Looking for the perfect wine to bring the hosts, or just that special bottle to give as a gift? The four selected wines this week will fit the bill. This is the first in our special series of tastings in December. The wines will blow you away and the flight is just an amazing value.
Sample the flight for $10!
2017 Dr. Loosen “Blue Slate” Kabinett Riesling; $19.99
It is my goal to keep pushing the comfort zone of people to try and make people consider wines they may never have in the past. Riesling is considered by many Sommeliers to be the most complex grape varietal in the world, and I am definitely on that list. The Rieslings of Ernst Loosen are (to me…) some of the best tasting wines on earth. The slight sweetness of these wines makes them the perfect dinner pairing to go with something spicy, seafood(especially sushi), salads, or even some pork.
(About German Labels) This is a Pradikatswein (noted on label). To qualify for this designation the grapes must come from one of the 13 designated districts in this case Mosel, and among many other regulations they can not add sugar to this wine. Any residual sugar is just naturally occurring post fermentation. The wines are then labeled based on ripeness level at the time of harvest. The longer the grapes are on the vine the riper they get and develop more sugars. Kabinett refers to the first harvest, these wines are clean, crisp, and just a bit sweet. If you have questions about this and want to chat… always love to talk about it.
The most important thing German Riesling has that can't be matched is acidity. The additional acidity makes your mouth water, it lightens the sweetness allowing for a clean refreshing finish without a lingering sugary note. The name “Blue Slate” actually refers to the soil these vines are grown in. It gives the wine a complex flinty minerality that balances nicely with the LOADS of fruit. Lots of vibrant white peaches, limes, honeysuckle and so much more. - $2.00 Sample
LO-VE Garnacha #5; $19.99
Winemaker Arthur O'Connor fell in love with Rioja when he first visited in 2006. During the harvest season, seasonal workers would bring their trailers to the area as temporary housing. The license plates which indicate the region of Spain they are registered read LO-VE in Rioja. The capitol city, Logrono is represented by the LO and the VE is for Vehiculo Especial. Arthur thought the homage it paid to the area and his passion for their wines, LOVE was the perfect name for his new wine project.
Instead of vintages his wines are numbered by batches. Each batch will vary just a bit with vineyard sources, but they also frequently blend a touch of Tempranillo into this wine and #5 is no exception with about 5%. I love the rich fruitiness that Garnacha brings. The cranberry and bright cherry are a wonderful compliment with about any poultry. The wine is rich and velvety without much tannin. There is some lovely depth to the wine with aromas of violets and lavender. - $2.00 Sample
2015 Vina Cobos “Cocodrilo” Corte; $29.99
Refereed to as the Steve Jobs of Wine, Winemaker Paul Hobbs is the huge personality behind Vina Cobos. With 40 years of experience in wineries he is now one of the most influential wine consultants in the world working with Simi, Opus One, Catena and many others.
The “Crocodile” is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Cabernet Franc. It is a very different beast than many of the California red blends. The high 3000+ft elevation gives great sunshine for ripening, but offers cool air for the development of balanced acidity and body. The fruit hits you first with notes of blueberries and blackberries followed by some chocolate and spice. Soft sweet tannins deliver a long lingering finish. - $3.00 Sample
2015 Scattered Peaks Cabernet Sauvignon; $39.99
Napa Valley, California
Scattered Peaks is a wine project between two of the most prominent figures of Napa Valley; Derek Benham and Joel Aiken. Derek's first booming success came in 1990 when he and his brother Courtney founded Codera Wine Group and launch the Blackstone Merlot brand. Since then he has created some of the most successful wine brands in the world including Mark West, Avalon, Raeburn, Calista and Flint and Steel. He now owns and manages Purple Wine & Spirits which still includes some of the mentioned brands along with now Scattered Peaks. Joel Aiken has a much more concise history, but no less prestigious. In 1985 at the age of 28 Joel was named the Winemaker at Beaulieu Vineyard(BV) which led to a 27 year career at the winery. He was involved in evolving the BV wines to some of the most awarded in Napa (Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon & Tapestry Red Blend). He even served at the President of the Napa Valley Vintners from 2001-2006.
The Relationships that Derek and Joel have developed over the years have allowed them to source some of the best Napa Valley fruit there is to offer. Man this wine is good. In May, Decanter awarded it a Platinum Medal at the World Wine Awards giving it 97points. It is the FOURTH highest rated Napa Valley wine under $100 on Wine.com.
“Scattered Peaks offers intense black and red fruit aromas bolstered by hints of mountain sage and a touch of anise. On the palate, dark brooding fruit flavors of black cherry and cassis mingle with essence of black licorice and violets as well as espresso and dark chocolate notes. Firm and silky tannins and a touch of vanilla support the long, lingering finish of this classic Napa Valley Cabernet.” Joel Aiken, Winemaker - $4.00 Sample