Monday, August 31, 2009

Galarej Gavi 2008 DOCG

This white from Serralunga, in the Piedmont region of Italy is a Gavi made with Cortese grapes.

Straw colored with pleasant aromas of melon, Italian pastries and honey followed by flavors reminding me of powdered sugar sprinkled onto a honeydew melon. The and high acidity and dry, but fruity style make this a perfect drink for an August afternoon.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Lomazzi & Sarli Solise Rosso Riserva 2005 DOC

This 100% Negroamaro from Brindisi, in the Puglia region of Italy, exhibits deep purple garnet colors, a full body and shows a nose full of aromas like black cherry, glycerine, stable, sweat, and animal.

A deep flavor profile loaded with licorice, dry cola, sour cherries and black pepper expresses itself with power and finesse. Very well balanced, with a long clean finish.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Wine: Saving Lives

The World Wine Tour 2010

For a year a couple will be travelling around the world visiting wineries and convincing the owners to donate one bottle of their best wine that will later be auctioned off to benefit The Lao Rehabilitation Foundation helping Laotian children. They plan on visiting 300 wineries and raising $150,000. The auction will be held after their return at The Robert Mondavi Winery.

Interested wineries and/or sponsors:

Georges Janssens and Anja Cheriakova can be Emailed at the following:

Or, their international number is +44(0)7538431044

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Il Borro Polissena

This Supertuscan is made from hand picked 100% Sangiovese grapes, ruby red and shows a dry countenance that is gracefully balanced and possesses a finish that is long and proud.

As though you stopped to pick a mushroom off the forest floor, the nose is a bold flourish of earth and moss, while the flavors caress the tongue with red fruits. The naturally high acidity of Sangiovese as well as the luscious tannins combine to create this beautiful example of a Supertuscan.

Winemaker's notes:

Polti is the highest vineyard at the Il Borro estate, approximately 350 meters above sea level. Planted at a density of 4,500 plants per hectare the soil is schistose and marly with exceptional drainage perfect for Sangiovese.

At the end of August, the vines are thinned to obtain 1Kg of grapes per plant, 45 quintals (4500 kg) of grapes per hectare with a yield of 30 hl of wine per hectare, producing nearly 1 bottle per plant. The grapes are selectively hand picked, destemmed, crushed and placed stainless steel vats by natural gravity. The first day of fermentation, approximately 10-20% of the juice is drained from the skins to increase the concentration of the wine. The alcoholic fermentation lasts for 10 days and the maceration on the skins continues for 22 days at a controlled temperature of 28°C.

The wine is racked into French oak barriques from Alliers where it undergoes malolactic fermentation around the end of November, it then is racked a second time before maturing 12 months in barriques. The wine is then placed stainless steel vats for 1 month to rest before undergoing a light filtration and bottling.
Polissena remains in the cellar to age in the bottle for 6 months before being released.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Riesling Columbia Valley Washington 2005

This Riesling from Washington's Columbia Valley exhibits floral aromas of honeysuckle with honey sweet flavors ripe with fruits of canteloupe and citrus rinds.

First paired with Camembert cheese, which did not work at all, and tended to contrast to the extreme, then switched to a Spanish Manchego which balanced well and took the sweetness of the Riesling down a notch.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Drylands Dry Riesling 2006 Marlborough New Zealand

This perky and fresh white wine from Marlborough, New Zealand starts with full aromas of honey along with a mild minerality, following up with sparky flavors of citrus. Then there are waves of grapefruit, golden raisins, a very nice acidity and a lemony finish. 13% alcohol and a screw top.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Macari Sette Frati

From Macari Vineyards on the the North Fork of Long Island comes this Sette Frati (seven brothers) blend of 50% Cabernet Franc and 50% Merlot. The distinct aromas of green olive along with sour cherries dominate this medium bodied red done in the wine stylings of Southern Rome. Ripe berries, glycerine, plums and spices round out the flavors of this well balanced unique wine. Long on the finish and expressing mild oak, with chocolate undertones and Christmas spices. Retails for $16.99.

Note: This sample bottle was given to me by Macari Vineyards.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Illuminati Zanna Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Riserva 2005 DOCG

Aged in oak 2 years, this Montepulciano d'Abruzzo is a gem, showing concentrated aromas of glycerine with undercurrents of animal, followed by waves of underbrush. Next are the flavors of ripe blackberries, black cherries, chocolate, cola and smoked meats. Well balanced with a velvety finish. Tasting compliments of Luca and Mario from Il Poeta. This was wonderful with appetizers of Tortino di Asparagi (Asparagus cake in a Fontina Fondue) and Grilled Figs with Speck, Balsamic Vinegar with Arugula.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Big Claw

I know "Big Claw" sounds like a monster movie from the 60s, but this white from California's north coast is anything but a B movie blend. Made from Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Columbard, and Chenin Blanc, this food-specific blend was the finalist in a quest by two Maine wine guys to find the best California white to pair with the Northeast's famed lobster.

On the nose, lychee fruit and pineapple will get you salivating, while taste buds are piqued with the flavors of just peeled lychee and the crispness of sour apple. The result is the perfect compliment for a robust lobster bisque.

The snappy essence of this delightful wine cuts through the savory soup providing a good flavor balance, while the acidity allows for a smooth transition as well as a dance of butter between the wine and the bisque. The finish completely cleanses the palate without overpowering the seafood. I likey.