Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Chateau St. Michele Syrah 2003 – Washington

This has a nice spicy and blackberry nose. The tastes are creamy, rather soft for a Syrah, with blackberries and blueberries and a hint of lemon. There’s also some prune and leather in there somewhere. It’s kind of thick and jammy, with soft acids and mild tannins. Yes/Maybe. $11 on sale, $15 regularly.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Monkey Bay Chardonnay 2004 – New Zealand

We generally think of New Zealand as specializing in Sauvignon Blanc. We enjoyed the Monkey Bay Sauvignon a lot, so when we saw this Chardonnay, we thought we’d try it without knowing anything about it.
It has some wonderful, deep aromas – vanilla, honey, and ripe apples. The tastes are of apple (both crisp green apple, and fuller ripe red apples), with a bit of an herbal/spicy note – maybe rosemary? It’s a bit woody and creamy, but has some crispness to cut through those notes. Yes. $10 on sale, usually about $14.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Sorensen Pinot Gris/Sauvignon Blanc 2006 – Washington

Sorensen is a small winery in Port Townsend, Washington. It sources grapes mostly from the Yakima Valley and other Washington appellations (no estate or regional Olympic Peninsula grapes are used). It has a small, friendly tasting room, and charges a nominal tasting fee. (We still have a huge gripe about tasting rooms that charge for tasting, then sell you wine at full retail without applying the tasting fee – however small – toward your purchase.)

This wine is a blend of 64% Pinot Gris and 36% Sauvignon Blanc – a mixture we wouldn’t have thought of combining. The nose is perfumey and slightly medicinal. The tastes are of mushrooms, sourdough starter, and baked apple. This seems like a well-made wine that just didn’t really appeal to our taste preferences. Maybe. $14.50

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Ridge Zinfandel Paso Robles 2006 – California

Wow, did this catch Ken by surprise. Francesca handed him a glass blind, and as much as we know and love Ridge wines, Ken thought this was a big French Burgundy (Pinot Noir). Oops. But it does show some of those characteristics. Nose of dark cherries, earth, loam, peat moss. Deep tastes of black cherries, earth, and a bit of spice. To us, quite different from the usual big Ridge fruit bombs. More reserved and subtle, with smoother, dry, but not harsh tannins. Beautiful garnet cherry color. Yes. About $30.