Saturday, February 18, 2006

Wine Tasting Treat

1998 Chateau La Fleur-Petrus, Pomerol -- This half-full bottle magically appeared in my car last night after a trip to Sake Bomb (famous for the flaming shots, but you don't need to bring your own blow torch as they have one there!). I would guess this wine retails for north of $150.

Last night when tasting I got aromas and flavors of cedar and pencil shavings. Very elegant and very long finish. A compelling wine! This wine should only get better over the next ten years.

The Chateau is situated between Lafleur and Petrus and is planted mostly in Merlot with 10% Cabernet Franc. The wines are aged in small oak barriques (50% new) for 18 months.

See, it pays to show up for the wine tastings on cold, wintery Saturdays sometime as you never know what might show up.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Guinness Blog

I'm not sure where they are going with this, but Guinness now has a blog. To enter you have to game the system and tell the site you are from England, not Other Countries, to gain access. (You can lie about your age too!)

What better way to end the week, and start the week-end, than enjoying a view of a cool, not cold, glass of Guinness!

Well, we could go grab one at the local pub, but it's a bit early this morning!

Have a nice day!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Stormhoek Is Coming

Question: How do you get a bunch of people all over the world talking about a new winery from South Africa run by a bunch of unknowns before the wine is even in the marketplace?

Answer: the blog-o-sphere, of course.

Details: We will be rolling out the product in Cincinnati on Derby Day, May 6th. Details to follow!

Le Cigare Volant

2003 Bonny Doon, Le Cigare Volant ($18 for 375ml) -- Red Wine, California. 35% Mourvedre, 32% Syrah, 26% Grenache, 7% Cinsault. This is a Chateauneuf-du-Pape style from Bonny Doon Vineyards in Santa Cruz. I am guessing that they sourced the grapes from multiple locations which explains the California desigation. I did not find production notes on the 2003 vintage. Here is some really important details from the site:

History: Yah, sure we now occupy a commanding eye-level outpost in the Rhône section of your tonier fine wine shops, but ‘twas not always so, at least not in April 1986 when the first vintage—1984—was released. Le Cigare Volant®, the one, the original, the inaugural Cryptoneuf-du-Pape to rise from the vineyards of California, first alighted a little off to the side of the “Other” section in the domestic aisle of the American bottle shop. The initial epiphany which seemed so heretical, so alien, in those dark times now strikes as elementary, utterly self-evident: the California climate is far more similar to the Mediterranean coast than it is to Bordeaux or Burgundy. Named after the dirigible or cigare-shaped UFOs seen over the vineyards of Châteauneuf-du-Pape in the southern Rhône Valley, Le Cigare Volant—literally, “The Flying Cigare”—pays homage not only to the wines of that celebrated appellation, but to all forays into the world of the magical and unknown.

This is a balanced, full-fruit wine with a smooth medium finish. An independent wine rep and I both declared this wine to be very "delicious" in a scholarly review of this wine. But I have to deduct style points here as the nose is lacking somewhat (this, while I watch the Men's Figure Skating Short Programs!)

Tuesday, February 14, 2006


2001 Cave de Tain, Hermitage ($65/33) -- Half-off at Pho Paris on Monday Night. Big aromas, balanced fruit, long finish, best with food, but very enjoyable with appetizers and Tina the bartender.

If this were an American wine the producers name would be in bold and the region would be in sub-titles, but this is French so the region is foremost.

PS: JK Carriere is coming to town in May for a Pinot dinner. If you had to pick one wine dinner to go to this year, this is the one. Oregon is THE Pinot region, and Jim Prosser is considered one of the best and is a friend of Jeff's (FOJ). Call Jeff at 513-871-1234 to make a reservation. Seating is limited to 35 (well, 34 now!).

Bon appetite!

Monday, February 13, 2006

A Class Act

This is a classy and surefire way to get a great meal at your local 4 star restaurant. It helps if you know the chef and manager, and are in the "business", and I would suggest trying this on a Monday or Tuesday, but not on Saturday or Friday.

Walk in, get a table and immediately send a bottle of Vintage Rose Champagne back to the kitchen for the chef and his staff. (The Rose says you are not afraid to order whatever you want and are wine-savy to know that it goes well with all foods, the Vintage says you are not cheap, and the Champagne says you are here to have some fun!)

I can guarantee that you will get a SPECTACULAR meal. Try it sometime.