Monday, May 29, 2017

Local winery using Napa grapes

This winery is two blocks from my shop and about 9 blocks from where I live. We have tasted wines there a few years ago but haven't bought any for some time. This one is on sale at Shopper's Corner for $ 17.95 , a really good price for a St. Helena Cabernet. It lives up to the pedigree for the most part-not super rich but still a really classy medium body red. I'll give it 8 1/2 swiggs-a great score for any wine at this price.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

A few years makes a difference

About 5-6 years ago I was getting the '08 Ursa Sierra foothills Syrah at the local liquor store for about $8.95. and really enjoying it. After awhile the store ran out and eventually replaced it with this 2010 edition. I was not as impressed with the '10 and it had a new price of $ 17.99.  This was a couple of years ago - just yesterday I decided to give the '10 another try- my patience was rewarded with something really great. This wine has all the broad spectrum of flavors that mark the best offerings from the Sierra foothills. I don't think that this one is widely available but it is worth the search. It is one of the best of the year so far. We gave it a strong 8 1/2 swiggs.....very good for a sub-$ 20.00 wine. If I take a trip  up to that area of Calif. I will try to stop by the winery and see what they have.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Sonoma bitch ! a good one....

While getting some office supplies at CVS I wandered into the wine section. You never know what they might have on sale and I was rewarded with this St. Francis Sonoma Cabernet 2013 for only $ 13.95 . I have generally been a fan of St. Francis, especially the hard to find Merlot-these wines are always pretty good but this one is really,really good-maybe a touch tannic but very rich and full for a Sonoma wine at this price. Go find it-maybe it is still on sale !   8 1/2 swiggs.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Nice price on a Napa stalwart

We don't get to drink this one very often as it is usually priced out of the Swiggtator comfort zone. Trader Joes has this 2012 Freemark Abbey Napa Merlot for $ 21.99 , about $ 16.00 less than the winery price. The wine is dark and rich as one would expect from this very established winery-a bit tannic and dry but still really good. I am going to see if the Cabernet is also at Trader Joes....I have seen it there on occasion. I am sure that it will be a bit more but if it is under $ 30.00 it represents a really good deal for a top-tier wine. We had this one with pasta and a salad, probably not what one would typically associate pairing with such a dense wine but it worked well enough for us. The price makes is a weekend treat and too spendy for most occasions but this is coming into the holidays so what the heck......give it a try. 9 swiggs.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Napa Cabernet at a good price

Every once in awhile I will give a sub-$ 20.00 Napa Cab a try to see if I can find a winner. This Uppercut Napa valley Cabernet 2013 comes pretty close. The wine is not tannic and ready to enjoy. While it might not be as full bodied and rich as the best from Napa it is at such a low price ( $17.99 ) that it is really worth a try . This one is available at Trader Joes. It has really nice fruit flavor and none of the vegetal elements that make some Napa wines unappetizing to me. All good here and a good choice for a weekend treat.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Napa Merlot at a decent price

This Tangley Oaks 2012 'Lot 13' Napa valley merlot is one I had not tried. I'm always on the hunt for the classic Napa taste at an under $ 20 price point and at $ 16.99  this one was in the range. On the back it states that the wine was in barrels for around 20 months, bottled in 2014 and released last year. All that waiting provides a very nice-not overpowering Napa red that is really outstanding for the price. We had it with some pasta with red sauce and a salad. The wine paired up really well with the pasta-good enough to merit 9 swiggs. This wine is sold by the Terlato wine group so it is probably available in more places than just the bay area. I found it at Shopper's Corner here in Santa Cruz.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Tobin James Rhone style

GSM, Grenache , Syrah, Mourvedre.......these grapes are blended to make some spectacular wines in the south France. Since the '70's there has been a bit of a similar thing going on in Paso Robles and Sonoma as well. Tobin James always seems to put their own stamp on a grape varietal , maybe a bit less subtle than most but the wines are undeniable good. This 2012 GSM really is different than their other offerings. That is one thing I appreciate about Tobin James......there;s a theme to their winemaking but each wine is really distinct- a hard thing to pull off in a climate so hot that every grape is pushed to the limit in terms of ripeness. This one does not disappoint. We gave it 9 swiggs and you can find it at the winery.