Happy Hallowine all you spooky winos!

I tried to take pictures of our pumpkins, but it’s really hard to get lighting right with just a candle glowing!

So you get a bonus of me in last year’s costume.

Be safe and responsible this Halloween and if anyone gets any chewy sweet tarts, please share with me.

Cool Label….

*Disclaimer: I received this wine as a sample from Sort This Out Cellars.

Not so cool wine. Overall, I really enjoyed the wines I received from Sort This Out Cellars. However, this bottle was the exception to the rule.  We tried the 2005 Sort This Out Cellars Rockabilly Red with our burgers the other night.  Although it clocked in at 13.5% alcohol by volume, I found it be overwhelmingly alcoholic.  It had a real cork closure and retails for $25.

On the nose I found spice, cranberry, raisins, alcohol, chocolate, and cherries.  In the mouth I got dark berries, dark cherries, and sour fruit.  The tannins, acidity, and alcohol just didn’t seem in balance to me and it threw off the whole wine.


Pig Roast!

The Matthiasson Vineyard

After the Wine Blogger Conference, the Matthiasson Family kindly hosted a pig roast for any wine bloggers who still happened to be in the area.  Our favorite meat being roasted in a pit and the Matthiasson’s wines? Thea and Ashley and I were there, along with several other wine bloggers who we convinced to make the trek over to Napa with us!

Now, I’ve written about the Matthiasson wines before, and I maintain that their white wine is absolutely the best white wine I’ve tasted all year.  Hands down.  You can read my review of it here. However, with the roasted pig, which was divine, by the way, I would recommend one of the Mattiasson Red wines, probably the red blend.  But that didn’t stop me from enjoying just a little bit of the white wine at the pig roast….but not much seeing as how I was our designated driver!

Wine Country Dog LOVED the pig roast. Clean plate club!

Instead, I took some pictures, walked in the little vineyard that backs right up to the Matthiasson’s house, and chatted with some of the many wine folks the Mattiasson’s had invited to the party, including Judd of Judd’s Hill!  Who kindly invited us all back to his tiki lounge for drinks, but the merry band of wine bloggers was exhausted and in need of some R&R before another big day in Napa the following day.  I didn’t manage to snap a shot of the final roasted pig, so you’ll have to ask Ashley for that!  I highly recommend the Matthiasson White Wine for your upcoming Thanksgiving feast, though you’ll have to act fast to get any of it since they produce all their wines in extremely limited quantities.

Tasting Bradford Mountain

After tasting at C. Donatiello, we scooted next door with Chris to try the wines from Bradford Mountain Winery.  The label is produced on the C. Donatiello property with the tasting room also located behind the C. Donatiello tasting room. It’s a little difficult to spot, but a few people wandered in while we were there.  Chris jumped behind the bar to pour for us and tell us a little about the winery.

2007 Healdsburg Ranches Chardonnay: Pear, green apple, crisp, cool, lemon, tart, tropical notes.

2005 Bradford Mountain Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel: Spicy, pepper, black cherry, blackberry, juicy, black fruit.

2005 Bradford Mountain Grist Vineyard Zinfandel: Oak, cedar, spice, perfume, red fruit, big juicy fruit, pepper, tart berries.

2005 Bradford Mountain Grist Vineyard Syrah: Oak, spice, white pepper, violets, dark, tannic, juicy, black plum.

2007 Healdsburg Ranches Cabernet Sauvignon: Pepper, green peppers, black fruit, mint, herbs, tart fruit.

2005 Bradford Mountain El Grandote Dry Creek Creek Valley: Blackberry. syrup, blue fruit, chocolate, nice structure. My favorite.

I’ve tried some of the Bradford Mountain wines last year when Chris sent them to me as samples and I thought you could really see the winery finding a style as the years went by. My favorite out of those was the 2005 Syrah, which I also enjoyed again at this tasting.  I actually still have one set of Zins in my basement that I still need to try, I left them down there to see what a year of age would do to them.  I’ll haul them out soon and report back!

Last of the Prums

*Disclaimer: I received this wine as a sample from the PR folks for Wines of Germany in order to participate in a Twitter Taste Live.

With the Wines of Germany S.A. Prum Twitter Taste Live in the bag, I’ve had quite a few Rieslings lately that I truly enjoyed.  I would recommend any of the S.A. Prum Rieslings we tried as great accompaniments to any upcoming Thanksgiving dinners or holiday parties.  I think the wine lovers and newbies alike can appreciate the S.A. Prum line up of Rieslings.  Up last for the night we tried the 2006 S.A. Prüm Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Kabinett.  It had a real cork closure, clocked in at 9% alcohol by volume, and retails for as low as $20.

On the nose the wine smelled herbal with notes of honey, gasoline, lemon cream, wet stones, orange blossoms, flowers, and other orange fruit.  In the mouth I found honey, honeysuckle, candied apricot, candied, peach, candied peach, wet stone running through, and the herbal quality from the nose.  This was the “sweetest” wine of the group  and it kept evolving and changing as it warmed in my glass.


Riesling Week

*Disclaimer: I received this wine as a sample from the PR folks for Wines of Germany so I could participate in the Wines of Germany Twitter Taste Live.

Let’s call a spade a spade here…with the 3rd day of Riesling in a row, it’s pretty much Riesling week around here! I don’t drink enough Riesling. It’s sad really, because I do love the stuff, but I often just don’t want to spend *quite* as much as it tends to cost to get a really tasty one. Another reason I’m glad I participated in this Twitter Taste Live, I found a whole line of reasonably priced delicious Rieslings.  Third up for the evening we had the 2007 S.A. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett. It had a screw cap closure, clocked in at 8.5% alcohol by volume, and retails for around $19.

On the nose I definitely found that classic German Riesling petrol smell, stone fruit, almost a sense of pine needles, stones-like swimming in a quarry, herbs, peach, and lemon zest. In the mouth I got apricot, honey, candied peaches, lemon drops, sweet apples, and a little bit of the herbal from the nose following through to the mouth.  Overall I found the wine to have fantastic acidity and to be dry with a slightly sweet sensation.

Blue Label

*Disclaimer: I received this wine as a sample from the PR folks for Wines of Germany in order to participate in the Wines of Germany Twitter Taste Live.

As I did yesterday, I have another Riesling for you today.  And another great bargain Riesling that would be elegant for any Thanksgiving dinner table.  Our second bottle for the evening was the 2007 S.S. Prüm Blue Label Riesling Kabinett. It had a screw cap closure, retails for about $19, and clocked in at 11% alcohol by volume.

On the nose I found lemon drops, lime zest, smoke, a touch of petrol that went away as soon as I smelled it, stones, stone fruit, sourdough bread, and pineapple.  This just had a fantastic nose that I wanted to keep sniffing, but alas, I had to move on so as not to hold up the Twitter Taste Live!  In the mouth I got green apple, citrus, lemon zest, lemon curd, apricots, stone fruit, and a touch of wet stones from tubing down a river.  Overall, I found the wine to be extremely dry and to have great acidity running through.