Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Exceptional Wines for Your Next Special Occasion

Some end of summer vacation time in Destin, FL with extended family produced plenty of great, special wine drinking occasions (apples don't fall far from their trees in my clan). Here's a quick summary of what went down poolside, tableside, and with a side of everything:

Krutz Family Cellars
Santa Lucia Highlands

The Chardonnay was my favorite of the wines. Some great winemakers like Paul Hobbs make
their wines from this vineyard - famous for its excellent soil and location in the Monterey appellation. There's a tropical kick featuring notes of mango, apricot, pear, and pineapple thanks to a small blend (9%) of Viognier added to the mix. I also tasted vanilla and caramel. It works. Great acidity and a 13-month rest (of which 8 months are Sur Lee) helps focus the wine.
(This review and a review of the other Krutz Family Cellars will soon appear on dirtysouthwine's blog)

Paul Hobbs
2000 Michael Black Vineyard Merlot 1.5ml
Napa Valley

Michael Black vineyard.
Strange to drink something this good from 2000 (seems so long ago and from a different world).

This wine will be my touchstone for all that a Merlot can be for quite some time. I prefer Merlots that aren't the smooth, silky, over-polished style that led to some cinematic disparaging comments.

This Merlot does stand out like a Cab in its boldness ripe cassis and oak flavors. Highly enjoyable with a great steakhouse dinner at Seager's in Destin, FL.

Teralto Family
2002 Episode Bordeaux Blend 1.5 ml
Napa Valley

[From World's Greatest Wines] Episode, a personal expression of the luxury wine experience. Episode is a classic Bordeaux blend, sculpted from the very best Napa Valley fruit.

The inaugural 2001 vintage was big and powerful. Reflecting on it in a recent article, one wine critic observed, "This rare super premium Bordeaux blend from the Terlato family (makers of Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio) has got Opus in its sights!

Flavors are delivered in waves of pretty fruits, blackberry, cherry, plum and currants with hints of cassis, licorice and cedar. The wine is very complete and soulful, giving you the essence of a first-growth Bordeaux."

(Rated 94 )


Look these up on sites like CellarTracker for even more descriptions and community ratings of these wines.

More photos of what was consumed during this vacation along with other food & wine images are at my Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmarcel/

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