Tuesday, August 23, 2016

2011 Alamos Malbec Seleccion

Happy Tuesday!  Today I had a most pleasant surprise when I arrived at the office, as my boss left me a case of wine!  Now granted it was his "reject" wines, various bottles that he's purchased and didn't really like, so I will happily be his waste bin!  Tonight I've opened one of the bottles he gave me, the 2011 Alamos Malbec Seleccion, a 100% Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina, so let's see how this reject wine does!


The wine has a classic Malbec look, with a deep inky center and bright ruby along the edges.  The nose presents pleasant aromas of black plum and accents of leather and tar.  The taste is a rather subdued Argentine Malbec with just a bit if black fruit up front that transitions to some earthy mineral notes midpalate, only to have a reprise of ripe black fruit at the finish.  The wine expresses some bright acidity and relatively mellow tannins supporting a long, smooth, dry finish.

Overall, I would rate this wine a solid 8, as it's a pleasant drinking wine that would be ideal for a hearty steak.  And it just so happens I have one of those lying around, so tonight I'm enjoying this wine with a rare grilled filet mignon with some grilled corn and steamed sugar snap peas that I picked up at a farmers market last week.  Cheers!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

2013 Seven Hills Walla Walla Cabernet Sauvignon

Happy Sunday!  I  got a few things done today, including mowing the lawn and doing a load of laundry, so now I'm ready to relax a bit.  I've decided to treat myself today and open a nice bottle of 2013 Seven Hills Walla Walla Cabernet Sauvignon. Now I remember tasting this at the winery last year (I think?) and it was pretty good, so let's see how it is now!


The wine is a deep, inky purple at the center with bright ruby along the edges.  The nose presents aromas of blackberry, blueberry and plum accented by some leather and graphite with just a hint of lavender.  The taste is classic Walla Walla cabernet, with a blast of ripe black fruit up front that transitions to some wonderful notes of dark chocolate and blueberry midpalate.  There is a good bit of limestone minerality on the finish, as the wonderfully structured tannins provide for the long, smooth and exceptionally dry finish.

Overall, I would rate this wine a solid 9, as it's a favorite wine from one of my favorite producers in one of my favorite regions.  This wine would be ideal with hearty meat dishes or southern Italian dishes.  Tonight, I am enjoying this wine with a classic Midwest summer dinner of a rare grilled Angus bone-in ribeye, along with some grilled sweet corn (I bought yesterday from a farmer in Beecher, Illinois) and some grilled Brussels sprouts.  Cheers!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

2009 Viansa Reserve Red Wine

Happy Tuesday!  We had an immense amount of rain yesterday (anywhere from 7 to 10 inches!) and tonight I want to celebrate since I can grill again.  So I've decided to open a bottle I recently received from Wines Till Sold Out, the 2009 Viansa Reserve Red Wine from Sonoma County.  This wine is a blend of Merlot (47%), Sangiovese (29%), Cabernet Franc (14%), Dolcetto (8%), Tinta Cao (1%) and Tempranillo (1%), so let's see how this blend stacks up!


The wine is a somewhat lighter, ruby color in the glass with great clarity, reflecting the impact of the Sangiovese and Dolcetto.  The nose presents aromas of leather, blackberry, fig and earthy minerals with just a hint of red floral notes over the top.  The taste is quite nice, with a rush of cherry and plum up front that transitions nicely to some notes of anise, leather and dusty limestone midpalate.  Although my first impression was that this is a remarkably Tuscan style blend, I was surprised that each of the varietals add their own imprint to the complexity of the wine, pepper spice from the Sangiovese, ripe red fruit from the Merlot, wonderful minerality from the Cabernet Franc and a bit of sweet black fruit from the Dolcetto.  The tannins are nicely integrated, forming the backbone of the long, smooth dry finish.

Overall, I would rate this wine a solid 8, as it's a pleasant drinking wine and a terrific value at just $14!  Despite the complexity, it's also a food friendly wine that would pair well with anything from pizza and pasta to roasts and steaks.  Tonight I am enjoying this wine with a rare grilled prime ribcap along with roasted fingerling potatoes and grilled Brussels sprouts.  Cheers!