Thursday, August 30, 2012

New Age White Wine NV

New Age White Wine NV (wine review and rating)

New Age White Wine NV

Origin: Mendoza, Argentina
Blend: Torront├ęs (90%), Sauvignon Blanc (10%)
Alcohol Content: 9.0%
Bottle Closure: Screw Cap
Purchase Date: August 2012
Purchase Price: $8.99 (750ml bottle)

Our review: Pale stray gold in color, this wine has aromas of apples, caramel, and candied fruit. Slightly fizzy and rather sweet on the palate, the fruit flavors tend towards apple and pear, having an almost juice-like character to them. There is no finish.

Our rating: We don't always get it, but we're usually prepared for one element to strike us as unusual in a bottle of wine. But this one hit us with two: fizzy and sweet, neither of which we associate at all with Torront├ęs, the primary grape in this wine. As such, we would consider this far more of a party-style wine than a food one … though we can see serving it at a Sunday brunch. We didn't dislike it but then again we were totally unprepared for it as well. We score it about Average. (Note: We noticed afterwards that the wine as being marketed more as a cocktail, called the "Tincho", served over ice with a wedge of lime.)

Taste profile from the winemaker: A light yellow-green colored wine, with fruity and floral aromas of great intensity. Balanced acidity leads to soft, semi-sweet and slightly effervescent flavors and mouth feel.

Winery website: Quintessential Wines: New Age.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

flipflop Sauvignon Blanc NV

flipflop Sauvignon Blanc NV (wine review and rating)

flipflop Sauvignon Blanc NV

Origin: Chile
Blend: Sauvignon Blanc (100%)
Alcohol Content: 12.5%
Bottle Closure: Screw Cap
Purchase Date: August 2012
Purchase Price: $5.99 (750ml bottle)

Our review: Light lemon yellow in color, this wine has aromas of freshly squeezed lemons and lemon zest with faint notes of tropical fruit. The palate is similar, reminiscent of lemonade, with crisp tartness a good acidic balance. The finish is clean, though relatively brief.

Our rating: The "flipflop" concept to this brand suggests this is a casual wine and we agree: it does have a light, summer, fun character to it. Versatile enough to accompany almost any cuisine, we'd suggest pairing it with something cooked outdoors, such as grilled chicken or shrimp, and vegetable kabobs. Or maybe something a bit more adventurous, like kielbasa. It's a simple, straight-forward wine, nothing too fancy but, then again, it's not intended to be. We rate it Above Average … and certainly one of the better examples of this varietal at this price point.

Taste profile from the winemaker: Light-bodied, aromatic Sauvignon Blanc with exuberant grapefruit and key lime notes, and a zesty, refreshing finish.

Winery website: flipflop: to each, their own.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

AlVerdi Pinot Grigio 2010

AlVerdi Pinot Grigio 2010 (wine review and rating)

AlVerdi Pinot Grigio 2010

Origin: Terre degli Osci, Italy
Blend: Pinot Grigio (100%)
Alcohol Content: 12.0%
Bottle Closure: Screw Cap
Purchase Date: August 2012
Purchase Price: $6.99 (750ml bottle)

Our review: Light golden yellow in color, this wine has very pleasant aromas of apples and pears coupled with notes of sweet pineapple and a hint of banana. Very smooth on the palate with soft edges, the fruit flavors tend more towards tropical in character; there is a sensation of sweetness, though it is actually rather dry. It finishes by simply allowing the flavors of the palate to slowly diminish.

Our rating: This is an elegantly crafted and quite delicious wine, and not at all like most of this varietal from Italy. There is a lot of structure here, all the components of which work well together. We had planned on serving our bottle with chicken and risotto; only a small amount actually made it to the table as we consumed most it during the meal preparations. We disagreed a bit on what the minor flaws were, but did agree that this is just shy of an Excellent wine. And an absolutely incredible value at just $7.

Taste profile from the winemaker: A fresh, floral nose with notes of acacia flowers. On the palate it is dry and well-balanced with lively fruit flavors.

Winery website: None found.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Clifford Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2011

Clifford Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2011 (wine review and rating)

Clifford Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2011

Origin: Marlborough, New Zealand
Blend: Sauvignon Blanc (100%)
Alcohol Content: 13.0%
Bottle Closure: Screw Cap
Purchase Date: June 2012
Purchase Price: $8.99 (750ml bottle)

Our review: Pale silver-straw in color with green highlights, this wine has strong aromas of citrus (grapefruit, lime), lemongrass, and orange zest. The acidity from the citrus fruit flavors is nicely balanced on the palate, crisp but not tart. The grassiness initially present evolves into a more mineral character on the finish, which is lengthy.

Our rating: This wine is very typical of a New Zealand crafting of this varietal, though better than most. The harsh edges that could have been dominant are nicely softened here, resulting in a well structured wine. We paired our bottle with freshly grilled whitefish, something we usually do with Sauvignon Blancs, and found it a very nice match, though we think it could be served with most any seafood or dishes that have a significant vegetable element to them. We previously rated the 2009 vintage Excellent and the 2010 vintage Above Average to Excellent; we think the present wine is just between the two, but scores slightly closer to the latter.

Taste profile from the winemaker: The wine possesses a light straw colour and tropical aromas of citrus and white peach. The palate exhibits the same fine flavours followed by a crisp, dry, flinty finish.

Winery website: Clifford Bay: New Zealand Wine.

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