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Chateau Serilhan St Estephe 2009 wine review by (PB)

Date: Thu, Jul 4, 2013 Wine Tasting

This "Left Bank" Bordeaux presents with a deep dark garnet hue.
Bouquet--Dark berry, cassis, loads of cedar with an earthy presence. Underneath the bold initial bouquet is a candy sweet hint of fresh grape.

Palate--Awesome first impression not nearly as tannic as I was expecting with a deep heavy supple mouth feel. I'm lovin it! Rich, deep big black berry and ripe purple plum and a light foundation of cocoa which is changing with air.

I just opened this wine an poured it through an aerator into my glass. It is wonderful now and will get even more wonderful with some breathing.
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Tua Rita Perlato del Bosco Toscana 2010 Wine Review (NW)

Date: Sat, Jun 29, 2013 Wine Tasting

Tasting notes:

Big notes of dark berries, licorice, and smoke on the nose

Full bodied on the palate

Dense finish of dark berries, earthy notes, and a hint of chocolate

Summary:

At 75% Sangiovese and 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine screams Tuscany with a real sense of place. From a legendary producer, it's dense and layered as you'd expect if a bit less explosive than some. Intermediate-term cellaring (3-5 years) will probably benefit this wine but it tastes great young as well. The retail price runs around $30, which is fair. When poured with a rich pasta dish or steak, it should really shine. Raise a glass!
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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La Petite Perriere Sauvignon Blanc 2011 Wine Review (NW)

Date: Sat, Jun 29, 2013 Wine Tasting

Tasting notes:

Floral, tropical, and mineral notes on the nose

Light bodied with good acidity on the palate

Lemon and apple finish

Summary:

An excellent value white wine, I'll be getting more of this for the Summer. It's crisp and clean but also has just enough depth to keep it interesting.

I'll submit that Sauvignon Blanc is the best value grape in the world, and great values abound from places like France, Italy, California, Chile, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. Don't miss out on the French versions, which in the case of the basic, inexpensive bottles have often begun putting the varietal on the label after many years of debating the merits of doing so.

Expect to pay $10 or less for this wine, and raise a glass!
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Virtual Vineyards Malbec 1999 wine review by (PB)

Date: Fri, Jun 28, 2013 Wine Tasting

Bricking hue showing its age with a bouquet that is wonderfully winsome full of mint and chocolate covered cherries with young cherry candy and cedar notes.

Palate--Totally relaxed structure, fully integrated cherry and spicy red berry goodness through out with stewed cherry fruit in the rear palate.. Finishes with mild cherry and spice fruit.

This is a one of kind wine I believe having originated from a world wide web wine sales start up in 1996. Functioning after the style of the French negociant M.O.
Virtual Vineyards from what I gather was an entrepreneurial endeavor that doesn't seem to be around anymore. I could be wrong...

A friend of ours who is leaving town brought this over tonight to share. This 14 year old Malbec has held up well and still has life in it.

It is always a treat when wine seems to defy the odds and outlives its life expectancy. No reference price is necessary as this is probably one of a kind having been given to our friend as business gift many years ago.

I love it when a wine surprises and this one was absolutely delightful! I paired it with carbonara and it was awesome!

Raise a glass Dick and Lori to a new life in a new state in a new culture! God speed!
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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The Wine Spectator Has Some Explaining To Do! by (PB)

Date: Wed, Jun 26, 2013 Wine Tasting

The Wine Spectator is far and away the leading authority on all things wine--granted. A few years ago Thomas Matthews, Senior Editor of the Wine Spectator commented on a blog post I made errantly ascribing an opinion to them in which I was mistaken. I printed an apology on this blog.

Unquestionably, as a many years long subscriber to both their magazine and on-line subscription to the tune of $100 a year for both, I was questioning when I saw a new App advertised which carried with it a monthly $2.99 subscription fee. The description of it seemed to be the same for which I was paying $50 annually with my old app so I e-mailed customer service to inquire about the new App since it seemed I could just let my on-line subscription expire and buy the new App and save a few dollars each year. I received NO response in spite of their automated e-mail saying I would hear within two working days. Weeks went by and one day I was no longer able to log into my WS iPhone app to access the on-line service I was paying for. This time I called the Wine Spectator looking for help with my older App but nothing was ever said about the new App and they simply forwarded me to three different customer service agents and finally to their (new) App designer--Zinio--yet another call to no avail.

Bottom line--NOW: In addition to the charge of $50 for their on-line service, you must also buy their new App at a charge of $2.99 a month (to access it from your smart phone) on top of the $50 annual charge. When I called the good folks at the WS to verify if this was correct, the young lady apologized and said , "Yes." I promptly ended my on-line subscription service and I am considering the same for my magazine subscription.

This is unfortunate as I am a BIG fan of the WS crew and their knowledge etc. But this smacks of gouging their customers and is being done in a less than forthright manner which I cannot endure. So perhaps Mr. Matthews will be good enough to respond to my post as I would love to get this straight for the sake of us all.

Mr. Matthews?
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Korbel Russian River Valley "Natural" wine review by (PB)

Date: Wed, Jun 26, 2013 Wine Tasting

This Non-Vintage sparkler from the Sonoma--Russian River Valley-- AVA (American Viticultural Area) has an ever so slight rose tint from the 15% Pinot Noir blended to the Chardonnay.

Bouquet is almond nuttiness with ever so slight suggestion of gentle stone fruit.

Palate--Lively bubbles with a delicate presentation up front and a nice floral, soft mid-palate and an almond finish.

I grabbed this to have a little toast to my wife's 60th today before we head out to a wine dinner. My normal "first choice" is Mumm's Brut Presitge but it has escalated to close to $25 a bottle. This sparkler is running less than $15 and I call it a keeper! Although a bit disconcerting the label calls this "Champagne" which of course is a misnomer. "Champagne" means it comes from Champagne, France. This on the other hand is an affordable domestic "sparkling wine" made in the Methode Champenoise; at any rate raise a glass.
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Yalumba Viognier Eden Valley 2011 wine review by (PB)

Date: Thu, Jun 20, 2013 Wine Tasting

Pale gold with bouquet of strange but sweet fruit. Slight white melon aromas but the rest is a bit odd; not unpleasant, I just can't relate it to anything I am familiar with.

Palate--Vibrant acidity highlights the foundation of a pungent and interesting fruity presence. It is crisp but I find it awkward if only because it is unusual to me. I just don't really know quite what to do with this wine. The good folks at the Wine Spectator gave this a 91 point rating calling it spicy pear and pineapple. I'm not getting the nomenclature or the rating. But this is not to say I don't like this wine. It is just unlike anything I have had which is saying something considering I have been studying wine since the mid 70's. I don't remember what I paid for this but I know it wasn't the reference price of $19 but probably closer to $14.

So, I'll defer to the expertise of the Wine Spectator and say, raise a glass!
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Wine Infographic

Date: Thu, Jun 20, 2013 Wine Tasting

The Wine Cask Blog and our friends at Sparefoot present a wine Infographic for you! Thanks to JOSH WALDRUM from SpareFoot for the great looking infographic!

Wine Infographic
Produced by SpareFoot. Copyright 2013.
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Guest Blogger Laura Diaz Reviews La Rioja Alta 904 Gran Reserva 2001

Date: Tue, Jun 18, 2013 Wine Tasting

Today we are proud to introduce you to Laura Diaz who guest blogs the 2001 La Rioja Alta 904 Gran Reserva with us! Welcome Laura and Raise a Glass!

Laura's Review:
One of the finest and highest rated Rioja wines with an exquisite taste The power of high quality wine has gone further than expected, especially in La Rioja, Spain.

La Rioja wine has broken through geographical and often tense political boundaries between La Rioja and the Basque Country where the wine is jointly produced. To our delight, it has given a common identity to this Spanish region as they share the success of their wine. And now, La Rioja Alta winery has produced one of the finest and highest rated wines, with a profound and complex character that cannot be missed!

La Rioja Alta 904 Gran Reserva 2001 is a delectable wine produced from Tempranillo grapes (90%) from 40 year-old vines located in Briñas, Villalba and Labastida that are perfectly complemented by a 10% touch of Graciano vines from Melchorón and Rodezno Briones vineyards, all of which belong to the DOC of La Rioja. In February 2002, the wine was transferred to the self-made, 4 year-old American oak barrels being racked through the traditional barrel-to-barrel method for 4 years, every 6 months. The wine was bottled in June 2006 and has been maturing in the company's cellars for over six years. In order to preserve maximum organoleptic components, the wine was subject to a gentle filtration, which can produce few sediments with age.

Now is a perfect time to acquire this fiercely anticipated red wine from La Rioja. It is worth the effort of purchasing it simply for its exclusive quality and extraordinary taste, but it will also be a great acquisition for any wine cellar as it will continue to evolve for 5 to 6 more years, and has great drinkability until 2040.

SIGHT: Ruby red, with a slight garnet rim. Very bright, has thin and elegant tears.
SMELL: Fresh, vibrant, with fine notes of candied fruit, spicy black fruit, excellent ripeness with a hint of coffee and chocolate mint.
TASTE: Solid structure, round and sweet elegantly polished tannins. Silky, soft and durable aftertaste. ALCOHOL: 12.5% °
SERVE: Serve at 17 ° C, / 62.5 ° F, decanting recommended
PAIRING: Red meats, Añejo or other semi-soft cheeses, Jamón Ibérico de Bellota


--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Beringer "Knight's Valley" Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 wine review by (PB)

Date: Mon, Jun 17, 2013 Wine Tasting

Nice black cherry pigmented hue with a bouquet of cedary blackberry, cigar box, and green pepper with another coating of ripe black fruit.

Palate--Cedar and spice front with integrated deep dark berry fruit and baked bread with a finish of briary dark berry fruit.

I found this on close out for under $12 at a local supermarket: sells for closer to $30. I bought the only two bottles that remained. It is a fine example of Cabernet Sauvignon with integrated flavors and solid structure that should hold this wine for another decade but peaking in another 3-5 years.

At any rate, bargains like this are always a treat so raise a glass to the hunt!

I will pair this with a grilled venison rib-eyes tonight--the pay out for a frigid butchering of this Maine deer shot in January.
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Renwood--Clos Rene--Viognier (Veauta Vineyard) 2009 wine review by (PB)

Date: Thu, Jun 13, 2013 Wine Tasting

Lightly golden hue with a bouquet of a tropical fruit smoothie with vanilla and a hint of banana, ripe pineapple and all kinds of luscious exotic fruit.

Palate--A razor sharp foundation supports an edgy and a bit tight beam of tropical fruit, with a nutty under layer carries through in the finish.

This single vineyard, Amador Co. varietal may be past its prime but is still drinkable.

I paid $9 for it and bought it on the basis of it being a single vineyard varietal but...a bit dubious! I'd probably pass on this wine.
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Solane Santi Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore2010 wine review by (PB)

Date: Thu, Jun 13, 2013 Wine Tasting

Pungent bouquet of licorice, sweet cherry, earthy spice and a touch of cedar.

Palate-- Nice flavors you would expect with a bold acidic structure, cherry, slight touch of raisin,


This is a great food wine for your favorite Italian cuisine and many other foods. $8 on sale which is a great deal so raise a glass.

Read previous posts concerning the "ripasso" process of wine making!
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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E. Guigal Cotes du Rhone White 2011 Wine Review (NW)

Date: Tue, Jun 11, 2013 Wine Tasting

Tasting notes:

Aromatic melon and floral notes on the nose

Full bodied on the palate

Layered finish with honeycomb and stone fruit on the finish

Summary:

Here's a white wine I recommend when you want to venture into Rhone wines from France. It's primarily made from Viognier with a few other grapes blended in. Typically priced anywhere from $10-15, it's a good value wine and distinctively different than Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc for example. Raise a glass!
--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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Chateau St. Jean Sonoma Merlot 2009 wine review by (PB)

Date: Mon, Jun 10, 2013 Wine Tasting


Black cherry presentation with a bouquet of dark berry and plum fruit with a slightly vegetal touch. Hints of cedar and cigar box.

Palate--vibrant lively acidity with loads of solid blackberry fruit and plum. Finishes with a slightly spicy fruity ending.

Tasted this the day after I reviewed Sebastiani's Merlot from the same vintage and region. Both are quality wines and this one I grabbed for $12 which is half of its reference price.

A nice wine a good value at $12 so raise a glass!

--A Review from The Wine Cask Blog. Creative Commons: Attribution - ShareAlike 2.5 applies

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