Monday, August 31, 2015

Seghesio Russian River Valley 2012 Arneis (White wine)







Seghesio Russian River Valley 2012 Arneis (White wine), $10.99-$18.99, 91 points, was a
Wheat color trending gray at the glass shallows.
Aromas of pome blossoms, apricots, and peach were beautiful.
The light body with fair to good acidity carried subtle flavors of peach, tangerine, and watermelon; though almost subconscious, these flavors were delicate, delicious, and distinguished.
Finished long on the trailing palate with hints of Lychee, the 13% alcohol, and a hint of ginger.
Paired perfectly with my fried clams.
Keep in mind that this varietal is best tasted young, but I'm confident that the screw-cap helped to retain much of its youth!

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Sunday, August 30, 2015

Chianti Classico's Black Rooster (You've always wanted to know!)





Chianti Classico's Black Rooster
 
 
 
 
Okay, here's the link to someone who knows:
 
 
 
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Bacio Divino Pazzo (Crazy) Napa Valley 2012 Red Wine






Bacio Divino Pazzo (Crazy) Napa Valley 2012 Red Wine, $21.99-$32.99, 90 points, poured core black trending a deep purple/red toward the transparent wine ring and leggy glass wall.
I usually don't think of Sangiovese (primary varietal) as "big", or even usually North American, but everything about this wine is big: Big plum, pomegranate, black cherry, and brine on the nose were wonderfully big, flavors reflective of the nose were carried on the full-body of big acidity, manageably big tannin, and a big finish of spice and the 14.9% alcohol all of which followed the big suit.
If you're looking for a big-red wine that's a big difference from your usual pairing with spiced lamb or rib-eyed cuisine, this just might fit your order.
The other major varietal was Cabernet Sauvignon (that explains everything).

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Saturday, August 29, 2015

Domaine Fouassier Père Et Fils 2013 Sancerre






Domaine Fouassier Père Et Fils 2013 Sancerre,
$17.99-$29.99, 90 points, was straw yellow trending water clear at the glass shallows.
Aromatic floral, lemon, and tangerine were wonderful.
This French Sauvignon Blanc was dry, crisp, mouth-watering, flinty, citrusy, light and refreshing.
Finished well on hints of juniper-berry and ginger, tart citrus with an appropriate 12.5% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my clambake. 

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Friday, August 28, 2015

Cuvaison Napa Valley Carneros 2009 Chardonnay Revisited four years later






Cuvaison Napa Valley Carneros 2009 Chardonnay Revisited four years later, $14.44-$22.99, 90 points (still), poured a copper/brass color.
Predominately a melon fragrance which was okay.
The medium-plus body carried fair acidity with flavors of butterscotch, caramel, with hints of butter (very much a good typical Cali Chardonnay), and unripe honeydew melon.
Finished long on powerful black and white pepper notes, ginger, and a well integrated 14.2% alcohol.
Wine changes all the time, so does the wine taster!

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Thursday, August 27, 2015

Liberty School Central Coast 2007 Syrah






Liberty School Central Coast 2007 Syrah, approximately $11.00, 86 points, poured core black trending cranberry red toward the thin clear wine ring.
Profuse aromas of cedar, clove, marzipan, red cherry, earth, oak, and a floral component were okay if not a bit overwhelming.
Full-bodied with fair acidity and nearly concluded mild tannin managed a smorgasbord of flavors reflecting the aromas and carried in a slightly tart and syrupy matrix with a hint of anise.
Finished fair on the trailing palate with easy warm spice and a well integrated 13.5% alcohol.
Sadly this worthy Syrah, in my opinion, unfairly rated scores from other sources of 78-85 points.


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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Château La Grande Metairie Entre-Deux-Mers 2014 Bordeaux White Wine





Château La Grande Metairie Entre-Deux-Mers 2014 Bordeaux White Wine, $10.19-$11.99, 90 points, poured a light bass color.
Aromatic grapefruit, gooseberry, and lemon grass were good and reminded me of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.
The light crisp body with good acidity deftly managed flavors of grapefruit, pineapple, tangerine, lychee, and pine needle tea.
Finished long on the trailing palate, white pepper, ginger, and a well integrated 12.5% alcohol.
Varietals were 56% Sauvignon Blanc, 35% Sauvignon Gris, and 9% Muscadelle.


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Italian Wines (Where's the Love?)



Italian wines
 are among the best wines in the world,
 but where's the love from New Hampshire wine drinkers?
I did a wine review of a Mexican Chardonnay,
 and within days that post received a thousand hits,
 but I did two glowing Italian wine reviews this week,
 and only three people are interested!
I don't get!
If anyone would like to speculate as to the lack of interest in Italian wines I'd be very interested.
 
 
 
 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Michele Chiarlo Anniversario 2008 Barolo







Michele Chiarlo Anniversario 2008 Barolo, $29.99-$46.99, 92 points, poured a bright candy apple red trending Italian red with a broad clear wine ring.
Lovely aromas of strawberry, truffle, and roses impressed.
Medium-bodied with mouth-watering acidity, firm grainy tannin, and a straight-forward flavor profile of pomegranate, red cherry, and bourbon notes.
Finished long on the trailing palate, red pepper, a hint of mint, and a warm 14% alcohol.





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Monday, August 24, 2015

Clos Pegase Mitsuke's Vineyard Carneros-Napa Valley 2012 Chardonnay






Clos Pegase Mitsuke's Vineyard Carneros-Napa Valley 2012 Chardonnay, $22.94-$29.99, 89 points, was a brass/copper color.
Floral, orange peanut candy, and melon aromas were quite good.
Medium-plus body managed fair acidity with complex flavors, mostly influenced by oak, were well balanced, but would be slightly overwhelming and overpowering to a light fish cuisine for example (JMO); pairing with something rich as in bacon wrapped sea scallops or a baked-stuffed pork loin would be my recommendation.
Finished very long on pepper notes, ginger, melon, orange peel, and a slightly noticeable 14.2% alcohol.


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Sunday, August 23, 2015

Turnbull Oakville 2011 Syrah




Turnbull Oakville 2011 Syrah, $24.99-$49.99, 90 points, poured core black trending ruby toward the clear wine ring and leggy glass wall.
Lovely cedar and floral aromas with a hint of chocolate were wonderful.
Full-bodied with fair acidity and moderately supportive tannin managed lots of black and red fruit, but no fruit bomb is this Syrah, rather richly textured with sweet herbs, anise, and violets complimented the panoply of fruit.
Finished fair to long with Damson plum, white pepper, a well integrated 14.5% alcohol, and a hint of mint. 




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Saturday, August 22, 2015

Rocca delle Macie 2011 Chianti Classico Riserva



Rocca delle Macie 2011 Chianti Classico Riserva, $19.99-$21.99, 91 points, poured a pomegranate red trending garnet/maroon with a broad transparent wine ring at the leggy glass bowl.
Aromatic pine resin, oaky northern red fruit, and hints of strawberry were good.
The medium body (very dry red wine) carried typically food friendly acids and a consistently supportive tannic presence throughout.
Fairly straight forward flavors of mint, red fruit, and a hint of bourbon with a floral component were good as well.
Finished long on the trailing palate, easy spice and the 14% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with luscious native tomatoes, a garlic/olive oil balsamic dressing, and a Papa Gino's peperoni pizza.
Varietals were 90% Sangiovese, 5% Merlot, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon.

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Friday, August 21, 2015

True Myth Paso Robles 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon





True Myth Paso Robles 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon, $14.99-$17.99, 88 points, was a candy-apple red color with an obligatory clear wine ring.
Profuse aromas of clove, cedar, violets, black olives, black cherry, and earth notes were very good and translated well onto the palate along with a slight brine note.
Full-bodied with fair acidity and slightly astringent tannin were supportive enough, but at times the texture was almost borderline too heavy for me.
Finished nicely on warm spices, red cherry, a hint of pomegranate, and a sweet-spot 14.5% alcohol.


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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Silverado Vineyards Carneros 2012 Chardonnay





Silverado Vineyards Carneros 2012 Chardonnay, $24.99-$28.99, 90 points, poured a lovely light golden color trending slightly gray toward the glass bowl.
Subtle apple-nut crisp aroma was light and fragrant.
Medium-bodied with fair acidity and flavors reminiscent of most Cali Chardonnay wines, but without the over-the-top oak (still a bit oaky for a Chablis lover); flavors of melon and pome fruit were clean and delicious.
Finished long on hints of watermelon rind, orange peel, and black pepper with a well integrated 14.2% alcohol.


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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Boundary Breaks Vineyard Single Clone No. 110--Semi-Dry Finger Lakes 2012 Riesling






Boundary Breaks Vineyard Single Clone No. 110--Semi-Dry Finger Lakes 2012 Riesling, $16.19-$17.99, 87 points, poured a light polished brass color trending gray at the glass shallows.
The nose was quite quiet with just hints of apple and petrol (which did not migrate onto the palate).
The light-plus body carried good acidity on well balanced flavors of quince and Asian pear.
Finished slightly sweet and fair, with a hint of ginger the trailing palate, and an unnoticeable 10.5% alcohol.
Paired beautifully with Asian cuisine.
Another great and hard to find wine bought at the Harvest Market Bedford.


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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Best of 2013 Cali Sauvignon Blanc (62) Tasted



Having finally finished my tasting of sixty two 2013 California Sauvignon Blanc white wines,
I can put the final touch of my opinion of them here.
Since I can't do this every year, I thought it appropriate in summation to flaunt my number one pick in quality and price.
Keep in mind that this was no easy choice, and the link below lists many contenders to the 2013 Throne, and that all sixty one, save for three were bought in New Hampshire
 

 




 



* I did score one SB a + higher, but since it was in a setting I was uncomfortable in giving a more accurate judgment, I left it effectively out. 

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Columna Rias Baixas 2013 Albarino (Spanish White Wine)







Columna Rias Baixas 2013 Albarino (Spanish White Wine), $13.99-$16.99, 90+ points, poured a straw yellow color.
The aromas were pome blossoms and a lovely fresh squeezed lemon.
Light-bodied with good acidity and pure flavors of grapefruit, lemon zest, tangerine, a subtle floral component, and slight slate mineral notes.
Finished as it began, vibrant and exuberant, floral, citrusy, and with a sweet-spot 12.5% alcohol.
Paired well with a summery BLT.

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Monday, August 17, 2015

Chalk Hill Sonoma Coast 2013 Chardonnay





Chalk Hill Sonoma Coast 2013 Chardonnay,
$17.99-$22.99, 87 points, was straw yellow.
Complex aromas depended on temperature, with cold temperatures having pineapple and citrus notes while warmer temperatures were more melon, honeysuckle and olive oil aromas; altogether quite good.
Medium-bodied with fair acidity managed this dry intense white wine.
Very much a typical Cali Chardonnay with cold citrus and oak notes transitioning toward vanilla, butter, and other oak influences while warm melon flavors supplanted colder citrus notes.
Finished with a noticeable 14.5% alcohol, orange peel, and spice.

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Sunday, August 16, 2015

Barboursville Vineyards Virginia 2012 Cabernet Franc Reserve







Barboursville Vineyards (Virginia) 2012 Cabernet Franc Reserve, $24.99, 90 points, poured leggy with a broad clear wine ring, with the wine being a lovely opaque burgundy purple/red.
The pleasant grapey, earthy, and slightly floral aromas were propitious.
Medium-plus bodied with fair to good acidity and supportive mellow tannins managed a rather complex flavor profile of black fruit, coffee, and tobacco notes.
Finished fair on the trailing palate with some warm spices and a well integrated 14.2% alcohol.
I've looked for this wine for three years and finally found it at the Harvest Market Bedford; The wine buyer should be congratulated for the wine selection as a whole.


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Saturday, August 15, 2015

Tommasi Viticoltori Rafaèl 2013 Valpolicella Classico Superiore



Tommasi Viticoltori Rafaèl 2013 Valpolicella Classico Superiore, $15.99-$18.99, 89 points, poured a bright purple/red trending maroon with a leggy glass wall and broad clear wine ring.
Aromatic floral and brine notes were good.
Medium-bodied with good acidity and mild to moderate tannins carried a balanced array of mint, raisin, black cherry, and oaky flavors.
Finished long on the trailing palate with a hint of bourbon and a well integrated 12.5% alcohol.
For me, this Valpolicella makes for a versatile red table wine with some serious table-setting gravitas.




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Friday, August 14, 2015

Château Beausejour Pentimento, Montagne-Saint-Emilion 2010 Bordeaux Red Wine






Château Beausejour Pentimento, Montagne-Saint-Emilion 2010 Bordeaux Red Wine, $29.99 (seen on the web for $24.99), 90 points, was an opaque ruby trending crushed black currant purple/red with a thin wine ring at the glass bowl's edge.
Upon opening, smells of cedar, blackberries, lavender and violets with hints of truffle were very good though they faded over a few hours.
Nearly full-bodied with good acidity, layered grainy tannins, and a broad flavor profile dominated by an early palate floral barrage which elegantly transitioned toward black fruit and plum.
Finished long on easy spice notes, a well integrated 14% alcohol, and the trailing palate.
Varietals were 75% Merlot and 25% Cabernet Franc.
Paired perfectly with my Angus rib-eye and baked potato.
I bought this Bordeaux at the A-Market in Manchester.


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Thursday, August 13, 2015

Groth Napa Valley 2014 Sauvignon Blanc




 

Groth Napa Valley 2014 Sauvignon Blanc, $17.95-$24.99, 92 points, poured a bright gold color.
Soft floral and fresh-cut grass notes on the nose were very good.
The light, dry, and crisp body carried mouth-watering acids.
Groth 2014 SB was quite stony, flinty, and far more complex than at first its cold drinking temperature revealed; flavors of subtle tangerine, jasmine, watermelon rind, and hints of lemon grass were balanced and without ostentation.
Finished long on the trailing palate, a touch black pepper, and the well handled 14.2% alcohol.

Just a note to blogspotters: I downloaded windows 10 and on the third day was unable to upload photos to this blog. After reversing windows 10 back to 8.1 I was able to resume as I have for more than 5 years. If anyone has any comments on this situation I will be grateful.

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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Wild Oats Central Ranges 2012 Chardonnay (Australia)






Wild Oats Central Ranges 2012 Chardonnay (Australia), $10.99-$12.99, 88 points, was a bright gold color.
Smells of citrus, pome blossoms, and fresh-water lakes were pleasant.
Just shy of medium-bodied with fair to good acidity, flavors of pear, citrus, granite minerality, hints of oak and bananas were quite good.
Finished on the trailing palate with hints of kiwi, watermelon rind, and a well integrated 13% alcohol.

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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

L. A. Cetto Estate Valle de Guadalupe Valley, Baja California, Mexico, 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon





L. A. Cetto Estate Valle de Guadalupe Valley, Baja California, Mexico, 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon, $12.00, 86 points, was a candy apple red with a broad clear wine ring.
Smells of red grapes, earth, mint, and violets with just a hint of fingernail polish were just okay for me.
Medium to medium-plus body with fair acidity and moderate tannin carried blueberry, strawberry, and tart pomegranate flavors reminiscent of a drier ARIZONA Stronghold 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon.
Finished long on escalating tannin, a well integrated 13.5% alcohol, easy spice notes, and the trailing palate.
Paired okay with buffalo wings.
I bought this Mexican Cabernet at the Manchester North-end Hannaford's Supermarket.

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Monday, August 10, 2015

La Craie 2013 Vouvray





La Craie 2013 Vouvray, $16.16-$17.95, 88+ points, poured a pale straw yellow trending gray toward the glass shallows.
Lovely subtle aromas of citrus, mint, and a floral note impressed.
Light-bodied with good acidity carried a straight-forward citrus profile, lemon and clementine being prominent.
Finished on the trailing palate, a slight chalky minerality, tart citrus note, orange peel, ginger, and a well integrated 12.5% alcohol.
As the wine warmed it gained complexity and charm.
Paired well with broccoli/cheddar soup and fried cod loin.
I bought this Vouvray (Chenin Blanc) at Angela's Pasta in Manchester.

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Sunday, August 9, 2015

Victor Vineyards Lodi Old Vine 2011 Zinfandel





Victor Vineyards Lodi Old Vine 2011 Zinfandel, $8.99-$17.99, 84 points, poured a dark maroon trending a pretty rosewood red with a clear wine ring.
Smells like tart black cherry and pomegranate.
Medium-bodied with fair acidity and mild to moderate tannins carried tangy/tart flavors reflective of the aromas with a hint of eucalyptus and over ripe strawberry.
The finish was the highlight of this Zinfandel, with an escalating eucalyptus, the trailing palate, warm spice notes, and a sweet-spot 14.5% alcohol going fairly long.
I know many wine lovers love Lodi, and there are some good Lodi AVA Zins out there, but for me, I'm always leery and just wouldn't pay the big-end price for a Lodi Zin I had no knowledge of. As for the Victor, under $10 was an okay price (no regrets).

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Saturday, August 8, 2015

High Valley Vineyard Lake County 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon





High Valley Vineyard Lake County 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon, $13.99-$29.99, 88+ points, was dark ruby red with a broad clear wine ring.
The very perfumed aroma was good, with violets, plums, black currant, and mulberry evident.
Near full-bodied with good acidity and layered moderate tannins.
Flavors were reflective of the aromas with a modicum of cedar, blackberry, and truffle notes.
Finished fair on hints of easy spice, a touch of pomegranate, and a warm 14.5% alcohol.


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Sonoma Walk-in Wine Tastings



  When visiting wine country there are hundreds of little tasting rooms which you can just drop into, and for a nominal fee (2 for 1 or free tasting coupons aside) taste a good selection of wines. If time is an issue, it usually is, these drop-in tastings facilitate experiencing more wines than wine-tasting by appointment, but there is a trade-off in intimacy.
  We did a number of these wine tastings off-the-cuff; here I'll mention four of them.





Poseidon/Obsidian was a wonderful place to visit,
with consistently good wines, friendly hostesses, and a lovely setting.
My wine of choice was the
Obsidian Ridge Estate 2012 Syrah, $30, 90 points.
Poseidon/Obsidian trademark oak influence was their





 

 
 
We visited the downtown Sonoma walk-in tasting room which was very informal,
but we had the opportunity to taste a number of their wines,
 of which the
$20.00, 90 points, was for me the most memorable.
 
 
 
 
 
Roche wines were just incredible, and almost everyone of them a stunner.
My favorites (not easy to pick) were the:
Carneros French Oak Reserve 2012 Chardonnay, 95 points, was restrained power and elegance with an amazingly balanced array of flavors carried by a sleek and lingering body.
Barrel tasted 2014 Merlot Reserve, 93 points, singles-out this Merlot as one of the best Merlot red wines I've tasted (Miles eat your heart out).
Roche Alexander Valley Old Vines 2012 Zinfandel, $32.95, 91 points, was a splendid lighter-bodied Zinfandel with red fruit notes and a long finish of spice.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Truett Hurst Winery was bounded by the Dry Creek (fed by the Mendocino Lake) and afforded green shade trees (much of Dry Creek is very dry at this time and off-dusty to brown blah colors), and with picnic tables and a lovely setting made for a great place for lunch while all the time piggybacking our wine tasting.
My memorable wine pick was the Truett-Hurst Red Rooster Old Vine 2012 Zinfandel, $32.99, 91 points, which was more a medium-bodied Zin with a good balance of red and black fruits with a long finish of black pepper and not too much heat.
 
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