Saturday, April 19, 2014

Reviews and Ratings: *** ** $ Wyldewood Cellars Sweet Muscadine and Blueberry Wines

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Wyldewood Cellars.

By way of background, opening thoughts: Today we are doing two unusual things at the same time - First, we are sampling two Kansas-based (sweet) wines, from Wyldewood Cellars.  Second, we are sampling these wines at a point FAR beyond their intended drinking age.  The wines are not vintage-dated, but they were each purchased about nine years ago, making them almost a full decade old each.  They were cellared cool.


Original tasting and review : The first wine is Wyldewood Cellars Muscadine American Sweet Wine, Kansas, non-vintage, finished at 11% alcohol.

In the glass: Light pink and orange.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows bright, sweet peachy bubblegum notes.  From the aroma, seems like this will be simple and still lively.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact much as anticipated - lively, quite sweet, bright with bouncy candy-like peach and chewing gum flavors.  Perky acids that nicely balanced the sugars.

In summary: Overall, rates an easy and friendly three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.  At the bargain price point, this is a best value in the Spirit of Wine universe!
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Original tasting and review : This is Wyldewood Cellars Blueberry Sweet Wine, Kansas, non-vintage, finished at 11% alcohol.

In the glass:  Light brick, looks like a lighter port.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows bright, piercing and perky red/purple acids, quite distinctive.   From the aroma, seems like this will be very high-pitched.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact distinctive and unique as anticipated, showing a fresh brambly fruit quality with an odd, piercing fruit quality.  Finishes quick but clean.

In summary: Overall, rates two stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale, but with the recognition that few, if any, lower-alcohol blueberry wines were intended for 10 years of age.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Wyldewood Cellars.

(c) Copyright 2014 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Review: *** $$ Crossroads Winery Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand, 2007

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Crossroads Winery Sauvignon Blanc.

By way of background:  New Zealand is a classic region for sauvignon blanc.  What makes today's tasting a bit unique is the full seven years of aging between the vintage date and the first sampling.  Will it turn the sharp classic grasses and stainless steel of these wines into a whole new experience?


Original tasting and review : This is Crossroads Winery Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand, 2007, finished at 12.5% alcohol, first sampled in 2014.

In the glass: Light yellow with pale hints of olive and green.

On the nose: Poured at cool cellar temperature and swirled vigorously, shows grass and hay muddled with some light motor oil.  From the aroma, seems like this will be bright but layered.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact vibrantly flavorful grassy hay, layered with a very faint sugar wash.  Lemony acids draw the sip up into your cheeks after a long lag time.  There the sip sits for quite awhile, dripping a softer lemon candy finish.  This has held up gracefully to age and hasn't relinquished the classic elements of the terroir.

In summary: Overall, rates three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Crossroads Winery Sauvignon Blanc.

(c) Copyright 2014 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Sunday, April 13, 2014

Review: Chateau Faizeau Selection Vieilles Vignes, Montagne Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux, France, 2005

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Chateau Faizeau Selection Vieilles Vignes.

By way of background, opening thoughts: Montagne Saint-Emilion is one of the "satellite" appelations ringing around the most well-known base appelation of Saint-Emilion.  We are sampling a well regarded, modestly-priced offering from the region, cellared to nine years from vintage date.  This is consistent with Robert Parker's recommendation that the 2005 vintage of this offering would be good for a decade.

Original tasting and review : This is Chateau Faizeau Selection Vieilles Vignes, Montagne Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux, France, 2005, finished at 14.5% alcohol, quite a high number for this region.

In the glass: Deep, dusty mahogany blood red, opaque in the center.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows a woody and brambly element around the fruit.  From the aroma, this is definitely fully old-world in style, still shy but unfortunately with some cork showing.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact classic, both bright and bold.  The bright black raspberry feel of the fruit touches first at the tip of your tongue, then curls in your cheeks, releasing more of a blackberry than black raspberry flavor (but with the acidity of black raspberry).  A real grip of bright tannins attaches to your gums and holds fast for a full minute, slowly releasing its hold, very slowly.  The alcohol is not apparent, except as it adds power to the distinctive grip of this finish.

In summary: Because of the slight corking, I won't provide a  rating on the Spirit of Wine scale, but this seems to have the stuffing and layers to reach 3+ level or slightly better.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Chateau Faizeau Selection Vieilles Vignes.

(c) Copyright 2013 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Review: ***+ $$ Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, California, 2003 = GOOD VALUE

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon.

By way of background, opening thoughts:  I enjoyed the 2001 version of this Napa cabernet sauvignon, but found it lost liveliness by the time it attained eight years of age (see review here).  I'm taking a bigger chance now with the 2003 vintage, first sampling at a whopping 11 years from vintage date.

Original tasting and review : This is Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, California, 2003, finished at 14.5% alcohol.

In the glass: Deep mahogany with some brick.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows cedar, vanilla and black cherry.  From the aroma, seems like this will be a classic, but friendly, Napa cabernet style.  Aroma seems to be holding up well for the age.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact bold, lively, rich and robust, full of ripe blackberry fruit, but surrounded by some helpful tannin tautness.  Finishes softer, but sweet, rich and ultimately clean.

In summary: Overall, rates three stars with a plus for its friendly well-aged character on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale, making this a good value (not something easily achieved in Napa Valley offerings).

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon.

(c) Copyright 2013 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.