Weekend Selection

Tags

, , ,

Miner Napa Valley Chardonnay 2014

Following a number of years spent working in the software industry, Dave Miner got his start in wine in 1993 as President of Oakville Ranch Vineyards, owned by his late uncle, Robert Miner. Having spent years as an enthusiastic wine consumer and collector, Dave had a natural affinity for the business. In 1998 Dave and Emily Miner, founded Miner Family Winery tucked along the eastern hills of the Oakville appellation in the heart of Napa Valley

Aged for 10 Months, 30% New French Oak, sunshine yellow with full concentrated stone fruit aromas. On the palate crisp apple, melon and citrus flavors with gentle toasty oak and lively acidity. Lingering finish ending with sweet notes, continued to get better to the end of the bottle.

Cheers!

Exceptional White

Tags

, , ,

Juvé y Camps Reserva De La Familia 2013 Cava

Juvé y Camps has been a family run company for three generations and has garnered an international reputation. Over two hundred years ago, Joan Juvé Mir, a bold and enterprising vine grower laid the foundations of what would become the family firm. He began the task which was carried on by his son, Antoni Juvé Escaiola, who, amongst other challenges, had to confront the effects of the terrible phylloxera plague. Advocating replanting, with other leading figures of the Penedes, he led a drive to restore the vineyards and to rebuild the wine production of the region. A man respected and loved by his contemporaries, his example encouraged his son, Joan Juvé Baqués, to build the family’s first winery. He married Teresa Camps Farré, an exceptional woman and an enthusiastic supporter who inspired her husband to launch, in 1921, the first sparkling wine under the “Juvé” brand. It was made in the underground cellars beneath the family home in San Sadurní d’Anoia.

Made from Macabeu, Xarel·lo and Parellada grapes, bright pale gold with a frothy creamy mousse, small plentiful bubbles with a steady stream. Aromas of apple and citrus with toasty notes. Well integrated, nice mouthfeel, elegant long finish. Great value as an exceptional alternative to French Champagne.

Cheers!

Cellar Selection

Tags

, , ,

Hartford Court Land’s Edge Vineyards Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2014

Hartford Family Winery was founded in 1994 as a result of Don and Jennifer Hartford’s appreciation for the wines, the people, and the unique vineyards near their Russian River Valley home. Located in the Sonoma County town of Forestville, the winery is about 15 miles from the cool Pacific Coast.

From a vineyard a few miles away from the Pacific Ocean and aged, in French Oak, about 1/3 new, deep ruby with black fruit aromas and earthy floral spice notes. On the palate, raspberry, black cherry and blueberry flavors, rich and complex with integrated spice and oak. Smooth tannins with good balance of juicy acidity has plenty of room to age. Lingering mineral finish, an outstanding wine.

Cheers!

Cellar Selection

Tags

,

Pacheca 20 Years Tawny Port

Quinta da Pacheca, one of the best known estates in the Douro region, was also one of the first properties to bottle wine under its own label. It is first mentioned in a document dated April 1738, where is it referred as “Pacheca’s”, because it was property of D. Mariana Pacheco Pereira.

Pacheca Porto Tawny 20 years old is a wine resulting from a blend of old cask aged ports matured at Quinta da Pacheca cool and tranquil cellar. With many years of ageing, the wine takes on its amber tawny color, with aromas of spice, nuts and oak. On the palate red fruit flavors, sweet, dried raisins and cacao with nice mouthfeel, smooth and complex. Rich and elegant lingering with a pleasant nuttiness, ending with honey and oak notes. This wine was a gift from a former colleague, Amandio, a native of Portugal, who brought back this gem from one of his trips back home.  Obrigato!

Cheers!

Weekend Selection

Tags

, , ,

Nickel & Nickel 2012 Merlot Suscol Ranch

Nickel & Nickel winery, located in Oakville, Napa Valley, produces 100 percent varietal, single-vineyard wines that express the distinct personality of each vineyard. Established by the partners of Far Niente in 1997, Nickel & Nickel is focused on producing single-vineyard wines from the appellation’s most significant vineyards. Construction of a cutting-edge winery facility housed within a vintage 1880s farmstead was completed in the summer of 2003, when the winery officially opened to the public. Merlot is often thought of as the little brother of Cabernet Sauvignon and the two varietals are frequently blended together. Yet, when grown in the right places, Merlot makes an exquisite wine all on its own. I’m tasting one of the three identified Napa Valley vineyards that show entirely different expressions of 100 percent varietal, single-vineyard Merlot.

Opening a bottle of their 2012 Suscol Ranch Merlot, aged for 17 months on French oak (52% new), showing beautiful fresh aromas of dark fruits and berries with a gentle cedar notes. On the palate juicy fresh fruit, plum and blackberry with toasty oak, white pepper and earthy tones, very unique flavor. Smooth tannins, well balanced on a lingering finish great now but cellar will benefit.

Cheers!

Weekend Selection

Tags

, , ,

David Bruce 2014 Sonoma County Pinot Noir

The David Bruce Winery was founded in the remote Santa Cruz Mountains in the early 1960’s and was one of the first of a new generation of wineries that would lead a modern resurgence of premium winemaking in the region. David Bruce Winery has earned an international reputation throughout its nearly four decades for its dedication to producing the greatest pinot noir in the world. In pursuit of his goal, the winery has adhered to traditional European winemaking practices that trace their lineage back to the early pioneers of winemaking in the Santa Cruz Mountains and Santa Clara Valley. David Bruce Winery has also been at the forefront of efforts to develop innovative new methods that have changed the face of winemaking in California.

The 2014 Sonoma County Pinot Noir had bright ruby and complex red berry fruit aromas with sweet earthy spice. The palate shows cherry, tart raspberry and strawberry flavors with citrus notes, pepper and nuttiness. The finish develops some toasty oak notes, minerality with firm tannins, well balanced coming together. Consistent quality year after year! A good value Pinot as retail is around $30, rivals some $50 bottles.

Cheers!

Weekend Selection

Tags

, , , ,

Louis M. Martini Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley 2014

In 1900, at age 13, Louis Martini emigrates from his native Genoa, Italy to the U.S., where he joins his father, a fisherman, in San Francisco.  In 1906, Louis makes his first wine alongside his father, who wisely sends him back to Italy to hone his craft and study winemaking at the university in Alba (Piedmont). In 1911, Louis returns to CA where he makes his first martini wine. In 1922, Louis forms the L.M. Martini Grape Products Company, producing sacramental and medicinal wine in the Prohibition-era. In 1933, Louis puts down roots in Napa, one of the original 5 wineries founded in 1933 after Prohibition. In 1933, Louis forms the Napa Valley Vintners Association. In 1952, Louis crafted his first luxury Cabernet, with a practice that continues today. In 1953, Louis P. takes over for his father, and in 1977, Mike Martini steps into the leadership of the family winery. In 2002 the Gallo family purchases the winery.

A blend of 98% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Petite Sirah, aged 16 months in 50% new French and American casks, a big wine that is very approachable for a 2014. Dense Ruby with black fruit aromas, earthy herb scents and soft spice. On the palate sweet fruits, cherry and currants, with licorice, tobacco and cacao notes on soft tannins, very well balanced. Lingering finish ending with earthy wood characteristics, very nice and has lots of room for cellaring. Only 11,000 cases so I bought a few bottles to set down, check back in a few years!

Cheers!

Cellar Selection

Tags

, ,

Campillo 2001 Gran Reserva

Bodegas Campillo represents the culmination of the accumulated experience of four generations of winemakers who sought a site at the heart of Rioja Alavesa.  Laguardia. Strategically placed in a location in which all key factors: altitude, climate, soil and terrain are ideally suited for growing grapes and ageing their wines. Juilio Faustino Martínez always had the dream of creating a winery surrounded by vineyards, thus transforming the concept of château to the land of Rioja wine. To this end he started his project by acquiring 35 hectares of land near Laguardia in the 1980s which were later expanded to 50. After several years, in 1988, everything was ready to build the winery, even its name: “Campillo”, like the first family estate. The architect Aurelio Ibarrondo Fragüela was responsible for the design. In September 1990, this dream came true.

I found my last bottle in the cellar! Deep Ruby red color with aromas of black and red fruit, with a soft cedar fragrance. This 100% Tempranillo wine, from 100-Year Old vines, was aged for 24 months in French oak barrels. The palate shows flavors of ripe red cherries, dried fruit, cacao and tobacco. The wine showed plenty of acidity and round tannins, giving the wine good structure.  This full-bodied wine had a long finish leaving with some oak and earthy mineral ending.  A Pleasure!  Still has room to age!

Cheers!

Cellar Selection

Tags

, , , , ,

Chateau Fleur Cardinale Grand Cru 2012

Interesting!!!!…..The idea suddenly came to them late one evening just as they were about to fall asleep. It suddenly caught their imaginations. They mulled it over for a few minutes, but then decided no…it wasn’t realistic. Days later that idea was still in their minds. It just wouldn’t go away. They hinted at it to others, who smiled in approval. It was a daring idea perhaps, but there are times when you want to believe, and nothing will stop you. They decided to pursue it. It was Florence Decoster, the present owner, who first nurtured that idea and brought it to fruition in the year 2000. Her husband, Dominique, having just completed the sale of his Limoges porcelain business, Haviland, had his doubts. “And now buy a vineyard?” he wondered slightly perplexed. But slowly the idea grew on him, and finally Florence and Dominique, both of them lovers of nature and fine dining, became enamored with their new plan. Arriving for the first time at the Château Fleur Cardinale estate, which is located on a limestone plateau just a few miles from the historic village of Saint-Emilion, Florence and Dominique were amazed by the beauty of the place and its surrounding countryside. They acquired the property in May 2001.

Aged for about 18 months in French oak (100% new) with a blend of 75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. Classic Bordeaux bouquet of rich black fruits and earthy spice. On the palate blackberry and black cherry flavors with leather, gentle herbs and smoky notes. Round firm tannins, elegant, but needs more time to refine, with nice acidity balance from start to finish. Lingering finish ending with earthy mineral tones. Wait a bit on this one!

Cheers!

Cellar Selection

Tags

, ,

Badia a Coltibuono 2008 Chianti Classico Riserva

For around a century and a half the name and history of the Stucchi Prinetti family has been linked with Badia a Coltibuono. It was in fact in 1846 that one of the family’s forbearers, the Florentine banker Guido Giuntini, acquired the beautiful Romanesque structure and the surrounding farms. Thanks to his complete dedication the entire property began to flourish and survived the second world war virtually intact. After the war, Piero Stucchi Prinetti, the son of Maria Luisa Stucchi Giuntini, took charge of the property. It was thanks to his intelligence, energy and managerial skills that Coltibuono was transformed into a modern estate. He began to bottle and sell the best vintages of the estate’s Chianti Classico, both on the domestic and international markets. Until then, these wines had been laid down in the ancient cellars of the Abbey as the family’s private reserves. Again, he was the first to realize the potential of another traditional product of the region, its extra virgin olive oil. Piero Stucchi Prinetti passed away in 2002. Over the years his children became involved in the running of the estate. Emanuela Stucchi Prinetti began working at Coltibuono in the early eighties taking care of public relations and marketing. She also assisted her mother, Lorenza de’ Medici, in the running of cooking courses and wrote a number of cookery books that have been translated into many languages. In July, 2000, Emanuela (pictured below) was the first woman to be elected as President of the Marchio Storico del Chianti Classico. Today, she manages Coltibuono assisted by her three brothers.

I attended a private wine tasting a few years ago where Emanuela Stucchi was pourng some of her gems. She was kind enough to autograph a 2008 Chianti Classico Riserva. I kept this in my cellar and decided it was time to open this bottle.

Ruby with garnet edges, aromas of berry fruit, spice, oak and tobacco emanated from my glass. The palate showed mature flavors of cherry, berry and plum, almost sweet, with soft well developed tannins, well balanced with acidity. The finish was long and satisfying ending with some oak and earthy tones. Probably difficult to find a 2008, but if you do, this Riserva is tasting great now.

Cheers!