October Wines of the Month
It’s October and what a gorgeous day today is!
It’s also nearly Halloween and I thought I’d have fun and try to find good wines with labels and/or names that fit the holiday……it took a little poking around and we found some true gems……you’ll love the wines AND the labels!
Tier One ($8-$15/bottle)
The White Fun-house Pinot Grigio 2008 (Australia) $11.99 – This is a dry, crisp PG with some nice juicy fruit to it! Aromas of white and yellow flowers, green apples and pears. Flavors of ripe white peaches, melons and apples. Finishes clean and crisp. Food pairing – salads, lighter appetizers, shellfish, light, creamy cheeses, a “go-to” wine for a party!
Renegade Wine Co. Red 2008 (Washington) $12.99 – This is a delicious, medium-bodied red blend. Long finish. Lots of black and red berries in the aromas and flavors. Notes of earth and licorice in the wine as well as Provencal herbs. Fine, dusty tannins and nice minerals at the finish. It’s a blend of 39% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Cabernet Franc, 13% Grenache and 9% Syrah. The grapes are from the Horse Heaven Hill AVA; specifically, they come from the Canoe Ridge Vineyard, one of Washington’s best vineyards. The wine sees about a year in oak barrels (20% are new). This is a “second” label for Sleight of Hand (Tier 2 wines). Food pairing – grilled steak, grilled pork chops or pork tenderloin, baby back ribs.
Both of these wines are from a wonderful tiny winery in Walla Walla, WA, Sleight of Hand Wines.
Trey Busch, the winemaker, is a young guy with lots of passion and skill. He makes wine in small batches and he makes it well!
The original labels for The Spellbinder and The Magician were created by Mike Klay, rock poster artist extraordinaire.
Sleight of Hand "The Magician" Gewurztraminer 2009 (Washington) $17.99 – Aromas and flavors of ripe pears, minerals and white flowers. This has just a hint of sweetness and great acidity tie it all together and keep the wine bright, fresh and crisp. Mostly Gewurz with a little Riesling from two vineyards, 60% Evergreen vineyard and 40% Pheasant Hill Vineyard. Food pairing - Great wine with a tropical/Asian "fusion" dish. Drinks wonderfully well on its own! Gewurz is a pairing with Thanksgiving Wines! Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, 88 points
Sleight of Hand "Spellbinder" Red Blend 2008 (Washington) $19.99 - we showed an earlier vintage of this wine a couple of years ago at a tasting. It's now been in the bottle for a couple of years and, while it was good 2 years ago, it's SMOKIN' good now! This is packed with fruit (raspberry, blueberry and a little brambliness) and has great baking spices and peppery spice. The tannins are really soft and fine-grained. This is a blend....42% Cabernet Franc, 21% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Syrah, 12% Merlot and 11% Sangiovese blend from one of Doug & Cat's current favorite winemakers, Trey Busch. Aged 11 months in neutral French oak barrels. Food pairing – grilled red meat, duck confit, beef stew and strong cheeses. Drinks well with or without food.
Wakatake Onikoroshi “Demon Slayer” Junmai Sake (Japan) $28.99 – This is a rich, full-bodied Sake that may be served chilled or warm. The aromas include fresh bread, melons, flowers, alcohol (this is pleasant and doesn’t sting). Flavors of pears, minerals, melons and a pleasant earthiness. You taste the alcohol, but it’s nice. Food pairing – sushi.
Orin Swift “The Prisoner” 2008 (California) $35.99 – This is a BIG, bodacious, smooth, rich, powerful, BIG red wine! This is a MOUTHFUL of wine! Black, red, blue fruits……lots of pepper and spice…..a little earth and herbs. Soft tannins. This is a heady wine and at 15.2% alcohol, it packs a punch, but you don’t notice the alcohol heat. Blend of 46% Zinfandel, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest is Syrah, Petite Sirah, Charbono and Grenache. Food pairing – Big meals. Steak. Lamb. Wine Spectator, 92 points; Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, 90 points