Category Archives: Cabernet Sauvignon

Napa Valley: Part One of My California Wine Adventure

Chateau Montelena

Chateau Montelena

I finally made it out to the Bay Area to visit my sister. Now obviously the most important part of the trip was spending time with my sister but wine tasting was definitely an added bonus! It was a pretty great trip not only did I get to see my sister but my parents came out at the same time. We went to a couple wineries in Napa and a few more in Sonoma. We also spent a day at Alcatraz and a day drinking wine and eating fresh oysters on the beach. All and all a pretty fabulous trip!

So let get down to the important stuff, wine! I’m going to split this into multiple post since there is some much to cover. Let’s start with Napa. Read the rest of this entry

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Harvest Fest at Bin36- Blend Your Own Wine

Harvest Fest

It’s fall and that means it’s harvest season. Here in Chicago there isn’t exactly a lot of winemaking going on, but Bin36 doesn’t let its patrons miss out on harvest activities. Every fall they host a Harvest Festival. This year was the 2nd time I have gone. It’s a chance to blend your own wine. You heard me blend your own wine. It’s a fun experience and your newly blended wine is a cool gift idea and arrives in time for the holidays.

Here’s how it works. There are 3 stations a smelling station, a blending station and a buying station. Read the rest of this entry

Your Wine, Your Personality

 

Everything we do can say a lot about our personalities and what you choose to drink is really no different right? Well I normally find these generalizations rather boring but sometimes they’re kinda true. So what does your wine perference say about you?

Cabernet Sauvignon:
Conseravtive, Powerful, Bussiness Executive

Why? Cabs are usually full bodied wines with dark fruits

Chardonnay:
In Control, Leader, and Dominate

Why? Chardonnays usually are high in alchohol and aged in barrels that give the wine a fulled bodied oaky flavor that stands out

Pinot Grigio:
Cautious, you are fully aware of work works for you

Why? Pinot Grigios are light and have both fruity,mineral notes.

Pinot Noir:
high standards, quality is exteremly important, willing to pay for well made wines

Why? Pinot Noir may be the toughest grape to grow, but the effort is often well worth the constant care and investment.

Sauvignon Blanc:
Outgoing, stands out in every room they walk into, life of the party

Why? Sauvignon Blanc offers a fairly wide range of flavors. From herbal taste sensations to veggie, and from flavors of grass, hay and mineral tones to a citrus and tropical flavor mix

Riesling:
Breath of fresh air, kind personality, never boring

Why? Riesling is one of the wine world’s “new” sweethearts. Its food pairing versatility and refreshing palate appeal

Gewürztraminer:
Creative, Risk Taker, thinking outside the square

Why? Gewürztraminer is not your normal everyday wine. Hints of Lychee, spicy, and exotic

Whatever your choice of wine just remember to enjoy! Never stop trying different and new wines you may end up finding your new favorite.

Cheers!

Lissette

 

Trader Joe’s: Wine Picks

Trader Joe’s is a place that many of us go grocery shopping. We find that they have a great selection of almost everything. You like fruit they have it and usually for a good price. You like cheese, they have that too, and its pretty good cheese. What about crackers you like those? Yep they have a wide assortment. These are items you may snack on while drinking wine. BUT does Trader Joe’s have a good selection of wine???

Well like any store that sells wine you’ll find that sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. However Dana and I have made our picks on wines that you should look into and buy on your next trip to Trader Joe’s

 

Lissette’s Picks:

Purple Moon Shiraz

Now let me just start off by saying this little gem is $5.99. And if you’re on a budget this is the wine you want to take to your friend’s house. Its fruity but not sweet and like many Shiraz it has a nice peppery finish but it certainly doesn’t overtake the fruit you taste at the beginning. Its smooth. This wine maybe something you may have with Pizza or a nice pasta with meat sauce. Or you can be just like me and drink it while watching a good TV show. Either way you can’t go wrong for the price. Read the rest of this entry

Wine is Good for you, No really it is

It’s not news to many that red wine is good for you. More specifically red wine can be something your heart will thank you for later.

A little history on wine. Back in the day wine was considered to be healthier to drink then water because it was considered to be more hygienic. i.e. alcohol.

Today however wine is good for you because it has been known to reduce incidences of atherosclerosis and heart disease, most likely due to the presence of numerous bioactive phenolic compounds in red wine products. Basically the antioxidant are helping to capillaries and on the collagen in the walls of the blood vessels.

Additionally, there are also studies that show that wine drinkers have the lowest incidence of colon cancer, only 1% as a posed to 18% of beer drinkers and 12% of non-drinkers.

I know what you are asking…

Which wines will give me the most benefits?

  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Petit Syrah
  • Pinot Noir

White wines have less health benefits, but remember the sweeter the wine, the fewer the benefits. The dryer the red wines the more you’ll get out of it.

How much red wine should I drink?

  • Women-4 ounces
  • Men-4-8 ounces

What if I have other health problems?

Talk to your doctor and discuss what if any wine you can or are allowed to have.

Now you have an excuse to drink wine everyday.

Cheers!

North by Northwest

On Saturday Dana and I attended a Pacific Northwest Wine tasting at Bodega Ramos. While I have tasted wines from Columbia Valley this particular wine tasting included Oregon. I must give some Kudos to Bodega Ramos for setting up this wonderful tasting. It was informative and was small enough that tasters could ask questions and really understand how the wine has been made. If you get a chance I suggest you go and visit Bodega Ramos and ask questions they’ll be happy to help.

Claar Cellars Sauvignon Blanc-$15.99
This white wine was crisp and had some wonderful acidity. Hint of sweet fruit it almost had a honeydew taste with some kiwi.

McKinley Springs Viognier-$19.99
I normally like Viognier but remember that while the grapes maybe the same the enviorment can determine the taste along with how the wine making process was done. This wasn’t my favorite it had a nutty flavor that I didn’t appreciate but Dana enjoyed it. If you’re a full bodied red wine drinker this maybe a white wine you enjoy.

Two Mountain Hidden Horse Red-$17.99
This is a great light red wine. If you don’t like tannins this maybe the wine for you. I personally love a light bodied red wine which maybe why Pinot Noir is my favorite. I bought this wine and I must say that this wine is a blended wine. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Lemberger and Malbec. This had dark fruits and some vanilla. Sound good right?

Gilbert Cellars Left Bank-$26.99
This is a blended wine Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Merlot, Malbec. The majority of this wine is a Cabernet Sauvignon. I personally found this to be a little too rich and robust for me and the pepper wasn’t something I personally enjoyed but Dana loved this wine. This is a full bodied wine so if you love a tannins this maybe the wine for you.

Maysara Pinot Noir Roseena Rose-$19.99
As Dana pointed out in the pervious blog post Rose’s a great summer wine for there light flavors. This wine was soft and fresh. This wine is perfect for shellfish or a nice talipia.

Andrew Rich Tabula Rasa-$19.99
I was a big fan of this red wine. I kept thinking it was like a Broadway Show. Soft to start and then had a nice big finish. It starts off fruity and ends in what I kept thinking tasted like chocolate, there wasn’t any in it but that’s the taste I was left with and I loved it. I enjoyed a few more tastings of this that night. Dana loved the finish because of the bold taste.

Owen Roe Ex-Humbris Syrah-$31.99
Full and Rich is the best way to describe this wine. Dana loved it and I of course wasn’t a big fan. The tannins were too much and the tast was too strong for me. The spices were too much but this is all a matter of taste and opinion. I can’t say it enough. If you love bolder wine this is good for you.

Corvidae The Keeper Cab Franc-$20.99
This red wine was also a full bodied wine but I have to admit I actually liked this wine. It had a creamy velvety taste. The spices had a good balance and I kept thinking a nice grilled strip steak would taste amazing with this wine. This wine was earthy which I normally enjoy.

Lemelson Vineyards Dry Riesling-$25.99
I love Riesling and so I knew I would like it. This didn’t have a very sweet taste but you could really smell the peachy fruit. The taste was slightly sweet but not overwhelming.

Lemelson Vineyards Tikka’s Run Pinot Gris-$24.99
I didn’t know if I’d like this wine and it turns out. I loved it. This is why you go to wine tastings to find out what you like and discover a new favorite. What I loved about this wine is that over ripe fruit. When I had this wine I wanted cheese.

Brick House Gamay-$28.99
This wine was made in limited quanties. I enjoyed this wine because it was bright and had a rich flavor. It was a intense without leaving an overwhelming taste. It had an earthy taste I enjoyed. Very old world wine.

Hamacher Cellars Pinot Noir-$27.99
This wine put a smile on my face. It was light with hints sweet berries, vanilla, and the finish was smooth. This is a wine that I think anyone would love and enjoy both in the winter and summer (and anywhere in between).

Cheers!

A Wine Filled Easter Weekend

My parents were in town this weekend for Easter. This means I had lots of good wine and good food!   They got in Thursday night and we started the weekend with a French Burgundy at the Red Rooster Wine Bar. The 2000 Laboure-Roi of the Gevrey Chambertin appellation was a very smooth wine. Being that the bottle was a 2000 the tannins had time to mellow. The wine was very balanced and had the old word characteristics you would expect from a French wine; dark fruit and hints of leather. You may be thinking leather? That’s kind of weird but leather is actually a common characteristic of wine. And can add some real complexity to a bottle of wine.

The second night my parent were here we ate in. my mother made an awesome rack of lamb and we started with a 2010 Villa Des Anges Rose from France. It’s important to note that a rose is NOT the same thing as a White Zinfandel. I repeat Rose is NOT the same as White Zinfandel. This rose run about $11 a bottle and is a perfect pre-dinner sipping wine.  It is very light and crisp. It is a dry rose (I’m not a fan of sweeter wines) and is great on its own, but would pair well with salads, seafood and other light dishes. Read the rest of this entry

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