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Past Blogcast Notes Archive

(When available hyperlinks have been added to the blog.  Click on the Winery name to visit the winery website.)

2006-09-24

(Scott's tasting notes for Blogcast 11 & 12)

2005 - Amon-Ra -  Shiraz - $87.00 - Barossa Valley, Australia - 15% Vol. - This is a brand new baby.  Due to be released in Oct '06, Wow, already has great balance, dark fruits and spice. Love the quality French oak. Grade: A-

2004 - Amon-Ra - Shiraz - $75.00 - Barossa Valley, Australia - 15% Vol. - This is a keeper!  Awesome Spice, Dark Fruit and toasted French oak.  Ben Glaetzer...a genius wine maker, not to mention a great guy!  Grade: A-

2005 - Gadolphin - 70% Shiraz, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon -  Barossa Valley, Australia - 15%Vol. -  $65.00 -  Not even released yet...due out in Oct. '06.  This baby is elegant!  Ben is on his game with this one. Grade: A-

2002 - Faust - Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa Valley - $50.00 - Very balanced, full bodied, dark fruits with hint of olives. This has really improved with time in the bottle.  Grade: B+

2002 - Miura - Pinot Noir - Pisoni Vineyard - Santa Lucia Highlands, Central Coast, CA - $50 -  Wow...effervescent, minerals, spice, young, nice spicy finish. This is not a weak pinot! Grade: A-

2002 - The Standish Wine Company - Shiraz - Barossa, Australia, - $80 - Big & Bold with great balance of fruit & spice, The finish was amazing, length, spice, heat. Standish shows how Elegance & Boldness make a great wine - Grade: A-/A

2004 - Linne Calodo - Sticks and Stones - 57% Grenache, 23% Syrah, 20% Mourvedre - $50 - Full Bodied, great French oak tastes, dark berries, very balanced, Great length on the finish - If you can find this...buy it up fast.  Grade: A

2002 - Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande -  Medoc, Pauillac, Bordeaux, France - $55 to $75 - Fantastic baby bordeaux, elegant,  nice oak (ordered it out to dinner...restaurant was out of the Lynch Bages...so I up graded to Lelande...it was a great move!) Grade: B+/A-

2003 - Kikikanoon - Killerman's Run - Shiraz - Barossa Valley, Australia -  $16 - This is the great deal of the night.  Nice Spice and balance, dark fruit, spice and heat, drank like a $40 bottle of wine.  Buy it if you can find it.  Grade: B+/A-

2003 - Two Hands - Bella's Garden Barossa Valley Shiraz - Australia - $50 to $80 15% Vol. - Rich dark fruit, slight hint of chocolate, elegant, balanced, great finish...spice & length - Grade: A-

Some wines we dumped that were spoiled (Caution: this doesn't mean that if you own these wines that they are spoiled & should be dumped - please use your own discretion before dumping):  2001, Furlan, Cabernet Franc - 2002 Santa Margherita Chardonnay - 1998 Jacob's Creek Cabernet Sauvignon, 1996 Monterra Syrah,

2006-08-22

(Stevo's notes from Blog10)

2003 - Matanzas Creek, Merlot, Bennett Valley Sonoma -Cherry/ Berry, Menthol & Herbal note on the nose...Basil? Bright Cherry Flavors.  Chocolate notes with warm spice.  Some noticeable heat - Medium bodied wine - after the cherry & chocolate flavors hit, shot of black coffee on the finish - Nicely done for the price point: $20-25 - Grade: B-
 
2003 - L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot, Columbia WA -14.2% Vol. - 82% Merlot, 13% Cab Franc, 4% Cab, 1% Petite Verdot - Gives up surprisingly little on the nose...bottle dumb? Really pops with flavor on the palate.  Kirsch-bomb.
Nice firm tannins. Well structured wine. Coffee flavors hit after the initially cherry blast.  Tad hot on the finish,  There is a nice long slow fade of flavors.
Important Note:  it took an hour, hour + to open up so this is not a wine to pick up and pop once you get home - $25-30 - Grade: B- now, B/B+ in a year or two
 
2003 - Lodi Vineyards, Michael & David, Earthquake Cab, Lodi 2003 - Vol. 15.5% - Like Cute labels or cute stories on labels?  Then you'll probably like the winery. - Here's my take: Lot of fruit and oak on the nose.  "Cranberry-Robitussin" Not a particularly pleasant wrap of flavors on the finish. $20-25
Grade: C-/C
2006-08-08 2003 - Sine Qua Non - Pinot Noir - Omega - Oregon - 15.5% Vol. - $115 - Wow, this is a really big Pinot, great oak, great spice, excellent dark fruits, chocolate, Big Bucks at $115 Penner Ash is a great alternative - Grade: B+/A-

2002 - Chateau Lynch Bages - Pauillac - $60 - dark chocolate, dark fruit, a really enjoyable long finish, excellent with food/Filet - Grade: B+/A-

2003 - Wild Hog Vineyard - Carignane - 15.5% Vol. - $25 - Pinot meets Shiraz - Great Value at under 30 bucks - Grade: B+

2004 - Walla Walla Vintners - Cabernet Franc - Columbia Valley, Washington - 14.3% Vol - $19 - Really nice fruit, good value for $20, needs more time in the bottle - Grade: B+

2006-08-05 2004 - Sea Smoke Cellars- Pinot Noir - Southing - 14.7% Vol. - $50 - Wow...that's some great Oak, This is still a baby and looks to be awesome - Grade: B+/A-

2001 - Ravenswood Winery - Rancho Salina - 50% Merlot, 32% Cab. Franc, 18% Cab. Sauv. - 14.3% Vol. - $24. - This is in its prime - good structure, really good finish - If you've got it...drink it - Grade: B+

2001 - Clos Du Val Wine Company - Cabernet Sauvignon - 13.5% Vol. - $25 - This has improved with time...should still improve with time, blackberries, dark fruits, decent finish - Grade: B-/B

2006-08-02

(Terry's notes from Blogcasts - 7 & 8)

2002 - Kamiak - Cellar Select - 92% Cabernet, 8% Merlot - $10 - Great earthy nose on the wine, but is balanced with great fruit, with hints of blackberry. It also has a complexity that has lingering asian spice on the finish.  Soy sauce hints with a bit of licorice - Grade: B (T)

2003 - Bodega Del Fin Del Mundo - Malbec - $20 - spicy black currant and blackberry/blueberry flavors with a hint of vanilla and toast - Grade: B (T)

2003 - Black Box - 87% Cabernet, 8% Syrah, 5% Cab. Franc - tasty box wine might be one of the best I have had, great for parties and well that is about it.  Lacks complexity or balanced.  On the plus side, it features good fruit with a strong ripe cherry taste with a chocolate finish.  This box is a must when entertaining on a budget and with non-wine drinking folk.  Temperature is a key, when this one gets up to room temperature it shows its limitations - Grade: C (T)

2002 - Ancien - Pinot Noir Napa Valley Mink Vineyard - More oak than fruit with initial offerings of strawberry and hints of stems. The tannins offer a long finish without complexity. Acid a bit high, . I would recommend Prince Florent de Merode Ladoix, plus it is $10.00 less. - Grade: C+ (T)

2003 - Isenhower - Syrah - Columbia Valley Wild Alfalfa - luscious nose with hints of spice and coffee. Toffee and dark fruit flavors envelope the palate with a nice light peppery finish. A well balanced wine. If you like Australian Shiraz or California Syrah this wine might open your eyes to what Washington State has to offer. This one reminds more of a French style syrah, elegant and balanced. - Grade: B  (T)

2003 - Canoe Ridge - Cabernet Sauvignon - Columbia Valley - great earthy nose with hints of green pepper, spice finish and the hints of cherry, lacks balance and fruit, low volume of alcohol, yet it seems strong.  I would pass on this bottle next time - Grade: C (T)

2006-07-27 2004 - Verget - Chablis - Terroirs de Fleys - France - $20 to $25 - 13% Vol. - Burgundy Screw Cap?? The world is a changing - Lot's of Oak on the nose, Green Apple, Lemon and Minerality on the palette - Grade: B+/A-

2003 - Ridge Vineyards - Zinfandel - York Creek - Spring Mountain - 84% Zin / 16% Petite Sirah - 14.4% Vol. - $30 - Let this puppy breath for at least an hour, you will be rewarded, Surprisingly red fruit, cherry dominated, Med Bodied - Grade: B/B+

2003 - Peter Franus - Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa - 14.4% Vol. -  Still in Dippers, Surprisingly tight and tannic, has all the elements for a great wine down the road - Grade: (Now N/R) - 2007-8: B+

2002  - Geyser Peak - Meritage - Reserve Alexandre  - Alexander Valley - Blackcurrant, Black Cherry, decent oak, okay finish - Grade: C+/B-

2003 - Twenty Rows - The Grappler - Napa Valley - 53% Zin, 32% Syrah, 15% Cab Sauv - 14.6% Vol. - $20.00 -

2006-07-25 2002 - Williams Selyem - Pinot Noir - Sonoma Coast - 14.2% Vol. - $50.00 - Awesome balance with some good oak...a little pricey at 50 bucks...Wow, it tastes great! Grade: B+/A-

2001 - Brewer-Clifton - Pinot Noir - Rozak Ranch - 15.8% Vol. - $40.00 - Another great Pinot with balances...not much heat despite the higher vol. - Nice hints of cedar/oak and spice.  Grade B+/A-

2002 - Fiddlehead Cellars - Pinot Noir - Fiddlestix - 14.1% Vol. - $36.00 -  Nice Spice and oak, Some good fruit on the finish - Grade: B

2003 - Mark West - Pinot Noir - Sonoma - $10 - Plums, Cherries and Spice - Not a bad wine for under 10 bucks...better served with food.  Grade: B-

2006-07-21 2001 - Trefethen Vineyards - Cabernet Franc - Napa Valley - 14.1% Vol. - $24.00 - This is a good food wine, has nice balance, cherry, spice and oak. Grade: B-

2001 - Robert Sinskey Vineyards - Cabernet Franc - Napa - 13.7% Vol. - $29.00 - Big and Bold, Great Tasting...better of the two and worth the extra 5 bucks, dark cherry, dark fruits, long rich finish...should age well.  Grade: B+

2006-07-15 2004 - Pax Cellars - Syrah - Cuvee Keltie - 15.3% Vol. - $50.00 - Concentrated and Intense, great spice and balance.  This will age gracefully with time - Grade: B+

2004 - Pax Cellars - Syrah - Cuvee Christine - 15.6% Vol. - $50 - 2 words, Blackberries & Spice, Great Finish!  We have yet to go wrong with any Pax offerings - Grade: B+/A-

2003 - Shadow Canyon Cellars - Syrah -  $33 -  Dense, Spice with some acid, Long finish of Spice and minerals - Cool Bottle - Good Value at under $35.  Grade: B+/A-

2006-07-12 Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 Australia
2006-07-05 2003 - Peter Franus - Zinfandel - Brandlin Vineyard - Mount Veeder - 15.2% Vol. - $27.00 - This is drinking very young - liquid midnight, dark cherry and earth.  Some heat and spice on the finish.  Sit on this one for a year or two.  Grade: B/B+

2003 - Cuvaison - Syrah - Napa - $28.00 - Dark Fruit, Fennel, Red Currants - Let this one breath for 30 to 45 min...it gets better with time out of the bottle.  Grade: B/B+

2006-07-01 1999 - J. F. Coche-Dury - Meursault - France - 12.3% Vol. - $230 - Wow, One of the best whites the I've ever had!!! By far the most expensive - Hints of Orange Zest & Citrus, great Oak -  Grade: A

1961 - Chateau Beychevelle - Medoc - St. Julien - $295 - Wow another amazing bottle of wine - Fruit is unbelievably lively for a 1961 vintage, Great Finish... A Great End to a Night at Joel Robuchon in Las Vegas, Sommelier Darren Lutz knows his stuff!!!- Grade: A-

2006-06-23 2001 - Martin Ray Winery - Cabernet Sauvignon - Diamond Mountain - 14.3% Vol. - $40.00 - Great balance between ripe plums, dark cherries, currant and slight oak.  Grade: B+/A-

2004 - Corq Dorq - Merlot - California -  Whole Foods - 13% Vol. - $10 - One Word:  Dumper - Grade: F/D-

2002 - Cakebread Cellars - Cabernet Sauvignon - Vine Hill Ranch - (Wine Club Only) - 14.1% Vol. - $60 - Very Concentrated, Black Fruit and Chocolate, Young  - Grade: B

2006-06-17 Pinot Noir 2004 Sonoma Coast
2006-06-12 2002 - Cakebread Cellars - Cabernet Sauvignon - Dancing Bear Ranch - 14.3% Vol. - $60 - Rich, Blackberry, Cocoa w/ Long Finish - Needs more time in the bottle - Grade:  B+

2005 - Hamilton Russell Vineyards - Pinot Noir - South Africa, Cape of Good Hope, Hemel-en-aarde Valley - 14.0% Vol. - $20 -  Unique, Dark Fruit, Spice - We're going to taste this one again. Grade: B?

2006-06-08 Sauvignon Blanc 2004 Podcast
2006-06-01 Washington State 2003 Blends Podcast
2006-05-14 2004- Copain Wines - Zinfandel - Arrowhead Mountain - Sonoma - 14.5% Vol. - 514 Cases - Hold for 4-5 years - Young, Balanced, Good Spice, Slight Heat - Grade:  B+/A-

2003 - Old Bridge Cellars - d'Arenberg - Footbolt - Australia - $15 - Ripe Fruits, Nice Balance - Grade: B+

2002 - Chalone Vineyard - Syrah - Chalone Appellation, CA - 3,333 cases est. - Peaks 2007-12 - $25 - Dense fruit from the nose, Big wine with a lot of alcohol but the dense dark fruit keeps the wine balance.  "Wow...this is up there with DuMol"-Scott, Grade: A -done!

2006-05-11 Champagne & Sparkling Wine Podcast

Dessert Wines Podcast

2006-05-10

2003 - Bacio Divino - 66% Sangiovese, 23% Cab Sauv, 7% Petit Sirah, 4% Viogner - $27 - Hints of Spice w/ ripe cherry finish.  Acidity is somewhat high, a bit overbearing, Interesting wine, yet I would pass on this wine - better blends at this price - Grade: C (T)

2003 - Bogle Vineyards - Phantom - 59% Petite Sirah, 39% Old Vine Zin, 2% Old Vine Mourvedre - $17 - Great Purple inky color, Great Balance of Spice and Fruit. Cranberry & Cherry notes, with a cinnamon and vanilla finish - Great Value - Grade: B/B+ (T)

2002 - Leasingham - Clare Valley, Australia - Bin 61 - Shiraz - A big disappointment, fruit was non-existent, spice was overwhelming, pass on this wine - much better values in the price range - Grade: C-/C (T)

2006-05-09

2003 - Larkmead Vineyards - Firebelle - Napa Valley, CA - 54% Merlot, 31% Cab Sauv, 15% Malbec - 14.5% Vol. - Peaks 2007-12 - $45 - Young, Balanced, Showy - Let it breath for at least an hour if drinking now - Grade: A- (Sc)

2003 - Caymus Vineyards - Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa Valley - $65 - Wow...had this a few months ago and it is already getting more approachable - This is a really nice offering from Caymus - Grade: B+ (Sc)

2004 - Penner Ash Wine Cellars - Pinot Noir - Oregon - $45 -  Wow... Penner Ash just keeps the awesome Pinot Noirs coming - This is a big BUY IT Now! if you can find it. Check out our Pinot Podcast ^we review the 2003 Penner Ash Pinot^ - Grade: A- (Sc)

2006-05-06

2003 - Calon Segur - Saint Estephe - Grand Cru Classe - 60% Cab Sauv, 40% Merlot - Peaks 2010 to 2025 - $105 - It's still young and has a long time to go before it is fully matured, It's a really good one and hard to resist drinking now, those who wait will be rewarded with this one - Grade: A-/A (Sc)

2003 - Pax Cellars - Griffin's Lair - Syrah - 138 Cases - Peaks 2006-12 - We just can't stop drinking this awesome wine!  Solid!  If you can find it...BUY IT!!! - Grade: A (Sc)

2004 - Ironstone Vineyards - Symphony / Obsession -$6.99 - Drink it cold and now - This is a good summer/party value white wine - Grade: B+  (Sc)

2006-05-05

2003 - Chateau Lascombes - Margaux - Grand Cru Classe - 50% Cab Sauv, 45% Merlot, 5% Petite Verdo - 12.5% Vol. - 18,000+ cases - $35 - Its a good value at under $40 - still young...very balanced at a young age - Grade: B+/A- (Sc)

2004 - Loring Wine Company - Durell Vineyard - Lompoc, CA - 15.2% Vol. - $45 - Nicely Balanced, Good Spice and Heat, some Toasted Oak - Grade: B+ (Sc)

1996 - Chateau Larmande - Saint Emilion - $29 - Berries, Chocolate, not the longest finish in the world - Medium bodied - Grade: B/B+  (Sc)

1995 - Chateau Malescot - St. Exupery - Marqaux - 12.5% - $30 - Barn Yard, Cinnamon, Nutmeg.  Great finish...reminiscent of "Red Hots" candy. Grade: B+/A- (Sc)&(St)

2006-05-03 Malbec Podcast
2006-05-01

2002 - Valentin Bianchi - Cabernet Sauvignon - San Rafael - Argentina - Famiglia - Great value, possible the best Cab I have tasted under $20 - Grade: A (T)

2002 - Connor Park - Australia - Shiraz - $25 - Big and Balanced...this wine will knock your sox off!  Great Value if you can find it! - Grade: A- (T)

2002 - Chimicky - Barossa Valley, Australia - Shiraz - $17 - Pepper & Blackberry, might still be too young. Great Value - Grade: B+ (T)

2004-04-14

2004 - Pax Cellars - Sonoma Hillside - 52% Syrah, 47% Grenache, 1% Roussanne, $75, Grade: B+/A-

2003 - Turley Wine Cellars, Hayne Vineyard- Petite Sirah -  $80 - (Peaks - a very long time???  If you have an online subscription to http://www.erobertparker.com/  -  Check out what he puts for it's Maturity - Wow!) - Grade: A-/A

2004 - Rivers Marie - Pinot Noir - Sonoma - $50 to $60 - Balanced, Light Tannin Dance - Grade: B+

1999 - Chateau Gruaud-Larose - Saint Julien - Blend - $35 - Ready for the drinking - Grade: B

2004-04-12 Burgundy, 2003 Podcast
2006-04-08

2002 - Sine Qua Non - Just for the Love of It - Syrah - $110 - First bottle was off...sent it back...second bottle...WOW!!!! Does it get any better??? Grade A+

2001 - Paul Hobbs - Bin 36, Barbara's Table, Brian's Blend VII - Cabernet Sauvignon - 14.5% Vol. - $75 - This is a great cab! Balanced and ready for drinking - Grade: A-

2004 - De Lisio - Quarterback - 27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Grenache, 21% Merlot, 29% Shiraz - Peaks 2006 to 10 - $20 to $25 - Grade: B/B+

2003 - Chateau Montelena - Chardonnay - Around 10,000 cases - Peaks 2006 to 09 - $30 to $35 - Grade: B/B+

2001 - Patrick Lesec - Gigondas - 'Les Blaches' - 80% Grenache, 20% Syrah - 1,200 Cases - $28 - Grade: B/B+

2002 - Brewer Clifton - Chardonnay - 'Clos Pepe' - 2,880 Cases - Peaks 2006 to 2008 - $35 - Grade: B+

2003 - Hill Climber Vineyard - Syrah - Rolly Akers Syrah - 75 Cases - $56 - This is a new Robert Biale Vineyards Project. - Classic Syrah flavors - Young - Grade: B+/A-

2006-04-06 Cotes du Rhone Villages Podcast
2006-04-04

2002 - Bodegas - Clio - Jumilla, Spain - 70% Monastrell, 30% Cab. Sauv. - 15.6% Vol. - $40 - Lots of heat, spice. Full Bodied - Great with Food - Grade: A-

2003 - Domain De Beaurendard - Chateauneuf Du Pape, France - 14.5% Vol. -  Grade: B+

2003 - Clos Du Mont Olivet, la Cuvee du Papet - Chateauneuf Du Pape, France - 14.0% Vol. - $50 - Grade: A-

2006-04-03

2002 - Verget - Chablis - Terroirs De Poinchy - 13.0% Vol. - $17 - Lemon Front, Apple Middle, Lemon/Spice Finish. - Grade: B

2004 - Radio Coteau - Pinot Noir - La Neblina - 14.4% Vol. - 2006-09 - 760 Cases - $40 - Clove Bomb, Dark Cherry, Spice, a little heat, Smooth, Polished - Grade: B+

2004 - Copain - Pinot Noir - Hein Family - Anderson Valley - 14.4% Vol. - 431 Cases - $50's - Nose..Sandlewood , Med Body, Dark Cherry, Nice Spiced with Clove accents...Fruityness comes through...nicely balanced - Grade: B+

2003 - Lost Highway Project - Two Hands - Stella's Garden  - Australia - 14.8% Vol. - 2006-18 - 500 Cases - $55 to $60 -  Full Body - Lush and Bold - Very Good but the debate is if this or the Copain was the wine of the night??? - Grade: B+

2006-03-31

2001 - Silver Oak - Cabernet Sauvignon - $60 - Peaks 2006-12 - 60,000 cases - Very good, Black Cherry, Nice finish. Grade: B+

2002 - Stag's Leap Winery - Cabernet Sauvignon - $45 - 14.1% Vol. - 92% Cab. Sauv. 6% Cab. Franc 2% Merlot - Napa Valley - Black fruit, Red Cherries.  Grade: B-

2006-03-22

2001 - Robert Foley - Claret - Napa Valley - Wow!  This is an awesome wine.  A perfect example of a Claret!  Grade: A

2002 - Peter Franus - Zinfandel - Napa Valley - 15.5% Vol. -1900 cases - This is a really good value wine.  Grade: B

2006-03-20 Petite Sirah Podcast
2006-03-15

2002 - Bodega Catena Zapata - Catena Alta Malbec - Argentina - $40 - 13.9% Vol. - 2000 cases - Black Fruits and herbs - great wine - Grade: B

2002 - DuMol  - Pinot Noir - Somona - Russian River - 14.5% Vol. - $52.00 - Peaks 2005-09 - One of the most complex wines of the night.  Another Very Enjoyable DuMol. Grade: A-

2006-03-10

2002 - Louis Jadot - St. Aubin - Burgundy - France - Chardonnay - peak 2005-10 - $20 - full bodied chardonnay, Lemon Pledge with pineapple and sandal wood - Grade: B+

2002 - Miller Wine Works - Pinot Noir - Burgurdian in style, earthy in the nose, great pinot.  Great Balance between fruit, earthyness, fresh.  Grade: B+/A-

2002 - Chalone Vineyard - Syrah - Chalone Appellation, CA - 3,333 cases est. - Peaks 2007-12 - $25 - Dense fruit from the nose, Big wine with a lot of alcohol but the dense dark fruit keeps the wine balance.  "Wow...this is up there with DuMol"-Scott, Grade: A -done!

2006-03-06 2003 - Montes Alpha - Cabernet Sauvignon - D. O. Colchagua Valley - Chile - 14.0% Vol. - Peaks late 2006-07 - $14.99 - Really Nice French Oak, Slight tartness due to its youth...sure to improve over the next year.  Great Deal at under $15.  Looking forward to re-tasting in the future.  Grade: B+/A-  (More Chilean Cabs coming soon!)
2006-03-04

2004 - Robert Biale Vineyards - Party Line Zinfandel - 16.1% Vol. - $15.00 -Drink now thru 2007 - This is a newly released zin from Biale. It a value wine at under 15 buck.  At over 16% vol. its got some big heat...nice fruit. Grade B/B+

2001 - Quixote Winery - Petite Syrah -  $60 - 190 Cases - Wow, a great petite syrah - Black Cherry, tobacco and coffee. Grade: A

1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 - Greg Norman Estates Wines - What a difference each year makes... Most noteworthy was 1998 & 2001 - Great oak, currant and berry.  Least noteworthy was 1997 - no surprise there...a year or two past its prime...not a bad one in the vertical.  Grade: C+ to B+

2006-03-01 Bordeaux Podcast
2006-02-24

2002 - Axios Wine - Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa, CA - Peaks 2008-14 - $125 - Although young...very smooth and balanced, shows great potential!  Premium Price is our only issue - Grade B+

2002 - Byron - Pinot Noir - Santa Maria Valley, CA - Peaks 2006-07 - $25 - Its a good value for $20 to $30 range - Grade: B

2006-02-22

2004 - Pax Cellars - Alder Springs - Syrah - 16.00% Vol. - Peaks 2007-20 - $50 to $70 - 475 cases - Wow!! This is awesome.  Full Bodied, Blackberries, Spice - AWESOME. (We had two of these bottles!) Grade: A

2003 - Two Hands Wines - Harry & Edward's Garden - Shiraz - Longhorne Creek - Australia - Peaks 2006-15 - $49.99 - Full Bodied, Earthy, Spice - Really Nice - Grade: B+

2006-02-20

2003 - Archery Summit - Pinot Noir - Premier Cuve - 14.4% Vol. - Peaks 2006-11 - $32.00 - the finish wasn't the best - Grade: C+

2002 - Puligny-Montracher -Sous Les Puits - Grand Vin De Bourgogne - France - 13.5% Vol. - Peaks 2006-10 - $42.00 - A Fresh tasting White - Grade B+

2003 - Terrazas de los Andres - Reserva - Malbec - Argentina - 14.0%Vol. - $15 to $20 -  This is a really good Malbec - Good Value - Grade: A-

2003 Tir Na N'Og - Old Vine Grenache - McLaren Vale, Australia - 15.9% Vol. - Peaks 2006-15 - $25.00 - This is a great example of Grenache - Grade: A-

2003 - Maria - Alonso de Yerro - Ribera del Duero - 14.0% Vol. -  $50.00 - Nasty... Corked!  Grade: ?

2006-02-16

2002 - Peter Franus - Zinfandel - Napa Valley - 15.5% Vol. -1900 cases - This is a really good value wine.  Grade: B

More Wines to be updated later....

2006-02-13

2003 - Bodegas Hijos de Juan Gill - Red Table Wine - 14.8% Vol. - Spain, Grade: B

2004 - Luzon - Red Table Wine - 14.5% Vol. - Spain, Grade: B

2006-02-10 The Grab Bag Podcast
2006-02-01 California - Syrah Podcast

2006-01-29

2002 - HDV Wines - Syrah - Carneros - 13.9% Vol. - $60.00 - Great tasting Syrah - Wine of the Night. Grade: A

2003 - L'Aventure - Syrah - Estate - Paso Robles - 16.4% Vol. - Another really nice tasting Syrah. Grade: A-

2002 - Anderson's Conn Valley Vineyards - Right Bank - 60% Cabernet Franc, 40% Merlot - 14.0% Vol. - a Great Balanced wine, with good structure, ripe currant with sweet tannins. Grade: B+

2002 - Peter Franus - Zinfandel - Napa Valley - 15.5% Vol. -1900 cases - This is a really good value wine.  Grade: B

NV - Trentadue Vineyard - Chocolate Amore - Red Dessert Wine - 19.0% - This is really nice with fruits and any dessert...great for dinner parties.  Grade: B+

2002 - DuMol  - Pinot Noir - Somona - Russian River - 14.5% Vol. - $52.00 - Peaks 2005-09 - One of the most complex wines of the night.  Another Very Enjoyable DuMol. Grade: A-

2002 - Binder Mitchell - Dovetail - Shiraz - Southern Hinders Range - 14.5% Vol. - $25.00 - Peaks 2004-12 - This is a really nice wine to end the night on.  A good value...should be able to find it well under $25...and that's a good deal for this quality wine.  Grade A-/B+

2006-01-27

2003 - Copain Wine - Syrah - Cailloux & Coccinelle - Walla Walla Valley (Oregon side of Valley) - 14.2% Vol. - Peaks 2007-20 - $50.00 - 189 Cases - Full Bodied, Great Spice, Blackberries...this is a great Syrah.  Grade: A-

2006-01-25

2004 - Pax Cellars - Alder Springs - Syrah - 16.00% Vol. - Peaks 2007-20 - $50 to $70 - 475 cases - Wow!! This is awesome.  Full Bodied, Blackberries, Spice - AWESOME. Grade: A

2004 - Turley - Hayne Vineyard - Syrah - 16.3% Vol. - Peaks 2005-15 - $90 - (after the first bottle was corked...)  Wow!  Great Syrah!  Full Bodied, Giant, Spice, Blackberries, Pepper. Grade: A

2006-01-23

2003 - Bogle Vineyards - Old Vine Zinfandel - 14.4% Vol. - Peaks 2006 - $9.00 - 70,000 cases - Not bad for under $10.00 - Advice...drink it the day you purchase it. Grade: B-

2006-01-21

2001 - Bodegas - J.C. Conde - Neo Punta Escencia - Tempranillo - Spain - 14.0% Vol. - Peaks 2006-2021 - $76.00 - Bordeaux like, Merlot like in body, Cab like in finish. Grade: A-

2001 - Domaine Raymond Usseglio - Chateauneuf de Pape - France - 14.0% Vol. - Peaks 2006 to 2021 - $45.00 - 5,000 cases - Striking, Minerality, Spice and Purity. Grade:  B+

2001 - Benziger - Tribute - 80% CS, 11.8% CF, 6.7% PV, 1.5% Merlot - Vol. 14.5% - 1,250 cases - $49.00 - Hands down...Best Wine of the Night.  Grade: A

2001 - Darioush - Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa Valley - Vol. 14.5% - $65.00 - 4,000 cases - Big Cab with some nice spice.  Grade: B+

2005-01-18

Super Tuscan Podcast

2005-01-11

Chardonnay Podcast

2005-12-26

2001 - Peju -Cabernet Sauvignon - Napa Valley - 14.0% Vol. - $38 - 6,700 Cases - Peaks 2005-08 - Oaky, Vanilla, Dark Fruit - Nice Bottle of Wine

2000 - St. Clement - Cabernet Sauvignon - 14.2% Vol. - $35 - 9,956 Cases - Peaks 2003-09 - Herb, Sage Currant - Peju is a better value

2005-12-20

2002 - Turley - Pesenti - Paso Robles - 500 Cases - a bit of a let down compared to the Pax.

2003 - Pax Cellars - Griffin's Lair - Syrah - 138 Cases - Peaks 2006-12 - Wow...this is an AWESOME bottle of wine.  If you can find it...BUY IT!!!

2003 - Cuvaison - Syrah - Napa Valley - Carneros - 14.5% Vol. - It's a nice Syrah but after the Pax...doesn't really compare.

2005-12-15

1999 - Martin Ray - Diamond Mountain Vineyard - Cabernet Sauvignon - 14.4% Vol. - Peaks 2003-14 - 1230 Cases - Full Bodied, Smooth, well balanced - very enjoyable

2002 - Cuvaison - Estate Chardonnay  - 14.5% Vol. - 1736 Cases - Peaks 2004-08 - Ripe Peach, Vanilla

2002 - Darioush - Signature Shiraz - 14.8% Vol. - 1860 Cases - Peaks 2006-12 - Spice, Currant and Berry...Young but still enjoyable.

2005-12-13

2001 - Silver Oak - Cabernet Sauvignon - $60 - Peaks 2006-12 - 60,000 cases - Very good, Black Cherry, Nice finish.

1990 - Chateau Leoville Barton - Peaks 2004-25 - Wow...Full Bodied, Big Tannins, Great Wine not to mention...we got to meet U2's The Edge while drinking it out on the town in Chicago!!!

1995 - Chateau Malescot - St. Exupery - Marqaux - 12.5% - $30 - Barn Yard, Cinnamon, Nutmeg.  Great finish...reminiscent of "Red Hots" candy.

2005-12-07

2001 - Torrigiani - Guiaccio - Super Tuscan - List $56...sale $25 - Toscana, Italy - This is a really good value.  Best description is that there is nothing wrong with this wine...however we are not saying that it is the best wine.  Very Enjoyable, Great Finish.

2001 - Robert Biale Vineyards - Zappa - 15.2% Vol. - Zin, Petite Syrah and Syrah - Wow another really big Biale, we have yet to have a Biale wine that disappoints

1999 - Shafer Vineyards - Relentless - 81% Syrah, 19% Petite Syrah - 14.9% Vol. - This is a really good wine...it held its own after the Biale Zappa...that really says a lot.

2005-12-01

2001 California Merlot Podcast

2005-11-30

2001 - Martin Ray Winery - Cabernet Sauvignon - Diamond Mountain District - Napa - 14.3% Vol.- $70 - 850 Cases - Peaks 2006 to 2012 - Dark Chocolate, Currant, and Nice Oak

2001 - Whitehall Lane Winery - Cabernet Sauvignon - Leonardini Vineyard - Napa - 14.3% Vol. - $90 - 486 Cases - Full Bodied, Smooth...a bit like Merlot???, Very Drinkable

2005-11-25

2002 - Val de Flores - Mendoza - Malbec - Argentina - 14.0% Vol. - $48 - 1000 Cases - Peaks 2004 to 2016 - This is a great example of a Malbec, Black Fruits and some spice

2004 - The Standish Wine Company - The Standish Shiraz - Australia - 14.% Vol. - $50 - Peaks 2010 to 2030 - Big Shiraz, Blackberry, Spice and Heat, This is one for the Cellar!

2003 - Robert Biale Vineyards - Black Chicken Zinfandel - The Home Vineyard - Napa - 16% Vol. - $38 - 1,400 Cases - Big, Bold and Rich Zin, This one of the best Zin's...just try to find it

2003 - Cakebread Cellars - Syrah - Napa - 14.1% Vol. - $35 - This is a nice Syrah, relative to other wines tasted tonight...this comes up short

2000 - Matanzas Creek Winery - Cabernet Sauvignon - Sonoma - 14.2% - $25 - 13,800 Cases - two words, Liquid Chocolate

2005-11-24

1998 - Chateau Mouton Rothschild - Pauillac - 86% Cab Sauv, 12% Merlot, 2% Cab Franc - 12.5% Vol. - $135 - 21,665 Cases - Peak 2012 to 2050 - Slight hint of tannins, Full Bodied, Blackberry - WOW - Grade: A

1999 - Chateau LaFite Rothschild - Pauillac - 12.5% Vol. - $175 - 22,500 Cases - Peak 2007 to 2030 - Young, Full Bodied, Blackberries and Spice - Another WOW - Grade: A

2000 - Chateau Pichon - Longueville - Pauillac - 13% Vol. - $85 - Peak 2008 to 2028 - Young, Full Bodied, Licorice, Spice - AWESOME - Grade: A

2000 - Chateau Margaux - Pavillon Rouge - 60% Cab Sauv, 35% Merlot, 7% Cab Franc - 13% Vol. - $50 - 20,525 Cases - Peak 2003 to 2018 - Really Big, Full Bodied, Spice and Blackberry - Grade: A

2005-11-23

1999 - Ornellaia - Tenuta Dell 'Ornellaia - Italy - 14.5% - $125 - 2,815 Cases - Full Bodied, Chewy, with Great French Oak and Tannins - This is a Great Wine - Grade: A

2002 - Ridge Vineyards - Monte Bello - Central Coast, CA - 74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, 8% Petite Verdot - 13.3% Vol. - $120 - 1000 Cases - Full Bodied, American oak really comes thru...needs more aging...lack complexity...should develop into a great wine with proper aging

2005-11-22

2002 - Justin Vineyards and Winery - 93% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc - 15% Vol. - $55 - 10,000 cases - Black, Blue and Wild Berries with a hint of Mint - This is a really nice wine

2005-11-16

Rioja Podcast Tasting Night  - "Muga, Muga, Muga"

2005-11-11

2001 - Ferrari Carano Vineyards and Winery - Siena - $17 - 14.5% Vol. - 84% Sangiovese and small amounts of Malbec, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Sauvignon 73% Alexander Valley; 25% Dry Creek Valley, 2% Napa Valley  - French Oak - Med. Bodied - If you can find this on sale...its a great value.   - Good Fruit, Juicy Plum and Black Berries & Cranberries

2000 - Luna Vineyards - Canto Red Wine - $60 - 14.9% Vol. - Blend of Sangiovese, Merlot with small amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Syrah - 2000 Cases - Med. Bodied with Black Fruits and a Spicy Finish - 60 bucks is a little pricey for this wine.

2005-11-05

1999 - Argyle Winery - Willamette Valley, OR - Brut - $16 - 30% Pinot Noir, 70% Chardonnay - 12.0% Vol. - 14,809 cases - Sweet pear and citrus - Spectator Smart Buy

2003 - Bethel Heights Vineyard - Pinot Noir - Willamette Valley, OR - $20 - 13.9% Vol. - 2260 cases - A big pinot, Black Cherry - great wine

2004 - Ferrari-Carano Winery - Fume Blanc - Sonoma Valley - $13 - 13.8% Vol. - 30,000 cases - Tropical Fruit and Lemon - Spectator Smart Buy

2002 - Bodega Catena Zapata - Catena Alta Malbec - Argentina - $40 - 13.9% Vol. - 2000 cases - Black Fruits and herbs - great wine

2001 - Tapestry - Shiraz - McLaren Vale, Australia - $15 - 14% Vol. - 100% New American Oak - Dark fruits with long finish...great value

2000 - Darioush Winery - Merlot - Napa Valley - $44 - 13.9% Vol. - 825 cases - 100% French Oak - Cab like, Big Merlot, Chocolate and Coffee

2002 - Kay Brothers - Amery Vineyards - Hillside - Shiraz - McLaren Vale, Australia - $45 - 15% Vol. - 800 cases - 28 Mo. in American Oak - Big Full Bodied Shiraz - Spice, Fruity Berry - this is an Awesome Wine!

2002 - Miller Wine Works - Syrah - Brookside Vineyard - Napa Valley - $38 -  15.5% Vol. - First bottle was corked and dumped it, Second bottle was great, pepper, spice well balances - very good wine

2005-10-25

2002 - Ridge - Geyseville - 84% Zinfandel, 12% Carignane, 4% Petite Sirah - $30 - This tastes like a cherry Cab.  Great start, strong middle and an okay finish.

1995 - Chateau Malescot - St. Exupery - Marqaux - 12.5% - $30 - Barn Yard, Cinnamon, Nutmeg.  Great finish...reminiscent of "Red Hots" candy.

2005-10-15

NV - Veuve Cliquot - Ponsardin Champagne, France Yellow Label

1990 - Chateau Mouton Rothchild - Pauillac, France - Wow '90 Mouton - Packs chocolate and coffee.  This was awesome!

1990 - Chateau LaFite - Pauillac, France - Wow '90 LaFite ....a great tasting night. Full bodied loaded with berry and cedar.

1990 - Grand Vin de Leoville - du Marquis Las Cases St. Julien - another Wow - this is a big wine...very full bodied.  This should be a First Cru Classe someday.

2000 - Robert Foley - Claret - Napa Valley - This is great wine for 2000 but given the other wines that we tasted tonight..it came up short.  Notes of oak, coffee and spice...great finish!

2005-10-14

2000 - York Creek Vineyards - Cabernet Franc - Spring Mountain District - Napa Valley - 113 Cases - 14.5% vol. -

2003 - Robert Biale Vineyards - Royal Punishers - Petite Sirah - $32.00 - 149 Cases - 15.1% vol. -  Wow...this was a big dark wine...a lot of fun to drink.

2000- Hugel - Pinot Gris - Alsace, France - $36 - 13.0% vol. - Great White Wine.  It was like drinking liquid candy.

2003 - Marquis Philips - Shiraz 9 - $40.00 - 16.00% vol. -  Number 9 pack a big punch.  This is no wishy -washy shiraz.  You know it from the second you taste it. 

2003 - Robert Biale Vineyards - Sweet 16 - Late Harvest Zinfandel - 16.6% vol. - This is Black Chicken on Steroids!!! - comes in a 375 ml bottle - this was great to taste!

2005-10-11

2001 - Chateau Duhart-Milon - Domaines Barons De Rothchild (LaFite) - Pauillac - Grand Cru Classe -    $ 20 - Cellar 2007 to 2017 -  This is a good bottle of bordeaux for the price.

1997 - Maddalena Vineyards - Cabernet Sauvignon.  This was a Wine Spectator Best Buy back in 2000.   I've had this in the past with a mix of good and bad bottles do to a shipping problem.  This was a good bottle.  Maddalena is owned by the Riboli Family.  They own eight different vineyards.

1999 - Fritz Cellars - Old Vines Zinfandel.  This is a pretty good zin from the Dry Creek Valley in Somona.  This retailed for around $25.00  More recent vintages have earned ratings from Wine Spectator in the low 90's.

2002 - Bogle Vineyards - Phantom - 56% Petite Sirah, 41% Old Vine Zin, 3% Old Vine Mourvedre - $15 - It's a good value given the under $20 price.

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