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Month October 2011

Louis Roederer Brut Cristal – 2006 – 9.4 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Buddha hand citrus zest, Seckel pears, white rose petals, and hint of almond .

 

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

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© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Dom Perignon – 2002 – 9.4 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Essence of passionfruit, Comice pear, Quince, Brioche, and slight hint of blood orange zest.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

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© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Abbazia di Novacella Müller-Thurgau Valle D’Isarco – 2010 – 9.0 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Crisp–mineral driven; highly focused; stone fruit–in particular white peach, essence of green citrus zest and fennel.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

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© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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The Terraces Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon – 2007 – 9.0 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Notes of smoked wild blueberry, blackberry, nuanced lavender and Eucalyptus and dash of allspice.

 

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

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© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Hawk & Horse Red Hills Lake County Latigo – 2006 – 9.5 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy


This dessert wine is 16% alcohol content; 13% residual sugar; spend 26 months in new French oak. This vineyard is 2,200 feet above sea level. This winery uses both biodynamic and organic farming practices. This wine has the right focus; if the wine had been fortified with 2-3% higher in alcohol it would have obscured the Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine gives notes of dried Turkish fig, dark cherry, black plum, truffle honey, lavender, and nicely herbaceous and continuously evolves.

Latigo is a word that describes a strap on the ‘port’ side of a horse. Port referring to the stylization of wine.

A beautiful fortified Cabernet Sauvignon wine.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

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© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Masperie Les Escures Cahors Malbec – 2009 – 9.2 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Super dark wine notes of  blueberry, mushroom, hint of chile Ancho, and lavender.  Rustic scents of leather, sage and wood pile. 100% organic malbec

Think this is the Malbec that everyone wants to enjoy but never ends up buying.  A gorgeous wine.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

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© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Zinfandel–an International Wine Varietal–Part I – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

I had to say that Part I is a statement about Zinfandel–not that I have never talked about Zinfandel but the continuous unfolding of Zinfandel.  This is a drum roll for this wine.  Zinfandel has been thought of as “fun” wine and that implication is that it is not a serious red wine.  But a wine can be serious and seriously fun.  Jancis Robinson wrote in her Oxford Companion to Wine that Zinfandel is an “exotic black grape.”  Exotic can mean many things—rare, uncommon or it can even connote something such as a curiosity grape.

If Zinfandel had a French provenance it would be an international grape; Cabernet Sauvignon is thought in the collective as the most noble of all red wines or the first “amongst equals” of all Bordeaux varietals.  And looking at most well known French varietals have a head start and many plantings begin in other wine regions for a variety of reasons and amongst them is because these are “known” wine varietals.  And thinking about Cabernet Sauvignon it is truly the new kid on the block which rose to prominence–comparing Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel is to look at lineage and how long they have existed

Zinfandel and those that produce it have had to work superbly hard to make it a prominent red grape–and not just a California phenomenon.  While Zinfandel almost had an Arnold signature and would have been California’s state grape that loss of that signature was a disappointment; however, maybe that was not a bad thing.  Zinfandel has had to also work hard to distance itself from White Zinfandel… and the Bordeaux reds have such equivalent concern.

Zinfandel is an international wine…  yes, lot of Zinfandel is produced in California but is also found in other U.S. states as well as South Africa, Austrlalia and it’s birth place Croatia and is known as Crljenak Kaštelanski.  Sometimes Zinfandel is thought of sometimes all tasting like raisins.  But that is an incorrect assumption.  Zinfandel like any other red varietal can also have that taste profile if indeed a large portion of the berries turned to raisin.  I like to highlight Clay Mauritson and he mentioned a visiting French wine maker said something to this effect:  “Raisin from Cabernet, Merlot or even Zinfandel is a raisin, is a raisin and a raisin”  That this affected grape state does profoundly influence the wine at hand and it is through careful sorting that these berries are plucked out and the raising influence is removed.

Zinfandel is a great wine that is often thought of as an entrant red wine and no more.  Yet there is a whole spectrum just like in Pinot Noir, Merlot, etc.  that are great freeway on-ramps and the freeways themselves.  That they can board someone new to red wine and keep them there.  Zinfandel quality and artistry has grown significantly in a short period of time–in the past 10-14 years.

Zinfandel is an ancient grape, and in modernity experiencing world class artistry.  Zinfandel specialist wine houses are sourcing world class fruit; having a relationship with their partner vineyard; walk the vineyard to see progress and to air on the side of quality or concerns but more importantly involved partners.  Zinfandel sterling notes and vibrancy is the essential nature and with a good growing practices and thoroughly modern techniques let this varietal blossom.

Zinfandel can and will get recognition by being added to more wine lists; consumers have an opportunity to taste these wines and equally importantly start asking for them at their retailer and on-premise establishments they like to frequent.  Zinfandel is making the outreach and speaking less about a California phenomenon but more so a red wine grape that makes compelling and easily recognized wines.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

Read more of my wine reviews:

© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Salus Rutherford Chardonnay – 2010 – 9.0 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Seared Comice pear, freshly roasted pine nut, fennel, and nutmeg.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

Read more of my wine reviews:

© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Sierra Vista El Dorado Mourvedre – 2006 – 9.1 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Boysenberry, red apple, white pepper, and vanilla bean.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

Read more of my wine reviews:

© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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Sierra Vista Sierra Foothills Grenache – 2008 – 9.1 – James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy

Early season cherry, cranberry, cinnamon, and anise.

¡Salud!

***

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

Read more of my wine reviews:

© 2011 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez — All Rights Reserved. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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