Sometimes I’m not able to attend one of the many trade tastings in town so I go to where the tastings happen and sometimes they happen at a wine shop. Most wine shops will have some sort of tasting, usually on a Saturday but with three or so wines to sample. At times they will have their “Grand Tastings” in the shop where the various distributors of wines and spirits will pour some of the wines in their portfolio. On Saturday I attended one of those tastings at the Post Wine & Spirits located in Syosset. After taking the wrong bus and a brisk two-mile walk, I made it to the event and threw myself into the tasting. Some cheese and crackers were served and there was a glass or two of decent juice to be had. The wines were grouped at tables by the importers who distribute the wines.
Some of what I liked:Whites:
2012 Starmont Sauvignon Blanc (Napa Valley). Very grassy nose with moderate fruit, balanced acidity.
2011 Starmont Chardonnay (Napa Valley). Light gold with tropical fruits on the nose with toasty fruit and good balance.
2011 Le Renard Bourgogne Blanc (Burgundy). Yellow with a greenish tint with a nose of white flowers and slight tropical fruit, medium bodied with some sweetness at the finish.
2011 Naveran Brut (Spain). A nice Cava, greenish tint, dry and crisp with notes of green apple on the finish.Reds:
2011 David Bruce Pinot Noir (Sonoma Coast). Medium red with cola, cinnamon and spices on the nose with moderate, dusty fruit, a bit tart but good mouth-feel.
2008 Heitz Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley). Dark red to black with a big nose of crushed red fruit and mint and was tight and smokey with firm acids and a moderate to long finish.
2010 Clos du Val Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley). Dark red with a beautiful nose of bell pepper, slate and mint with concentrated mineral fruit with great balance on the long finish. Very nice.
2009 Merryvale Cabernet Sauvignon. (Napa Valley). Dark red to black with smoky dark fruits and chocolate on the nose and was chunky and dusty with gritty mouth-feel and balance. Very good.
2011 Flora Springs Merlot (Napa Valley). Dark red with notes of smoke and red plums on the nose and fruit with moderate to long finish and good balance.
2009 Confidences de Prieure Lichine (Bordeaux). Black in color with stewed fruit on the nose and was chewy and minty with good balance and a long finish.
2010 St. Cosme Chateauneauf du Pape (Rhone). Dark red to black with notes of tobacco, bacon and crushed black fruit with firm and balanced finish.
2011 Errazuriz Estate Cabernet Sauvignon (Chile). Dark red with a nose of bay leaf and bell pepper with good fruit and some mint notes on the long finish. Some heat but good budget Cab.
2011 Decero Malbec (Argentina). Black in color with a nose of ripe black fruit and was juicy and concentrated with dusty slate on the balanced finish though some heat.
2010 Argiolas Costera (Sardinia) Dark red with red cherry and smoke on the nose with firm, dusty fruit.
2009 Silvio Grasso Barolo (Piedmont). Dark amber with a brown robe and a nose of cigar-box and camphor with big dusty fruit of crushed berries with silky tannin on the finish.
2009 Felisina Chianti Classico Riserva “Rancia” (Piedmont). 100% Sangiovese, dark amber with a nose of stewed fruit and mint with tight, dusty and velvety fruit with firm acids at the finish.