Tuesday, November 22, 2011
More Wines for Thanksgiving
I'd like to thank Kristen and her good friends for helping me taste this flight of wine picks for Thanksgiving. The wines were from California, Italy, France and New Zealand. (Also thank you to Kristen for photo above.)
Chateau Julien Gewurztraminer 2010 Carmel Valley, California
Light golden colors, clean citrus notes of grapefruit, flowers, honey and jolly rancher green apple, the mild and simple palate shows spice and nice acidity. Gewurztraminer is versatile and will pair well with Turkey dinner, especially if your stuffing is spicy, also may be used before dinner with cheese or after dinner with dessert.
Cold fermented using Steinberger Yeast, known for its slow fermentation, allows the winemaker the ability to maintain natural varietal flavor and a slight residual sugar. While semi-dry in flavor, this wines slightly higher acidity balances the residual sugar for a refreshing, lighter style of wine.
Rasciatano Rose, Puglia Italy
Made with 100% Montepulciano grapes pressed softly then fermented partly in stainless steel vats at a temperature of 13-15° (C) and partly in second and third passage barriques, followed by aging in stainless steel vats for 4-6 months and 4 months in bottle. Rose petal colors, aromas of sour cherry, and peach, on the palate dry, slightly metallic with good acidity.
Dino Torti Forza Inter Pino Nero Oltrepo Pavese 2008 Italy
Also soft pressed, complex aromas of almonds, fruits and flowers, flavors of nutty, apple and pear, dry but satisfying.
Maison Louis Jadot Beaujolais-Villages, 2009 France
The grapes (Gamay) are gently crushed, an extended maceration of 12-20 days gets you the extraction of color and tannins, then aged in French oak for 8 to 10 months. On the nose notes of tar and forest floor, fruit forward on the palate of black sour cherry, pepper, an attractive minerality and holiday spice, good finish. Great deal at $10.
Te Muna Road Vineyard Craggy Range Pinot Noir, 2009, New Zealand
From the region of Martinborough, 100% Pinot Noir grapes are fermented in open-top tanks followed by aging in 33% new French oak barriques for 10 months. Rose red, medium weight but at the same time velvety, tree bark, smoky earth and violets, dry but sweet, beautiful balancing act, plums. Nice long layered finish. SRP $40. A majority of the tasters really enjoyed this one.
St. Francis Winery Sonoma County Old Vines Zinfandel, 2008 California
The average age of the vines here are 80-100 years old, and actually is 89% Zin, and the rest a blend of Alicante Bouschet, Mourverdre, Carignane, Syrah and Petite Sirah. The grapes are fermented then aged in new American oak for 12-15 months. Complex, underbrush, cigar box, cherry vanilla, raspberry, plums, pepper and spice. For the price ($17) very nice.
Luccarelli Pazzia Primitivo di Manduria Old Vines 2007 Puglia, Italy
Deep rich purple ruby colors show such an opacity as to preview what's to come, namely rich cherries with prunes and spices on top of vanilla and chocolate nuances. Very fruit forward but with an Italian flair. Beautiful. $40.
Arnaldo Caprai Sagrantino di Montefalco 25 Anni 2005 DOCG Montefalco Italy
Made with the best grapes of 100% Sagrantino, aged 2 years in French Oak Barrique and a minimum of 6 months in bottle. What is immediately apparent is the very deep dark opaque colors, with strong and vibrant vanilla concentrates on the nose, laid over violets, earth and spices. Flavors of ripe fruit woven with spices and vanilla, great aging potential.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!!