Category Archives: Wine

Wine review – Wente 1883 Cabernet Sauvignon – 2013

This is a celebratory blend to commemorate the formation of two

great American Icons in both grocers and wine making.   Kroger and Wente both found their way onto the scene in America during the year 1883 and have had a bit of a partnership as Icons in their respective industries.

I’ll be honest.  Much of what I’m seeing in the grocery stores that passes for wines from California does little to thrill me.  Perhaps it’s years of living in the Bay Area and having access to much of the wine up front, or having access to inexpensive wines that were under priced.

The Wente Cab isn’t a bad Cabernet.  Fruit flavors and cherry from the get go start off the wine.  It’s a deep red in color.  The nose of this wine is light, but the berry tartness can be picked up easily.  The wine has a mellow flavor, almost like that mulled wine flavor I keep picking up in CA wines that I buy from the grocer.  I did manage to pair it with tritip from the cast iron, and that helped.

This is not a disparaging review by any means.  I have had a ton of wines from California (particularly from Underground Cellar and Firstleaf)  and this wine serves as an excellent table wine with friends.

Underwood cellars sparkling NV Rose

It’s nice to go where they remember you even after you haven’t visited in eons!  I picked up another can of wine.  Yes, you read that right.  

Underwood Cellars is located in Oregon and is part of the Union Wine Company. 

The folks at Wahoo Wine and Provisions keep Underwood Cellars cans of wine in stock and out of my own natural curiosity I had to try one.  I’ve had the Cabernet Savignon, the Pinot Noir and now I’m trying the Sparkling Rose.

I have to be honest.  The snob in me is disgusted LOL!

PInk Sparkling Rose…

But honestly?  This is one of the better cans of wine I’ve had in a long time. In fact, for a rose, since I’m not overly fond of those to begin with, it was pretty tasty.  The nose was typical, but the flavors were lingering tart cherry, blueberry and almost a candy heart sugariness that’s oddly light and refreshing.

I’ll go back for the other two cans mentioned and do reviews on them when I can.

The bubbles are light and approachable without being too dry

Big takeaway here?  Oregon is known for stellar Pinots.  But wine in a can?

Blew my mind too, but remember, a can of wine is HALF A BOTTLE haha!

Wine review: 9 mile road langhorne creek Shiraz 2013

This is another hit from First Leaf Wine Club.  I’ve been enjoying the half case shipments when I could pick them up and I think you’ll enjoy them too. Unlike my preferred Underground Cellar, Firstleaf is a curated wine program in the more traditional sense of the word – that is, you buy in and are sent wine at specified time periods.

Deep red in color, slight purple tinge. The nose is mostly berry and herbaceous, but once the wine opens up, the herbal notes tone down just a bit. I was pleasantly surprised to not get hit in the face with typical, strong pepper notes from Shiraz, this wine is softer than that.

The flavor is very herbaceous, but hints of pepper, cherry and vanilla come through. Medium long finish and enjoyed with pepper steak and roasted garlic potatoes.

When things settle in for me I’ll start posting about the various wine regions I’m getting bottles from. I think you’ll be excited, just as I am!

Wine Review: Pigeon Hill Winery Shiraz Cabernet 2016

Another FirstLeaf selection, and the last from my last shipment, this wine was equally as impressive as the other five bottles drank and reviewed.  Our offering today is from South Eastern Australia and is an 80/20% mix of Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon.

Pigeon Hill 2016 Shiraz-Cab

The wine has a very faint nose with hints of berry. Swirling the wine brings the berry flavors up. The wine has almost a deep purple tint to it.

The first sip confirms it. Sweet berries and hints of oak come together in a lush mouthfeel that leaves a lingering medium finish on the palate.  As the wine reaches room temperature, the berries become more pronounced, almost like cherry but with less tartness and a touch of spice.

Overall, another solid offering from First Leaf.

Wine Review: Le Douleur Exquise 2016

This wine from the region of Bergerac, France was pretty stellar I have to say. Taking it on the back of another, full bodied red from Australia showed that it had power behind it, without being overwhelming.

Oh, this was a selection sent from FirstLeaf.

The wine was almost a combination between straw and gold, with a beautiful bouquet of rich limestone, slight hints of grapefruit and of course, the typical heat from wine.

Very strong mineral notes. Upon taking the first sip, limestone and grapefruit hit my tongue along with those mineral notes I’d mentioned. Very tasty.  This wine is fairly supple and feels good in the mouth with enough weight that it could be a summer sipper or pair well with fish in the fall.

The breakdown:

60% Sauvignon Blanc
30% Semillon (surprised I didn’t get any herbaceous notes)
10% Muscadelle

A fantastic wine overall.

 

Wine review: Isolani 2016 Pinot Blanc

I picked up this wine from First Leaf wine club along with two others which are resting now. The advertisement said the wind would retail for over 25 bucks at least so I was a little skeptical because the only one program I’ve found so far has been underground cellar.

And I love everything Underground Cellar has sent me.

Anyway this was the first time I’ve ever had a Pinot blog and it was from 2016 Monterey California. And it was pretty amazing. It started off with a really fresh nose with hints of grapefruit. The wine was pale yellow, but the text. The taste was chalky, very very minerally, slightly off dry with a medium finish. Perfect for summertime