Life itself is the proper
"....eat thy bread with joy, and drink thy wine with a merry heart..."
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Reds worth cellaring...Cabs, Pinots, Other
B.E.'s Cellar Notes
Special Aged Wines: B.E.'s Discoveries
Virginia/North Carolina: B.E.'s Discoveries
Interesting Links: see Other Interests
Wine Books for Wine Lovers
see B.E.'s Wine Tips
Articles by B.E. see B.E. in print
Starting a Wine Cellar: B.E.'s Wine Tips
Wines for aging: see B.E. Cellar Notes
B.E. on organic and biodynamic wines
|BEST BUYS FOR
Dry Creek Heritage Vines Zinfandel 2016 Dry Creek Valley $16-19**+ One of the best values in quality Zins--black fruit flavors of ripe berries (think black raspberry), hints of black pepper, lively and well-balanced, juicy and vibrant. Excellent value.
Rodney Strong Vyds Upshot Red Blend 2015 Sonoma $18-22** Fruit-driven red dominated by Zinfandel, so lots of ripe-berry flavors. Sturdy, meaty red recommended for roast or grilled meats and savory cheese dishes. Very drinkable now but will develop further with 3-5 years.
Terrazas de los Andes Malbec 2015 Argentina $15-18**+ Succulent black fruit flavors make this a smacking good red. Warm and generous; excellent value.
Domaine Guy Farges 2014 Saint-Joseph Rhône Valley $23-29**+ Among my favorite Rhône reds--some go for much more but this one, with its lovely rich berry flavors, is an excellent value; well-balanced and elegant, and quite drinkable now. An excellent choice for roast or grilled meats. Check it out at A Southern Season--the 2015 should be in market soon.
PINOT NOIR: Often my first pick for roast fowl--chicken, turkey, quail, game hens. Lighter ones rather than big tannic ones are the best choices, and among appellations to look for are these: Sonoma Coast, Burgundy's Chorey-les-Beaune, Santenay and Côte Haute-de Beaune offer affordable choices.
More full-bodied Pinots will also work with roast fowl, such as Pommard, Volnay, Chambolle Musigny from Burgundy--especially good choices for roast duck or goose. Your wallet can decide this, since Burgundies are expensive, but it's hard to beat their warmth of flavor and character. Meantime:
Paris Valley Road Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 California $12.99**+ Hard to find a young Cabernet with character and flavor but not overwhelmed by tannin- I strongly recommend this one--with fruit sourced from the warm Paso Robles region of the central coast it teems with generous ripe-berry flavors. Very drinkable. Great value!
Fento Bico da Ran Albariño 2016 Rias Baxias, Spain $15-18*** Hard to find, but surely the best Albariño I've tasted recently--dry, enticingly crisp and flavorful, with bright notes of citrus and a hint of spice. Available on line.
Mount Eden Chardonnay 2015 Edna Valley $23-34***+ Don't say you don't like Chardonnay until you've tasted this one! Rich, intense flavors of toasted nuts, buttery apples, lemon zest, very nicely balanced with a deft touch of oak. Lingering finish very appealing--lovely with the likes of turbot or halibut with butter-sauteed mushrooms.
Hugel Classic Riesling 2015 Alsace*** $19-23 If you want to know what a classic, pure dry Riesling is, buy this wine! Aromatic, with hints of floral and mineral, superbly balanced, with an acidity that gives it great verve, and fruit that is enticing.
Château Graville-Lacoste 2015 Bordeaux $15*** An excellent white Bordeaux, balanced and graceful; this blend of sauvignon blanc and sémillon has a broader flavor profile of stony citrus, very clean, a superb choice for fish and seafood.
Steininger Gruner Veltliner 2015 Austria $14-17*** Very nicely balanced and flavorful--crisp, dry, a hint of mineral, excellent length.
King Estate Pinot Gris 2015 Oregon $15-18** Dry with some richness of honeyed pear flavors--a very affordable choice for roast turkey, also game hens.
Le Paradou Viognier 2016 Languedoc-Rousillon $15** Appealing floral fragrance, nice and fresh crispness. An excellent aperitif.
always have one on ice, just in case. And a great way to
launch a fine dinner:
Gloria Ferrer Brut Rosé Carneros **+ $20-29 This sparkler--the flaming color of sunset--is lively and crisp with bright berryish accents. Made from pinot noir, a grape that excels in the cool Carneros region of Sonoma County. A charmer.
Domaine Chandon Blanc de Noirs NV, California, $18-22**+ Tiny bubbles, bright, clean fruit, dry and quite delicious. Keep this sparkler on hand as a great aperitif, year-round. I've tasted this wine several times with great pleasure. An excellent value, too.
Mumm Brut Prestige Napa Valley $19**+ It's dry but the bright hints of peach and vibrant citrus whet the appetite with effervescent appeal. Also excellent value.