Saturday, October 30, 2010

Maryhill 2008 Winemaker's Red

i am always intrigued with red blends. when they are priced in the under $15 area, like this one is, you catch my attention fully. and when it is good like this one, i am very pleased because i found a go to bargain. maryhill red is a blend of 40% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot, 20% syrah and 10% cabernet franc. the nose had cherry, some plum and some spice, along with a little earth. on the palate, lots of tart cherry and soft tannins. the wine gave me the impression that it might benefit from some more bottle time. nice chocolate, earth tones and spice were also evident in the finish. we had this with some pizza, and it would work with red sauce pasta dishes or red meat as well. very good wine at an even better price.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Hob Nob Pinot Noir 2008

had dinner with the family at a local restaurant chain before my recent move. i was ordering salmon so a pinot noir was my first choice for wine. never tried this one before and it flies in the face of the typical hard to read chateau this or that from france. fun name. so i said why not!? selling for about $8, it was hard to believe that this is really in that price range. the nose was cherry and floral, with some spice notes and vanilla too. the palate was fruit forward, with more cherry and some violet and spice notes. also has some nice earthy flavors that are usually present in french pinot noirs. this went very well with the salmon i had and will be a definite try at home bargain wine. well worth a look by you pinot noir lovers out there.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay 2008

apologies for the lack of posts recently. relocated to a new state and had no computer access. the comely brunette and i enjoyed this go to white with a fresh salad with tuna. selling for about $12-14, kendall-jackson has always been a producer that we can go to for quality wines at reasonable prices. the chardonnay has a nose of mango and peach, a little citrus and some light spice notes. the palate was smooth and creamy with lots of mango and pear flavors. there was also some nice spice and a little green apple. not an overly oaked chardonnay, which is a good thing in my book.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Foris Flyover Red 2008

my first experience with flyover red happened many years ago, and it was fascinating. it has been a favorite of mine for some time and i always try to keep a bottle or two in stock. it is a bordeaux blend of 55% merlot, 40% cabernet sauvignon and 5% cabernet franc. the blend changes from year to year so it is always worth checking out because it is never quite the same. the nose has lots of dark fruit and cocoa, with some earth and a little cigar thrown in. the palate was a bit tight and young. flavors of black cherry, plum, coffee and leather. i was actually surprised that the 08 was already on the shelf, as the folks at foris usually hold there flyover back a few years. this is worth buying two and laying one down for a few years. and at the nice price of about $13, it is worth it.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thelema Cabernet Sauvignon 2007

my last south african bottle has officially been opened. unfortunately it probably should have been laid down for several years as it has plenty of aging potential, and it is still tasting a bit young. thelema is also from the stellenbosch region and is from one of the highest elevation vineyards in south africa. the nose has lots of black cherry, blackberry and spice. i also got some eucalyptus aromas. the palate is a little tight and tannic at first. it opens nicely after the wine sits in the glass for a bit. nice black currant and blackberry flavors, with smoky cedar,  mint and earth tones in the long finish. this one sells for about $40 and has definite aging possibilities. if you are into the point rating system, this one has consistently scored 90 points or better in wine spectator for 11 years. i enjoyed this with spaghetti with steamed veggies over the top. it will work with any red meat or stew as well.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Rudi Schultz Syrah 2007

a have two more wines from south africa that i would like to write about. first is this beautiful syrah from winemaker rudi schultz. i love a good syrah and this one will now occupy a place near the top of my list of go to syrahs. selling for about $35 (but do some searching and you can save about $5), this 100% syrah has a nose of black cherry, raspberry and some nice earth tones. the palate is more black cherry, along with blackberry and some nice cocoa powder. nice earthy flavors and some tar and licorice in this one too. excellent red if you like a full bodied red with lots of flavors and medium tannins and a long finish. break out the steak, hearty stew or the red pasta dish for this one.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Rustenberg Estate John X Merriman 2007

this evening finds me with another very nice bordeaux blend from south africa. rustenberg JXM is a blend of 48% cabernet sauvignon, 40% merlot, 6% petit verdot, 3% cab franc, and 3% malbec. the wine comes from the stellenbosch appellation and sells for around $30. if you search a little you can find it for a few dollars less. the nose is black currant, licorice, and a little floral. the palate is plum and cherry, with firm tannins and lots of nice tobacco and licorice in the mid-palate. nice full, long finish with some spice and earth. this is a very nice wine begging for two things; more time in the bottle and a juicy steak dinner. these south african wines have been very impressive.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Mulderbosch Faithful Hound 2006

sorry for the shortage on the postings, travel time got in the way. waiting for me when i arrived at home this evening was this red blend from south africa. this is a bordeaux blend of 41% cabernet sauvignon, 36% petit verdot, 10% cab franc, 9% merlot, and 4% malbec. if that doesn't get you interested, then you are not a red wine fan. the nose is loaded with black currant, spice, some earth and a little leather. the palate has blackberry and licorice flavors with some black cherry and plum also. the tannins are not too overpowering and the wine finished very nicely with some earth and tobacco notes. excellent wine for this weary traveller. my palate was not quite up for subtle flavors and this red satisfied the need for something a little bolder. great all by itself, but try this with red pasta or a nice steak. sells for about $20.