Back on the road again but not quite as fancy as my trip to D.C. This time I'm in Northern Virginia for two weeks but instead of the Grand Hyatt I'm at the not-so-grand Comfort Inn. Not terrible just not the Grand Hyatt. I was able to venture out and visit the local wine purveyors and came across a nice bottle of a red blend table wine. I visited a little shop in historic Fredericksburg, Virginia, the Virginia Wine Experience. Lots of wine to choose from with the Domestics on the main floor and all of the imports on the top floor. After much browsing I settled on the 2005 Stephen Vincent Crimson which the check out lady said was a good one. Dark ruby red in the glass, I mean plastic hotel cup, with lots of blackberry on the nose. On the palate I picked up lots of plum and dark cherry with a nice balance of tanin. A nice smooth finish added up to an excellent bottle of wine. Not quite 5 Corkscrew level but easily a 4 Corkscrew rating especially based on the $13.00/bottle price I paid. If in the Fredericksburg, Virginia area definitely make a point to check out the Virginia Wine Experience and give the Stephen Vincent Crimson a try if you come across it. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine.
Sunday, November 4, 2007
Hi there fellow wine lovers. Not a lot of time these days to write about wine so I'm saving posts for unique wines that I'm able to find and I'll be posting about travel and wine a little more as well. Also, be on the look out for my series of reviews of Riesling from the Finger Lakes Region of New York. I've been trying several bottles from that region and will be posting reviews of those in the coming days. I haven't covered Riesling in the past as I was never that crazy about it but I've come to appreciate it and, in fact, really liked the ones from the Finger Lakes. But you'll see those reviews soon enough.
Today's reviewed wine is The Big Red Monster bottled by Bennett Family Vineyards in Rutherford, California. A full-bodied, red blend with a great label was what greeted me when I had a chance to try this one. My fondness for old movie posters had me very interested in opening this and soon after I received it I was pouring my first glass. Lots of cherry on the nose with blackberry and currant picked up on the tongue. Just the right amount of spice, maybe a little nutmeg, with a long, ultra-smooth finish made this a great little bottle of wine. At a suggested retail price of $9.99 a bottle this one is a steal! I gave this one 4 Corkscrews and would have given it 4 1/2 Corkscrews if I had a 1/2 Corkscrew icon to use. Highly recommended by this wine lover! Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink The Big Red Monster!
Saturday, August 18, Little Rock, AR
Today's reviewed wine is from a vineyard that I'm anxious to visit in the near future. If you've read my reviews for any length of time you'll know that I gave Domaine Alfred's Pinot Gris 5 Corkscrews and liked it so much that I ordered a case at the beginning of the summer. Needless to say, it didn't last all summer but we enjoyed it while it was here. I picked up the 04 DA Red from their vineyard on my last trip to the store. I paid around $11.99/bottle and was anxious to see how it stacked up to the Pinot Gris as I've noticed that just because a vineyard does a good job with whites doesn't mean they'll be equally good with reds. Let me tell you, Domaine Alfred does well with both. After pouring this I picked up aromas of all kinds of berries. Strawberry, cherry, plum and just a little blackberry. On the tongue lots of fruit of the aforementioned berry and a nice side of oak. Excellent finish made this a very enjoyable bottle. Came close to awarding the 5 Corkscrew rating on this as well but couldn't say that it was one of my all-time favorites. It is good though. Very, very good. Give it a try as soon as you get a chance! Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink DA Red Wine!
Big times in Little Rock! After retrieving our nephew to babysit, #1 and I headed downtown to a great restaurant, Lulav, that occupies a great space and has some of the best food in town. This is the second time we've eaten there in a month and were just blown away with the quality of the appetizers and entrees. I'm afraid, however, that they may not be long for this market as the restaurant was less than a quarter full both times we dined and we went during prime time. The majority of downtown Little Rock is pretty dead after 5:00 p.m. and I'm afraid they may fall victim to that. I hope not as the chef there has got it going on! We dined on a first course of a variety of salads and then followed up with five different appetizers that were all out of this world and very unique in their preparation. We had the 2005 Beauzeaux Red with the appetizers and were pleased with it. On the nose lots of dark, cherry fruit. On the palate more of the cherry with a little bit of spice and an excellent finish. As we were dining with #1's aunt and uncle, they treated us so I'm not sure what this wine sells for at retail or in a restaurant setting. I gave it 3 Corkscrews due to good flavor and taste. After finishing our wine we headed to a showing of The Full Monty at The Arkansas Repertory Theatre. A good performance but as with all musicals about three quarters of the way through I found myself saying, "Another song"! The Rep has some good shows and plays and it's a good addition to the Little Rock cultural scene. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!
Crazy day today as I'm headed off to San Francisco tomorrow and the day before an extended trip always makes for a hectic situation. After packing and trying to determine what the weather was going to be like in San Francisco, I opened a bottle of 2002 Novella Synergy. I didn't know anything about this wine other than it was a blend of various grapes including Sangiovese, Zinfandel and Petite Sirah. I thought I would give this a try although my luck with blends has been pretty bad as of late. Unfortunately this one has kept my streak alive! I uncorked this and poured a decent sized glass which exhibited dark plum color. On the nose I was able to pick up a little raspberry and cherry. In the mouth the overwhelming thought that came to mind was sweetness. A lot of sugar in this one which overpowered any fruit that might have been there. Too much tannin made for a so-so glass of wine. I gave this one 2 Corkscrews due to the fact that I really didn't like this blend at all and I paid $9.99 for the bottle so it was not a great value by any means. It could be that blends are just not to my liking and I can't recommend this one as I wouldn't buy it again myself. Sit Long, Talk Much, Laugh Often, Drink Wine!