Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sequillo White 2006 ($12 on sale)

Swartland, South Africa

In an effort to bring more white wines into my repertoire, I saw this wine mentioned in a local wine store’s online newsletter. It intrigued me that it was a white blend I had not yet experienced. In the style of a southern French white blend using 60% Chenin Blanc, 20% Granache Blanc, 10% Roussane and 10% Viognier my desire to try this became impatient before the sale price was gone. You see the regular price on this wine is $20+ depending on where you find it online or in a local wine shop. Here is a link to seach your local wine store: Sequillo

2006 was the first vinification of this wine. With a wonderful golden color present in the glass the first aromas exploded with fragrant orange peel and pineapple. After letting the wine decant for about 20 minutes, the scent of honey began to come alive. The winemaker recommends 2 hours of decanting although I was quite happy after 20 minutes. Plus, I can’t wait 2 hours…can you? The first taste supported the nose with orange, honey and a hint of citrus. I would say this is a semi-sweet wine with a very clean taste on the palette. Served chilled (or I say cold) this is a pleasant summer time wine to sip with grilled seafood or even a light pasta dish.

Some simple “did you knows” about the wine are that 50% of the Chenin Blanc is fermented in stainless tanks and the remainder of the wine is vinified in French Oak barrels. The aging takes place in French oak as well and you won’t find this wine “over oaked” as some chardonnays have been forced in to over the past few years.

I honestly liked this as an alternative to a Sav. Blanc or Chardonnay although it is a bit sweeter. Give it a try and look for a sale!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Heritage Des Caves des Papes, Cotes-Du-Rhone ($11)


Its not often a good bottle from France is moderately priced however this selection truly impressed me. I had no information on the wine prior to buying and the only insight was from one of the wine store’s associates feeling the same as I did…”for eleven bucks, its worth trying.”

I can’t help but like various blends as mentioned in past postings and this one was quite nice complementing our dinner of grilled pork tenderloin, sauté pea pods & baby bella mushrooms & summer tomatoes w/ mozzarella over garlic toast. Sounds good enough to have again tonight with the rest of the bottle!

At first the aromas seemed a bit unpleasant yet after a few swirls in the glass, it began to open up with an earthiness accompanied by a woody scent. A subtle musty and green moss hint was present along with a slight anise tone. I know it sounds like a lot of smells but it really wasn’t that overpowering.

On the taste, a definite fruit forward flavor of blackberries and cherries was present with an faint oaky sensation on the mid palate. The wine finished with an nice spice and hint of smokiness. In general I’d say the vintage was well balanced, medium body with pleasant tannins and very easy drinking. Almost a lighter wine than I would have thought prior to opening.

For those of you curious, the wine is comprised of 3 classic grape varietals from the Rhone region in France. 70% Grenache (which holds the fruitiness), 25% Syrah (which brings on the spiciness) and 5% Mourvedre (which softens the wine).

This is one of the best deals I’ve found in a good French wine.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Neu Direction, Malbec 2005 ($11)

Mendoza, Argentina

To those of you following me, sorry it’s been a few weeks since my last posting. My “real” job took over but I haven’t forgotten you.

It’s no surprise that most of us are looking to find more “value wines” in today’s economy. Well it’s not hard to find a match between reasonably priced bottles and good wine. By reasonably priced lets just say under $20.

One of my recent findings was during a stroll through the wine aisle at Sam’s Club. I know, their prices “kill” the small wine shop but what can I say if something I decided to try turns out good. They especially deserve credit for many more reasons than price point on this Neu Direction Malbec.

On the nose (for those of you new to this that means smell or aromas) a hint of smokiness, must and maybe wet leaves was there. The flavors supported a light woody flavor, licorice and dark berries. I would characterize this wine as having a medium body with a slight spicy, chocolaty flavor on the finish. Once again, for those of you new here and in basic terms…”finish” is usually what you taste once the wine has left your mouth. – just keeping it “Simple Wine Talk”

This Malbec is a good everyday drinking red especially with grilled beef or pork. The great story behind the wine itself is that it’s a “Fair Trade” wine. In an excerpt taken from the link below:
The DIRECTION of the path is guided by Fair Trade, seeking to enrich the lives of vineyard workers, their families, and their communities. Fair Trade Certified™ directly supports a better life for farming families in the developing world through fair prices, community development and environmental stewardship.

For more information on this Fair Trade Wine see:
Organic Wine

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