Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bridlewood 2003 Syrah

wow. i have had this before and i just opened a bottle of the '03 from the 2007 wine festival. earthy nose. hints of cedar, vanilla, and deep floral notes. tastes of cassis and dried blackberry, dark chocolate and mocha. soft tannins and a chewy mouth feel, with a beautiful, long finish. this wine opens up as it has more time to breathe. then the licorice flavors start to kick in, adding to the beauty of this wine. excellent syrah which i highly recommend. priced anywhere from $15-30 depending on where you buy, this is an excellent red that pairs well with grilled meats.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Château La Pierre Levée 2005

this cotes de castillon bordeaux is the first french wine on my blog. i haven't been much of a french wine drinker until recently, so i am starting to expand my horizons. i have had a few folks tell me to try some bordeaux's and burgundies, so i will give them a try. on to the tasting… this wine exhibited plums and a cedar note on the nose as well as an interesting clay or gravel note. there was even a bit of a cheesy note on the nose. on the palate, spicy black cherries, plum and menthol, followed by firm tannins and gravel. interesting wine that i will revisit again in the next day or so to see how it opens up. it could be that it just needed more time in the bottle. at about $12, it would be worth buying another bottle and laying it for a year or so to see the difference.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Pepperwood Groves 2005 Chardonnay

this ones for lucie. i enjoyed this tonight with a vegan dinner. nose of tropical fruit, a little something floral, and a slight oaky aroma. on the palate, a crisp slightly buttery, brown sugar, oaky flavor. for only about $6-8, this is a very nice chardonnay. pepperwood does a very nice job with quite a few of their varietals.

Monday, April 21, 2008

2006 Alamos Malbec

for those of you who are always searching for good wines on a budget, the under $15 a bottle group, try this one. alamos malbec from argentina has been a favorite at the bald wine geeks home for several years. the nose is intense and complex, with leather and black cherry, and a little something i would call funky. you will have to give it a try and let me know if you agree. very fruity, plum flavors on the palate in the beginning. decant this and leave it sit for a while and just taste the difference. the wine gets earthy, the fruit flavors become deeper and more robust. the hints of licorice and spice come through. very good wine for the price, usually under $10 if you look in the right place.

Houghton Shiraz

this 2004 vintage isn't the typical bold, slap you in the face, shiraz. a bit more elegant that had aromas of warm chocolate and spice/pepper. tastes of red berries and some floral notes and a long, soft finish with very typical shiraz pepper notes. had this with a burger with grilled mushrooms which worked well together. priced in the $15-18 range. a good valued shiraz.

Friday, April 18, 2008

another good pinot

lily 2006 pinot noir from sonoma. fruity vanilla/cherry and funky/earthy nose. earthy can mean all kinds of things. in this case it is animal in nature…the attractive sensual/sweaty aroma of the human body. what some people (like me) really look for in a good pinot. big flavor of raspberries and really nice long soft tannin finish with hints of spice and earth. very nice pinot which sells for about $20.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

pinot noir anyone?

"ultimately, any discussion of the aromas and flavors in pinot noir comes down to a discussion of sex."
-scott rich, winemaker, talisman

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

another good white

oriel 2006 sauvignon blanc. aromas of grapefruit, passion fruit and a hint of stones, this white is another good patio pounder for the warmer months. flavors of bright tropical fruits and a long, crisp finish with hints of minerals. nice wine for about $20. enjoyed this with a nice shrimp and pasta dinner. excellent pairing.

Monday, April 14, 2008

2005 Atteca Old Vines Garnacha

interesting 100% grenache wine from spain. black currant and black cherry nose. immediate fruit forward taste followed by tar and licorice flavors, and a stony finish followed by soft tannins. 14.5% alcohol content gives it a bit of a bite. overall a very nice meaty red wine that would compliment a good steak dinner, or game like venison if you like that sort of meat. priced at around $15-18. enjoy!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

pizza wine

looking for a good wine to drink when you have a craving for pizza? on a tight budget? this ones for you. barefoot shiraz. blackberries, spices, and a hint of bacon. nice wine for under $10. get that pizza topped with bacon and have a glass of this wine with it and tell me what you think.

another white wine…

geyser peak sauvignon blanc. as you will see, this varietal will be a recurring one for me. especially during warmer weather. great wine to drink in the summer. the finish on this might be a bit too sweet for some folks, but like i said, it's a nice warm weather wine. a little grassy, sweet hay, citrus flavor. not a bad wine that sells for about 10-12 dollars. try it with shellfish or a summer salad and some chicken.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

my favorite grape…

pinot noir! subtle, yet bold. very complex. lots of beautiful flavors come through. sexy. earthy nose. this could describe most pinots. this time around i am referring to styring vineyards "wit" 2004 pinot from willamette valley oregon. excellent wine from a small winery, about 300 cases a year, that sells for about 38. a bit pricey for those on a budget but worth the price.
sorry if this post seemed a bit short, but i had to abandon the typing part way through the posting. here is what else i have to say about this really nice wine. it has bold blackberry and black cherry flavors and a nice spicey note. time in the bottle will only make this wine even better. i also have a few bottles of the 03 and plan on doing a side by side comparison later in the year.

Wine Wisdom

"Three kraters (shallow bowls used as wine cups) do I mix for the temperate: one to health, which they empty first, the second to love and pleasure, the third to sleep. When the bowl is drunk up wise quests go home, The fourth bowl is ours no longer, but belongs to hubris, the fifth to uproar, the sixth to prancing about, the seventh to black eyes, the eighth brings the police, the ninth belongs to vomiting, and the tenth to insanity and the hurling of furniture."
— Eubulus, fourth-century Greek poet and playwright
The words above , attributed to the god Dionysus in one of Eubulus' works, reflect the ancient Greek wisdom that wine should be consumed in moderation.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Shiraz comparison

two from the mclaren vale region of australia. d'arenberg the footbolt 2004 and angove's vintner select 2005. the footbolt was a bit tight and would benefit from some more time in the bottle. it had a nice nose of blackberry and cedary pepper. nice blackberry and black currant flavors and some dark chocolate in the finish. the angove's had a beautiful black licorice and cherry nose. very spicey flavors typical of the area with cloves and anise coming through the plum fruit. both of these wines would benefit from more time on the bottle, with the angove's being a little more enjoyable now. both retail in the $16-22 range. 

Thursday, April 3, 2008

White Wine?

yes, i do drink white wine. it is coming up on the warmer time of the year and a good patio pounder, a nice gulpable white, can make the late evening on a warm day more bearable. i have a couple of good sauvignon blancs to suggest. the first is whitehaven, from new zealand…the personal favorite of this house. beautiful and fruity, citrus, passion fruit, delicious with food. the 2006 was rated 90 points with wine enthusiast. we have always got a bottle or two on hand in the wine rack.

the other recommendation is what i am tasting right now…taltarni, from australia. another fruity white that has a nose of grapefruit and tastes of grapefruit and pear. very crisp, tasty wine. 87 points with enthusiast and sells for around $14.

opened a bottle of fess parker 2003 santa barbara county syrah. a wine festival acquisition. full bodied. spicey with undertones of vanilla and cocoa. beautiful finish. drank this with out any food, but this would work really well with a nice steak and some garlic mashed potatoes. an excellent wine. rated 93 points by wine enthusiast, this wine is typical of a really good california syrah. well worth the the $$ that you lay down for it.

the quest for the penfolds port will continue. my favorite wine source didn't and couldn't get it, so i will search elsewhere.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

on a mission to get a bottle of penfolds grandfather port. tasted this at the cincinnati wine festival. amazing! i need to taste this when i am sitting at the computer so i can write down everything that it brings to mind. it was the best port i have tasted to date…

where do we start. how about the low end. cycles gladiator cab, 2005. drinkable but with very little finish. i've definitely had better cabs around this price point of $10 a bottle. the cycles pinot noir is much better. the cab is very tight, green, and lacks the punch a good cab has. not very complex. probably won't buy this one again.

planning a tasting to compare a couple of years of bridlewood estate syrah, as i now have the 04 and 05. beautiful place to visit if you are ever in the santa barbara/santa ynez area. very nice wines at reasonable prices for those on a budget.