Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day posting for Kiva

The Rockroom blog is generally reserved for all things wine and so today is a good opportunity to remind folks of how at Rockroom we link wine with community. We started out doing this by making and sharing wine as a group of wine lovers. Then when we decided to make more wine than we could drink ourselves, we decided to sell it and use the profits to fund microloans in the developing world. Not a donation, these microloans fund entrepreneurs that go on to build small businesses that can dramatically improve the quality of their lives and the well being of their families and communities. And they generate enough income to repay the zero-interest loans in full at which time we get the funds back to deploy again. In this way we now have expanded our community to include dozens of friends that act as trusted agents for change in the world. And that's the connection to Memorial Day. What better way to honor those who have given their lives to protect our American freedoms than to participate in the perpetuation of those freedoms around the world? After all, it is widely recognized that the economic opportunity and hope embodied in these microventures is a highly stabilizing force for peace. That is why Muhammad Yunus, the creator of the microfinance industry, was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace, not economics. What we are doing is participating in a very clever grassroots movement in capitalist free enterprise for peace, one bottle of wine at a time!
And we do all this through Kiva, a San Francisco based social business that bundles funds from Rockroom and thousands of other participants into millions of dollars in funding for microloans, one entrepreneur at a time. So today we are promoting Kiva in the Rockroom blog and encouraging you to go check out our Kiva lender page, buy a bottle of wine, or even go to Kiva and start your own lending.
This blog post is part of Zemanta's "Blogging For a Cause" campaign to raise awareness and funds for worthy causes that bloggers care about.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

wow - syrah by any other name

Last weekend a few of us Rockroom co-op-ers got together to enjoy some spring weather, spring lamb and syrah. Syrah can have so many different personalities and the picture shows a couple that you might consider trying. First of course is Shiraz from Australia, but not your garden variety grocery store colorful critter wine. This 2003 Brokenwood is more serious, complex and chewy than those simple or over-amped cocktail wines. Aged for a few years too which makes a big difference in allowing flavors to integrate and mellow. And then there is the Cornas, a syrah from France's Northern Rhone River valley. A very complex and aromatic wine, this 1995 example just kept getting more and more interesting with color and aromas almost like a fine Bordeaux with a pinch of black and white pepper added. Both beautiful food wines and stellar with chargrilled rack of lamb.

Monday, May 11, 2009

WOW some good old Hangtime

Waiting 5 years to pop this 2002 Carneros Hangtime pinot was well worth the wait. It made for good Mothers' Day wine with coconut curried chicken and red rice. More evidence that putting aside a few bottles now and then for special dinners is usually rewarded. Dark ruby red with cherry fruit and just a kiss of oak with only six months in barrel.