Posts tagged ‘#LodiWine’

Cliffs Wine Picks – April 2019 Vol 1

 

2013 Anthill Farms Grenache Steel Plow Vineyard

2014 Macchia Barbera Delicious Lodi

2012 Jean Edwards Cellars Petite Sirah

2014 Bacio Divino Pazzo

2012 Elyse Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley

2014 Courtney Benham Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

 

 

 

2013 Anthill Farms Grenache Steel Plow Vineyard – $18

Just about every year Anthill Farms produces a “one-off” wine that usually doesn’t become part of their wines produced every year.  I say usually because several years ago their one-off wine was a Syrah from Windsor Oaks Vineyard that was so popular it was added to their annual offerings.  This is a one-off wine from a couple years ago from the volcanic soils of the Sonoma Valley.

 

The wine is a very light ruby red color, just a touch darker than some Rosé wines.  The inviting nose has cherries, baking spice, crushed stones, white pepper, wild flowers and a touch of dried herbs.  This has medium body with moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate spicy, tart cherries, minerals and white pepper quickly take hold, slowly allowing some dried herbs to slip through.  The finish has nice length with cherries, white pepper and minerals seeming to linger forever.  This is very young so patience will be rewarded.  This has outstanding balance and is very food friendly.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2013 Anthill Farms Grenache Steel Plow Vineyard

2013 Anthill Farms Grenache Steel Plow Vineyard

 

 

2014 Macchia Barbera Delicious Lodi – $19.54

Barbera is another grape that is used to produce some real gems in Lodi.  In Lodi, the grape gets a bit riper and more luxurious then their Italian counterparts.  These are nice, easy drinking, fruit driven wines that will surprise you when you try one.  In September 2016 I participated in a big Lodi Barbera tasting at Macchia Wines and across the board, these were outstanding wines.  Do these wines age?  After trying his 2014 and 2015 vintages, Tim Holdener, Macchia owner/winemaker, pulled a 2003 vintage from his personal stash for us to taste.  The wine held up marvelously and proved Lodi wines can age, even those produced from the Barbera grape which is usually consumed within a couple years of being produced.

 

The wine is a deep maroon color.  The exotic nose has black cherries, blackberries, white pepper, dusty minerals, espresso beans, scorched earth, dark chocolate and dried violets.  This has a full body with soft tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate cherries, blackberries, white pepper and minerals come through on the front end with espresso beans and dark chocolate coming in on the back end.  The finish has very nice length with scorched earth and a dried floral note providing good depth.  The wine finishes with lingering sweet fruit.  This won’t be confused with an Italian Barbera but who cares, it’s very tasty.  This has 14.6% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2014 Macchia Barbera Delicious Lodi

2014 Macchia Barbera Delicious Lodi

 

 

2012 Jean Edwards Cellars Petite Sirah – $30

This 100% Petite Sirah comes from multiple blocks in Vincent Arroyo vineyards in Calistoga that was aged in a combination of French and American Oak.

 

The wine is a deep, dark purple color.  The exuberant nose has blackberries, black peppercorns, eucalyptus, espresso beans, baking spices, dry earth, tobacco, dried wildflowers and a bit of dark chocolate.  This has medium to full body with solid tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate blackberries, black pepper and espresso beans grab your attention on the front end with dry earth, tobacco and baking spices coming in later.  The finish has nice length with a dried floral note and dark chocolate providing good depth.  This is still very young and needs a couple hours of air, preferably a couple more years in the cellar.  There still seems to be a lot hidden behind the wall of tannins and acidity, this has tremendous upside for those with patience.  This has 14.3% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts now with potential to 94-95)

2012 Jean Edwards Cellars Petite Sirah

2012 Jean Edwards Cellars Petite Sirah

 

 

2014 Bacio Divino Pazzo – $22

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.

 

Pazzo means “crazy” in Italian.

 

This is a blend of 46% Sangiovese, 28% Merlot, 10% Syrah, 10% Malbec and 4% Cabernet Sauvignon.  I know this only adds up to 98% but this is the breakdown by the winery.

 

The wine is a deep garnet color.  The enticing nose has black cherries, raspberries, licorice, roasted leafy herbs, dark roasted coffee beans, white pepper, baking spices and wildflowers.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate black cherries, roasted herbs, coffee beans and baking spices jump out on the front end with raspberries and white pepper coming in later.  The finish has nice length with subtle underbrush providing some depth.  This is an easy drinking wine that is full of fruit and savory notes to enjoy over the next few years.  This has 14.9% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (90 pts)

2014 Bacio Divino Pazzo

2014 Bacio Divino Pazzo

 

 

2012 Elyse Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley – $18

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  The wine’s release price was $40 so Last Bottle’s price was well over 50% off.

 

This wine includes 12% Petite Sirah and 6% Carignane.  The grapes come from Teldeschi and Ramazzotti Vineyards.  Following a 15 day native yeast fermentation the wine was aged 10 ½ months in American oak with 25% new.  The total production was 1,176 cases.

 

The wine is a deep ruby to maroon color.  The enticing nose has brambly berries, baking spices, dry earth, black peppercorns, licorice, dark chocolate, candied wildflowers and underbrush.  This has medium body with moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate brambly berries, baking spices and black peppercorns come through on the front end with underbrush, dry earth and chocolate coming in later.  A candied floral note and licorice come in on the nicely lingering finish.  This has very nice acidity and good closing tannins making this a great partner to something hot and juicy off the grill.  This has 14.6% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2012 Elyse Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley

2012 Elyse Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley

 

 

2014 Courtney Benham Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley – $21.24

Courtney Benham is a division of Martin Ray Winery.  Courtney Benham Wines are limited release for special offer to their wine club members but obviously some make it into the hands of the Total Wine stores since I can buy these reasonably priced wines at my local store.

 

The wine is a medium to deep ruby color.  The slightly shy nose has crushed berries, baking spices, tobacco, violets and a touch of dark chocolate.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and good acidity.  On the palate crushed berries and spices come through on the front end with tobacco and violets coming in on the back end.  The finish has decent length with some dark chocolate providing depth.  This gets a bit hollow on the back end and this doesn’t offer much complexity.  Perhaps some cellar time will allow the wine to fill out and aid the complexity.  As is this is a nice week night Cabernet from Napa at an attractive price.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (87 pts)

2014 Courtney Benham Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

2014 Courtney Benham Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

 

The Bacio Divino Pazzo was paired with Veal Parmigiana, a garlic roll and a tossed salad.

 

 

I paired the Jean Edwards Cellars Petite Sirah with a simple bacon cheeseburger (with pepper jack cheese) and fries.

 

 

The Macchia Barbera Delicious paired very nicely with a meaty baked ziti that was loaded with gooey mozzarella cheese.

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2019 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – March 2019 Vol 1

 

2015 Cornerstone Cellars Pinot Noir

2013 Terra d’Oro Winery Barbera

2016 Turley Sauvignon Blanc Turley Estate

2012 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Barbera

Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Brut Réserve

2007 Agharta Wines Black Label

 

 

 

2015 Cornerstone Cellars Pinot Noir – $19

This was a “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  The winery’s price for this wine is $50, do the math.  After using some of my credits, I actually bought this wine for a ridiculous $10.52 a bottle.  Check out Last Bottle, sign up and then get your friends to sign up and you’ll be able to score the same steals.

 

This 100% Pinot Noir is a blend of grapes from a wide array of vineyards and clones all over the Willamette Valley.

 

The wine is a medium ruby red color.  The elegant nose has black cherries, raspberries, baking spices, cocoa powder, dry earth, white pepper and wild flowers.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate bright fruit, baling spices and cocoa powder jump out on the front end with dry earth and white pepper coming in later.  The finish has good length with a nice floral note providing depth.  This carries no excess weight and shows great balance.  This would be a crowd pleaser, the upfront fruit will appeal to casual wine drinkers but there is enough savory notes on the back end and finish to appeal to most of the people reading this note.  This has 14.1% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (90 pts)

2015 Cornerstone Cellars Pinot Noir

2015 Cornerstone Cellars Pinot Noir

 

 

2013 Terra d’Oro Winery Barbera – $10.19

This Terra d’Oro Barbera was fermented in stainless steel before being aged for 15 months in small French and Hungarian oak barrels.

 

The wine is a deep ruby red color.  The inviting nose has blackberries, baking spices, cherries, licorice, dry earth, dark chocolate and blueberries.  This has medium body with soft to moderate smooth tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate berries, cherries and baking spices dominate the front end with earthy elements and dark chocolate coming in on the back end.  The finish has nice length with blueberries providing some depth.  This is a bit lacking in complexity but the nice fruit and spice make it easy to drink and enjoy.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (89 pts)

2013 Terra d'Oro Winery Barbera

2013 Terra d’Oro Winery Barbera

 

 

2016 Turley Sauvignon Blanc Turley Estate – $28

This will be my first white wine from Turley.  I normally have a hard time limiting myself to a case of their zinfandel and petite sirah wines, but in this release, I stashed a couple bottles of their sauvignon blanc in my case.

 

This is a light golden straw color.  The mesmerizing nose has white peach, apples, lemongrass, crushed stone minerals and beeswax.  This has medium body with a creamy texture and very nice acidity.  On the palate nice fruit and minerals come through on the front end with lemongrass and beeswax coming in later.  The finish has good length with mouthwatering lime zest forcing you to grab another sip.  This has great balance and it is extremely easy to sip and enjoy.  This has 13.1% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2016 Turley Sauvignon Blanc Turley Estate

2016 Turley Sauvignon Blanc Turley Estate

 

 

2012 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Barbera – $10

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.

 

The man behind Uvaggio is Jim Moore.  If you remember the old La Famiglia di Robert Mondavi label from many years ago, Jim was the wine maker and driving force behind those wonderful wines.

 

This 100% Lodi AVA wine is a blend of 98% Barbera from the Leventini Vineyard and 2% Primitivo from the Bella Vigna Vineyard.

 

The wine is a deep garnet color.  The very inviting nose has cherries, plums, baking spices, white pepper, dry loam, vanilla bean, raspberries and violets.  This has medium body with soft tannins and good acidity.  On the palate the rich fruit and spice jump out on the front end with nice earthiness and white pepper coming in later.  The finish has nice length with vanilla bean, raspberries and a floral note providing good depth.  This wouldn’t be mistaken for an Italian Barbera but who cares.  This has nice upfront fruit with enough savory notes to keep it very interesting.  Barbera is another grape that is producing very tasty wines in Lodi.  I liked this more and more as the evening turned into night.  Great job.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (92 pts)

2012 Uvaggio (L'Uvaggio di Giacomo) Barbera

2012 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Barbera

 

 

Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Brut Réserve – $29.29

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  This was picked up at a Last Bottle Marathon, always a great source for special wines at every day prices.  See below for information on the site and a discount on your first purchase.

 

I can’t find, with 100% confidence, the exact blend of grapes for this wine but it appears to be 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay.  I should note, I have even seen this noted as 60% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir.  This means, your guess is as good as mine.

 

This is a light golden straw color with a steady stream of pinpoint sized, persistent bubbles.  The festive nose has tart apples, lemon zest, stony minerals, toasted yeasty bread, orange blossoms, white peach and a hint of berries.  This has light to medium body with great effervescence, crisp acidity and just a touch of sweetness.  On the palate apples, minerals, orange blossoms and lemon zest quickly take control with a hint of white peach and berries slipping in on the back end.  The finish has good length and is crisp and clean thanks to lemony acidity.  This is a joy to sip on its’ own or with a light meal.  This has 12.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a standard Champagne cork.  (92 pts)

Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Brut Réserve

Paul Bara Champagne Grand Cru Brut Réserve

 

 

2007 Agharta Wines Black Label – $41.39

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  I know the wine’s release price was $75 because I bought a couple bottles from the winery upon release.

 

First some info for the wine geeks from the winery:

 

This wine spent 57 months in barrel, 55% was new French oak.  The final selection process yielded only a 20 barrel-lot, which is composed of 100% Alder Springs fruit.  Eleven of the selected barrels were new in 2007, from coopers Darnajou, Ermitage, François Frère & Meyrieux, the remaining barrels were of varying ages, but all were essentially neutral when the wine went into them.  Four of the barrels were co-fermented with Viognier and they were clearly loaded with a succulent lift in their aromas.  Only two of the barrels came from fruit that was de-stemmed.  The freshest and most concentrated barrels included 100% whole-clusters, with some of the more open knit and exotic barrels having received some partial de-stemming, giving them some more evolved and exotic characteristics, that worked well in the final blend.

 

This is 98% Syrah and 2% Viognier.  85% were whole-cluster.

 

The wine is a deep, inky purple color.  The sexy nose has blackberries, blueberries, charcoal, dark bittersweet chocolate, road tar, plums, violets, licorice and black pepper.  This has a full body with moderate to solid tannins and good acidity.  A barrage of berries, charcoal, dark chocolate and road tar quickly engulf your palate on the front end with plums, charcoal and black pepper coming in later.  The long finish adds licorice and a nice floral note.  This is a loaded wine but with the structure and savory notes that keep it out of the “fruit bomb” category.  This isn’t for you if you are looking for a lighter style of nuanced wine.  This will last in the cellar for several more years but I wouldn’t plan on cellaring it for an extended length of time, this needs opened before the acidity and tannin levels decrease to the point they can’t support the body and flavor, figure 5 to 7 more years.  This has 15.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (94 pts)

2007 Agharta Wines Black Label

2007 Agharta Wines Black Label

 

 

 

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

I paired the 2007 Agharta Wines Black Label with slow simmered short ribs and gravy over mashed potatoes with a yeast roll and green beans we froze from last summer’s garden.

 

The 2015 Cornerstone Cellars Pinot Noir was paired with a new recipe, Creamy Ranch Chicken, and fresh picked broccoli from our “winter” garden.

 

How can you go wrong having a pepperoni and Italian sausage pizza with a bottle of 2012 Uvaggio (L’Uvaggio di Giacomo) Barbera

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2019 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

Cliffs Wine Picks – January 2018 Vol 3

 

2015 Flora Springs Dashaway

2012 Cairdean Vineyards Merlot

2008 Sleeper Brut Reserve Extended Tirage

2013 Speratus Cabernet Sauvignon

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Heritage Compagni Portis

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

 

 

 

2015 Flora Springs Chardonnay Dashaway – SRP $45

This wine was a winery supplied sample.

 

This is 100% Napa Valley Chardonnay.  This was fermented in French oak barrels with twice-weekly lees stirring.  30% of the wine went through malolactic fermentation to give the wine a creamy texture.  The wine was aged for 7 months in French oak and concrete tanks before bottling.  There were 200 cases produced.  This wine was bottled with a holiday season label.  If you see it on close-out on a store’s shelf, grab it.  Someone told me they spotted it on a World Market shelf.

 

This is a golden yellow color.  The expressive nose has ripe apples, pears, toasted nuts, baking spices, pineapple, orange blossoms and vanilla.  This has medium to full body with a creamy texture and nice acidity.  On the palate apples, pears and roasted nuts quickly grab your attention on the front end with baking spices and pineapple coming in later.  The finish has good length with orange blossoms and vanilla providing nice depth.  The restrained oak use and limited malolactic allows the fruit to shine but still provide nice spice and a creamy texture.  This would be perfect with a wide array of meals or on its own.  This has 14.3% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2015 Flora Springs Chardonnay Dashaway

2015 Flora Springs Chardonnay Dashaway

 

 

 

2012 Cairdean Vineyards Merlot – $16

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  This wine had a suggested price of $50 so the Last Bottle price was over 67% off.

 

This winery changed their name from Cairdean to Brasswood Napa Valley.  That was the reason Last Bottle Wines was able to sell this wine at such an incredible price.

 

The wine is a deep maroon color.  The inviting nose has black cherries, white pepper, vanilla, dusty minerals, cedar, eucalyptus, baking spices, dark chocolate and a touch of blueberry.  This has medium body with moderate to solid tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate black cherries, baking spices, minerals and white pepper take control on the front end with eucalyptus, dark chocolate and vanilla coming in later.  The finish has good length with spicy cedar and a hint of blueberry providing good depth.  This is tasting very nice now and will hold and possibly improve over the next several years.  This has 14.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2012 Cairdean Vineyards Merlot

2012 Cairdean Vineyards Merlot

 

 

 

2008 Sleeper Brut Reserve Extended Tirage – $22

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  In this case, the wine had an original release price of about $75 from the winery.

 

This bubbly was produced by Robert Hunter Winery.  The family closed the winery after Robert’s death.  Last Bottle Wines bought a lot of their inventory.  Since the wine was ready for market but not yet labeled, it acquired the “Sleeper” label which is Last Bottle’s “in house” label.  This is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay from the Sonoma Valley.

 

This is a straw yellow color with several streams of pinpoint sized bubbles.  The bright and appealing nose has tart green apples, minerals, yeasty bread, roasted nuts and lemon zest.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity and great inner mouth effervescence.  On the palate green apples and minerals quickly grab your attention with yeasty bread and roasted nuts coming in later.  The finish has nice length with a healthy amount of mouthwatering lemon zest making you grab another sip.  This has 12.56% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a standard Champagne cork.  (92 pts)

2008 Sleeper Brut Reserve Extended Tirage work

2008 Sleeper Brut Reserve Extended Tirage work

 

 

 

2013 Speratus Cabernet Sauvignon – $17.88

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.

 

Following taken from the Last Bottle Wines offer since there is limited information available:

Do you love the wines of Jean Hoefliger (lord knows how many 95-100 pointers at Alpha Omega and others that range from $50-$200)? Do you love the slammin’ good 2013 vintage? Do you love doing good? Well, we are hitting that trifecta today, oh yes!! What a unique find!!

In brief: Speratus is a wine that is made 100% for charity. The proceeds of ALL sales are donated to needy families to attend school. In fact, since the wine is exclusively sold to the mailing list, we didn’t even know it EXISTED! But we’re Napa Valley locals, and it was only a matter of time…in addition, every single part of this wine is donated by wineries and winemakers. This list includes a staggering array of incredible producers — including (blended by Jean Hoefliger): Beckstoffer Vineyards, Sangiacomo, Trefethen, Flora Springs, Antinori.. Not to mention all the barrels, corks, capsules, grapes, warehousing, legal stuff, EVERYTHING is donated. Jean blends something magical, ages in French oak barrels and the wine is released and sold via mailing list. It’s NEVER in stores, never in restaurants, in fact, Last Bottle is probably the only place you will ever see this rarity…and our PRICE?! C’mon!!

What’s it like? We think it’s a bit like Bordeaux, with its dusty black currant fruit, but without any rusticity. Rather, we are talking sweet, ripe fruit, medium weight, boysenberry jam, licorice and some dark chocolate, too. At our stupendous price, we instantly thought that this was 6 or 12-pack worthy for sure. We had to offer it on a Saturday, though, because there ain’t much!! Totally cool stuff!!

 

The wine is a deep ruby to purple color.  The expressive nose has cassis, licorice, baking spices, violets, dark roast coffee beans, dusty minerals, roasted herbs, dark chocolate, black cherries and vanilla beans.  This has medium body with moderate tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate this is a bit more lean than the usual California Cabernet with cassis, baking spices and minerals on the front end and dark roast coffee, dark chocolate and roasted herbs coming in later.  The finish has nice length with vanilla beans and more roasted herbs.  At this point there is nothing about this wine that would make it leave a lasting impression.  It is very drinkable but not memorable.  The prominent roasted herbs on the back end and finish are an issue for me.  Perhaps a bit more cellar time will bring some improvement.  That said, for under $20 this is fine for a week night Alexander Valley Cabernet.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (87 pts)

2013 Speratus Cabernet Sauvignon

2013 Speratus Cabernet Sauvignon

 

 

 

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Heritage Compagni Portis – $25

This wine is a field blend consisting of about a dozen different varietals including Gewurtzraminer, Trousseau Gris, Riesling, Roter Veltliner, Chardonnay and a few others from a vineyard planted in 1954.  This is how wines used to be made before people wanted to see a specific grape on the label.

 

The wine is a bright yellow color.  The exotic nose has apples, lychee, white peach, pear, stony minerals, petrol, honeysuckle, orange blossoms and melon.  This has medium body with nice acidity.  This is rich and luxurious on the palate with nice white orchard fruit, orange blossoms, minerals and lychee nuts on the front end with honeysuckle and a touch of lime zest coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with a touch of melon and white peach providing great depth.  This was much smoother and richer as it warmed up a bit, don’t serve this one too cold, just a brief chill in the refrigerator will be perfect.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Heritage Compagni Portis

2012 Bedrock Wine Co. Heritage Compagni Portis

 

 

 

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine – $15.29

Macchia makes the big, full bore Zinfandels that originally put Lodi on wine lover’s radar.  Like most other wineries in the region Zinfandel is still the mainstay of their offerings but other grape varieties are also produced masterfully.

 

The wine is a deep, dark ruby to maroon color.  The big and bold nose has blackberries, toasty oak, black cherries, vanilla bean, black peppercorns, charcoal, dark chocolate and dried wildflowers.  This has a full body with soft to moderate ripe tannins and decent acidity.  This is rich and velvety on the palate with big upfront fruit and barrel nuances coming in later.  This doesn’t offer a lot of complexity but it makes up for that deficiency with a load of fruit on the palate.  This isn’t a wine to sit back and ponder over, pop the cork and just enjoy.  This has 15.4% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

 

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

I paired the Flora Springs Chardonnay with Seafood Lasagna and a salad with lettuce fresh from the garden,

 

The Macchia Zinfandel was perfect with a Grilled Wisconsin Jalapeno-Cheddar Brat and fries.

 

The Speratus Cabernet paired nicely with Pot Roast with veggies and rice.

 

 

 

Recipe Requests

 

I received a couple requests for this recipe from a week or two ago:

 

Pork Tenderloin with Mustard Sauce

 

2 cups uncooked egg noodles

1 TB Olive Oil

1 (one pound) Pork Tenderloin, trimmed and sliced into 1/2″ thick slices

1/2 t black pepper

1/4 t salt

1 cup dry white wine (I like Sauvignon Blanc)

3 TB Whole Grain Dijon mustard

2 TB water

2 t cornstarch

 

Cook noodles per directions (omit any fat or salt), drain

 

While noodles cook, heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high.

Sprinkle pork slices with the salt and pepper.

Brown pork in pan for 2 minutes (at most), turning once.  Don’t over cook!

 

Combine the wine and mustard, pour into pan.  Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes

Remove pork from skillet and keep warm.

 

Combine water and cornstarch in a small bowl.

Stir cornstarch mixture into pan with the mustard sauce, bring to a boil and cook for one minute or until it gets thick.  This happens VERY quickly, don’t turn your head.

 

Put the completed noodles in the pan and toss to coat.  The sauce is very flavorful so a light coating is all that is needed, there won’t be excess “sauce”.

 

Serve the pork with the noodles and sauce.

 

I like this with a Pinot Noir or lighter style Syrah.

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2018 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – January 2018 Vol 1

 

2015 Bedrock Wine Co. Ode to Lulu Old Vine Rosé

2012 Gamble Family Vineyards Heritage Sites

2015 LangeTwins Sauvignon Blanc Lodi

2012 Sandler Wine Company Pinot Noir Boer Vineyard

2012 Imprimata Grenache

2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Albarino Abrente

 

 

 

2015 Bedrock Wine Co. Ode to Lulu Old Vine Rosé – $19

This vintage is a blend of over 60% Mataro (Mourvedre) from the Pagani Ranch and own-rooted fruit from Live Oak Vineyard in Contra Costa County.  The remainder of the grapes are Gibson Ranch Grenache and Cemetery Carignan.

 

The wine is an intense pink salmon color.  The fresh and spellbinding nose has cherries, strawberries, crushed stones, orange blossoms, watermelon, lime zest and a hint of dried herbs.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity and seems to have just a touch of lingering sweetness.  The front end is fruit driven until the minerals and orange blossoms kick in on the back end.  The juicy finish has nice length with a touch of lime zest providing nice closing acidity.  This was a tasty vintage for this wine.  This has 12.3% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (91 pts)

2015 Bedrock Wine Co. Ode to Lulu Old Vine Rosé

2015 Bedrock Wine Co. Ode to Lulu Old Vine Rosé

 

 

 

2012 Gamble Family Vineyards Heritage Sites – $20

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  This wine had a suggested price of $35 so the Last Bottle price was over 40% off.

 

This is a blend of 47% Zinfandel, 32% Syrah, 12% Charbono and 9% Petite Sirah from Napa Valley.  The vines are all at least 35 years with most being over 50 years old.  The dry farmed vineyard yields under 2 tons of fruit per acre.

 

Each variety was harvested and fermented separately after being given a cold soak, destemmed and lightly crushed.  After a gentle pressing the wines were transferred to 60 gallon oak barrels for a 20 month aging process in 32% new oak (Saury American, Nadalie Virginia, Marchive Pennsylvania, Kadar Hungarian and Remond French)

 

The wine is a deep, inky purple color.  The expressive nose has blackberries, black pepper, dusty minerals, licorice, wood smoke, road tar, dark chocolate and dried flowers.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and decent acidity.  On the palate blackberries, minerals and black pepper jump out quickly with licorice, dark chocolate and wood smoke coming in later.  The finish has nice length with a dried floral note providing some depth.  This isn’t a wine made to sit on for an extended time, it would be best to open this one in the next couple of years.  This has 14.3% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (88 pts)

2012 Gamble Family Vineyards Heritage Sites

2012 Gamble Family Vineyards Heritage Sites

 

 

 

2015 LangeTwins Sauvignon Blanc Lodi – $10

I’m a big fan of wines from Lodi.  If your past experiences of Lodi wines are limited to big red wines, especially Zinfandel, I highly recommend checking out their crisp white and rosé wines.  These wine will make you a fan.

 

This is 100% “Musqué Clone” Sauvignon Blanc from the winery’s Jahant Vineyard in Lodi.

 

The wine is a pale yellow color with a very slight green tint.  The crisp and fresh nose has tart apples, dusty minerals, lemongrass, lime zest, under ripe pineapple and a spritz of grapefruit.  This has medium body with crisp acidity and just a hint of residual sweetness.  On the palate tart apples, minerals and lemongrass quickly grab your attention with lime zest and a hint of pineapple coming in later.  The mouthwatering finish has good length with a touch of grapefruit joining the tart apples and minerals.  This would be perfect with a light meal on the deck or patio on a warm, sunny day.  The hint of sweetness would also make this a marvelous way to relax before dinner.  This has 12.8% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (89 pts)

2015 LangeTwins Sauvignon Blanc Lodi

2015 LangeTwins Sauvignon Blanc Lodi

 

 

 

2012 Sandler Wine Company Pinot Noir Boer Vineyard – $25

Sandler Wine Company is the personal label of ever-present consulting winemaker, Ed Kurtzman.  Sandler Wine Company is devoted to small bottlings of Pinot Noir, Syrah, Zinfandel and Grenache, from some of Ed’s favorite vineyard and grower sources.  Production of most wines very seldom exceeds 100 cases and in some cases don’t even reach 25 cases.  This is a highly recommended mailing list to check out if you want very reasonably priced, small production wines.

 

The wine is a deep garnet color.  The sensuous nose has black cherries, raspberries, baking spices, dry underbrush, white pepper, chalky minerals and dried wildflowers.  This has medium body with moderate to solid tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate black cherries, raspberries, baking spices and minerals come through quickly on the front end with dry underbrush coming in later.  The finish has very good length with white pepper and a dried floral note providing nice depth.  This has great closing acidity.  This tastes great now with some air but I think some additional cellar time will be rewarded.  This has 13.4% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (92 pts)

2012 Sandler Wine Company Pinot Noir Boer Vineyard

2012 Sandler Wine Company Pinot Noir Boer Vineyard

 

 

 

2012 Imprimata Grenache – $15.70

100% Grenache grown in the tough Ironstone laden hillside. The vines appear to float above the valley and the sea below, braving the winds off of the Southern Ocean and keeping yields achingly low, thus producing a profound Grenache of delicate balance. Aged in neutral oak for 5 months.  The winemaker is Ben Glaetzer, a very highly regarded and world renowned figure in the Australian wine community.

 

This is a bright ruby color.  The seductive nose has black cherries, raspberries, dusty minerals, dry underbrush, white pepper, cola and a hint of dried leafy herbs.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate the cherries and berries jump out on the front end with the savory elements rolling in later.  The finish has very good length with fruit, minerals and white pepper seeming to linger forever.  This is rich and ripe but not overblown like some Aussie wines.  This wouldn’t be mistaken for a Southern Rhone wine but who cares, this is very tasty stuff.  The longer the bottle was opened the more the savory notes came through on the back end and finish.  I’d sit on this one for a couple more years to see what happens.  This has 15% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (91 pts)

2012 Imprimata Grenache

2012 Imprimata Grenache

 

 

 

2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Albarino Abrente – $22

This  was the 5th vintage of this wine made by Michael Havens (the first person to make Albarino in the New World) and Morgan Twain-Peterson.  The wine comes from two sites in the far southern part of Napa Valley.  This vintage consists of almost 60% grapes from the Watson Vineyard, which is planted in limestone.  The fruit from this vineyard adds density and perfume.  This was fermented and aged in stainless steel tank, with no malolactic.

 

The wine is a nice straw yellow color.  The invigorating nose has ripe apple, dusty minerals, lemon zest, white peach, under ripe melon and orange blossoms.  This has light to medium body with crisp acidity.  On the palate apples, lemon zest and white peach take control on the front end with minerals and orange blossoms coming in later.  The finish has nice length with a bit of melon joining the apples and lemon zest.  This has great citrusy acidity with enough apple and peach to balance the tartness.  The couple years in the cellar have been very kind to this wine but I’d advise consuming this one over the next year or two.  This has 13% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (90 pts)

2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Albarino Abrente

2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Albarino Abrente

 

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

I paired the Sandler Pinot Noir with Pork Tenderloin medallions over egg noodles with a mustard sauce.

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2018 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – December 2017 Vol 3

 

2016 Raidis Estate Pinot Gris Cheeky Goat (Orange Wine)

2015 Ironstone Vineyards Petite Sirah (barrel sample shiner)

2012 Mark Herold Wines Flux

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White

2007 Terrabianca Campaccio Toscana IGT

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Syrah 6th Sense

 

 

 

2016 Raidis Estate Pinot Gris Cheeky Goat (Orange Wine) – $12.56

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  This bottle was included in a “mystery case” offer.

 

This is an “orange” wine.  No, there were no oranges used to produce the wine.  An orange wine is a wine made with white grapes, in this case, Pinot Gris, that is fermented “on the skins” like a red wine.  The fermentation process gives the wine an orange tint, hence the name.

 

The wine is a light peach color.  The very fragrant nose has cherry skin, white peach, orange blossoms, honeysuckle, pears, chalky minerals and pears.  This has medium to full body with decent acidity and a touch of residual sweetness.  On the palate cherry skins, pears and minerals grab hold on the front end with a big floral note coming in later.  This has nice length with cherry skins, minerals and the lingering floral notes.  This is an oddity but in this case, it works nicely.  This has 14% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a twist off closure.  (89 pts)

2016 Raidis Estate Pinot Gris Cheeky Goat (Orange Wine)

2016 Raidis Estate Pinot Gris Cheeky Goat (Orange Wine)

 

 

 

2015 Ironstone Vineyards Petite Sirah (unlabeled barrel sample)

This bottle of wine was a sample from a barrel that was aging at the winery.  This may not be representative of the final product since the released wines is produced by blending multiple barrels together.  Technically every barrel is slightly different so my sample may have been slightly better or worse than the released wine depending on the barrel that was used for my sample.  The released wine also would have spent additional time aging in the barrel, so that is another variable.

 

The wine is a deep purple color.  The very open and outgoing nose is full of blackberry, black peppercorns, scorched earth, blueberries, cedar, baking spices, licorice and vanilla bean.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  On the palate the front end is a warm berry pie full of blackberries, baking spices and blueberries.  The back end brings in black pepper and scorched earth notes.  The finish has nice length with cedar and vanilla bean providing depth.  This is a very easy to drink, fruit forward, Petite Sirah.  Some time in the cellar may allow some complexity to show through but why wait, enjoy this now for the great fruit and spice.  Since my bottle was an unlabeled sample, I don’t know the alcohol level or the closure used.  My bottle was closed with a manmade, spongy type closure.  No score since this wasn’t the released wine, but I did enjoy the wine.

2015 Ironstone Vineyards Petite Sirah (shiner)

2015 Ironstone Vineyards Petite Sirah (shiner)

 

 

 

2012 Mark Herold Wines Flux – $16.48

This was another “steal” from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate $10 credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  In this case, the release price was $32, so the Last Bottle price was almost 50% off.

 

This is a blend of 84% Grenache, 9% Syrah and 7% Mourvedre mostly from Lodi.

 

This is a deep ruby color.  The flamboyant nose is full of blackberries, raspberries, scorched earth, baking spices, blueberries and underbrush.  This has a full body with soft to moderate ripe tannins and decent acidity.  On the palate the front end is wall to wall fruit, thankfully some baking spices, underbrush and scorched earth come in on the backend.  The finish has good length and is again very fruit driven.  This is big, rich and lush and loaded with ripe fruit that pushes the sweetness a bit too far.  This may not be a wine for everyone but I bet it would be a smash hit at a holiday party.  I very much preferred the 2011 vintage of this wine.  This has 14.7% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.  (86 pts)

2012 Mark Herold Wines Flux

2012 Mark Herold Wines Flux

 

 

 

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White – $28.50

This wine is a blend of 54% Semillon from Monte Rosso Vineyard, 30% Muscadelle from Monte Rosso Vineyard and 16% Palomino from Saitone Ranch in the Russian River Valley.   All the vines were planted between 1886 and 1920.  The Muscadelle was fermented in all stainless steel.  The Palomino was fermented in 75% stainless steel and 25% new oak.  The Semillon was fermented in all oak but only 22% new.  Malolactic fermentation was prevented to preserve acidity and freshness.  There were 316 cases produced.

 

This is a light golden yellow color.  The exuberant nose has tart apples, beeswax, lemon zest, unripe pineapple, crushed stone minerals and white peach.  This has a fairly full body with crisp acidity.  On the palate nice orchard fruit comes through on the front end with minerals, beeswax and pineapple coming in on the backend.  The finish has very nice length with mouthwatering lemon zest.  This is a contradictory wine, if it big and rich on the front end but when the lemony acidity kicks in on the finish it becomes lighter and more nuanced.  This is drinking very nicely today and should hold for at least a couple more years.  I liked this wine from the start but grew to appreciate it even more as the time rolled on.  This has 14.2% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White

2012 Carlisle The Derivative White

 

 

 

2007 Terrabianca Campaccio Toscana IGT – $24.69

This “Super Tuscan” is a blend of 70% Sangiovese and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon.  A “Super Tuscan” wine is a wine that includes grapes not traditionally associated with Italian wine like Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

The wine is a fairly dark ruby color with some lightening at the edge.  The deep and exotic nose has blackberries, cherries, cocoa powder, licorice, underbrush, dried herbs, minerals and some well worn leather.  This has a medium body with fairly solid tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate the wine has loads of spicy, earthy fruit with dried herbs and cocoa powder adding considerable depth.  The finish has nice length, but a bit of oak pops out and gets a touch intrusive.  I don’t think there is a lot of upside by keeping this in the cellar but it should drink very nicely for the next five years, maybe even longer.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2007 Terrabianca Campaccio Toscana IGT

2007 Terrabianca Campaccio Toscana IGT

 

 

 

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Syrah 6th Sense – $12.99

This wine is mostly Syrah with a touch of Petite Sirah.  The winery likes to add a bit of Petite Sirah to most of their wines.  I was jokingly told they would add it to their Chardonnay if they could.  This wine was aged 12 months in French oak barrels.

 

The winery is one of the “big boys” in Lodi.  The family has been growing fruit and vegetable in the region since the 1850s and have been growing grapes for nearly 100 years.  With an eye to the future the winery has adopted some of the most progressive sustainable farming practices in the state.  All of the 750 acres of family vineyards are third party certified as being sustainably farmed.  Since the 2011 vintage, 100% of the Lodi grown fruit crushed at the winery has been certified as sustainably farmed.

 

Much more information on the winery is available on their website.

 

From the winery:

The Phillips brothers planted one of the first Syrah vineyards in California in 1982. With Michael’s son Kevin continuing the Phillips grape growing tradition into the 6th generation, this Syrah vineyard was one of the first he tended to as our Vineyard Manager. If you turn the bottle around you will see Kevin’s eye looking out from the inside of the bottle, making sure the wine is being enjoyed!

 

The wine is a deep purple color.  The intoxicating nose has blackberries, blueberries, asphalt, dark chocolate, fresh ground espresso beans, dry underbrush, licorice, violets and black pepper.  This has a full body with moderate ripe tannins and nice acidity.  This has massive berries and ground espresso beans on the front end with underbrush, dark chocolate and a big floral note coming in on the back end.  The finish is long and lingering with black pepper coming into play.  Not a lot of subtlety here but the big fruit and nice structure makes for a worthy companion for something hot off the grill.  This has 15.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  This is a steal for the price.  (89 pts)

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Syrah 6th Sense

2013 Michael-David Vineyards Syrah 6th Sense

 

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

 

I paired the Ironstone Petite Sirah with a burger made from ground New York Strip steak.  The burger was topped with a slice of pepper jack cheese.

 

 

The Michael-David Syrah went very nicely with grilled beef and chicken fajitas.

 

 

A rib-eye steak was marinated several hours with Italian herbs and cooked to medium rare with the Sous Vide then finished in a smoking hot cast iron pan.  This paired very nicely with the Terrabianca Campaccio.

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – December 2017 Vol 1

 

2014 KivelStadt Cellars Father’s Watch

2014 Big Tar Sauvignon Blanc McGinley Vineyard

2014 The Four Graces Pinot Noir Willamette Valley

2011 Helioterra Pinot Noir Vintner’s Select

2013 Bokisch Vineyards Tempranillo

2014 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann Vineyard

 

 

 

2014 KivelStadt Cellars Father’s Watch – $11.72

This was a purchase from Last Bottle wines, my favorite “flash” wine site.  If you use the provided link and sign up, you get an immediate credit and I get a credit if/when you make a purchase.  Check them out, they have awesome deals and their Marathons are always something special.  This bottle was included in a blind, mixed case purchase.  I never buy wine without knowing exactly what I am getting but make an exception for Last Bottle.  This wine had a release price of $28.

 

This Sonoma County wine is a blend of 50% Syrah from the winery’s Kivelstadt Vineyard, with 25% Carignane, and 25% Grenache from the Venturi Vineyard.  The lots were fermented separately and blended together after 4 months.  The wine was then aged for an additional 12 months in French oak with 10% being new.  There were 1,600 cases produced.

 

This is a deep garnet color.  The slightly shy nose has blackberries, dry underbrush, black cherries, roasted herbs and espresso beans.  This has medium body with moderate tannins and very good acidity.  The palate shows much more than the nose lead you to expect.  This has nice tart fruit but this is not a fruit driven wine with loads of savory notes dancing across your palate.  This still seems pretty tight even with a couple hours of air.  I’d stash this in the back of your cellar for a couple years, I think it will need a while to open.  This has 14.1% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (89 pts)

2014 KivelStadt Cellars Father's Watch

2014 KivelStadt Cellars Father’s Watch

 

 

 

2014 Big Tar Sauvignon Blanc McGinley Vineyard

McGinley Vineyard was formerly known as Westerly Vineyard is located in the newest Santa Barbara County AVA, Happy Canyon.

 

This is a light yellow color with a green tint.  The exhilarating nose has green apples, crushed stone minerals, lemongrass, honeysuckle and lime zest.  This has medium body with crisp acidity.  After a quick shot of green apples on the palate, crushed stones, lemongrass and honeysuckle take control.  The finish has good length with mouthwatering lime zest joining the green apples and minerals.  I liked this more and more as the evening work on.  This has 12.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (91 pts)

2014 Big Tar Sauvignon Blanc McGinley Vineyard

2014 Big Tar Sauvignon Blanc McGinley Vineyard

 

 

 

2014 The Four Graces Pinot Noir Willamette Valley – $18.99

This Willamette Valley Pinot Noir uses grapes from the Foley Family Estate in the Dundee Hills and the winery’s Doe Ridge Estate in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA.  After fermentation, the wine was aged for 9 months in 100% French oak with 15% being new.

 

The wine is a nice ruby red color.  The very inviting nose has black cherry, plum, violets, underbrush, warm baking spices and black tea leaves.  This has medium body with very nice acidity.  On the palate nice dark fruit and spice lead the way with underbrush and black tea coming in later.  The finish is a touch tight and linear right now but a nice violet note provides some depth.  I’d recommend sitting on this for a while or give it a fair amount of air.  This will be better in 6 months to a year and drink nicely for another 5 years after that time.  This is well worth the tariff at my local Costco.  This has 14.1% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2014 The Four Graces Pinot Noir Willamette Valley

2014 The Four Graces Pinot Noir Willamette Valley

 

 

 

2011 Helioterra Pinot Noir Vintner’s Select – $25

Helioterra produces Pinot Noir, Mourvédre, Pinot Blanc, Syrah, Arneis, Melon de Bourgogne, Rosé of Pinot Noir, and Riesling. Their wines are distributed to several states and they have a very nice wine club.  For more information visit their website by clicking here.

 

The wine is a light, bright ruby color.  The enjoyable nose has cherries, white pepper, crushed stones, dry underbrush and wildflowers.  This has a medium body with soft to moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  Cherries, crushed stones and white pepper jump out immediately on the palate with some dried earthy elements coming in on the back end.  The finish has nice length with more minerals and a floral note providing nice depth.  This is a keeper.  This wine has 12.4% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2011 Helioterra Pinot Noir Vintner's Select

2011 Helioterra Pinot Noir Vintner’s Select

 

 

 

2013 Bokisch Vineyards Tempranillo – $18.40

This wine includes a touch of Graciano.

 

Bokisch Vineyards is one of my favorite Lodi wineries.  The winery specializes in Spanish varietals.  If you ever find yourself in Lodi, I highly recommend a stop at Bokisch.  Besides their top notch red wines, they make some of the best white wines anywhere.  Much more information is available on the Bokisch website.

 

The wine is a deep ruby red color.  The exotic nose has black cherries, crushed stone minerals, baking spices, blackberries, dry underbrush, roasted leafy herbs, wildflowers, white pepper and a touch of dark roast coffee beans.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  Tart black cherries, baking spices, underbrush and wildflowers immediately grab your attention on the palate with minerals, tart berries and roasted herbs coming in later.  The finish has very nice length with dark roasted coffee beans and white pepper providing nice depth.  This has great balance and is very easy to enjoy.  Who says Lodi only makes big, bold red wines?  This is full of subtle nuances with no rough edges.  This has 13.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2013 Bokisch Vineyards Tempranillo

2013 Bokisch Vineyards Tempranillo

 

 

 

2014 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann Vineyard – $30

This note is based on a bottle that was a “leaker”.  The cork had a small slit that allowed about a tablespoon of wine to leak out.  The wine seemed fine but a perfect bottle may show a little differently.

 

Kirschenmann Vineyard is an “own rooted” vineyard in Lodi that was planted in 1915.

 

The wine is a deep purple color.  The energetic nose has blackberries, black cherries, baking spices, dark chocolate, wildflowers and dry earth.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and very nice acidity.  On the palate nice fruit on the front end sets up baking spices and dry earth coming in later.  The finish has good length with cherries and a nice floral note providing depth.  This is a lighter bodied, nuanced and lively zinfandel that carries no excess weight.  This has great balance and is very food friendly.  This has 14.6% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (92 pts)

2014 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann Vineyard

2014 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Kirschenmann Vineyard

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

I had Chicken Kiev and my version of Rice-A-Roni with the Bokisch Tempranillo.

 

 

Pork Piccata with Gnocchi, Asparagus and Sun-Dried Tomatoes paired very nicely with the Helioterra Pinot Noir.

 

 

The Four Graces Pinot Noir went very nicely with Corned Beef with Cabbage, Red Potatoes and Carrots.

 

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

Cliffs Wine Picks – November 2017 Vol 3

 

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine

Guy Brunot Champagne Blanc de Blancs Premier Cru

2012 Louis Latour Mercurey

2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard

2002 Vincent Arroyo Petite Sirah Greenwood Ranch

2013 Jessie’s Grove Zinfandel Royal Tee Ancient Vine

 

 

 

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine Lodi – $19.79

Macchia makes the big, full bore Zinfandels that originally put Lodi on wine lover’s radar.  Like most other wineries in the region Zinfandel is still the mainstay of their offerings but other grape varieties are also produced masterfully.

 

The wine is a deep, dark ruby to maroon color.  The big and bold nose has blackberries, toasty oak, black cherries, vanilla bean, black peppercorns, charcoal, dark chocolate and dried wildflowers.  This has a full body with soft to moderate ripe tannins and decent acidity.  This is rich and velvety on the palate with big upfront fruit and barrel nuances coming in later.  This doesn’t offer a lot of complexity but it makes up for that deficiency with a load of fruit on the palate.  This isn’t a wine to sit back and ponder over, pop the cork and just enjoy.  This has 15.4% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (90 pts)

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine Lodi

2015 Macchia Zinfandel Mischievous Old Vine Lodi

 

 

 

Guy Brunot Champagne Blanc de Blancs Premier Cru – $28.02

This was a purchase from Last Bottle Wines, please see below for more information on them and the opportunity to receive a credit on your account by signing up for their e-mail list.

 

My previous bottle seemed a bit tired and perhaps past its prime but that was clearly an off bottle.

 

This is a light straw color with several persistent streams of pinpoint sized bubbles.  The exhilarating nose has tart apples, lemon zest, yeasty bread, crushed stone minerals, orange blossoms and roasted nuts.  This has light body with great inner mouth effervescence and crisp acidity.  This has nice fruit on the front end with the savory notes quickly entering the picture.  The finish has nice length with yeasty bread and minerals providing a nice counterpoint to the fruit.  This has 12% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a standard Champagne cork.  (90 pts)

Guy Brunot Champagne Blanc de Blancs Premier Cru

Guy Brunot Champagne Blanc de Blancs Premier Cru

 

 

 

2012 Louis Latour Mercurey – $24.99

This 100% Pinot Noir is from the village of Mercurey in the Côte Chalonnaise region.  The vines are an average of 25 years old.  After a traditional fermentation, the wine is aged 10 to 12 months in stainless steel vats.  The wine has 13.0% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with an agglomerated cork.

 

The wine is a light ruby red color.  The appealing nose has cherries, baking spices, white pepper, chalky minerals, orange zest, dry earth and dried wildflowers.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate tart cherries, spice and minerals jump out first with white pepper and dry earth coming in later.  The finish has nice length with white pepper and a hint of orange zest adding nice depth.  Not the most complex wine out there, but this is very tasty and offers great QPR for around $25.  (90 pts)

2012 Louis Latour Mercurey

2012 Louis Latour Mercurey

 

 

 

2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard – $49

Rhys makes world class wines that usually need a few years in the cellar to develop and open up before they show their best.

 

This vineyard used to be a Christmas tree farm.  In 2002 the Sletten, Martin, Sullivan and Harvey families formed a partnership and decided to convert the farm into a vineyard due to its loamy clay soil and eastern aspect.

 

The wine is a medium ruby red color.  The exotic and sexy nose features cherries, black raspberries, crushed stones, white pepper, Asian spices, fresh cut flowers and earthy underbrush.  This has medium body with moderate to solid tannins and outstanding acidity.  On the palate spicy red and black fruit dominate on the front end with the savory elements coming in later.  The wine has a long, lingering finish with tart, spicy cherries, minerals and some earthiness lingering seemingly forever.  This still seems young and there is absolutely no hurry to open this one.  Even at 10 years old, some additional cellar time will be rewarded.  This has 13.4% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (94 pts)

2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard

2007 Rhys Pinot Noir Family Farm Vineyard

 

 

 

2002 Vincent Arroyo Petite Sirah Greenwood Ranch – $40.50

Vincent Arroyo holds a special place in my heart.  This was one of the first wineries I visited on my first trip to Napa many years ago.  For me, a trip to Napa isn’t complete without a stop at the winery which usually includes trying just about everything they have aging in barrels.  If you ever visit the winery, Greenwood Ranch is the home vineyard around the winery.  The winery owns 85 acres and cultivate 9 different wine grape varieties.  The winery produces about 8,000 cases of wine a year.

 

The wine is a deep maroon color.  The sensuous nose has blackberries, crushed stone minerals, baking spices, melted licorice, blueberries, dry underbrush and a touch of adhesive tape.  This has medium body with soft to moderate tannins and very good acidity.  On the palate nice fruit comes through on the front end with minerals, spices and dry underbrush coming in later.  The finish has very good length with a nice balance between the fruit and savory elements.  This is in a very good drinking window with the tannins integrated and very good acidity.  Caution with this one, my cork pretty much disintegrated and there was a LOT of sediment.  This has 14.4% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork.  (93 pts)

2002 Vincent Arroyo Petite Sirah Greenwood Ranch

2002 Vincent Arroyo Petite Sirah Greenwood Ranch

 

 

 

2013 Jessie’s Grove Zinfandel Royal Tee Ancient Vine – SRP $45

This wine was supplied to me by Lodi Wine to help celebrate Zinfandel Day.

 

There are always heated arguments over what should be considered to be an “old vine”.  In this case, there should be no disagreement that this wine comes from “ancient vines” since the vineyard was planted in the 1800’s.  To me, a wine produced from vines over 100 years old deserves to be called Ancient Vines.

 

The wine is a medium ruby red color.  The very inviting nose has plums, brambly berries, white pepper, dry earth, baking spices and vanilla bean.  This has medium to full body with moderate tannins and very good acidity.  This has bright fruit on the front end and nice savory notes coming in later.  The finish has good length with nice sweet fruit and spice.  This is a nicely structured zinfandel that shows good balance with no over ripe notes.  This tastes very good now but a year in the cellar will be rewarded.  This has a surprising 15.5% alcohol and the bottle is sealed with a natural cork. (92 pts)

2013 Jessie's Grove Zinfandel Royal Tee Ancient Vine

2013 Jessie’s Grove Zinfandel Royal Tee Ancient Vine

 

 

 

A few meals paired with a couple of the wines.

 

Other meals that were paired with all the wines for the week are usually posted on my Instagram account, Cliff’s Wine Picks Instagram.  If you want a specific recipe, send an e-mail to Cliff @ CliffsWinePicks . com.  Obviously, remove the spaces.

 

 

The Louis Latour Mercurey paired wonderfully with ham, macaroni & cheese and mixed peas from this year’s garden.

 

 

I paired the Jessie’s Grove Zinfandel with a cooler weather staple, Red Beans & Rice.

 

 

I opted to open the Vincent Arroyo Petite Sirah with prime rib instead of my normal Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

 

The Macchia Zinfandel was my choice to open with a large serving of Chicken and Andouille Gumbo.

 

 

 

 

 

I am a big fan of the “Flash Wine Sale” site Last Bottle.  You probably noticed some of the wines in this post were purchased from the site.  All of these wines were purchased at a big discount.  I highly recommend getting on their e-mail list.  Like most of the flash sale sites, they offer one wine per day until it sells out.  They also have a couple two-day marathons during the year.  Last Bottle is a great site to buy special wines at prices low enough to open any day of the week.

 

If you sign up using this link you will get a $10 credit that can be used on your first purchase.  I will also get a credit if you make a purchase.

 

Other than getting a credit as explained above, I have no financial interest in the site.  After you are on the list, you can also get the same credit by introducing friends to Last Bottle.

 

 

 

Connect with me

You can follow me on Twitter for more wine info, potential food pairings, and an occasional recipe or two.  Be warned, I’m also a sports fan and there are occasional Pittsburgh Penguins, Steelers, and Pirates tweets.  I attended the University of South Carolina, so during football season, there will also be some Gamecock posts.

 

I post a lot more pictures and pairing suggestions on my Instagram account, consider joining me at https://www.instagram.com/cbbrown3/

 

If you like this post, consider joining Cliffs Wine Picks Wine Blog on Facebook and giving me a Like.

 

Cheers!

 

 

This is original to CliffsWinePicks.com.  Copyright 2017 Cliff’s Wine Picks.

All rights reserved.

 

 

 

***** Shameless Self Promotion *****

 

Here is a link to a YouTube video of me getting “coal” from Santa for being named the “Nicest Person in Social Media” in 2012.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOvQTeGR3-c

 

 

 

Breaking news from Klout:

 

 

Cliff’s Wine Picks mentions or other posts

Here are posts, newsletters, blogs or other articles that either mention this site or that I have written:

 

Click here or on the “Cliff’s Wine Picks On Other Sites” link in the top right corner to see links to other sites that either have my reviews, my thoughts or other posts I have written.

 

 

 

Remember to support your local wine store!

 

 

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Notes – I use the “official” Cellar Tracker name for the wines.  I use Cellar Tracker to help manage and organize my cellar.  I highly recommend checking it out at www.cellartracker.com.  Loading you existing cellar is a lot less intimidating than it would first appear.  There is a good chance 99% of your wine is already in the system, so you generally only need to enter part of the wine’s name and the system will find it for you.

 

 

Prices noted are the prices I paid at the time of purchase.  I don’t shop around to find the best prices, but always check out the sale and close out items when in a store.  Wines purchased direct from a winery do not include any shipping charges.  None of the prices include the sales tax.

 

 

All wines that were sent to me free of charge to sample will be noted and I will show suggested prices when available.

 

 

 

Cheers!

 

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