Thursday, May 21, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Italian Red - 2009 Tolaini Valdisanti Tenuta S. Giovanni Toscana IGT

Wine labels from Europe can be a bit intimidating. Take this wine for instance...the wine's full name (spread across various parts of the label) is Tolaini Valdisanti Tenuta S. Giovanni Toscana IGT.  What the hell does all that mean??? Just a few tricks will help you find very interesting and very unique wines. Tuscany is the land of Chianti wines made from Sangiovese. There are strict rules about the amount of Sangiovese that must be in Chianti, what other grapes can be used, and even rules about how the wine is made. Versions of these rules exist in wine regions throughout Europe including wonderful wine making countries like Spain, Italy, Germany, and Portugal.  In Italy, there is another classification of wine referred to as IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica or typical wines of the area).  These IGT wines have more flexibility than wines like Chianti, and most likely use Sangiovese, but can create blends like today' s wine - mostly Cabernet Sauvignon blended with Sangiovese and Cabernet Franc.  Wine's like these from Tuscany (Toscana in Italian) are sometimes referred to as "Super Tuscans."  Some Super Tuscans are quite expensive, but check your wine shop for Italian wines labeled as "IGT" - you can find some very interesting and value priced wines from a great wine region - but just made a bit differently from the more classic wines of the region.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Chilean Red - 2009 Viña Cono Sur Pinot Noir Ocio

I have stated before that while I strive not to be a big ole' wine snob, I do fail when it comes to Pinot Noir. Only certain regions, and certain wineries within those regions are able to coax something wonderful from this temperamental grape.  However, I'm not too big a Pinot Snob to admit when I'm wrong.  Recently I was very surprised by a wonderfully old world style Pinot from...are you ready???... CANADA!!!  I have six bottles being graciously stored for me in Chicago by a generous comrade in wine as we found that wine at a big Pinot fest in Chicago.  So... while thinking that lightning likely won't strike twice, here is a bottle that we were gifted at the Wine Spectator Grand Tour in Vegas - but didn't get a chance to taste while we were there.  This one is from Chile, mostly know for Cabernet... but you never know!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Central California Red - 2010 Zaca Mesa Syrah

We have not visited Central California for a wine vacation in some time... I need to fix that!  Not as good as a visit to the land of the movie Sideways, but a bottle of Zaca Mesa might hold us over until we make it back.  Memorial day maybe?  A long weekend of wine tasting sounds very doable!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Spanish Red - 2008 Bodegas Olarra Rioja Cerro Anon Reserva

This year we aren't able to make it to Spain, and from my wine shopping it's clear that I'm missing it already!  This winery is on the outskirts of Logroño in the Rioja region of Spain.  A candidate for a visit next year??? Let's find out!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc - 2014 Cognizant Sauvignon Blanc

As the temperatures rise, a big hearty red is sometimes too much...time to check out some crisp, dry, delicious (hopefully) whites...first up a little something from New Zealand. More specifically Marlborough, NZs premier wine region.  This wine has 25% of it's blend 
spend time in neutral/older French Oak barrels, which typically adds a nice level of complexity to the wine. 

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Australian Shiraz - 2012 Kilikanoon Killerman's Run Shiraz

I've often heard it's best to buy the cheapest house in a great neighborhood. How about buying the cheapest wine from the maker of some great higher end wines... let's see!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Spanish Red - 2008 Bodegas Muriel Rioja Vendimia Seleccionada Reserva

I have been very much enjoying the spoils of a recent trip to California where I visited a great wine shop in Hollywood - K & L Wines.  They have a wonderful selection of Spanish reds - so it will be a spring full of vinos de España!!!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Spanish Red Blend - 2008 Altavins Viticoltors Terra Alta Domus Pensi

Spanish wine...check.  Garnacha (Spanish for Grenache)...check. A grape in the blend I'm not familiar with (Samsó, which I later discovered is Carignan)...check.  A name (the Domus Pensi part) that reminds me that Games of Thrones new season is next month...check. More than enough reasons to give this wine a try!
 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Spanish Red - 2013 Algueira Ribeira Sacra Mencia

My experience to date with Spanish wines made with the Mencia grape has been restricted to Bierzo. I quickly became, and remain a very big fan of Mencia wines. When I came across this wine, the first I've found from Bierzo's neighbor Ribeira Sacra - I knew I had to give it a try.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Weekly Wine Review - Australian Red Blend - 2011 Sons of Eden Kennedy

I thoroughly  enjoyed the Sons of Eden Romulus, so decided to give their less expensive GSM blend wine a try. Screw top, so we didn't even need a corkscrew!

 

Thursday, March 5, 2015