Barn Blend

We finally drank our bottle of the 2006 Nelson Family Vineyards Barn Blend! This came in a club shipment in April, but I somehow neglected it. Matt and I were lucky enough to attend the barn blending party this year, you can see me playing mad winemaker in the picture below, but we unfortunately did not win. My love of Zinfandel led me to encourage my table to concoct a Zin heavy blend, while the two finalists were Cabernet Sauvignon heavy. As was the previous year’s winner.

The 2006 was a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Zinfandel, in order from greatest to least, though I either didn’t record the exact percentages or they weren’t available. It had a real cork closure, clocked in at 14.8% alcohol by volume and cost us $18.40.

On the nose I found currants, earth, leather, saddle room, spice, and cloves. And interesting mix and a complex nose that kept showing more as it aired. In the mouth the wine has mellowed from our tasting at the Barn Blend Party, but it still has it tannins. I found leather, berries, currants, cloves, and a hint of red raspberries. Overall the wine was very dark and I enjoyed it a lot now, it seems to have settled a bit and is coming into its own. A good value for a red blend!


Old Vines

I must admit, I’m never quite sure what “old vines” are. I know I’ve seen other bloggers debate this topic quite a bit. In this case the vines are all over 90 years old. (Sometimes I’ve seen “old vine” on 30 year old vines and that doesn’t make me happy, 30 isn’t old!)

Our wine for the evening was a 2004 Old Vine Seghesio Zinfandel. We picked this up on our visit to Seghesio in April, one of our stops along our Sonoma trip. The bottle cost us $33, a bit more than we normally spend, but I really liked this bottle of wine at the tasting. It had a real cork closure and clocked in at 15.3% alcohol by volume.

On the nose I found leather, raspberries, spice, and licorice.
In the mouth the wine showed raspberries and blackberries and just a touch of the licorice. Overall the wine was smooth and balanced, though slightly sharp on the finish. It’s drinking fairly well now, not sure if it will smooth out any more.

We drank it on it’s own, but my affinity for Zinfandel is to grill up a nice big steak. This one would have worked well with my steak and jam/wine reduction sauce.

Purple Beauty

The wine for the evening was a 2005 Quivira Mourvedre. You’ll be noticing lots of new wines around here as the shipments are pouring in from my wine clubs after a long summer break. Hopefully come April I’ll have a new selection of wineries for you as we are planning to head up to Calaveras County to visit El Jefe.

The wine had a real cork closure, clocked in at 14.4% alcohol by volume, came in a club shipment and cost around $24 (can’t find the price on line, this is my best guess).

On the nose I found vanilla, leather, spice, pepper, and bramble fruit. Overall the nose did not display much fruit. In the mouth I found licorice, blackberries, cherry pie, and what I think might have been eucalyptus, or in any case was a medicinal note. The wine was fruitier in the mouth than on the nose. I found it to be dark and earthy with a slightly bitter component. It was a bit tannic, so I think it could age. We have another bottle in the basement, so I’ll try to hang onto that one for a while.

This wine was very different, unlike anything else I’d ever had. I really liked this bottle and would definitely seek it out again.

It’s a Mauritson Month

And time to root around in my cellar to see what’s ready for drinking!

In my last post about this wine, I said you should hold it for at least another year or so. Well, it’s been 7 months and I just couldn’t leave this one in the cellar anymore. We needed a less expensive bottle for drinking after dinner and this one fit the bill at $19.20. I believe this bottle came in a club shipment, though I honestly couldn’t say for sure as we picked up a case at Mauritson on our very first trip over a year ago and have subsequently received 3 more shipments from them. Whatever the case, this bottle arrived before I started using CellarTracker. The wine was a 2003 Mauritson Grower’s Reserve Zinfandel. It clocked in at 15.1% alcohol by volume and had a real cork closure.

No alcohol on the nose this time. White pepper, blackberry, blueberry, vanilla, fresh blackberry on the nose. Definitely very prominent white pepper. More vanilla shows through as the wine airs. In the mouth, totally mellowed. Tannins are gone, smooth, very ready to drink. Fruit is there, but not overwhelming. Blackberry cobbler, vanilla, blueberries, creamy. Has turned into an excellent bottle of wine for the price point. I would definitely suggest drinking this now or fairly soon as I don’t really see it getting much better.

Not Quite Summer

But I still love Sauvignon Blanc! And this one arrived in my latest shipment from Mauritson, whom I haven’t had any new wines from in a year as they were kind enough to combine my shipments for me to help my wine budget! So I was very excited to try out some of the offerings from the past year.

The wine was a 2006 Mauritson Sauvignon Blanc. It clocked in at 13.5% alcohol by volume, had a real cork closure, and cost us $13.60.

On the nose I found figs, grapefruit, wet stone, grass, and mainly citrus. The nose was fairly reserved, but easier to detect after it had warmed up a bit. In the mouth I found peach, grapefruit, and minerals. The wine was acidic and crisp, but well rounded.

We drank this on it’s own one night, but I would serve it with crab or perhaps some nice creamy cheeses as an appetizer!

Thanksgiving Recap

15 pounds of turkey (with all but a drumstick gone as of lunch today!)
10 pounds of potatoes
8 guests
6 bottles of wine
3 pounds of green beans
1 pounds of cranberries
1 package of burnt rolls (oops)
1 burn and 1 accidental grating of my thumb
=5 pounds heavier and one exhausted wine blogger.

Another Thanksgiving under my belt, my second, but my first in our new house!

Back to work and regularly scheduled blogging tomorrow, I hope everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving and didn’t have to loosen their belts too much!

Gobble Gobble

I am in full prep for Thanksgiving. Hosting for Matt’s family, 8 of us total. That’s the most people I’ve ever cooked a meal for, so I’m a wee bit nervous!

I’m not big on the whole “here’s my ultimate Thanksgiving pairings” post thing, but as an fyi, we are having an Austrian Riesling provided by Matt’s Aunt and Uncle, two lovely Roses, one from domaine547 and the other from WineQ, and a raspberry Merlot from a local vineyard for dessert. I’ve also got a few bottles of Pinot Noir stuck off to the side in case anyone wants some red with dinner!

I wish you and your’s a happy and safe Thanksgiving and I hope your turkeys cook perfectly! I’ll likely be off the posting while my house is full of relatives, but I’ll attempt to pop on.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Announcing Wine Blogging Wednesday #40-Que Sirah Sirah

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, sends you off in search of what is arguably my favorite red wine varietal: Petite Sirah. So often confused with Syrah or Shiraz, it deserves it’s own time to shine, and this is it.

Petite Sirah is lesser known by the name Durif. I have noticed, and actually picked one up, Durifs coming out of Australia recently, so they are out there, it just takes some hunting. I haven’t found any from France yet, but maybe one of you will have better luck than me.

The assignment is simply that. Report back on any Petite Sirah that strikes your fancy.

Post your review on Wednesday, December 12 and send me an email at with a link to your review. If you don’t have a blog, please send me your tasting notes and I will be happy to publish them here and include you in the round up.

I am thrilled that my theme suggestion was taken by our fearless leaders over at Wine Blogging Wednesday and am incredibly happy to be hosting this month. Many thanks to the creator of WBW, Lenn of Lenndevours and to last month’s host, Brooklynguy for his excellent theme and write-up! Can’t wait to read about all the delicious Petite Sirah everyone discovers!

Freshly Pressed: WBW #39 Round-Up

Y’all should mosey on over to BrooklynGuy’s blog to read his excellent round-up of all the WBW #39-Silver Burgundy wines.

Despite crushing computer problems, he’s got his round-up posted and it looks like lots of excellent wines were again tasted for us to seek out on upcoming wine shop visits, not to mention for me to pick up another bottle (or 6) of the wine I tasted!

Happy reading to all and stop by here tomorrow morning for the WBW #40 announcement!

Bubbly from the Folks

My parents were down visiting not too long ago and in their tradition of supporting my wine-drinking habit, showed up bearing a bottle of NV Lamiable Grand Cru Brut Champagne. We enjoyed this after dinner, and even my mom had a glass, and enjoyed it, which is quite unusual for her!

The nose of the wine displayed honey, apple, yeast and a hint of lemon. The yeast was the most prominent aroma and it carried through nicely to the mouth with a good biscuit aroma. I also found lemons and apples in the mouth.

Overall, the wine was dry and tart, with good bubbles (or bead for my friends who seem to like picking up wine terms from me!) We enjoyed this after our meal was over, and I could easily see how this would be a crowd pleaser. It clocked in at 12% alcohol by volume and I believe can be purchased for around $50.