Thursday, February 08, 2007


When the cork is pushed out more than half way, we have a problem. This is how the wines arrived after I removed the capsules. One of the bottles had even leaked.

This is why it is wise not to have your wine shipped in winter when it is 10 degrees. When FedEx showed up today to drop off a few deliveries, the driver laughed and said, "Oh, you're open today!" The last two days have been Snow Days here in Cincinnati with 6 inches of snow and lows of 6 degrees.

So my wine shipments have been hanging out in the back of a FedEx truck for two days. Ouch!!

The guys at took care of this within hours of being notified as they offered full credit for the damaged goods.

Next time, wait till Spring to load up on those wine bargains from out of state! One Chicago shipper offered to hold off until Spring to ship as did J K Carriere from Oregon.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Australian Shiraz

2004 John Duval, Entity ($42) -- Barrosa Valley, Australia . 750 cases produced. I almost selected this wine for Wine Blogging Wednesday, but decided to savor this tremendous wine during last night's snow storm and today's Snow Day without rushing to post my review. If you think the kids are having a blast today, I managed to go skiing this morning with my son, play tennis with Polly, and now we are off to the Playhouse in an hour or so for dinner and a play. Unfortunately, I doubt the wine selection will be as fine as Chez Jens'.

As many of you know John Duval was the winemaker for Penfolds Grange during the 80's and 90's. It is outstanding that for about $40, one can experience such a master winemaker.

In the meantime, I am finishing off the remnants of last night's bottle. I very much like the Plexus, but I may have found a new favorite. This wine reminds me of a dense, intense Cote-Rotie or Hermitage because of its elegance. Strength and beauty in one. Also, it was still going strong the next day without any extaordinary preservation methods. (It sat on the bar with a cork in it.)

Parker raved about this wine. I leave it up to you to figure the points awarded. (For those that dislike the whole 100 point scoring system, I suggest posting his reviews without the numbers!):

"The 2004 Entity (100% Shiraz) is even more profound than the Plexus. Its opaque purple color is accompanied by a magical, sweet creme de cassis, blackberry, camphor, espresso roast, and subtle wood-scented perfume. A fabulous attack, voluptuous, full-bodied mid-palate, multi-layered texture and finish suggest this brilliant Shiraz should drink beautifully for 12-15+ years."

Wine Blogging Wednesday -- #30

What: WBW is the international internet wine tasting event held monthly. Lenn, a proud new father, is the mastermind. Details and past postings are here.

Host/Hostess: This month's event is hosted by Tim at Winecast.

Theme: New World Syrah

The Wine: 2001 Finca Flichman, Paisaje de Barrancas ($16)

This is Tupungato's little sister, also from Mendoza, Argentina. I raved about finding a bottle of Tupungato last week when I found a six-pack in the back closet. Sadly, there was no more at the warehouse. The Barrancas is more refined and subtle as it is a blend of Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon (75/20/5) fermented in stainless steel, aged 12 months in new French and American oak (50/50).

Moderate but alluring nose, with soft, round complex fruit flavors and a medium finish. Would be great with food. If you can find some, give it a swirl!

Lately I have been on a Syrah kick as I find it is a great food wine and each region and winemaker can bring out a range of expressions in the wine. It is complex and approachable when young and evolves in your glass after several hours.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Superbowl Wine

2003 Weingut Robert Weil, Riesling ($30) -- Rheingau, Kabinett Halbtrocken. I know, I know almost any wine will do here given the range of food options (and 90% of the population will scream for beer), but I am going to a party thrown by a wine store owner. I was tempted to bring the 2002 Lynch Bages, but I don't think subtlety works well at these events.

I think the Riesling is an inspired choice as the first wine to start the activities in a few hours, and two hours before the actual kick-off. Chilled slightly, with steel and minerality and enough sugar to ward off the meanest guacamole dip.

Later, I will segue to a Petite Sirah by Rosenblum. The concept again is to go with a wine that can take on any food thrown at it. Come on, let's see what the salsa and nachos got today. This is our house! And if there are any steak sandwiches, we're talking touchdown!

Now, if only da Bears can make it an interesting game in the second half!