November 20, 2018

Chicago wine pros share wines they are grateful for

by Joseph Hernandez

Get to know wine professionals long enough, and you’ll find out the bottle that “changed their life,” expanding their mind and propelling them into the profession. But what about a bottle they’re thankful for, a bottle transporting them to a cherished place and time?

Wine is, in some ways, a time travel device — our senses can send us back almost instantaneously, no DeLorean needed. Instead of tapping local sommeliers for their “perfect pairing” suggestions for Thanksgiving dinner, we asked them to recount a bottle they’re grateful for, one that inspires a memory they hold dear.

Kolin Juckins, assistant general manager, beverage director and certified sommelier, Blvd

Looking back on last year, I can’t help but think about the incredible journey I had moving to Oregon to work the full harvest of 2017 in the Willamette Valley for Argyle Winery. With my passion and desire to learn more about viticulture and oenology, my wife encouraged me to chase my dreams, take the risk and enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I am grateful for her support during the months we were apart. I will always remember our first wedding anniversary, when she came to visit me, and the wine we shared. We celebrated at Cannon Beach watching the sunrise, drinking a bottle of Argyle’s 2007 Extended Tirage Brut. The wine is actually a favorite of mine to share at holiday celebrations, and pairs perfectly with a number of Thanksgiving dishes. For example, the floral and citrus notes of the wine work really well with pears, and the extended time on the lees (10 years) works really well with pecans.

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