Archive for October, 2012

More New Wines from Tablas Creek Vineyard

Hey, we got some new wines to try from Tablas Creek Vineyard, and guess what? They’re really good!!! (Like we haven’t been saying that for how many years now…?) Here are our impressions, starting with one that we’ve never had previously. (Click images to enlarge.)

2011 Tablas Creek Vineyard Vermentino Paso Robles, 100% Vermentino, 13.1% alc., SRP $27.00: Clean, pale color, with a bright citrus lemon-lime nose that carries over onto the palate with some nice mineral in the background. Medium-plus body, with excellent acids and good length, this is an excellent choice for a variety of seafood selections, or as an aperitif. Like just about any Tablas Creek wine, this will likely get better with a few years in the cellar, but it’s so darned good already. 825 cases produced. Find this wine

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Alan Kerr’s Vintage’s October 27th Release – Tasting Notes

2009, another vintage of the century in Bordeaux, is the October 27th’s feature release. For the most part, what I tasted I liked and I believe the hype is justified. Please read on.

966473 CHÂTEAU DE CRUZEAU 2009 Pessac-Léognan $27.95
Very tight wine, only showing teasing whiffs of dried fruit, plum and balsa. A smoky and spicy palate shows good concentration of fruit, massive tannins and vibrant acidity. Great length, red currant and black fruit on the finish, but do keep in mind the tannins suggest time. Find this wine

303859 CHÂTEAU LALANDE MAUSSE 2009 Fronsac $16.95
Aromas of slate, wet earth and dried leaves with dark fruit, blackcurrant and shitake mushr9om. Light on the palate, but it delivers plum and currant flavours, some tannins, good acidity and certainly well worth the seventeen dollar asking price. Find this wine

303875 CHÂTEAU CHEVAL BRUN 2009 St-Émilion Grand Cru $24.95
Brimming with aromas of blackcurrant, dark fruit, black licorice, sea air/iodine and earthy mineral. Very good concentration, pumping with flavours of black raspberry and blackcurrant on the palate, a creamy texture, fine tannins and has the potential to be nice and stinky in its older years. Find this wine

196469 CHÂTEAU DE FONBEL 2009 St-Émilion Grand Cru $37.85
Floral aromas combine with lavender, Bassets licorice all sorts, charcoal and dried blueberry. Palate is tight, but the layers of dark fruit do their best to show, quite spicy and decent length. Find this wine

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Three from Stepping Stone by Cornerstone

My first impulse in filing this report was to preface my notes by saying that the wines from Cornerstone Cellars just keep getting better and better. Then, I looked at our report from last January and noticed that I said the same thing then. At least my impressions are consistent. The truth of the matter is that pretty much all of Cornerstone’s wines are eminently drinkable and downright delicious, from the top shelf Napa and Willamette bottlings right on through the more moderately priced Stepping Stone by Cornerstone offerings. We had the opportunity to taste three new releases of the latter recently, and we were quite impressed with them.
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Alan Kerr’s Vintage’s October 13th Release – Tasting Notes

It has been a while since I was able to shoot back to London and scribe a few thoughts on Vintages next release, but I did it. A few nice wines out there and I hope you find the notes to be useful.  Wines of Australia are the feature of the Oct 13th release.

149914 PAXTON JONES BLOCK SHIRAZ 2009 Single Vineyard, McLaren Vale, South Australia $32.95

The wine spent twenty months in an equal mix of French and American oak with half of that being new. It is big and fleshy, showing notes of cake spice, lavender and floral aromas. A spicy and sweet texture on the palate exhibiting lots of pure sweet dark fruit, low level of acidity, some chocolate tannins and a cloying finish. Find this wine

284141 SPINIFEX BÊTE NOIR SHIRAZ 2010 Barossa, South Australia $49.95

Dark and alluring, very concentrated, brimming with aromas of mocha, lavender, Moroccan spice, plum and blackberry. It is a mouthful, laden with fruit and mineral, a peppery note and perfect balance. The finish is long, dry and bloody tasty. Find this wine

285205 SPINIFEX PAPILLON GRENACHE/CINSAULT/ CARIGNAN/SHIRAZ 2010 Barossa Valley, South Australia $29.95

Lovely aromas of red licorice, black toffee, tar and freshly baked strawberry muffins. There is plenty of fruit on the palate, the right amount of acidity, a chalky texture and good length. Find this wine

283077 FRASER GALLOP CABERNET/MERLOT 2010 Margaret River, Western Australia $29.95

An Ozzie Meritage mix of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 2% Malbec, 2% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot. The plum and currant aromas are supported by layers of leather, wet animal fur, mocha, lead pencil and a spoonful of medicinal notes. It has a focused palate, great structure, along with plenty of tight tannins that suggest, given time, this will reward those with the patience to let it slumber. Find this wine

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3rd Annual Detroit Holiday Food Bazaar

Save the date for the 3rd Annual Detroit Holiday Food Bazaar.  The Gang of Pour will be there again this year selling its Orleans method fermented wine vinegars.

This year’s Bazaar will be held in a very cool space, the Jam Handy in Detroit.  There will be many great indie food vendors and probably a few others selling food related items, such as, vintage dishes, handmade aprons, cookbooks, etc.  So save the date and come visit to get your holiday shopping completed, be entertained and definitely sated with the many samples that will be offered.

Cowan Cellars visits Ordway’s Valley Foothills View Vineyard

Jim Cowan introduces you Ordway’s Valley Foothills View Vineyard and vineyard manager Casey Hartlip.

Three from PortoVino and more…

I’ll be the first to admit that I have not been posting here at blogs.gangofpour as much as I have in the past or should be at present, but I’d like to think I have a good excuse for not doing so. I have been devoting a LOT of time to singing, playing guitar and writing songs, and am in the process of recording a CD of new and old originals. More on all of this in a future blog entry, but I should add that just because I’ve been so single-mindedly focused on music, that doesn’t mean that we haven’t been tasting some good vino lately.

Some weeks back, our buddy Brendan DeCoursy, from Signature Selections Wine Company in Auburn Hills, MI, dropped off some things from an importer that’s new to us, PortoVino, out of Buffalo, NY., which describes their wares as “groovy Italian wines.” All of their small production, artisan producers are sustainable, and over half are certified organic or biodynamic. The focus is on food friendly, affordable wines, and based on the three we tried, they succeed admirably in that regard. Read the rest of this entry »

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