This past Saturday I attended an in-house tasting at Young’s wine store located at 505 Plandome Road in Manhasset. They had sixteen distributors/importers pouring some of the wines in their portfolios. It was a good cross section of wines from various countries. I’ve been to this event a few times before and they do a good job. Some of the wines I enjoyed:
From Southern Wines and Spirits, the 2009 Stag’s Leap Artemis had a nose of black plums with a very chewy texture. The 2009 Girard Petite Sirah Napa Valley was inky black with chunky but not jammy fruit with a long dusty finish. The 2009 Girard Artistry Bordeaux blend Napa Valley was dark in color with black fruits and menthol on the nose with juicy and jammy fruit.
From Winebow the 2010 Belle Glos “Clark & Telephone” Pinot Noir was dark, almost black in color, very unusual in a Pinot, very extracted raspberry and sour cherry fruit, a very ripe style of Pinot Noir.
From T. Edwards Wines, the 2009 Rocca di Montegrossi Chianti Classico had toasty, earthy, chewy fruit with good balance while the 2006 Rocca di Montegrossi single vineyard “San Marcelino” had a big nose of violets with dark, tight fruits and a mouthful of tannins on the finish. The 2008 Sinskey “Four Vineyards” Pinot Noir was a beautiful wine with a nose of cigar box with tight velvety fruit and toasted tobacco notes on the long finish.
From Domaine Select, the 2008 Clos Du Caillou Chateauneuf du Pape had a nose of menthol and earth with chewy, damp earth fruit and a long finish.
From Dubos Imports the 2005 Chateau Gros Caillou St. Emilion had a beautiful nose of black cherry with silky fruit and earth on the long finish. The 2008 Bois Tiffray Lussac St Emilion was a good value Bordeaux with chunky but balanced fruit.
From Tempranillo Imports, the 2009 Bodegas Alto Moncayo Garnacha had a big nose of spring flowers with a mouthfull of fruit. The 2007 Victorino Tinto de Toro was black with a nose of cherries and spareribs and a velvety, smoky finish.
This Saturday afternoon I attended an in store tasting at Post Wine & Spirits wine shop located at 510 Jericho Turnpike in Syosset. They had some of the beverage distributors pouring some of their wines, about a hundred. I started the day out by trying some of the white wines. The 2011 Di Filippo Grechetto was dark gold, floral with a mouthful of fruit. The 2010 Gini Soave Classico had a nose of hazelnuts with moderate fruit, a floral finish and good balance. The 2010 Flora Springs Soliloquy Oakville Sauvignon Blanc had a nose of white flowers with lots of melon flavor with none of the grassiness that you usually get in a Sauvignon Blanc.
The 2010 Domaine Crochet Vouvray Sec had a nose of wet slate with a crisp lemony finish. On to the reds, I enjoyed the 2007 Les Chemins de Bassac Isa Rouge from Languedoc, a blend of Syrah, Mouvedre, Cabernet and some Pinot Noir. A nose of damp earth, a mouthful of chewy fruit and a long finish. The 2010 Evesham Wood Le Grive Blue a Pinot Noir from Oregon was nice with a big nose of cola and black cherry and some earth, tight silky fruit with a long finish. The 2009 Dom Laurent Bourgogne Rouge was dark with a dusty, cherry nose tight and chewy with firm acids on the finish.
The 2009 Badia a Coltibuono Chianti Classico was not a typical Chianti, dark and rustic with a nose of plums, with very chewy and earthy fruit and firm tannins on the finish. My favorite red of the night was the 2008 Frog’s Leap Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Very elegant with restrained alcohol levels, a nose of green olives and tobacco, balanced fruit with silky tannins on the long finish. If I would have tasted it blind I would have guessed it to be a Bordeaux.
This past Saturday I took a road trip to Philadelphia to attend the 11th annual Philly Wine Fest. The event was held at the Lincoln Financial Field located at the AT&T sports complex which is about a fifteen minute subway ride south of the city center. This past week in New York some of the big wine magazines such as the Wine Spectator, The Wine Enthusiast, and Wine & Spirits Magazine had tastings. I missed those events so I thought I would make up for that with this event in Philly since many of the vendors who participated at the magazine events participated at the Philly event as well.
Since this was a huge event I decided to focus on red wines and since the last few tastings I attended I drank mostly European wines, I made sure the first part of the tasting would be spent sampling California wines.
I started the day off to a good start by trying the wines from Pahlmeyer Winery. Their 2008 Merlot Napa Valley was big with chocolate and velvety fruit and good structure while their 2008 Proprietary Red Napa Valley had a nose of mint with tighter fruit than the Merlot. Ridge Vineyards poured a few of their reds. I enjoyed the 2009 York Creek Zinfandel, not a jammy Zin but tight and silky with a balanced finish. The Ridge Monte Bello Cabernet Sauvignon blend is always outstanding and the 2006 that was poured had a nose of plums and black cherries with a lush mouthfeel, though I thought the finish could have been longer.
Shafer Vineyard poured the 2008 One Point Nine Cabernet Sauvignon which was very concentrated but I though the wine needed some more time for the components to come together, would love to taste it in a few years after it had time to settle down. From Caymus Vineyards the 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection was outstanding, my notes had liquid velvet, chocolate with a long finish. The 2008 Rubicon from Inglenook was black,dense and chewy with good balance.
Beaulieu Vineyards poured a few of their wines. The 2008 Tapestry Reserve was dark and concentrated with tight fruit and a firm finish. The 2008 George de Latour Cabernet Private Reserve was dark and concentrated with silky fruit and a great balance with a good grip on the long finish. Louis Martini’s 2008 Monte Rosso Sonoma Valley Cabernet Sauvignon had a closed nose but a mouthful of silky, dusty fruit and a long finish. Joseph Phelps Winery poured their 2009 Napa Valley Cabernet which had tight fruit, good grip and a dusty finish. Their 2008 “Insignia” had a nose of plums, very tightly put together with a mouthful of tannins on the finish.
When they opened the event for the consumers at 5:00 they finally served some food and they poured wines that were not available during the trade portion of the tasting. I know I said I would stick to California wines but they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. I liked the 2004 Bodegas Muga Gran Reserva “Prado Enea“, which had a great nose of damp earth, excellent mid palate with nice balance. The 2005 Muga Rioja “Torre Muga” was made in a more new world style with dense, black, sweet fruit and nicely balanced. They brought out some of the heavy hitters for the vip consumer tasting and I had the opportunity to try wines such as the 2009 Chateau Palmer and the 2009 Chateau Mouton Rothschild. The Palmer was silky with great balance while theRothschild had a big nose of green olives with velvety fruit. I was a little disappointed with the 2007 Chateau Petrus. I don’t know if it was from the high expectations I had for the wine or for the fact that I spent the afternoon drinking fruit forward new world Cabernet and Merlot. I thought the Petrus had a big nose and a long finish but the fruit was very tight and light. They also poured the 2007 Penfolds Grange which had a big nose with great balance and a long finish.
Overall it was a very good tasting.