Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Country Rose' by Galena Wine Cellars for under $15

This wine is made from the Catawba grape and is classified as a semi-sweet wine. The confusion may be that the alternative to the semi-sweet is dry, but this wine is not dry at all, it is tart which makes it only semi-sweet. Catawba is used a lot in Illinois wines and from previously blogs you will note that generally it is made into a sweet wine versus a semi-sweet. I find this wine best on the first day you open it and more tart after it sat in the refrigerator for 2 days. I think this was my fault not the wines, I could have pumped it, but I thought with the screw top, which I love, it would be fine. I thought it was more tart 2 days later, but still very light and fun. I think this is a great summer wine, and very good wine for Easter that is coming up this weekend. This wine is also a great brunch wine, and I would definitely buy it again.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

American Frizzante di Muscat Canelli by Galena Cellars under $15 in Geneva, Il

I love the wines made by Galena Cellars and when we went to Geneva we obviously needed to go to Galena Cellars. We did not need to join their case club, but they have a lot of great wine and I was getting very low on wine. This wine is less sweet than a Moscato d'Asti, but still has that touch of sweetness that keeps it from the dry Champagne class or Brut class. This wine would be considered more of demi-sec, and I liked the sparkling Muscat Canelli a lot better then the non-sparkling Muscat Canelli. You can't beat the selection and the prices on the wines at this winery. I will be blogging on them a lot in the future, I just bought a case of their wine, so I have to recommend if you are in the area head up to Galena Wine Cellars in Geneva.

2009 Innocent Bystander Moscato out of Austrailia 375 ml for $10 at Gibby's Wine Den

This wine came in a half bottle with a bottle top that made it look like a large bottle of pop. According to my better half, this was a pink Moscato d'Asti out of Austrailia. I thought it was good, just a little too sweet for me, but my better half made quick work of the pop bottle of sweet bubbly. We picked up this wine at Gibby's Wine Den in Geneva when we decided this last Saturday to taste wine for the day. A very cute store, with a lot of different wines, however, some is quite pricey compared to a Binnys or a Costco, but the offered a tasting of about 4 wines, were extremely friendly and had some unique wines that only are available at their store. They have some wine tastings for $10 that we may check out in the future also.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Brazilio under $10 at Vintages

I brought this wine for dinner with friends at an Italian Restaurant, and it was fantastic. This wine is a blend of grapes from Brazil that were just bursting with fruit flavors with no tannic aftertaste. My friends are more about drinking than talking about the wine, but this wine was really a crowd pleaser for me. My better half that it was dry, I just did not taste any dryness. I will definitely be buying this wine again, and would consider making this wine one of my house reds, since it seemed to be so versatile.

LuLu Island Late Harvest Merlot $21 at the winery in Vancouver 375ml

This wine totally smells of cranberry, but is much sweeter than a cranberry wine. My better half told me that this county is the largest producer of cranberries in the world so we are wondering if the soil was previously used for cranberries. This wine is sweet and good, but at this price tag, I would not be buying it on a regular basis. However, this is the only late harvest Merlot I have ever tasted and I like it just not enough for this price tag.

Line 39 2007 North Coast Petite Sirah for under $10 at Binnys

This wine was your typical Petite Sirah fruity with some tannins on the finish. This wine was a little too dry for my palate, and not enough fruit on the initial sip. This wine is best with food preferably with pizza or red meat. I just found this wine to be very unmemorable. I would not buy it again, one of my least favorite Petite Sirahs.

Monday, March 22, 2010

2007 Conundrum 375ml for $7 at Binnys

This wine was a half bottle on sale in the dessert section of Binnys so I wrongly assumed this was a desert wine. No such luck, this wine is a white table wine like it says on the bottle. The wine tastes like a Viognier full of orange, peach, pineapple flavors without much acidity. I thought the wine was good overall, however, my better half thought it tasted better the second day because the first day he thought it was awful. Honestly, I think it was his mood that was awful, not the wine. Well, I think this wine would go well with a chicken or fish dish as long as the preparation did not surround butter and was more of a fruit flavor, like Orange Chicken. Overall, I am glad we only bought the half bottle because this is a relatively expensive wine and we would not make this our first choice.

2007 Debortoli Austrailian Petite Syrah at Binnys for under $10

This Petite Syrah was the wine I know and love, versus the Petite Syrah that I just had and hated. This wine has very little oak, ripe, jammy fruits. This wine went well on its own and would go with any type of red meat or pasta dish. Again, this Petite Syrah was a very good every day red that I could drink without any problems on weekly basis. The wine has good fruit is very versatile with mild tannins and an inexpensive price tag.

2006 Chateau Suau Sauternes for $20 at Costco

For our love of sweet wines, you would think that we would have tried a Sauternes before now, but generally they are really pricey and I am not a big fan of French wines. However, a full bottle versus the half bottle of a sweet wine for $20 is a good price all around and so we picked it up with some reservations. This wine is totally smooth with flavors of apricot and honey. The wine could have probably aged longer, but our curiosity won out, and we were not disappointed. The wine is golden in color with some legs, but is not sickenly sweet as people may think about Sauternes. I would definitely buy this wine again it is a fantastic desser wine that would go great with flan or any type of custard dish. Of course, on its own it was a joy also.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

2007 Petite Syrah by Concannon Conservancy for under $10 at Binnys

This wine had a bad topper on it when I closed the refrigerator door, so most of this wine found its way to the floor. I was not disappointed, this wine was one of the worst Petite Syrahs of all time if not the worst. The wine had no fruit flavors and a extremely bitter aftertaste that would remind me of tar. I lauged at the back of the bottle that said it was smooth and silky finish, this wine was terrible, enough said.

2008 Gewertz-I am abbreviating because I have misspelled it previously of the LuLu Winery in Vancouver, Canada for around $18

My boyfriend picked this wine up while he was in Vancouver for work over the Winter Olympics. I found it to be ok, I am not a huge fan of the lychee flavor of the Gewertz. I found the wine to be very smooth without the acidity I generally relate to a Gewertz, and my better half really enjoyed the wine. I thought this would pair well with spicy food and was ok on its own with its fruit and lychee flavors. Also, this wine did not have the spiciness I also associate with a Gewertz. At this price, the wine would have to needed to be exceptional, but if you like Gewertz I believe you would like this wine.

2008 Cellar Masters Columbia Winery Riesling from Columbia Valley in Washington for under $10 at Binnys

This wine was a great value and a very good wine. This wine had a light sweetness and some good peach and apricot flavors. I found this to be a great sipping wine, not requiring food, just some lazy day time for relaxation. This wine would be classified as a Spatlese if made in Germany and is overall a very good wine for the money. This wine does not have exceptional depth or character, but great summer fruit flavors with some pineapple and very little acidity and some sweetness to make this a very quick bottle of wine.

Monday, March 15, 2010

2007 Covey Run Riesling from Columbia Valley for about $10

Well, we got lucky with the first 2 Rieslings that we bought without tasting, but not this one. This one is made in an off-dry style and is too dry for me. There flavors of nectarines and peaches are on the aroma and some of the initial flavor, but the aftertaste is dry and a little flat to me. My better half did not like it either as the wine being more dry than off dry. We drank this with fried chicken which it did not pair well with, I think a sweeter more citrusy dish, but I won't be buying it again.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

2007 Lot 205 Petite Syrah out of California for $8 at Binnys

A very typical Petite Syrah with big fruit up front and some slight tannins on the back. A lot of cherry notes and some tobacco qualities. This wine is a great every day red, I paired it with Italian sausage, cheese, and chocolate. The wine did not pair very well with chocolate, much better with the Italian sausage. At this price, this wine is not a hard sell, if you like Petite Syrah, need an every day house red this would be a good choice.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

2009 Fess Parker Santa Barbara County Riesling around $10 at Binnys

After the last 2 bottles of white wine, I was nervous about trying this wine. I bought the wine because Fess Parker has gotten such good reviews in the past. I thought this wine was delicious, a touch of sweetness, but not too sweet, I am not a fan of a Riesling that lacks some of the effervescence. This wine has the flavors of orange and pineapple without any acidity. This wine was great on its own, I am definitely going to buy this wine again, it is a great summer wine and would go great with barbeque. I only saved a swallow for my better half since he was out of town, but I am sure he will be pleasantly surprised.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

2008 Cline Viognier for $8.49 from Binnys

I bought this wine because I liked the Cline Zinfandel, and I made a mistake. This wine required food. This wine is extremely dry and acidic. Generally, Viognier has great aroma with orange, and honeysuckle, this wine did not have much of an aroma. I found the wine too acidic to taste the fruit flavors. I am very picky about Viognier because generally I like a fruiter style that is not crisp which is synonomous with acidic. So I have learned a lesson this last weekend, grapes and blends were I generally like the exception versus the rule I need to taste first.

2006 Ne-go-ciant a White Wine Blend from Napa Valley

This wine was reduced from $16 to $6 at Binnys and was proclaimed to be a combination of select barrels. I thought this wine was going to be good, but I was dead wrong. This wine required food and being that pizza was on the order for the day it did not go well. I could not taste the flavors of this wine described on the back of the bottle. The wine was extremely acidic, dry, without any fruit flavors. This wine seemed to have a heavy dose of chardonnay, and overall was nothing I would ever buy again. My better half states that I am not allowed to buy any more white blends without trying them first. I also have to stop thinking that a reduction in price is always a good thing.

2005 Ashland Park Cabernet Sauvignon for $10 at Binnys

This wine retailed for $25 so when it was reduced to $10, I decided to try it. We used this wine to make a crock pot recipe with beef from a magazine. The beef was delicious and the meal paired with this wine was perfect. The wine on its own was very tannic and dry, but with the tender beef the cherry and smoky flavors of the wine came through without the harsh tannins. I would drink this wine again with food, not without and preferably with a heavy, saucier type beef dish like the one we had that evening.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

2007 Red Tree Petite Syrah out of California for under $10 at Binnys

My better half was out of town and my wine stock was down to 3 bottles so I headed to Binnys with my 15% off and bought a case of my favorite grapes. This wine is very smooth, bursting on the first sip with cherry flavors almost reminiscent of a Pinot Noir. I thought this wine was very fruity and had only a touch of black pepper on the finish. The wine went better with cheese than with chocolate, but was very good on its own which is how I like my wine most of the time. I would definitely buy this again, bring it to dinner party, it was light enough for a summer barbeque. This wine was very versatile and at this price point really an unbelievable value.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Fresavino for $20 in the Dessert Wine Club at Lynfred or it is $35

We have never bought this wine before because before we were in the Dessert/Sparkling wine club it was $35, but since we are in this wine club we get if for $20. This wine is a Strawberry wine fortified with grape spirits to bring it to around 20% alcohol. The first taste is pure strawberry and I really like Lynfred's strawberry wine, however this wine is very strong to me one the aftertaste. I have a hard time with some of these foritified wines because they taste soo strong to me. I am going to try this wine with a chocolate covered strawberry in an attempt to cut some of alcohol taste from the wine. We will see, if you like a strawberry flavored port style wine this wine is perfect for you. I just find the wine a little strong for me.