Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Joseph Drouhin Laforet Pinot Noir 2005

this is the second french pinot noir i have tried. i tried one before i began this blog page, but i do remember i was a bit disappointed. this one was a bit better. very subtle. on the the nose, red berries and a bit of a band aid or eucalyptus like note. a bit odd. i expected something a bit more earthy. i did a little research on the wine and found that the harvest is basically split into two, where part ages in oak and part in stainless steel. they really want the fruity, berry flavor to come through. and it does. on the palate, the wine is light, and fruity with flavors of raspberry and currant. soft and easy tannins and not a whole lot of finish. priced at about $20 a bottle, this pinot noir left me a bit unsatisfied. i expect a whole lot more complexity and flavor. this is more of a burgers and cold cuts kind of wine. sorry, but just not impressed.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Burnet Ridge 2004 Zinfandel Field Blend

recently opened this bottle that i had laying down for a while. i've mentioned burnet ridge before. locally made in ohio from california grapes. wine maker chip emmerich does an excellent job blending his wines. this zinfandel is no exception. huge nose of black cherry, raspberry, spice and cedar notes. on the palate, a big, bold, jammy wine. raspberries, black cherries, vanilla, soft tannins. a cedar type note in the flavor as well. complex wine. very full, chewy mouth feel. this is a very good food wine. think steak, ribs, meaty dishes. the only drawback is the 15% alcohol heat that you get in the finish. but that is only a minor complaint. sells for $18.99, and is well worth the price if you like big, bold wines.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Harmony Hill Rubato 2007

one more from ohio winery harmony hill. this is a new release and i just found out it earned a silver medal at the american wine society commercial wine competition www.AmericanWineSociety.org this past weekend. another wine i recently reviewed, concerto, won a gold. congratulations to harmony hill. on to the tasting. rubato is 100% chambourcin. it has a nose of oak and black cherry. on the palate, black cherries, plum and a subtle oak flavor come through. and this wine was just bottled within the last few months so it is a little green. i have a second bottle that will be opened at a later date to see how it ages in the bottle.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Txomin Etxaniz Getaria 2007

here is a hard to pronounce white from spain that the comely brunette saw in a magazine somewhere. the description intrigue us so we decided to give it a try. it had a nose of mineral and citrus. and on the palate it was definitely citrus. lemon and lime, with maybe a little apple thrown in at the end. and a little spritz as well. this was also a very dry white. not very sweet at all. but a very refreshing wine. serve this well chilled and you will get the most from it. sells for about $19-22, so it is a bit pricey, but still a very nice wine.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Harmony Hill Chamber Suite 2007

another red from the folks at harmony hill. a semi-sweet wine that may appeal to some new wine drinkers who aren't quite ready to plunge into some real big wines. 60% chambourcin, 40% marechal foch. similar blend to the serenade i talked about earlier with one big difference. this is aged in stainless steel so there is nothing earthy or woody about this. the nose has some floral characteristics, along with cherry notes. the palate is all black cherry. especially in the finish. a big fruit bomb of a wine. reminds me of a black cherry pie. if you like a sweeter wine, this one is for you. for me, it is just a bit too sweet. it would go well with some bar-b-que, ribs, or other meats served with a sweeter sauce. sells for $10.95.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Trinity Oaks 2006 Pinot Noir

the comley brunette and i were at the local grocer searching for a cheap bottle of wine to enjoy with a late dinner and saw this for $6.99. interesting label. really nice price. nose was a little scarce but had hints of cherries and tobacco. the comely brunette liked the taste. i was a bit disappointed. flavors were much the same as the nose, black cherry, tobacco, medium tannins. but for me it just seemed a bit thin. the flavor disappeared too quickly and was a bit too green. it is about what i would expect for this price for a pinot noir.

Harmony Hill Serenade 2006

65% chambourcin, 35% marechal foch, this earthy red blend is an interesting ohio wine. this blend spends 6 months in appalachian (ohio) oak barrels and has a nose of earth, black cherry, some strawberry and cedar. on the palate, sexy, earthy strawberry and cherry flavors come through. the flavor reminded me a bit of some pinot noirs i have had. light to medium tannins and more cedar notes in the finish. very smooth, very intense flavors. i was very intrigued by the taste of this wine. sells for about $11, so it is budget friendly. i have a second bottle laying for a later taste and i am hoping it improves with time in the cellar, but it will be difficult to improve upon this really nice red.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Fess Parker 2006 Viognier

fess parker winery does an excellent job with all the wines they produce and this viognier is no exception. a nose of honeysuckle, peaches and hints of floral and mineral notes. on the palate the wine was full and round in the mouth with peaches as the central flavor. the wine was crisp and there were hints of jasmine and some citrus. there was also a full, buttery mouth feel that reminded me just a bit of a chardonnay. i paid about $21 for the bottle and although it was a little pricey, it was a very nice wine. i think you can find a nice viognier for less money but this one is very good.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Harmony Hill Concerto 2007

the first of the harmony hill vineyards wines i am going to touch on is perfect for the warm weather months…concerto. this wine is 100% vidal blanc. this grape is well suited to the colder climates in the ohio area and is generally used in very sweet ice wines. in this case, the wine is more like a dry riesling with a bit of the sauvignon blanc citrus characteristic. nose of peach and apple. on the palate, crisp and clean with a slightly sweet taste. flavors of peaches and pears, a crisp apple flavor and a slightly acid finish that lingers on the tongue. very food friendly wine that will go with all your summer time fare. priced at $11 a bottle, this white is worth every penny.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Quara 2005 Chardonnay

every now and then you feel the need to just try something based on price and an interesting label. this had the low price of $6.99 and the label was different. the comely brunette and i have been drinking a lot of sauvignon blanc and decided to get away from that and try this chardonnay from argentina. this one really delivered for as little as we paid for it. nose of pears and green apples, a little pineapple and maybe a little spice note, like a cinnamon. the pears flavor continued on the palate, although it was more like a baked pear taste. creamy textures and oak, with a spice finish. a very nice white that will pair well with many foods like chicken or pasta dishes.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Lindeman's Bin 99 2007 Pinot Noir

before i start down the harmony hill wine trail, i have a couple unfinished posts i'd like to sneak in. first is this pinot noir from lindeman's in australia. this falls into the inexpensive category of around $8-10 a bottle, so the price is nice. it is not, however, meant to be a bottle that you lay down for a while and expect to get better. when i first poured this, the lack of a big nose was an indication of what was to come. raspberry aromas and maybe a little earth. taste of raspberry, a bit of green olive, with very subtle tannins and not much finish. thin would be the word that best describes this wine. but then it is cheap by comparison to other pinots. sometimes you get what you pay for. it wasn't a bad wine and it would go with most food, but it wouldn't be a wine i would pair with a really nice meal. think burgers, pizza, and that sort of dinner fare.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Winey Thoughts

i had the chance to spend an afternoon with the comely brunette and "blondie" at a local ohio winery, harmony hill vineyards recently. located in the city of bethel, ohio. most wine folks are so enamored with the wines of napa, france, or some other famed location that they forget about the little guy crafting boutique wines. and when some people think of ohio, the last thing they think about is wine. especially really high quality wine. i've written about some of the ohio wines already and there are definitely some very interesting wines being crafted in the state. bill and patti skvarla have quite a following at harmony hill and deservedly so. some very nice wines which i will be blogging about over the course of the next few weeks. they also bring in local music talent to entertain the folks who come to taste their wines and sit outside on a friday night or saturday afternoon. relaxing, warm, friendly people and excellent wine. a beautiful combination. want more info? here is their website. a big thumbs up from the baldwinegeek.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Cava Submarinas Carmenere 2006

there is an interesting story about how this wine is aged. in underwater caves in chile! when i first heard this i was skeptical. if you look into this on you tube, there are videos to prove it. not sure what this does to the wine, but i really enjoyed it. a nose of dark fruit, anise and earth. on the palate an immediate flavor of black cherry, followed by dark chocolate cordial and licorice flavors. very complex and very tasty. i have had this bottle laying in my cellar for about a year. i paid about $14 for it. a steal at that price for as big and bold a wine as this was.

coming soon…a visit to a local ohio winery where they produce some very exciting wines.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Espadaña Verdejo 2005

there seems to bit a bit of a spanish trend lately so i'll continue down that path with this white. nose of white fruit, maybe pear or slightly apple in aroma. some citrus as well. on the palate minerals come through right away, along with some citrus. mid way it becomes a bit more floral, maybe a little jasmine. although the wine was crisp and of medium acidity, i wasn't crazy about the overall taste. maybe it was too medicinal for my taste. sells for about $14.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Montaribaldi 2007 Moscato D'Asti

i'm not much into sparkling wines or champagnes, but this semi-sparkler (details to follow) really was nice. i refer to it as a semi sparkler because it is slightly carbonated. it has very tiny bubbles. not too dry, slightly sweet, but not cloying in the least. from the barbaresco region of italy, this had a nose of minerals and honeysuckle. it was very low in alcohol (5%), so it had no acidic bite. it tasted of honey, honeycrisp apple, and soft pear and has an effervescence that lingered in the mouth. sells for about $16 and pairs well with spicy foods, like the cajun crab dip and olives i snacked on while i sipped. so if you aren't a champagne drinker, give this a try. worth it without the high alcohol a dry taste.


Monday, September 1, 2008

Longhop Boomerang Shiraz 2005

i had just finished the last glass of pinecrest prior to dinner and opened this one up to go with the meal. i noticed the nose straight away. big, fruity, chocolate and some sweet flowery notes. not a huge chewy shiraz, but this one was definitely a bigger wine. taste of plums, cherries, spice and chocolate that paired well with the grilled filet, corn on the cob and smashed potatoes. it would easily benefit from more time in the bottle, as it opened up considerably with time. it sells for the nice price of about $15. very enjoyable shiraz and well worth another visit.