Sunday, January 31, 2010

Bodegas Pedro Escudor Fuente Elvira 2008 Rueda Verdejo

Medium yellow color with green tints.

Aromatic honey, lime, and peach smells.

Fruity dry melon and citrus flavors, honeyed texture. Sprightly and petillant on the tongue.

Excellent bottle for $16.99, this confirms my fondness for this Verdejo, an increasingly fashionable white grape that nearly went extinct.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Haut Marin 2008 Petit Manseng Gros Manseng Vin de Pays Cotes de Gascogne

55% Petit Manseng, 45% Gros Manseng.

Applesauce, pineapple smells.

Fruity sweet flavor, applesauce without cinnamon.

Adequate bottle for $14.99 The sweetness was unexpected and a bit disappointing.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Kendermanns 2007 Mosel Riesling Spatlese

Bright golden / yellow color, petillance forms on the glass.

Fruity enticing peach smell, floral quality.

Candy-sweet peach flavor, drinking the sugary syrup from a can of peaches. Petillant on the tongue

Tolerable bottle for $17.99, soda-pop (almost) without the fizz.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Kendermanns 2007 Gewurztraminer QbA

Very pale color, petillance forms on the glass.

Floral/fruity smell, gardenia and peach.

Off-dry peach, apple, floral flavors.

Very good bottle for $14.99.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Au Bon Climat 2008 Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir

Medium clear garnet color.

Cherry soda smell, blackberry, black pepper.

Blackberry and oak flavors.

Acceptable bottle for $24.99, would be better for $5 less.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Felsina Berardenga 2007 Chianti Classico DOCG

Dark but transparent red color.

Cherry, berry, and leather smells, tar at the end. Am I imagining or is there just the least little whiff of wet dog brettanomyces?

Raspberry flavor, tart cherry, leather.

I think this very good $22.99 bottle would benefit from some vigorous aeration. Both the smell and the taste are a bit shy and they might be more likely to come out to play with some more oxygen.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Familia Mayol 2008 Lujan de Cuyo Mendoza Malbec Montuiri Vineyard

Near opaque, dark ruby glints in the depths.

Spicy smell, nutmeg and cinnamon, cigar-box cedar, plum and prune.

Dark fruits, plum and prune and currants. Full-bodied and fat.

Very good bottle for $17.99. Big food-friendly wine.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Rosenblum Cellars 2007 Sonoma County Zinfandel

Slightly translucent ruby color.

Blackberry, oak smells.

Black cherry flavor, blackberry, red raspberry, well-balanced with oak.

Simple but good bottle for $20.99, an exuberant celebration of juicy ripe fruit.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Fetzer Vineyards 2008 California Gewurztraminer Valley Oaks

Rich golden color, green highlights.

Fresh clean floral smell, the first deep breath as you enter the florist.

Ripe fruit, sweet apple and peach, pear and petillance on the tongue.

At $12.95 a bottle, cheap and cheerful fun.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Rosenblum Cellars 2007 California Petite Sirah Heritage Clones

Purple color, dark as the allegorical hour just before dawn.

Smell of black plums and oak, something like cinnamon.

Dark stone fruit and oak flavors, dark chocolate, black pepper. Thick, almost chunky mouth-feel. Warm alcohol finish.

Good bottle for $20.99.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Duckhorn Vineyards 2008 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc

Extremely pale straw color, just the slightest tinge of green. Some petillance on the opened bottle and on the glass.

Fresh melon smell, lemon and lime, toast.

Dry citrus fruit, melon,

Good bottle for $28.99, tart refreshing acid that cries out for full-flavored food.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Matteo Correggia 2007 Barbera d'Alba

Opaque dark purple color.

Smells of plum and black cherry.

Full flavor of plum, blackberry, and blueberry. No oak, all fruit.

Extremely good bottle for $19.99. Full bodied wine that's a fine match for any full-flavored food.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

d'Arenberg 2008 Adelaide Viognier 72% Marsanne 28% "The Hermit Crab"

The color of mass-market American lager, a little petillance is visible.

Peach/floral smell, pear, melon.

Fresh tart peach flavor, not-quite-ripe melon, alcohol warmth, oily mouth-feel, salt-water in the finish, some petillance tingling on the tongue.

Pleasant, if imperfectly so, bottle for $15.50. I remember when Viognier was rare, expensive, and almost always quite good. There's a certain perverse satisfaction in seeing it common, sometimes fairly cheap and occasionally rather ordinary, as long as the good can still be had.

Some bottles may not assert Adelaide,