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EnRoute - Pinot Noir Les Pommiers
Purchased on 9/15/13 on Daniela Lucchesi's wedding weekend at Far Niente Winery. from Enroute's website: LES POMMIERS "Les Pommiers" Pinot Noir draws its name from the apple orchards emblematic of the Russian River Valley's agricultural history. At once elegant and intense, Les Pommiers is the consummate blend of fruit from our vineyards located primarily in the Green Valley and upper Middle Reach areas of the Russian River Valley AVA. Our grapes are farmed according to organic principles and minimally handled at the winery. The wine is deftly shaped with a subtle combination of new and once-used French oak barrels. Les Pommiers captures aromatics of wild raspberry, black cherry, plum and floral notes that yield to mineral, spice and toasty oak. It has a juicy, coating entry, followed by more layers of raspberry and cherry fruit, and ripe, integrated tannins.
Chateau Julien - Cabernet Sauvignon Private Reserve
Black currant, jammy blackberry and cassis aromas complement smoky coffee flavors and lingering sweet oak. Moderate tannins balance bold, ripe fruit. Complex and robust, this full-bodied wine shows deep texture through a smooth finish. Will age nicely for up to twenty years. The Vineyard Approximately 9.9 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were planted in the southwest section of the winery's Estate Vineyard in 1996. The vineyard is located in South Monterey County's Lockwood Valley, a coastal valley on the western Santa Lucia Mountain Range a short 14 miles from the Pacific Ocean. The vineyard's southwest location brings warmer daytime temperatures with diurnal temperature variations exceeding 50 degrees throughout the growing season. This ensures the balance of acidity in the ripe, full development of fruit. An ideal coarse, gravely loam soil with low moisture levels enable controlled water management practices early season, ultimately resulting in intense, vibrant fruit on the vine. Small berry clusters and deep varietal character are a result of the vineyard's unique climate, where we thin the crop load to under 2 tons to the acre. Planted on its own roots in 1996, only 5.2 acres of the Cabernet Sauvignon block was hand harvested for this Private Reserve wine. The Vintage The growing season began with a very wet spring of unseasonable rain storms, which ultimately affected bloom with set less than normal and a lower yield of fruit development on the vines. Luckily, a temperate summer with a few days of high temperatures followed with a long, warm fall for an extended period of flavor development. The result was a small crop with intense color, flavor and balance. Winemaking Notes One hundred percent Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were crushed for minimal maceration and inoculated with Pris de Mousse yeast to maintain many of the fruit components. Fermented warm up to 85 degrees, the juice was pumped over 2 times daily to increase the color and tannin extract in the wine. At dryness, the wine was pressed off and allowed to settle until completion of malolactic fermentation. Aged in 100% new French Never oak barrels from cooper Nadalie. Racked annually, and aged for 23 months. Tasting Notes Black currant, jammy blackberry and cassis aromas complement smoky coffee flavors and lingering sweet oak. Moderate tannins balance bold, ripe fruit. Complex and robust, this full-bodied wine shows deep texture through a smooth finish. Will age nicely for up to twenty years. Wine Statistics Varietal Composition- 100% Cabernet Sauvignon Appellation- Monterey County Harvest Date- September 13, 2003 Brix at Harvest- 25.2 Barrel Aged- 23 months Cooperage- French, Never Age of Oak- 100% new Total Acidity- 0.65g/100ml pH- 3.62 Alcohol- 14.5% Production- 165 6-packs
Braida - Brachetto d'Acqui
An elegant sparkling dessert wine with ripe, round aromas of grapes, black currants, cherries, and herbs. Bright acidity and bubbles balance the sweetness, and a hint of spice on the finish brings some depth. This Brachetto pairs well with raspberry tarts, chocolate-covered cherries, and blue cheese with roasted pears. Serve chilled. From F&W Mag - Sweet & Spicy Why do sweet wines go well with spicy food? "Sweetness in wine takes away some of the heat in a spicy dish," says Maniec. "It's similar to how chefs often put something sweet in a fiery dish to cool off the palate, like duck sauce with spicy Chinese food. It's almost like a cooling gel." Workout: Tempering Heat Order a bucket of your favorite spicy buffalo chicken wings and taste them with the three wines. "You can probably eat more wings with the sweet, lower-alcohol wine because your palate's refreshed with each sip," says Maniec, adding "and maybe because you've forgotten how hot the wings were." Many sweet whites are low in alcohol, which helps. "High-alcohol wine will make a spicy dish taste more fiery." What You Need Spicy buffalo chicken wings Sweet, low-alcohol sparkling wine Off-dry, low-alcohol Riesling Tannic, high-alcohol Shiraz Best Pairing: Low-Alcohol, Sweet Wine Wine Pick: 2011 Giacomo Bologna Braida Brachetto d'Acqui "The sweetness of the wine cuts the spice and matches the sweet flavors in the wings," says Maniec. OK Pairing: Low-Alcohol, Off-Dry Wine Wine Pick: 2011 Willi Schaefer Estate Riesling This pairing works, but the sweetness of the wings may make the wine seem a little sour. Bad Pairing: High-Alcohol, Tannic Wine Wine Pick: 2008 Henry's Drive Dead Letter Office Shiraz "The wine is great on its own, but all you'll taste with the wings is alcohol and intense heat," says Maniec.
Hook & Ladder - Pinot Noir Russian River Valley
Light reddish-purple color in the glass. Bright aromas of Bing cherries and oak spice. Flavors of cherries, sandalwood and clove. Very smooth on the palate and easy to drink. A lighter, straight forward, solid Pinot, that is lighter, redder fruited and juicier than the Reserve bottling. Good (+).
Rosemount - Cabernet Sauvignon Show Reserve
Dried herbs and sweet cedar/vanilla oak add complexity to its intense fragrance of red and black berries, plums and mulberries, while its palate is juicy and up-front, but lacks genuine length. Supported by sweet oak, it reveals a rather hollow middle, but a moderately firm, if herbal finish of smooth, slightly sappy tannins.
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NV Gruet - Blanc de Blancs Extra Dry
USA - New Mexico
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2013 Aveleda - Vinho Verde Aveleda
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2013 Momo - Sauvignon Blanc
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F&W pair - 9/14 - Shio Koji-Marinated Pork Shoulder Steaks