Ancient Peaks Sauvignon Blanc, Paso Robles, CA 2008 – $12
This was a very surprising and different style of Sauvignon Blanc than I am used to and chances are you will be pleasantly surprised too when you pop open this Sauvignon Blanc. Stylistically, it was more like an Italian Grecco Di Tufo, with great citrus and light green fruit flavors, a very mellow medium body mouthfeel, and a smooth clean lasting finish. This seems like a very well made wine, and doesn’t have the characteristics of “goosberry” or the herbaceous grassy qualities of a typical Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. It just goes to show you how different varietal wines can be when they come from different areas of the world, and are made by different winemakers.
Grenache/Syrah Blend Rose 2009 – $9 (Mystery Bottle)
This is a great inexpensive Rose with pretty big fruit, and a nice refreshing spritz fresh out of the bottle. Excellent served cold on a hot day. Will be a big hit at summer BBQs!
Tabali Pinot Noir, Limari, Chile 2008 – $18
Spicy, light to medium body red wine with aromas of boisenberry, oak, and red cherry. This wine spent 10 months in French oak, and has nice finesse reminiscent of a Beaune Burgundy, with new world spice making it a great Chilean value wine. My Pinot Noir preferences usually lean toward less new oak flavors, more fresh or aged unadulterated Pinot Noir fruit, but I found this to be an easy drinking, well balanced wine.
Ancient Peaks Cabernet Sauvignon, Paso Robles, CA – $18
I always have trouble finding good value Cabernet Sauvignon to recommend because there are so many inexpensive, decent ones to try, yet they all have their own styles, some heavier on the oak, some lighter styles, some more tannic, some easier drinking, and the list goes on… This wine was an easier drinking medium- full body Cabernet with rather soft tannins. It had the typical Black Currant aromas and flavors of a Cabernet Sauvignon, but it seems as if it could have some Merlot in the blend…not sure if it does though, but it just seemed too soft and friendly for a straight Cab. I don’t particularly think it was an excellent value wine, but it was good and worth talking about, it just didn’t have any really memorable qualities for me.
Saw Tooth Riesling, Idaho 2008 – $11
Finally we finished off the night with this very young and fresh Riesling from Idaho of all places! Since my expectations were low, I was very pleasantly surprised, and thought that this was a nice, off dry light dessert wine…though it would probably be served better as an apperetif. It had a little effervescence, or spritz, seemingly freshly bottled and a light, dry finish that was quite refreshing! I think it was a good value and a perfect cross between Riesling and Potatoes! 😉
It was a great way to celebrate Tony’s Birthday! I didn’t even mention the 2 bottles of Champagne we started with… but hey, it’s better if some things remain a mystery…