It's summer in Seattle, which I associate with grilling and salmon (among many other associations) ... and I associate grilled salmon with Pinot Noir.
We picked up some salmon -- generic Wild King Salmon and Yakutat Salmon -- at Whole Foods yesterday, where there were cases of the 2004 Irony Pinot Noir prominently displayed. With a wine name like Irony, a winery name of Life's Strange Twists, a $12 price tag and a description on the placard that included depth, complexity and smoke, I just had to try it. Also, the alcohol level of 14.5% on the label -- high for a Pinot Noir -- reinforced my belief that this wine would have depth and complexity ... and it did, along with the smoke.
The winery web site is "under contruction", and the only other description I can find on the web is at BevMo (where the 2003 version is available for $10):
90 PTS WILFRED WONG. Enticing, exotic, and another "e" word I cannot mention, the fascinating '03 Irony Pinot Noir steals the show; packed with fruit, smoked bacon rind, and pungent sour plum, tasty!
The wine paired beautifully with all four variations of salmon that we prepared: we coated half of each salmon with Tom Douglas' Salmon Rub (from the "Rub with Love" spice rub series). The Yakutat Salmon, with 33% oil, was preferred over the regular King Salmon, with 16% oil, and the rubbed sections were preferred over the plain sections, by all members of the family. Along with having twice as much oil content, the Yakutat Salmon is also nearly twice as expensive -- and, like Copper River Salmon and Yukon River Salmon, only available for brief periods each year. It would be fun to arrange a multi-person multi-dimensional Salmon and Pinot Noir tasting while everything is in season ... but we may have to wait until next season.