Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Rodney Strong Knotty Vines 2005 Zinfandel

opened this bottle of zinfandel to enjoy as a nightcap. rodney strong is always a reliable winemaker, and this zin is no exception. the nose was blueberry, black cherry and pepper notes. the taste is big, jammy, slightly chewy and complex. at first taste the wine was a bit tight, but it opened up nicely as i let it sit. cherry flavors followed by pepper notes. then i got anise, and as the wine continued to open up i got a really nice dark chocolate flavor. on a second day the wine opened up even more and the anise flavor was more prevalent. the wine was even more complex with bigger fruit flavors. this was well balanced with medium tannins and a very nice, long finish. this wine could easily lay for a few more years. sells for about $20 and is well worth the price.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Flying Fish Riesling 2007

i am on a bit of a riesling kick lately, especially from the northwest. decided to try this one. the nose was lemon and lime, with hints of peaches. the taste was peaches, apricots and citrus. very crisp and not extremely sweet, slightly dry. very nice white that paired well with shrimp and vegetables. and at a nice price of about $12. the flying fish is named for the salmon the swim past the winery in the columbia river to spawn. the winery donates a portion of their profits to ocean conservancy.

Elsa Bianchi Torrontes 2007

the comely brunette and i were at the wine store recently and were intrigued by the description on this one so we picked up a bottle. this is 100% torrontes, a grape that apparently has a long history in argentina. it had a nose of honey and some citrus and floral notes. the palate was refreshing, with similar honey notes. i also got floral and spice notes as well. this would make a very nice summer time wine and the price was very nice at about $8. i will have to revisit this one in the warmer weather.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Kung Fu Girl 2007 Riesling

i had a bottle of this some time ago and never got a chance to blog about it, so i purchased another bottle for a holiday gathering. this oddly named riesling hails from washington state. northwest rieslings i have tried have been pretty good so this one was a no brainer to purchase, especially a a price of about $12. the nose was white peaches, citrus, and some nice floral notes. the palate was nicely balanced between the sweet flavors of pears and the acidity of lime. there were crisp mineral notes with a medium finish. excellent wine with the spicy meal we were enjoying. not overly sweet with a dryer finish that i like in a riesling.

Alta Vista 2005 Malbec

i received this as a gift. i'm a big fan of argentina malbecs and finding them at low price points is usually not too difficult. this one falls into that $10 range and it is a keeper. the nose was a very interesting combination of black cherry, spice, chocolate and earth. the palate, black raspberry, and the spicy flavors you would expect in a malbec. there were chocolate notes and hints of figs at the end. this had a very nice, long finish. enjoyed this with a barbecue dinner with red beans and rice. very nice wine. worth a second look.

Rosenblum 2005 Paso Robles Zinfandel

i love the holidays because everyone breaks out many new wines. here is a nice zinfandel i offered to guests at the baldwinegeek home. the nose was earthy and full of black fruits and spice. the palate was exceptional. very full mouth feel, dominated by flavors of blackberry. there were flavors of chocolate, anise, herbal rosemary and cherry flavors as well. this was a big, bold, complex wine. sells for about $20 and is a bargain at that price.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Riondo Prosecco

one more holiday wine for you to enjoy, this prosecco made for a nice post dinner drink. aromas of lemons and floral notes. palate of lemon, floral flavors, and minerals and a nice effervescence. this is technically a still wine, but it does have bubbles. it was very light and crisp, complimenting the food quite nicely. it worked nicely with shrimp and the holiday desserts. sells for about $14.

Loredona 2007 Riesling

here is a nice holiday wine that works well with ham, shrimp and other holiday foods. this is a riesling from a smaller, boutique winery. the nose was very bright, with aromas of white peaches right away, followed by floral notes. the palate was not too sweet, with flavors of green apples, melon and tropical fruits. a very nice food wine which i found at my local wine merchant for about $10. well worth thinking about if you are enjoying holiday fare this year.

Ferrari-Carano Pinot Grigio 2007

here is a nice, crisp pinot grigio which we enjoyed with some cheese and crackers. the nose is peaches and citrus, with hints of green apples. the palate is lively, with flavors of melon and lemon-lime, vibrant acidity and a nice, long finish. the bottle sells for about $13.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Mirassou 2005 Pinot Noir

back to the budget conscious wines with this pinot noir. sells for about $9. this one is not a very complex pinot, but it has a nice fruit forward flavor. nose red berries and vanilla. palate is mostly strawberries. there are hints of spice and vanilla in the end. the finish is moderate, but just not very complex. for the price, a nice pinot noir, just not great.

Monday, December 22, 2008

2004 Bergevin Lane "Alder Ridge Vineyard" Horse Heaven Hills Cabernet Sauvignon

here is another cabernet, although not in the ultra-low price region. but it is a beauty. from washington state, this cab has a little merlot (16%), cab franc (3%), and petit verdot (3%) mixed in. the nose is black currant, and an earthy, leathery, rich aroma. some spice and cedar. wow. if the taste is anything like the nose, this will be a treat. the flavor was black raspberry, licorice, vanilla, earthy tones. medium tannins with a long, velvety finish. this sells for about $30, although if you shop around you can find it for less. this cab will benefit from time in the bottle. well worth the price. a very complex, delicious cab!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Covey Run 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon

it is definitely red wine time. cabs are big, bold wines and finding one that is good at a lower price can be difficult. i received this bottle from a friend and it did a pretty good job of living up to expectations. not an extremely complicated cab, but a good one none the less. the nose was dark fruits, like black cherry and blackberry. there was a chocolate aroma as well. i also picked up some floral notes. the palate was loaded with blackberry, hints of leather, anise and spice with fairly bold tannins that eased a bit after the wine opened up. this bottle sells for under $10 most places and is really a nice, drinkable cab for the price.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bota Box 2006 Merlot

sorry for the long delay between posts but the baldwinegeek has been under the weather, and when the nose is gone, you just can't taste anything. i'm not sure i will be doing this boxed wine offering justice, but here goes. the nose was plums and black cherries. the palate was black cherries with medium tannins and a long finish with hints of vanilla. a pretty good wine for the price of $15.99 a box from what i could taste. i will revisit this as i get my nose back and may add to this review. so far, the bota box varietals i have tried have been pretty good, and you get four bottles for the price.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Douglas Valley Bunk House Red

another bottle i received as a gift recently. this one takes us to the north and the state of michigan. a first for me in the wine world. the nose was red berries, with some floral and vanilla notes. i also got a stone smell and a hint of cedar. very complex nose. the palate was tart cherry, with earthy mushroom hints and black pepper. soft tannins and a ling finish. very nice red blend. haven't been able to figure out what grapes are used, but based on things i have tasted before, it almost has hints of cab franc and chambourcin. sells for about $12. worth a try.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Elk Creek 2005 Merlot

got this as a gift from a friend recently. owenton, kentucky vineyard. a few friends have been raving about some of the wineries in kentucky so this is going to be an interesting taste for me, seeing if the blue grass state lives up to the hype. the nose is cherries and chocolate with hints of spice. so far a good start. now for the taste…plums, more of the chocolate, a little spice and medium tannins. it had nice long finish that ends with a hint of vanilla. not a bad merlot at all. sells for about $25. a bit pricey, but it is a very tasty merlot. i'm thinking a road trip next year to the blue grass state wineries is in order.

Bota Box 2007 Pinot Grigio

back to the boxed wine circuit. priced nicely like the shiraz at $15.99, which is four bottles of wine! this is great to have on hand when you have company. we actually had a cold day and were drinking this while enjoying time in the hot tub. the wine stayed chilled due to the air temperature. the nose was tropical fruit and floral notes. the palate was crisp with flavors of lemon and minerals. just a nice drinkable white that refreshed us as we warmed up in the spa.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Strong Arms 2006 Shiraz

i picked up this australian shiraz at our local wine merchant back in the summer. we had tried it at one of their tasting, enjoyed it and bought a bottle to lay for a bit. a very typical aussie shiraz. the nose was blueberry, pepper and spice, with hints of cedar. the taste was full of fruit and spice, with blackberry and cherry flavors and a black pepper finish. soft to medium tannins and a nice long finish. and at the nice price of about $11, worth a second try with maybe more time in the bottle to see what aging will do. strong arms has been bottled with 6 different but similarly themed labels.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Pepperwood Grove 2006 Old Vine Zinfandel

over the last couple of years i have tried several of the varietals from pepperwood grove. this is one of the sub brand labels for don sebastiani and sons. if you are on a tight budget, as most people seem to be these days, then give some of their wines a try. the zinfandel is quite nice. not a big, bold zin, but holds up well as a food wine. the nose was black cherry, pepper and i also got a tar-like note. after the wine had opened up, i also got a floral note on the nose. the palate was blackberry, strawberry, black pepper and a little spice of cinnamon, some earth and a touch of vanilla. not sure what is in the ground near the vineyards but almost all the wines under this label have hints of pepper in them. makes for interesting tasting. sells for about $8-9.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Hogue 2006 Chardonnay

here is another wine from our thanksgiving feast that the white wine drinkers enjoyed. this wine is from washington state and has a little more fruit forward flavor than the typical california chard. the nose was very sweet smelling white peach, some floral notes, and a creamy aroma. the palate was full and round with flavors of pears and apples, some buttery vanilla and spice in a nice long, smooth finish. it worked quite well with the dressing of our meal as well as the dessert. sells for about $8.99 or less, depending on your wine vendor, so a nice price. definitely worth a second visit.