Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Nobilo 2007 East Coast Pinot Gris

back to new zealand for this summer patio pounder. selling for about $12, this refreshing white has a nose of pears, a little orange peel, and some nice floral notes. the palate has lots of pears and melon flavors. i also got some nice mineral notes. this is a nice, crisp white with a long, creamy finish. grilled fish, shrimp, cheese and salads will work well with this. i enjoyed this with steamed vegetables and pasta in a light red sauce. excellent white wine!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Realeza Tempranillo Cuvee 2006

i tasted this 100% tempranillo from spain back in march as part of an all spanish wine tasting. this one sees just a little oak, making for a big fruit wine. the nose had some nice floral notes of violets, along with lots of fruity strawberry and raspberry. the palate was loaded with juicy fruit flavors of blackberry and black cherry. firm tannins with a nice leather and black licorice finish makes this an excellent wine for those nights when you just want something fun to enjoy with a pizza or burgers. sells for about $10.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Coto de Hayas Chardonnay 2008

if you are not a fan of heavily oaked chardonnay's, this is for you. this chard is from spain and sells for the nice price of about $9. stainless fermentation means no oak and plenty of fruit that you don't get with many of those big oaked california chards. the nose has lots of melon and floral aromas. the palate is fresh lemon and green apples, followed by some nice mineral notes and melon in the finish. very refreshing, warm weather wine that is great alone as a patio drink or with lighter summer foods.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Apaltagua Envero Gran Reserva 2007

a blend of 90% carmenere and 10% cabernet sauvignon, this fun red from chile is a real pleaser for me. beautifully complex nose with aromas of blackberry, spice, some nice tobacco notes and a little coffee. the palate is full of dark fruit, like blackberry and black currant, with lots of spice at mid-palate and in the finish. almost a minty finish to this. good firm tannins. there is also some sour black cherry notes and a little chocolate on the palate as well. selling for about $14, this wine begs for a filet mignon or a red sauce pasta dish. nice, big, fruity red.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Brancott Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2007

i am off to new zealand with this sauvignon blanc. a great summer time wine, sauv blanc can be great with lots of summer fare and this one is no exception. selling for about $18, this sauv blanc has a nose of citrus and passion fruit. the palate was citrus, most notably grapefruit, and some green pepper. nice mineral notes at the finish. as i said, this one will work with summer fare, like grilled shrimp or nice salads. well worth the price. i revisited this today and got some really big tropical fruit on the palate, guava and passion fruit. very complex, very nice sauv blanc.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Styring Vineyards "Wit" Reserve Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2005

i enjoyed a wine tasting last evening of several offerings from styring vineyards, from oregon. wine wife kelley styring was on hand to describe the wines and food pairings. the 05 "wit" was the first wine we enjoyed. i have written about this one previously, describing it as a sexy wine. it still holds that description quite well. we also tried the premier estate pinot from 2006, the first estate grown pinot from styring, which was a beautiful wine as well. i will be writing on this one soon. and yes, the comparison to the italian i tried a day ago was not even close. styring makes some amazing wines, including some nice white wines and a very interesting cab. visit them on line at

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Folonari Pinot Noir 2008 Delle Venezie

i am going to do a little bit of an unfair comparison. i am starting first with this italian pinot noir boxed wine which i recently purchased for about $17 for the box. that works out to a little over $4 a bottle in this 3 litre format. later tonight i am going to be at a wine tasting featuring styring vineyards pinot noir from oregon. and i am pretty sure the styring pinot will blow this italian out of the water. as for the italian? nice nose of black currants, spice and a little forest floor. the palate was somewhat dry with raspberry and black cherry notes. a little vanilla and some earth as well. not bad for the price. drinkable, but a bit thin. i don't think it is earthy enough to stand up to a salmon dish, but this would work with lighter summer fare, like salads and cheese. or just as a nice patio sipper. i am looking forward to comparing this to the oregon pinot tonight!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bodegas Aragonesas Castillo de Fuendejalon Crianza 2006

this red blend was a wine tasting discovery at my local wine store. a blend of 75% grenache and 25% tempranillo that sells for a nice friendly price of $8. nose of black cherry and hints of violet and vanilla. the palate was filled with cherry and raspberry with firm tannins and vanilla and a little earthiness in the finish. finding decent every day reds at this price is always a joy. try this with pasta, which is how i enjoyed it. worked very well. it was also quite nice by itself both before and after the meal.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Darby + Joan Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

wine tastings are the best place to try new wines. that is where i get a great deal of the material i write about. this barossa valley, australia cab is from a recent tasting and was a bit different from the napa variety cabs. a little more playful and not as big. the nose had plum and cherry notes and a little herbal aroma. the palate was fruit-forward with black currant and some cherry. i also picked up some licorice notes in the finish. a very jammy cab that will pair well with some nice cheese or maybe a little chocolate. sells for about $10-12.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Bird Sauvignon Blanc 2007

warmer weather means it is time to break out more white wines, and i go to sauv blancs quite often. this one from aorearoa, new zealand, was introduced to me at a recent tasting at my local wine merchant. the nose was grassy and tropical, with kiwi fruit aromas. the palate was not your typical grapefruit bomb that many new zealand sauv blancs seem to gravitate toward. this one had some of the citrus flavor, but there was some nice floral and passion fruit notes as well. a little zing in the finish of spice. good patio pounder that would work well with asian or seafood dishes. sells for about $13.