Castillo de Monjardin La Cantera 2009, another selection from our wine club, is a delicious rich, fruity wine.
Garnacha (knowns as Grenache in France) is the most widely planted grape in Spain. Because it is not a very acidic or tannic variety, Garnacha is typically blended with other grapes, such as Tempranillo and Syrah.
This wine is 100% Garnacha.
Bright ruby in color and very aromatic. It is very easy to drink. Fruity, yet earthy, filled with the taste of raspberries and currants and a little bit of spice. Aged in an oak barrel for six months, this wine has a nice structure. I definitely recommend it.
I believe you can purchase for somewhere between $10 and $12.
Irony 2010 Pinot Noir, Monterey County
Medium-bodied wine with a definite sweet cherry aroma. It smells super fruity and tastes like fresh strawberries with hints of vanilla. Firm tannins and crisp acidity, well-balanced with a smooth finish. I have always been a fan of Pinot and this one is quite good.
I can’t recall how I stumbled upon this one, but for about $12, I will buy it again.
Vina Leyda Carmenere 2010
This Chilean wine from Rapel Valley came from our wine club. It’s an interesting selection. The black pepper on the nose is especially strong. The intense, jammy fruit flavors that take over are rich but quite smooth. The finish is savory and spicy with that hint of pepper again. There is a subtle oak taste as well. No need to decant this wine. It is meant to be consumed while young and the tannin level is naturally low.
Because the wine is pretty different from what I normally drink, I don’t know that I’d have this on hand to drink every day. But I would consider buying again for a special occasion.
Another great selection from our wine club. Fondo Antico I Versi Bianco 2010 is a rich white blend – without oak – that combines equal parts Grecanico, Inzolia and Grillo from Sicily.
Fresh and fruity, this wine delivers citrus and tropical fruit flavors with a hint of toasted almonds. It is clean and crisp with a bit of zing and nice balanced acidity. It has the rich fruit flavor of a Chardonnay and the liveliness of a Sauvignon Blanc.
I Versi Bianco is from Fondo Antico, a winery located near Trapani in a small town called Frazione Rilievo. Admittedly, I was not very familiar with the grape varieties that make up I Versi Bianco, so I did a little investigating.
Grecanico is a white grape used widely in the white wines of Sicily. Producers like Grecanico for its robust aroma and the ease with which it can be used to cut other Sicilian wines, specifically the Catarratto and Inzolia, resulting in a full-flavored wine.
Inzolia, also indigenous to Sicily, is known for its nutty aroma. Notes of almonds, citrus fruits and fresh herbs are common in this well-structured variety. In Tuscany, this grape is referred to as Ansonica.
Grillo is a Sicilian white grape variety used to produce full-bodied wines. It is the most planted white grape in Italy. Crisp and light in texture, it has sufficient acidity and significant sweetness.
I believe you can find I Versi Bianco for less than $10. I think it would be delicious and refreshing on a warm summer evening. I’m sure we’ll have a few of those very soon.
A couple of weeks ago the kind PR folks from Jacob’s creek sent me a selection of Jacob’s Creek Reserve wines to help promote the Australian wine’s True Character contest. The contest, which runs through March 31, gives wine enthusiasts a chance to win $5,000 to put toward their favorite charity or passion, which is pretty cool. To enter, you must visit www.facebook.com/jacobscreek, upload a photo of yourself and a brief description of how you stay true to yourself and show your true character. In addition to the $5,000, the winner will be featured in a Jacob’s Creek commercial,
I have tried two of the four wines that were sent to me. All wines are $12.99.
Jacob’s Creek Reserve Chardonnay 2010
You all know how I feel about oaked Chardonnay. I am not a big fan but I wanted to give it a try. Not my preference, but I think Chardonnay admirers will enjoy this wine. It’s a crisp Chardonnay from the Adelaide Hills region of South Australia. Full-bodied with peach and lemon flavors and a nutty finish.
The high rainfall and cool ripening conditions of the Adelaide Hills give this Chardonnay that crisp acidity.
Jacob’s Creek Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
This wine includes select grapes grown in the Coonawarra region in South Australia. The Coonawarra is known for its rich red ‘Terra Rossa’ soil and is widely regarded as Australia’s best and most famous Cabernet Sauvignon region.
Very distinct clove smell. Fruity with a hint of mint. Full-bodied, rich and smooth to the finish. Delicious wine.
I look forward to tasting the other two: Jacob’s Creek Reserve Barossa Shiraz and Reserve Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir.
Welcome to Wine-Girl’s Annual Wine Festival Survival Guide. Every year I poll a large group of wine bloggers and find out if there are any outstanding tips, which I add to my own. This year, I’ve added new tips based on my experience pouring wines for the last two years. I’m sad to say that I’m missing the Wine Festival for the first time in years. It makes me sad, but it snuck up on me and I’m currently in San Francisco. I’m leaving Festival reporting to the capable hands of Kevin, Cresta, and Angela.
Please realize that these tips are geared for people who are heading to the Festival to try new wines, learn new things, and not get generally hammered. If insanely drunk is your goal, well … get a cab and/or a hotel.
So in no particular order, here are my tips for surviving a festival with hundreds of wines and even more people:
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