture of the fun Friday night, mommy's "juice" bottle of wine from Target, with a quirky fun label and who knows what inside the bottle. It really got me thinking....we spend all this time thinking about what we put into our bodies in regards to food, and what we put on our bodies in terms of sunscreen and moisturizer and makeup. Why would we not care about the wine we consume? 

We are by no means preaching that you should be in search of a "Certified Organic" or "Sulfite Free Wine " (ps that isn't really a thing anyway). But the same as with food, there are wines that are hand made - grapes that are hand harvested - and that are grown without the use of harmful pesticides. Some are Certified Organic - others are labeled as "Biodynamic" (sort of an Organic approach to the 10th power, utilizing phases of the moon and the idea that for what you take from the earth, you must put back). Some aren't  labeled anything. They may be so old world or old school that they don't even think of such things because thats how they have always made wine. In a natural manner. Not utilizing pesticides. Not using large machines to grasp and pull hundreds of grapes and leaves and whatever else. Some of them use native yeasts, some do not fine or filter their wines. They believe in a hands off approach and that the best wines are made in the vineyard and it is about the care they take with farming these "crops" that truly makes a good wine. 

There may be a pre conceived notion that these wines are too pricey. Some may be. Some maybe not at all. Again some of the wines you may purchase may have minimal intervention and be produced in a  very clean manner with no pesticides used in their farming practices but they may not be labeled as such. Certification in many cases costs a lot and if you are buying wine from a smaller producer, essentially a "farmer", such a certification may not be worthwhile to them. 

Which brings us to the inevitable question - how does a person know what wines are made in this manner? Not sure how to answer that if you shop elsewhere. You can always ask a wine steward or research online. We feel this is important info to pass on to our customers. So if you come by the shop over the next few weeks, you will see a green sticker on our shelf talkers for wines that are produced with minimal intervention. Some may be Organic, some Biodynamic. Some may just be super old world and made by a small family in Italy, and we will do the research for you to know that they don't use pesticides and that they utilize sheep to graze the fields and to fertilize the vines and that they have a small crew of family and friends that works to harvest the grapes by hand. So when you see the green sticker this should be an indicator to you that we have done our homework and can attest to its production. It isn't our focus to only sell wines that are made in this manner. You may love your (insert name here) California Pinot Noir and be damned if you will drink anything else and that is cool with us.  But as a consumer and and someone who cares about my personal health and well being, I feel this is an important mission of consumer eduction for us. 

So come by, look for green, and give a new wine a try. I can tell you from personal experience that there is nothing better after a major detoxing yoga sweat session than a big glass of wine....so you gotta keep it clean all the way. 

 

Cheers! 

Tatjana 

 

Meza Travels: Willamette Valley - Highlight on Chehalem Winery

For those of you who have been following along on Instagram, Jason and I had the opportunity for a short but much needed getaway to Oregon Wine Country! It has been on our list for a while and we finally decided to make it happen. We have been to Napa/Sonoma before and we just love Sonoma, but Oregon  has earned a special place in our hearts! Such nice and friendly people and a very laid back, non pretentious approach to wine. In fact I can't think of one stop we made where we felt any sort of pretense ( which can happen in the wine world). 

We were able to stay at the lovely guest house at Chehalem ( a comfy and breezy craftsman style house where vineyard interns stay during harvest), and had an awesome experience with their wines. We met with Jon Foster, from the Chehalem team, for a tasting and tour of the winery, and got to walk through and explore the vineyard ourselves. We briefly got to meet owner Harry Peterson -Nedry and his daughter Wynn Peterson - Nedry  who is now the wine maker - both nothing but friendly and gracious. 

First and foremost, one of the most impressive things about the winery was its commitment to sustainability. Chehalem is LIVE Certified ( Low Imput Viticulture and Eonology) and a participant in Carbon Neutral Challenge. You will find solar panels in the vineyard that provides some degree of their power. All weed control is done by hand - no chemicals. You can tell from looking at the site that the vines are growing in a very healthy, thriving environment. I think you cannot help but feel good about what you are consuming when it's made in this manner. I am always a little perplexed when people spend so much time thinking about eating fresh, organic food but don't think of the wine they consume in the same manner. 

On to the wines themselves! We have for quite some time stocked the Chehalem Three Vineyard Pinot Noir - their largest distributed Pinot. We were able to taste some of their gorgeous white wines as well, from their Coral Creek Vineyard Riesling that was juicy and crisp and mineral driven to their Ridgecrest Vineyard Gruner Veltliner that had a freshness and brightness to it but was also a slightly more complex, richer style than some Gruners.  The Pinot Gris also stood out due to its richer, Alsatian style.

Fruit is sourced from three vineyard sites - Coral Creek vineyard which surrounds the winery (what is pictured here).  Stoller Vineyard featured Jory Soil ( a term we heard often in this area), a red volcanic soil that lends itself to Pinot Noir that has both a balance of fruit and earthiness. Finally Ridgecrest Vineyard, known for producing richer, briary style of Pinot Noir  due to its silt and sandstone soils is the last of the three vineyards utilized. 

We loved our experience and the wines of Chehalem, and loved the laid back, friendly, and inviting nature of the people we met. Always makes me feel like I am at home or at Meza when I talk to people from a winery and they really have a team and family focus and mentality. 

Look for more offerings from Chehalem to be hitting the shelves at Meza soon! Stay tuned for our recap of other wineries we visited and our tips on exploring the Willamette Valley!

Cheers!

Tatjana

On Comfort Zones & Community

We had an awesome tasting meeting this week with the staff at Meza! We blind tasted 7 wines and it really pushed us to get out of our comfort zones and to think about the wines in a more objective manner. Its hard not knowing all the info and not knowing the "right" answer sometimes but that's the beautiful thing. Its not about right or wrong but about experiencing and letting go and allowing your senses to explore something new! We poured some gorgeous wines - all chardonnay and pinot noirs from various regions and  each brought its own unique flavor profile. 

One thing that really unifies being a business owner for me is the community that has been created at the shop. Having this great group that is open to tasting and experiencing and learning and then passing that on to customers is a great support that we are super lucky to have. 

Next time you are feeling like you just cant let go of the reins, open up a bottle of wine made from a varietal you have never heard of and let your senses go and explore. Even better do it with a friend and explore together. 

 

On Southern Italian Wine and Breaking Out of our Comfort Zone

I just gave our team a little homework this week, and if you know me, the homework for the shop is always enjoyable. After all, it involves drinking wine!

I was putting together our wine club packs for this month which feature wines from Southern Italy, mainly Campania and Puglia. We have so many red lovers on our team and I thought, this is a great option for them to learn a little more about this region and to enjoy wines that fit their palate. We all get stuck in a comfort zone with lots of things in life....the food we eat, with our workouts, with our personal style. Same goes with wine. Its so easy to grab a bottle of Cabernet because we know what it is and we see it everywhere. We may gravitate towards a Zinfandel - now knowing how similar (and related) a Primitivo is. Its my job to get people drinking outside of the box and learning about wine and thats totally what we are doing this week!

Next time you head into the wine shop or to your local wine retailer, ask a couple questions and have the staff find you something new. Its fun and interesting and there is something so cool about tasting a wine from half way across the world and learning about it that makes you feel like maybe you would want to go there someday.  If you don't have time for all that jazz and you live locally, then hit us up about wine club and get the adventure chosen for you each month. Trust us, you will be pleasantly surprised at how your palate and your list of favorite wines grows.

Cheers!

Tatjana

Gifting the Experience: Meza Monthly Wine Club

We are in the swing of the holiday season and so many of us are scrambling to find that perfect, unique gift. We feel like this year its more about the experience rather than "stuff". Don't we all feel like we have enough stuff sitting around? I love getting gifts that get me out exploring - be it a new restaurant or  trying out a new activity. 

We want to apply this to the world of wine by giving customers a chance to explore wine selections from around the world. Whether you are just getting interested in wine or love wine but don't feel comfortable stepping outside your comfort zone, our Meza Monthly Wine Club is the perfect way to indulge and enjoy new wines with a guided approach so you aren't just aiming blindly. This makes a great gift and something that they can experience for several months or all year long - and the best thing is they can share that experience, and the wines with others. 

We offer 3 tiers of membership - Discovery ($30/month), Enthusiast ($60/month) and Bubbly ($50/month). You can sign up the recipient for a 4, 6 or 12 month membership and those that live in Westerville can even have it delivered to their doorstep!

Call or stop in to inquire and give them an experience they can enjoy and share with others!

 

 

 

Meet the Team Week on IG - Meet the Owner

Hi! I'm Tatjana. I own Meza Wine Shop (along with my husband Jason) and I am the wine buyer. We have been in business in Uptown Westerville for almost 8 years and in that time we have also grown our family. Our kids are now 7 and 3! It hasn't always been the easiest road but it has been super rewarding. The team that has been built at Meza and the community that the business has brought to us is amazing. These people are part of our "village" and they help make it all possible!

 

How Do You Balance Running a Business and Having a Family?

 

It takes some creative scheduling! I work in the shop on certain week days at the moment. Jason works longer hours so week nights for me are devoted to working from home, and household stuff (dinners, homework, baths....and before you know it its 9pm!). The weekends are when we have time to really devote to store projects and we lean on help of family to get certain things accomplished there. 

 

What Do You Love Most About Running A Small Business?

 

I am fascinated by the ins and outs of retail in general. I am passionate about marketing and I love the direct impact you can have on your business when there are not a million different tiers involved like there are in a corporate setting. That being said it is hard to carve out time for certain things when you are wearing so many hats. Making time to focus on big picture planning has been huge for me this year! Its vital to moving the business forward. I love taking something like a wine list or a Facebook campaign and tweaking it and seeing how we can increase performance. 

 

What Shops Do You Follow on IG for Ideas and Inspiration?

 

I love following other wine shops, restaurants and makers on social media. It's an amazing recourse for ideas!! I follow dandywineshop in NYC - I love their innovative store space and cool, wine geeky posts! I also like to follow makers like mulberrypressco for inspiration on how to promote your business online and how to build interest among followers and local shops needleandgrain for inspiration on posts and pics. 

Holiday Events at Meza Wine Shop!

Happy Holidays! It is about to be December and that means we are in the mood to celebrate!

This month in addition to our weekly Friday night wine tastings, we have added two additional tasting opportunities to really highlight the holiday season. This week on December 3 we will be hosting our Holiday Bubbles tasting, and the following week on Thursday December 10 we will be hosting our Holiday Luxury tasting.

Two great opportunities to taste and enjoy some special selections that we would maybe not normally have in our tasting line up. 

Enjoy all types of bubbly from Cava to Prosecco to Champagne at the event on the 3rd!

For our Luxury tasting we will be showcasing some gorgeous wines from producers such as Duckhorn, Paul Hobbs, Patz & Hall and more! It will be a great night - taste 8 wines and enjoy light appetizers. The event is $50/person ($55 at the door). This is the perfect way to ring in the holiday season with friends and to purchase some special gift bottles. Both events start at 6:30.

We hope to see you at either event! Cheers to a fun filled December!

 

What is State Minimum Pricing and How Does it Benefit YOU?

We hear from customers all the time that the pricing structure of wine can be really confusing, especially since the laws vary from state to state. We have often shared with our customers that we price our retail wine bottles at State minimum but quickly realized that the terminology is not too clear - so the savings to the customer isn't clear. So we thought this would be a good way to demystify the meaning of State Minimum retail and what it means at our shop.

In Ohio, there is a standard mark up on wine. A retailer must charge this price (meaning, they must charge the "state minimum retail price", however they are also allowed to charge more. That choice is individual to each establishment. 

We have fielded questions as to why we price our wines at this State Minimum retail price instead of marking them up - and our answer is that our customers are savvy when it comes to shopping. They shop at multiple stores, they support both big box retailers and small business and we feel that we must remain competitive with these larger shopping channels by pricing our wines the same. There is a lot of mystique around the idea that just because you are a smaller retailer or "boutique" type of shop that your merchandise will be higher in price and that is  just not true! The bonus of shopping a smaller retailer that prices their wines at State Minimum is that you are getting wines at the best value but you are also getting a more curated selection and a knowledgable staff that is there to make recommendations!

We want to be able to pass on to our customers the best possible value and  to give them one more reason to make a stop at our shop! Hope to see you at the shop soon and we look forward to helping you pick out the perfect bottle.

Cheers!

Tatjana Brown

owner/wine buyer

 

 

 

September's Varietal Feature: Pinot Noir

The weather is literally in that zone of perfection the last few weeks. Warm days and cooler evenings make us want to drink wine! (than again what doesn't)

This month on our feature table we are showcasing Pinot Noir. Seems like the perfect transition to fall weather. Pinot Noir can be a very alluring varietal. They can be intensly aromatic (think cherry, cranberry, and baking spices) and on the palate there can be the flavors ranging from red fruit to cherry pie to mushrooms and earth. So many variances and so many interesting and alluring smells and tastes and they all sort of remind me of fall.

Here are several of our favorite Pinots at the moment - if you stop by the shop be sure to check out our newest offerings and the two Pinots we have currently available by the glass from Allamand and Scott Family.

JK Carrier Provacateur Pinot Noir - This is by far my favorite Pinot in the shop. Cherry, blueberry and soft vanilla nuances on the palate lead into a super silky finish. ($30)

Stoller Pinot Noir - This wine definitely screams fall to me. I love the hints of cinnamon and spice that accent the fruity palate. ($25)

Allamand Pinot Noir - We love wines from this Argentine producer and found this super affordable Pinot to be really soft and pretty but also a bit earthy.  ($17)

Whatever is in your glass, we hope you are enjoying it! See you at the shop.

Cheers!

Tatjana

 

Meza Summer Staff Picks

A lot of times we get nervous to go out on a limb and fork over cash for a bottle of wine we haven't tasted. That's where a great recommendation from someone who has the inside scoop comes in handy! Since we all have different palates, I love to get recommendations from the staff on bottles they love and what they are currently drinking and loving. Here are some of our summer staff picks for the months of August. Try one tonight - everyone on the Meza staff is pretty well versed in wine so I would say you are in good hands. - Tatjana

April's Pick - Entresuelos Tempranillo $15

Love this tempranillo for a great weeknight red! Smooth and easy drinking with a little smoky note on the nose.

Bruce's Pick - The Scrapper Cabernet Franc $34

Spicy and juicy Cab Franc, big and robust. Pair with ribs or a steak.

Jane's Pick - Chateau Coutet Saint-Emilion Grand Cru $42

Bold, smooth - going to be a new fall favorite

Kristina's Pick - Astrolabe Sauvignon Blanc $18

Rich, grassy and tropical - showcases a nice citrus and mineral notes and a little hint of fresh jalapeno!

Emily's Pick - Mon Coeur Cotes du Rhone $25

Great, medium bodied summer red. Organic!

Yvonne's Pick - Marietta Cellars Arme Red Blend $25

Full bodied and beautiful flavor at this amazing price.

Buyer's Pick

Sleigh of Hand cellars "The Magician" Riesling $20

LOVE this Riesling! So balanced and beautiful, notes of peach and citrus. Great mineralility and acidity. Pair this with something delicious off the Thai Grill menu in Uptown - maybe with the spicy Pad Thai.

Cataldi Madonna Giulia Pecorino $21

I am still in major white mode - not quite ready to jump into fall yet! This beautiful Italian white is perfect for the transition in seasons. A little fuller bodied, with hints of grapefruit and tropical fruit and a roundness on the palate.

Value Pick of the Month

Campos de Luz Old Vine Garnacha $9

This is such a great warm weather red! Uncomplicated, juicy and fruit forward.

 

 

 

 

Our Favorite Warm Weather Wines....What We Are Drinking Lots Of This Summer

Summer is here and we are celebrating each and every day of these warmer temperatures with winter tucked away far behind us! It is full swing patio or deck season, so fire up the grill, turn on the twinkle lights and pour yourselves a glass of a great summer wine. Here is what we are drinking this summer at our house. 

HM Hoffer Gruner Veltliner

This is in all honestly our go to, perfect summer white. It comes in a 1L, pretty, green bottle that also makes a pretty vase or table decor, and it is perfect wine to just have open daily in your wine cooler or fridge during the hot summer months. Clean and refreshing with notes of green apple, citrus and white pepper. It is one that you will want to snag now since it is more limited in quantity - and it is a Meza staff favorite so it goes fast!

The Ned Sauvignon Blanc
 

I love New Zealand Sauv Blanc in the summer months, but I prefer a drier style - not the over zealous grapefruit bombs that some can be. The Ned is dry and crisp with hints of fresh cut jalapeño and pink grapefruit and lime zest. Amazingly refreshing!

Any and All Sancerre

Flinty, mineral driven and elegant, Sancerre is my go to white wine for summer and always a great bet on any restaurant wine list. One of our favorite producers is Henri Bourgeois - he makes several wines from various specific terroirs in Sancerre that are all exceptional for the value. 

Michel Schlumberger Pinot Blanc

We tasted this wine while visiting the winery in Sonoma and it has been a favorite ever since. Sort of one of those easy to drink whites that has a little more character to it, but that wouldn't offend anyone. Just all around good stuff! They pick the grapes earlier to avoid over ripeness and to preserve some of the acidity. Sustainably farmed so you know you are drinking a wine made with great care for the juice and for the surrounding environment. 

Rosé - All Day Every Day

We seriously cannot get enough!! We have so many great options to chose from at the moment - and price here is actually sort of irrelevant. Some of the best Rosé wines we have in are in the $12-$15 range, from France or Spain, and they seem to be outshining some of their domestic counterparts at the moment. Not sure where to start with Rosé? Try out a Spanish Rosado (often inexpensive and a bit fuller in flavor/darker in color) or a rosé from Provence or from the Loire (France). 

What all will you be drinking this summer? We want to know!

Snap a pic of your favorite summer wine and share on Instagram with the hashtag #mezasummerfavs and keep us in the loop!

 

Seven Years Later.....What I Have Learned About Owning a Small Business

It's hard to believe that tomorrow is Meza's 7th anniversary since we opened the doors! In some ways it has flown by and in other ways it's hard to remember what it was like prior to Meza being open, seems like it has been around forever. Being a small business owner has been one of the most challenging, rewarding, tumultuous, un nerving, and exciting things I have ever done. I feel like we are constantly learning something new everyday, and gaining more and more footing with each passing year. We don't know exactly what the future holds for us and we hope that Meza will continue to evolve and grow. Just a few thoughts on what I feel like we have learned with this experience. 

1. Passion and stubborn pride helps get you past the difficult times.

There have been so many times that things have been hard during the last seven years. In particular, early on when we first were getting things up and running and were uncertain of our exact direction. I have to say what I truly believe keeps us at it during those times has been sheer determination due to our stubborn pride. Not wanting to give up because we made this decision and we were going to see it through no matter what. No one wants to fall on their face, right? However, our passion for wine, for small business, for the community and for our family has also been continued fuel. It is what makes the hard stuff seem so worth while.

2. You cannot be everything to everybody.

This is coming from a not very thick skinned person who has had to learn this over and over again. With starting a business, you are in a sense putting yourself out there. Your ideas, your passions, and your "trials and errors" out there for everyone to see but also for customers to "experience".  There will be suggestions and conversation around which direction you should take your business. I think it is vital to any business to adapt and change as the world around them changes, and to listen to what customers are telling you. But you cannot be everything to everybody. You cannot be a destination for everyone. While it is good to embrace change and adapt, its also SO very important to stay true to your passions. You may end up with a slightly smaller customer base but what you are able to offer those customers will be that much greater.

3. Surround Yourself with Passionate People Who Truly Care About Your Business

One of the hardest things I have experienced with running Meza was learning how to work by myself. No boss to give you guidance. No co workers to pat your back and tell you it was a job well done. It really becomes about believing in yourself, having conviction in your decisions and knowing that if something doesn't work out, you try different avenues until you see results. Well, that is a lot of damn work! However, no one can do it all themselves. It literally takes a village. We have had to lean on so many friends, babysitters and family members for support.  I have been so lucky to have found people to team up with that are truly as passionate about Meza as we are. Leaning on them for their areas of expertise and knowledge has been key. Knowing when to let go has been important. Finding just anyone to fill a gap is not going to work. It is so personal. Finding people that are just that perfect fit is what makes a business like ours run and what keeps us afloat.

4. How do you measure success? Its all about tradeoffs

Success is a hard thing to measure. Maybe its how much money you make. Or what title you carry at your job. Maybe its the benefits you receive from your particular employer. Maybe its time and flexibility with your family and your schedule. 

My friend and I always have this conversation. There are tradeoffs in life. It is easy to be envious of someone elses paycheck or status. Or to wish you could strike off on your own. There have been days where I have played the "what if" game, thinking where I would be now in my career had I chosen a different path. How much money would I be making now? Those are the days I have to take a minute to really look at what Meza means to our family. I see all the amazing people I have met through this experience, people that have become like family to us,  and to look at the flexibility it has allowed me with my kids to know that success has many different forms and life is all about tradeoffs. 

So there it is. The little bit that seems to resonate with me on a day to day basis. Jason and I are so grateful for the last seven years and we look forward to continuing to grow Meza and to continue to develop it as a unique wine destination. Thanks to all those who have been a part of the journey!

Cheers!

Tatjana

 

 

Springtime Wines on Our Minds - Terry Theise Portfolio Show

A few of the Meza staff members and I recently attended the Terry Theise German/Austrian Portfolio Show at Spagio in Grandview and while it was a few weeks ago,  the wines have been lingering on my mind ever since. Maybe it has something to do with the seemingly forever long winter here in Ohio, but the wines featured at the show completely screamed spring to us! An array of Rieslings, both sweet and dry, Gruner Veltliners, Muskateller and sparkling wines were presented from some of the top producers in Germany and Austria. Literally the perfect spring time tasting because these wines showcased clean, crisp fruit, bright, mouthwatering acidity and in some cases a lifting effervescence that really cleansed the palate.

I have been placing some pre orders on Rose wines as well as some of our favorite wines from the show, and we are excited to see these wines start trickling in to the shops starting sometime in March through the end of May. While I love bold, hearty red wines, this time of year always leaves me wishing for whatever is fresh and fragrant and crisp. Guess it makes me feel like spring is really on the horizon.

Hope whatever you are doing this Sunday involves a beautiful glass of wine…

Cheers!

Tatjana