Friday, June 18th
3:30 – 7:30pm
10% off all wines at the tasting!
Doug’s Table – Redneck Riviera Tasting
Doug and I are both from the South and we’ve joked about doing a tasting where we pair wines with what we sometimes call "redneck" foods…….so, that’s what we are doing for part of this tasting!
Ferrari Brut (Italy) $21.99 – – This is a “Metodo Classico” sparkling wine. That means it is made in the same way Champagne is made. The bubbles come from a secondary fermentation in the bottle. Hot dogs and “Champagne” are a great pairing!
From Trentino in the far north, Ferrari was first made in 1902 when Giulio Ferrari started this winery. He had studied winemaking in France and was convinced that the northeastern part of Italy could produce world-class Champagne-method sparkling wines. The wine is produced following strict Champagne-like methods. The vines are about 30 years old. The Chardonnay grapes are hand-harvested. This winery has consistently won awards since 1906 and it is a perennial winner of “Tre Bicchieri” (Three Glasses) – the highest Italian wine award. The wine has great bubbles and aromas of lemons, fresh bread and herbs. Flavors of crisp apples, pears, toast and lemons.
Samantha Star Chardonnay 2007 (California) $14.99 – Wonderful Chardonnay from the Santa Lucia Highlands near Monterey! Aromas of pineapple, tropical fruits, coconut & banana. Medium-bodied, clean and crisp style. Flavors of peaches, apples, bananas & a hint of toasty oak. Long crisp, soft finish. Sam Balderas is the winemaker (he’s been the winemaker at Robert Talbott Vineyards since 1984; in 1997 his 1990 Chardonnay earned 100 points from Wine Spectator). Fermented in stainless steel & aged in neutral oak barrels. Not oaky. Food pairing – chicken, duck, salmon, lobster and creamy pasta dishes. Drinks well on its own! The creaminess of the Chardonnay goes perfectly with the salty oiliness of the potato chip!
Big Fire Pinot Noir 2007 (Oregon) $15.99 - The winemaker, Rob Stuart, says this wine is like a ripe plum - juicy, fruity & delicious. He’s right & he’s wrong – it’s got a little earth & spice to it as well. It’s not a “fruitbomb.” Aromas and flavors of raspberries, cherries, cranberries, plums and a little earth & spice! Everything nice! Food pairing – jambalaya with shrimp, pasta with roasted tomatoes, mushroom and/or sausage pizza, a burger. Pork Rinds (maybe Vienna sausages). Lots of ripe fruit in this wine…..perfect with pork rinds. Hugh Johnson, Wall Street Journal, “Top 12 Wine Buys of the Year”
Mas de la Dam Rouge 2006 (France) $18.99 - - It tastes like Provence! Big, full-bodied, spicy, with notes of herbs. Deep, dark color. Big fruit in the nose & flavors. I tasted this 24 hours after it was first opened & it was great. When it was first opened it was tight with BIG tannins for the 1st hour. Certified organic. Biodynamic. Blend of Grenache & Syrah. Most importantly, it’s excellent wine! Food pairing - Great with grilled meats, roasts, mushroom dishes and just drinking! Decant this! Smoked, pulled pork…..I’m going to smoke a couple of pork shoulders (Boston butts) over wood coals….and we’ll have Eastern North Carolina Sauce and Western North Carolina Sauce.
Quinta do Portal Tawny Port – Excellent Tawny Port! Rich nutty aromas of walnuts, almonds and caramel. Similar flavors with hints of red berries. Smooth and rich! Long, lingering nutty finish! Tawny Port will last about a month after opening. Food pairing - Great as an aperitif with nuts, olives and paté. Awesome with sweet desserts. Serve slightly chilled rather than at room temperature (20+ minutes in the fridge). Quinta do Portal is unusual among Port producers – it has always been owned by Portuguese; most of the other producers have a British heritage. This is the perfect upscale redneck dessert! You need to dip your ‘Nilla wafer into the Port!
Cat’s Table – GREAT Summer Wines
This will be the more mature table.
Grand Cassagne Rosé 2009 (France) $11.99 - – Fabulous dry rosé! Aromas of strawberries, dark cherries, herbs and anise. Rich flavors of strawberries, minerals & sweet herbs. Soft texture. Light-to-medium-bodied. Dry & beautiful! Hint of pepper at the finish. Dianne Puymorin purchased the estate in 1998. She farms biodynamically & strictly limits yield/acre. 100% destemmed grapes. Blend - 60% Grenache, 35% Syrah & 5% Mourvèdre Food pairing – Great with roasted or grilled chicken & pork. Great as a cocktail wine! Drink young!
Tomero Torrontes 2009 (Argentina) $12.99 - This is AWESOME! Rich, vibrant texture and feel when you are sipping it…..lush and smooth. Finishes with a nice crispness. Aromas and flavors of white flowers, roses, oranges, tropical fruit. This has a nice zippy acidity to it. POPS in your mouth at the start and then finishes smooth and easy! 100% Torrontes. Stainless steel fermentation. Food pairing - seafood, poultry…..lobster…..shellfish….drinks well without food.
Nessa Albarinho 2009 (Spain) $15.99 - This is delicious! Spain’s best wine wine grape! Albariño! Wonderful aromas of peaches, pears, citrus, flowers & minerals. Flavors of white peaches, minerals & a wonderful, zippy acidity that has a.little saline quality to it! It's medium-bodied & dry. Estate grown grapes. Stainless steel fermentation. Aged 1 month on lees to soften the texture. Rias Baixas is in the NW corner of Spain. These vineyards are near the ocean. Food pairing - Great paired with fresh Maine seafood, especially shellfish!
Campos de Risca Monastrell 2008 (Spain) $9.99 – Great little friendly barbecue wine! This is bright, fresh and flavorful! Spicy, dark stewed fruit. New to Maine! 90% Monastrell (Mourvèdre in France) and 10% Syrah. 4,200 cases made. This part of Spain – the Spanish call it the Southeast – is near the southwestern Mediterranean coast of Spain. This area is exceptionally hot and dry. It takes a hardy, tough vine, such as Monastrell, to survive and flourish in this soil! Food pairing – grilled meats, pasta dishes, pizza. Wine Enthusiast, “Best Buy
Berger Zweigelt 2008 (Austria) $13.99 - Zweigelt is your classic red grape from Austria – it’s a hybrid cross of 2 other obscure grapes, Blaufrankisch (limburger) and Saint Laurent. Think of this as being along the lines of a Pinot Noir or a Dolcetto, before those wines started getting ideas of being “Syrah-like.” What I mean by that is Zweigelt, or Pinot and/or Dolcetto, is not meant to be a heavy, fruit-bomb of a wine. It should be elegant. Refined. But, complex….. Medium-bodied. Peppery. With spicy, dark and red fruit.
Vines on the Merrycrest Heart of Glass 2006 (California) $18.99 - When these wines first came into Maine a couple of years ago, they were good bit more expensive – this was $23.99. This is a true, family-owned and –run winery, founded by Victor Abascal in 2004. This wine is available in only FIVE states! Without a doubt, one thing I like about the Marycrest wines are rich aromas from the dominant grape! Grenache dominates the blend, so we get red berries in the nose - lots of strawberries & raspberries in the aromas and flavors. In the flavors the dark earth of the Syrah and the leather from the Mourvedre kick in...... Blend of 60% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 20% Mourvèdre. The Grenache vines are at least 50+ years-old. Small number of cases made. Food pairing – lamb, chicken, turkey, salmon, etc....