August 21, 2008

Domaine de la Batardiere Muscadet 2006

batardieremuscadet.jpgVARIETAL: Muscadet
REGION: Loire Valley, France
PRICE: $10

Also known as Melon de Borgogne, Muscadet is the perfect quaffer for the languid, hazy days of summer. If you find yourself feeling a little wilted and weary, chill a bottle of the Domaine de la Batardiere and prepare to be refreshed. The bouquet is all sweet smelling summer fruit. Succulent peach, melon and and citrus aromas are a little misleading. Though sweetly fragrant, this wine has very little residual sugar. Vivacious and vibrant with grapefruit and lime cleaning the palate. It is super crisp and clean with a distinctly Loire minerality that just begs for steamed crabs and fresh Maryland silver queen corn... or just a steamy evening on the porch swing.

Look for it at BevMo ( if you have one) or Whole Foods. But make sure you get the 2006. I initially, mistakenly picked up a leftover 2004 and though it wasn't terrible, it certainly was not a prime example of what a Muscadet can and should be.

Read More in: White Wine | Wine Tasting Notes

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August 14, 2008

St. M Riesling 2006

saintM.jpgVARIETAL: Riesling
REGION: Pfalz, Germany
PRICE: $11

It is no surprise that the Saint M is a Dr. Loosen Estate wine. True to its roots, this riesling is soft and subtly sweet like ripe nectar pressed from early summer peaches and green pears. It thankfully resists the cloying sweetness that is often expressed in cheaper German rieslings, though it still has that slight twinge of kerosene that is so typical. Is that terrior? Or just an oddity of the varietal? I don't know, but it seems more pronounced in sweeter incarnations. The Saint M redeems itself with a light and lovely crispness that foils the sweet viscosity and cleanses the palate a bit. I'm partial to pairing rieslings with spicy noodle or rice dishes, but tonight I was adventurous and tried it with a jerked pork tenderloin. Good, but maybe better with a heavier riesling or gewurtz.

I found mine at my nearest market, but if you have trouble getting it locally, you can find it here: Saint M Riesling

Read More in: White Wine | Wine Tasting Notes

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August 12, 2008

Recycled Windshield Wine Glasses

windshield-glasses.jpgCheck out these fantastic and green (literally) stemless wine glasses from Uncommon Goods:

Handmade in Colombia of recycled glass from old car windows, these substantial stemless wine glasses will add an interesting twist to any glass of wine. Sturdy and strong, the thick glass has a slight green hue from the tint originally added to lessen the sun's glare. Beautiful and interesting, these stemless wine glasses are an uncommon take on a stylish design. Each is one of a kind and will vary. Sold as a set of 2.

Charming and stylish for only $22. And they are dishwasher safe.

Image and content via Uncommon Goods

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August 8, 2008

La Grande Dame by Riva Collection

veuveriva.jpgI'd like to tell you that this was my anniverary present...and that we enjoyed it while drifting off the coast of Cap-Ferrat. Alas, I would be hallucinating. But it is nice to dream. For the Champagne lover with impeccable taste and very deep pockets, check out the Veuve Clicquot Riva Collection, courtesy of Acquire:

Veuve Clicquot and luxury yacht builder, Riva, are collaborating on a stunning collection of products called "La Grande Dame". The collection features two products -- The Cruiser Collection which is a made to measure piece and comes with 4 bottles of La Grande Dame, 2 magnums of La Grande Dame 88, 6 Riedel Champagne Flutes, 6 water tumblers, plates, table mats, and cutlery. The second item is their "Cruiser Bag" which is a limited edition piece (Only 300 made) and includes a bottle of La Grande Dame 88 and two champagne flutes.

Via Acquire

Read More in: Swanky Wine Fridays | Wine Accessories

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August 5, 2008

Pour on - Porrón Wine Pitcher

porron.jpgIf you are a fan of Spanish wine (and food, and culture), you must check out this fantastic pitcher from La Tienda. It is only $19.95, which makes it a great hostess gift, guaranteed to liven even the dullest gathering. I wouldn't start with a priorat. . . but maybe a lovely albarino. . .

A porrón is a sure-fire way to have fun at a summer party. See if you and your guests can master the technique of delivering a thin stream of wine into your mouth with nary a drop lost!
You begin by bringing the traditional glass wine pitcher very close to your open mouth and slowly tilting the pitcher so the spout points towards your teeth. Once the wine begins to flow, you gradually pull the porrón away from your face while looking up. When you have had your fill, lower the porrón back close to your mouth before tilting it back to stop the flow. It never touches your lips as you pass the porrón to your adventurous friend!
Easy? Once you get the hang of it. Most people fill the pitcher with regular white or red wine, but we find that sparkling cava fills the bill nicely, and the near misses are not quite so obvious.

Our traditional porrón is a thing of beauty made of recycled glass, which will please your "green" sensibilities. It is shaped in a way that wine stored within has minimal contact with the air.

Give the Porrón Pitcher a try - it's a great conversation piece and a lot of fun.

Image and content via La Tienda - The Best of Spain in America

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Noël Wallace Permalink social bookmarking

August 4, 2008

Washington Hills Gewurztraminer 2006

small_Gewurzt_label.jpgVARIETAL: Gewurztraminer
REGION: Columbia Valley, Washington
PRICE: $7.99

It isn't often that I take three sips of a wine and hastily dispose of the remainder in my sink. I have only one word to adequately describe my experience with this wine: blech! I bought it to accompany my weekly Indian fix and as usual, before dinner, I readied my notepad and poured myself a glass. It smelled fine. Not as aromatic as Gewurtz should be in my opinion, but it seemed drinkable. And then, BLECH!! Pixie stix meets overripe grapes. I spit it out and did my due diligence. I waited to taste it with dinner before making my final judgment. After all, sometimes wine tastes better with food. Ugh. Why did I bother? Unappealing and overall undrinkable. If you want to give it the benefit of the doubt it could very well be a bad bottle or just past its prime. But as for me, I'll be steering clear of Washington Hills wines for a while. I'm still shuddering. . .

Read More in: White Wine | Wine Tasting Notes

Noël Wallace Permalink social bookmarking

August 1, 2008

To Market, To Market - Bread & Wine Bag

breadwinebag.jpgI love it and I hate it . . . where to begin?
I LOVE the idea of a bread and wine bag to take to the market. It is very laid-back-European and of course, appeals to my inner conservationist. I've often wondered how I could keep my wine bottle(s) from crushing delicate produce in my floppy, pocket-less canvas satchel. This leather version from Rebecca Minkoff is an adorable solution.

HOWEVER, I'm disinclined to pay $185 for a leather bag that will doubtless encounter all manner of leaks, spills, and sweaty refrigerated foods. How about a cheap, fun canvas or burlap version? Way more my speed. I don't think you need to spend a fortune to conserve. Oxymoron, anyone? These days being "green" is often synonymous with spending green.

That said, if you have the disposable income, by all means splurge. And then keep coming back to us for cheap, fun picks to fill the wine pocket.


Read More in: Swanky Wine Fridays | Wine Accessories

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July 31, 2008

Drinking from a Drop - Fubiz™

droppa.jpgCheck out this crazy cool carafe. Definitely not the most practical for wine--the base is only about 10cm--but it might work for sake or for a romantic dinner for two. The water droplet design is breathtaking. And I love that the cup, carafe and tray are a fluid, self-contained unit. Check out more photos after the jump.

Via Fubiz

Read More in: Wine Accessories

Noël Wallace Permalink social bookmarking

July 29, 2008

Cat's Phee on a Gooseberry Bush 2007

catspheeLABEL.jpgVARIETAL: Sauvignon Blanc
REGION: New Zealand
PRICE: $10

Remember that pucker you got when you first popped a Lemonhead in your mouth? Well amplify that about ten times and you'll get this extremely vibrant New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Aromas of cut grass and a certain l'eau du chat that the name implies are a little sharp. Explosions of zesty lime follow on your palate and reinforce the racy nature of this wine. I love the irreverence of the name, but I do wish the wine was a little more well rounded. Fun and refreshing, but a little one-dimensional.

I found mine at Cost Plus World Market, but if you require further investigation, check out the Coopers Creek site.

Read More in: White Wine | Wine Tasting Notes

Noël Wallace Permalink social bookmarking

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