Archive for February, 2011

Jumpin’ Jim Lester

Jumpin’ Jim Lester rode into town last week on a trade mission, lookin’ to sell some of his always-delicious Wyncroft wines and spend a little time with his buddies Kim and geo. He dropped in at Gang Central after a very successful wine dinner and tasted me through most of what he’d poured earlier that evening; unfortunately, his latest vintage of Shou had been consumed entirely, but we’ll get to try that one at a later date, no doubt. He started me out on a couple of Rieslings before moving on to the red stuff.

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Zinfandel Guy Parodies Old Spice Guy

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Château de La Font du Loup

The last time we saw Anne Charlotte Bachas, co-owner of Chateau Font du Loup, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, just about a year ago, she was in town to promote her wines with AHD Vintners, who import and distribute them locally. We had a delightful time with Anne Charlotte, and loved the wines, so when I heard that she was returning to Day-twah with husband Laurent, I made a point of keeping my schedule open to attend the tasting at Cork Wine Pub, in Pleasant Ridge. Like his wife, Laurent is very friendly and easygoing, and despite his protestations to the contrary, his English is more than adequate for conveying information about his wines and vineyards; frankly, I wish I spoke French half as well.

AHD poured their entire Rhone lineup on this occasion, but I didn’t taste everything. I started out with a charming rose, and then moved right on to the Font du Loups. (Price ranges listed reflect standard retail markup of both post off (sale) and front line wholesale costs.)  CLICK IMAGES TO ENLARGE

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Yoga For Wine Lovers

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Alan Kerr’s Vintage’s February 19th Release – Tasting Notes

Global Cabernet Sauvignon takes pride of place in this edition of Vintages manual. In addition, there are a few wines for Passover and a couple of decent wines in the regular section of the release. It’s time for a barbecue perhaps in this spring-like weather we are experiencing.

Click images to enlarge.

WINES OF THE CABERNET SAUVIGNON RELEASE

212357 NAPANOOK 2007 Napa Valley $53.95
True left bank Bordeaux blend, 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc and 7% Petit Verdot, loaded with mineral, iron, dried meat and rich dark fruit. Solid structure on the palate, but tannin is dominant and holds back the dense layer of fruit from presently showing its best. Find this wine

045476 SHAFER ONE POINT FIVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2007 Stags Leap District Napa Valley $79.95
Holy cow, pure blackcurrant, Dutch salty licorice, mocha, chalk and dusty cocoa are bold and enticing. A delight to drink, tannin is there, but the layers of dark and red fruits roll across the palate leaving a coat of tingly acidity. Superb concentration and balance with a creamy texture on the finish. Find this wine

671164 ST. FRANCIS CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2006 Sonoma County $28.95
Ripe with a raisin aroma, plenty of sweet blackcurrant, mocha and cigar box. Clumsy tannins and sweet fruit clash on the palate, oaky vanilla note on the finish. Find this wine

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A pairing experiment with carbonlia (chili) and almond soup

Recently, we received the following email:

I’m Amber Hoxha from The Thomas Collective, a wine and spirits public relations firm in NYC. I’m writing to inquire if you had any interest in being added to our database so that we can send you updated wine information. Just an email address would be fine.

Thanks!
-Amber

Now, we’re always happy to get any “updated wine information,” and when we replied as such to Amber, she suggested that we might like to sample a couple of wines from one of their clients, Pernod Ricard USA, paired with regional dishes from Spain and Argentina. We like samples at Adams-Heritier and Associates, so, of course, we said , “Sure!” Sure enough, not long afterward, we took possession of two bottles of QPR red wine that, coincidentally, sell quite well at the establishments where I am gainfully employed, but which we had yet to try. These were accompanied by recipes for deceptively simple, yet quite tasty food pairings for each.

We started with a late-model Malbec and an Argentine carbonlia (recipe listed below tasting notes), a chili-like dish, spiked with cinnamon and prepared artfully by Kim.

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Alan Kerr’s Vintage’s February 5th Release – Tasting Notes

According to the Vintages catalogue, 2007 was a banner year in Tuscany. Judging from what I tasted, for the most part at least, I have to agree. There is a secondary feature that showcases wines from Washington State and a couple of those are dandies too. And as the 14th of the month nears, what better way to please than cracking a bubbly or two! Please read on.  Click labels to enlarge.

211599 LORNANO CHIANTI CLASSICO 2007 $15.95
Amazing nose of pure red fruit, hay, bay leaf, mocha and dried mushroom. It has a fleshy palate, but the balance is in perfect tune showing nice blackcurrant, a pleasing sweetness and just a faint layer of dusty tannin. Great price for a great wine. Find this wine

191361 LA MADONNINA CHIANTI CLASSICO RISERVA 2007 $22.95
Tight at first, but with some enticing the nose shows some wet earth, star anise, Dutch licorice, currant and kirsch. The palate has great structure, laden with blackberry and cola flavours along with gentle tannins that suggest aging will be beneficial. Find this wine

207795 LE CINCIOLE CHIANTI CLASSICO 2007 $19.95
Wine of the Month: unfortunately sample was corked. Find this wine

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