Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Bodega Septima Malbec 2008, Mendoza, Argentina - $10



This Argentinian Malbec was rated 85 points by Wine Enthusiast. I purchased it at the Austin Wine Merchant for $10.

Aroma - dark fruit, a little hot
Taste - dark bitter fruit, moderate tannins (surprising how much for a Malbec), tobacco finish

I think there are better choices of Malbec out there in this price range. Most people who prefer Malbec are not going to like this particular one, which tastes a lot more like an inexpensive Cab. That's not a bad thing, but just not something I prefer - I open a Malbec when I feel like having something less tannic than a Cab.

Update - 7 Deadly Zins, Old Vines Lodi Zinfandel 2007 - $12


See the update on this wine's main page!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Pedroncelli Sauvignon Blanc 2008 Dry Creek Valley East Side Vineyard, Sonoma County, CA - $10



This wine is from a Sonoma County winery that offers free tastings - great tip for those visiting the area! I purchased it for $10 at Austin Wine Merchant.

Aroma - pineapples, citrus, honey, clean
Taste - pineapples, citrus, honey, good acidity

This wine is very food friendly, and such a great price! I LOVE IT!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Santa Carolina Reserva de Familia Carmenère 2007, D. O. Valle del Rapel, Chile - $12


This Chilean wine is 100% Carmenère, and received 91 points from Wine Enthusiast. It was also #12 on Wine Enthusiast's Top 100 Best Buys of 2009. I purchased it for $12 at Costco.

Aroma - black plums, hot (at 14.5% alcohol, I'm not surprised)
Taste - black plums, soft tannins, a little cedar at the end

This is a good wine for the price. Not crazy about the high alcohol content, which really makes it smell (but not taste) hot. But I think a lot of folks will like it because it's rich but not too tannic.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sottano Reserva Malbec 2007, I.P. Mendoza, Argentina - $15



This 100% Malbec from Argentina was rated 90 points by Robert Parker, who says to drink it from 2011 through 2022. I guess I opened it too soon! We purchased it for $15 at Costco.

Aroma - plums, a little hot
Taste - plums, spice, soft tannins

As you know I've really been loving the Malbecs! Had this one with truffle oil popcorn - yum!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

ZD Wines Pinot Noir 2007, Carneros, CA - $55

MS, SD, D, and I had this wine with dinner at Aquarelle - it retails for $55/bottle at the restaurant. It earned 92 points and 2 stars from the Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine.

This wine went well with everything we had for dinner. I remember lots of bright cherry flavors and a light, clean mouthfeel.

Interestingly enough, the winery has run out of this particular vintage, even though it has older vintages of this Pinot dating back to 1987! No wonder I couldn't find it on Aquarelle's menu lately!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

To decant or not to decant?

This isn't really a debatable point, really - most people that enjoy wine do believe in the power of decanting. I don't consistently decant wine - sometimes I do and sometimes I don't. But, this article in New York Magazine really got me thinking. I'm going to do a tasting with decanted vs. straight-from-the-bottle wine sometime, and see how much of a difference it makes.

Double-decanting is a good way to introduce oxygen to wine a little faster, and if you pour the wine back into the bottle from which it came, everyone enjoying the wine will know which one it is.

The other option is to aerate the wine with an aerator, which significantly and quickly increases the oxygen in wine and helps to smooth out the taste of most wines, especially young wines. Reviews of some of the top aerators seem to indicate that the majority of people that use them really see a marked improvement in the taste of their less expensive and younger wines. This I will have to try!

Pedroncelli Pinot Noir 2008, Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, CA - $14.99


This winery's website is awesome! Check out the recipes listed on the product page!

I purchased this wine at Austin Wine Merchant for $14.99. It received 90 points and was named an Editor's Choice by Wine Enthusiast.

Aroma - raspberries, a little hot
Taste - red fruit, a little oak, soft to moderate tannins

This is a nice Pinot Noir for the price point. I'd purchase it again, but given the choice between this one and the Devil's Corner PN I reviewed a few days ago, I'd purchase the Devil's Corner, especially since they are basically the same price and I can purchase either at the AWM.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Devil's Corner Pinot Noir 2008, Tasmania - $13.75



This Tasmanian Pinot Noir is 100% PN. I purchased it at the Austin Wine Merchant for $13.75, simply because it's from Tasmania and it just sounded so exotic - I mean, how many wines have you tried from Tasmania? And Devil's Corner - haha! Brings me back to memories of the Tasmanian Devil in childhood cartoons!

Aroma - cherries
Taste - cherries, soft tannins, long finish

So good and such a great price! Serve it just a little chilled during the summer - fabulous!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Masciarelli Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2006, Italy - $12.50



I tasted this 100% Montepulciano d’Abruzzo at Royal Blue. According to the winery's website it was aged in stainless.

Aroma - fruit and cedar
Taste - fruit and cedar

I like this wine and would absolutely purchase it again!

Tangent Sauvignon Blanc 2008, Edna Valley, CA - $13.49


I tasted this wine at Royal Blue, where it retails for $13.49/bottle. Wine Enthusiast gave it 91 points and named it an Editors' Choice. The wine rep told me that it's aged in stainless steel, which is probably why I find it so appealing.

Aroma - light fruit, citrus
Taste - light fruit, pear

I really like this wine, especially since I love pears and can see it going well with pears and a great chunk of Parmesan!