I do like Grenache as a grape variety but on it’s own the wines are often too soft for me , and too fruit forward. This Grenache/Carignan/Syrah blend is well judged. A great food wine that went very well with the game casserole for dinner.
This was nice, but had a lot of sediment. Good bright fruit with a nice finish. Had it with take out pizza…because Friday night.
2013 Fratelli Alessandria Speziale Verduno Pelaverga “Speziale” (Piedmonte, Italy) – produced from a local, indigenous grape variety I had previously never tasted (Pelaverga Piccolo), this is a medium-bodied red, earthy and spicy on the nose, with black pepper and cherry notes; bright and lively on the palate, with good depth of flavor and a lingering finish, this was a great match with a quick parts dish of rigatoni with onions, garlic, brussels sprouts, pecorino, and red chili flake.
Have a friend who as a hobby makes a lot of wine, this is one of his bottles.
With an interesting variation on Coq au Vin . . . Coq au Riesling
2013 Eva Fricke Riesling, Trocken (Rheingau, Germany) – pure, focused, dry without being austere and overly acidic, this was a beautifully aromatic and flavorful wine that picked up the nuanced flavors of the chicken deliciously.
With a soup of Mushrooms and Moroccan spices, stuffed quail, and roasted vegetables . . .
1995 Savigny-les-Beaune 1er Cru, “Les Narbentons,” Maurice Ecard et Fils (Burgundy, France) – at 20 years of age, this wine was simply gorgeous. Violet red in color with some brick to show its age, the bouquet was filled with cherries, red raspberries, violets, sous bois, earth, and light oak; on the palate, the wine was medium-bodied, silky and elegant, yet with great layering and depth of flavor, filled with fruit and light earth, which carried through in the long, persistent finish. A true delight!
They used riesling as the braising liquid in coq au vin? How was it?
It was actually rather good, and worth making . . . though I will say that I prefer it the traditional way.
2010 Bodegas Olarra “Cerro Añon,” Crianza (Rioja, Spain)
Served with roasted poussin, roast vegetables, and salad, this medium-bodied red had loads of fruit, moderate oak, light earth, and enough “oomph” to easily stand up to the espellete pepper and spices of the young, moist, perfectly roasted chicken . . . YUM!
2008 Vinos de Benjamin Romeo (aka Bodegas Contador) “Predicador” Vino Tinto, Rioja, Spain.
Beautiful, modern style Rioja that was a wonderful accompaniment to movie watching with a cheese course, bread, fruit, crackers, etc. . . . .
1998 Ahlgren Vineyards Syrah, Meeker Vineyard, Paso Robles AVA, California.
At 17+ years of age, this Syrah truly shines! Garnet red, with some bricking at the edges, the bouquet is filled with blueberries, cherries, white pepper, moderate oak, some spice, and sweet cream; medium-bodied, supple and smooth, with finely grained tannins, the wine is generously flavored with good fruit and spice, light earth, and a very long, linger finish. A great match with Persian-spiced lamb shanks, butternut squash, and other roasted vegetables.
Opened a bottle of 2008 Red Rooster from Truit Hurst. Picked up a case after our first visit to the winery in Dry Creek a few years ago. At $13 a bottle it was a good deal
Pink wine…very unusual at our house. But, DH was out, this was in the frig, and it promised to be dry. It was.
Toad Hollow has long been known for their excellent dry rosé . . .
On Sunday, 13 March, my mother-in-law’s book club met at our house to discuss the book, Tangled Vines, about “Greed, Murder, Obsession, and an Arsonist in the Vineyards of California”, written by Frances Dinkelspiel. Joining the 10-12 women that made up the book club was the author (who lives in Berkeley), and I was allowed to
crash sit in . . .
The book uses the 2005 arson at the Wines Central warehouse on Mare Island – the fired destroyed wine owned by over 90 wineries, as well as dozens of private collectors, worth well over $100 million; the man convicted of the crime received 27 years in Federal prison – to look across the entire history of California winemaking, which is indeed a history of greed, murder, obsession and arson . . . among other things.
To accompany the cheeses and charcuterie served, I picked wines from wineries which suffered losses in the fire . . .
Both wines were decanted. The Sainsbury was gorgeous after decanting, but will certainly improve with added bottle age. The Beaulieu, also decanted, was delicious but truly needs time in the bottle before drinking.
Tuesday, 15 March, served with a pork roast, asparagus, and an arugula salad . . .
2010 Rexford Pinot Noir, “Fambrini Vineyard,” Santa Cruz Mountains AVA, California – a lovely Pinot from a small Santa Cruz producer, with an aroma far more reminiscent of a Burgundy than your typical Central Coast Pinot, with cherries, red raspberries, forest, spice and a hint of oak; all this is echoed on the medium-bodied palate, which has good acidity and nice depth, while the flavors carry through to the very long and lingering finish. Really wonderful!
Wednesday, 16 March, served with lamb (shoulder) chops, green beans with sautéed shiitake mushrooms and leeks, and a salad . . .
1994 L’Ecole No. 41 Merlot, “Seven Hills Vineyard,” Walla Walla Valley AVA, Washington – garnet-hued, clean and brilliant after decanting off the sediment, with some bricking at the rim as the only hint of the wine’s real age; the bouquet is filled with ripe plum, red currants, and cherries, with a touch of leather, pencil wood, sweet cream, light earth and more; satiny smooth in texture, the finely grained tannins are well integrated, and is the wine’s acidity; the flavors are layered and complex, but so delicious! and the finish is wonderfully long and tasty.
I cannot believe this is a 21-year old wine . . .