5/20/2015

Quick Sip: Montes Alpha 2012 Syrah

Hello Friends,

Today’s Quick Sip is the Montes Alpha 2012 Syrah from the Colchagua Valley in Chile. Located south of the capital city of Santiago, the Colchagua Valley, largely recognized for its red wines, is a well-known and regarded wine-growing appellation in Chile’s central valley. I had an opportunity to review this Syrah for a recent #SommChat Twitter tasting featuring Montes Alpha’s chief winemaker Aurelio Montes Sr. In celebration of “Earth Day,” Aurelio took time to tell us about Montes Winery as well as their new dry farming initiative.

Already adhering to sustainable agricultural practices since their founding in 1988; and certified under the Wines of Chile Sustainable Code, Montes Winery was compelled to do more. Realizing rainwater is a precious resource; and being responsible caretakers of the land, Montes Winery started a viticulture project in 2009. They began studying the impact of varying levels of vine irrigation on grape growth. Their findings proved significant; demonstrating that dry farming – which simply means the vineyard does not receive any irrigation -- improved the final quality of their wines. Aurelio notes, “We have seen in several tasting panels that through dry farming, we increase the concentration and final quality of the wines.” He added, “We get more ripe fruit, and more weight in the mouth, decreasing the use of water up to 65%.”



Montes’ dry farmed wines were introduced with the 2012 line-up of Alpha wines -- all produced from their Marchigüe and Apalta estates in Colchagua.  The Montes Alpha 2012 Syrah, which retails for $21.99, can be found online for $14.99 and represents very good value for the money. It is inky, shows good concentration and depth, and is harmonious in the mouth – hitting all the right notes. I recommend seeking some out this grilling season! For further information and where you can find this wine, please see my tasting notes below.

Review: Montes Alpha 2012 Syrah (SRP $21.99):  A deep, dark purple color, this aromatic Syrah is appealing and expansive in character, offering a mouth-filling medley of ripe blueberries, blackberries, and plum flavors joined by subtle notes of mocha spice, vanilla bean, and floral nuances. It is full and round in the mouth, with fine integrated tannins and enough acidity to lift the fruit and support the richness; providing wonderful balance. The finish is medium-long, fruit-driven, and satisfying. A more than pleasing solitary sipper, this is also an excellent selection to have on-hand at your next backyard cookout – think gourmet burgers, grilled red meats, or lamb chops!  Region: Colchagua Valley, Chile. Other info: ABV 14.5%, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Viognier, yields 2.8 tons per acre, 55% barrel aged for 12 months in French oak barrels with 1, 2, or 3 uses, cork enclosure). Rating: 90 Points. Click here to find this wine.

I would like to thank Montes Winery and Feast PR for their time and invitation to the Earth Day virtual tasting. Cheers!

Have a question about this post? Feel free to drop me an e-mail at myvinespot@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. Stay tuned ...more to come. Happy Sipping, my friends! Disclosure: This wine was provided for review. Thoughts are my own.

Live, Love, Laugh, Tweet, Sip, Enjoy!

5/11/2015

Quick Sip: Château Miraval Côtes de Provence 2014 Rosé

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Hello Friends,

There is something about summer that makes a well-chilled bottle of rosé a very attractive option. I keep a significant number of drier examples in my sipping rotation year-round. After all, real men not only drink pink, but enjoy the pink drink through all four seasons. But during the warmer months in particular, the interest in rosé reaches an all-time high -- refreshing and satisfying the drinking needs of many. The wine’s fresh flavors and mouth-watering acidity make it one of the most food-friendly and versatile wines you can sip, bar none. This brings me to the Château Miraval Côtes de Provence 2014 Rosé; a very pretty wine – packaging included -- that emphasizes delicacy, brightness, and nuance.

Besides the cognac-like bottle and attractive packaging, what also draws attention to this Provencal rosé are its Hollywood A-List owners. Chateau Miraval is a joint venture between Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, and the Perrin family of Château de Beaucastel. The 1,000-acre estate, of which approximately 150 acres are planted to wine grapes, has been home to the couple since 2008. While some consumers purchase wines with their eyes (i.e., wine labels) and others are influenced by celebrity, this Côtes de Provence rosé stands on its own merits. It retails for $30, but can be found over at Cork-Exclusive for $21.99 with free shipping. I plan on adding several bottles to my warm weather sipping rack.  For further information and a link to this deal, please see my tasting notes.

Château Miraval Côtes de Provence 2014 Rosé

Review: Château Miraval Côtes de Provence 2014 Rosé ($30): A blend of Cinsault, Grenache, Syrah and Rolle, this rosé, which is characterized by freshness, brightness and subtlety, pours a pale salmon-pink color. Muted aromas of white stone fruits, rhubarb, crushed rose petal, hay, and underlying streaks of dried herbs extend to the palate; offering a slender and streamlined mouth-feel enlivened by a firm backbone of acidity. The flavors are sedate, yet well-balanced, with nothing particularly standing out. The wine finishes with a medium-long, acid-driven dry finish. Overall, this Provencal rosé is a warm weather essential that tops the charts for versatility and food-friendliness. Enjoy a bottle or three with friends this spring and summer over picnic or lunch fare. Region: Côtes de Provence, France. Other info: ABV 13%, vinified in stainless steel vats (95%) and barrels (5%) with bâtonnage, cork enclosure). Rating: 90 Points.

Click here to find this wine. It has a suggested retail price of $30 and is available for as low as $21.99 on CorkExclusive with FREE SHIPPING on any size order.

This review is sponsored by: 

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Get the Château Miraval Côtes de Provence 2014 Rosé for just $21.99 with FREE SHIPPING on any order!"


Have a question about this post? Feel free to drop me an e-mail at myvinespot@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. Stay tuned -- more to come. Happy Sipping, my friends! Disclosure: This wine was provided for review. Thoughts are my own.

Live, Love, Laugh, Tweet, Sip, Enjoy!

5/04/2015

Quick Sip: Oak Farm Vineyards 2014 Sauvignon Blanc

Hello Friends,

Today’s Quick Sip is Oak Farm Vineyards’ 2014 Sauvignon Blanc. Oak Farm is a 70 acre historical estate that dates back to the 1860's. The property’s founder, William DeVries, had a fondness for trees, particularly oaks, and many towering oaks from centuries back still stand on the property today. In 2004, the Panella family purchased Oak Farm. They opened the doors to their beautiful new tasting room in 2009. Managing partner Dan Panella tells me, “It's been steadily growing ever since!”

The grapes for this wine were sourced from Mohr-Fry Ranches and certified by Lodi Rules as sustainably grown. Mohr-Fry Ranches is another significant Lodi gem, whose agricultural history dates back to the 1850’s. I visited the property with a media group last spring and had an opportunity to learn about the fourth and fifth generation family-owned operation and walk through a Zinfandel block [pictured] where plantings date back to 1901.

Oak Farm Vineyards 2014 Sauvignon Blanc  

"Driven in pursuit of perfecting the wines of the Lodi appellation, we work to bring you one great glass of wine," reads the top right corner of the attractive wine label. I guess you can say mission accomplished, as this delightfully fresh and well-crafted Sauvignon Blanc, which captures an aura of spring, is ideal for warm weather sipping and a natural partner for lighter lunch and picnic fare. For further information and where you can find this wine, please see my tasting notes below.

Mohr-Fry Ranches: Own-rooted, head trained Zinfandel vines dating back to 1901 

Review: Oak Farm Vineyards 2014 Sauvignon Blanc  (SRP $19.00): A brilliant pale straw color, this Sauvignon Blanc offers vibrant aromas and flavors suggestive of lemongrass, citrus blossom, and melon with a whisper of fresh-cut grass. In the mouth, it is pure, fresh, and sleek with full, juicy flavors enlivened by mouth-watering acidity; ending in a crisp and clean medium-long finish. This wine is both versatile and extremely food-friendly, partnering nicely with anything from a warm and sunny spring or summer day to the winery’s food recommendations of goat cheese and crackers, oysters, Caesar salad, and pesto based pasta dishes. Approximately 229 cases of this wine were produced. Region: Lodi, California. Other info: ABV 13.5%, 100% Sauvignon Blanc, 100% stainless, cork enclosure). Rating: 89 Points. Click here to find this wine. 

I would like to thank Lodi Wine and Charles Communication for their time and invitation to the Earth Day virtual tasting. Always a grape time tasting and tweeting with you folks!

Have a question about this post? Feel free to drop me an e-mail at myvinespot@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. Stay tuned ...more to come. Happy Sipping, my friends! Disclosure: This wine was provided for review. Thoughts are my own.

Live, Love, Laugh, Tweet, Sip, Enjoy!

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